Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Dr Binayak Sen walks out, a free man

On May 11, a meeting was held at CMC-Vellore to mark the second anniversary of rights activist Dr Binayak Sen's incarceration. There have been several campaigns for his release across India, even in Chennai, spearheaded by activists here like A Narayanan. Today, Sen walked out of jail, a free man. The Supreme Court granted him bail. However, he says he fears for his life, and that is not good news at all.

Sen’s movement was against the Chattisgarh government and its violence, and, according to a PTI report, he said his movement against state violence would continue. And, of course, he felt happy to be a free man once again. Who doesn’t value freedom?

Sen is vice president of the People's Union of Civil Liberties (PUCL) and was in jail since May 14, 2007 on charges under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act of acting as a courier for an alleged Naxalite leader lodged in a Chattisgarh jail while on a visit as a doctor.

The PTI report quotes Sen as saying that he has been condemning all forms of violence whether by Maoists or police or in the forceful displacement of people from their land.

To quote Sen from the PTI report: "The PUCL and my personal voice continues to be raised against the Salwa Judum. We will work for political engagement instead of military engagement. I would say military engagement should be stopped and a peace formula should be restored. People should not be killed and political problems should be sorted out by discussions and talks."

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