Swami Aseemanand Says the RSS Chief Mohan Bhagwat Sanctioned Terrorist Attacks

Summary of Aseemanand’s Interview

(Based on a Press Release issued by The Caravan magazine, February 5, 2014)


Swami Aseemanand at Police Custody

Swami Aseemanand, incarcerated in Ambala Central Jail for abetting terrorist attacks on various targets between 2006 and 2008—Samjhauta Express (February 2007), Hyderabad Mecca Masjid (May 2007), Ajmer Dargah (October 2007) and two attacks in Malegaon (September 2006 and September 2008)—which together took the lives of 119 people, has made a revelation toThe Caravan which has been published in the latest issue of the magazine. In the course of over two years, Aseemanand granted four exclusive interviews to The Caravan journalist Leena Gita Reghunath inside Ambala jail, the total duration of which ran into 09 hours and 26 minutes. In the last two interviews, Aseemanand repeated that his terrorist acts were sanctioned by the highest levels of the RSS—all the way up to Mohan Bhagwat, the current RSS chief, who was the organisation’s general secretary at the time. Aseemanand told The Caravan that Bhagwat said of the violence, “It is very important that it be done. But you should not link it to the Sangh.”

 Extract from the 11,200-word-long The Caravan article:

Over the course of our conversations, Aseemanand’s description of the plot in which he was involved became increasingly detailed. In our third and fourth interviews, he told me that his terrorist acts were sanctioned by the highest levels of the RSS—all the way up to Mohan Bhagwat, the current RSS chief, who was the organisation’s general secretary at the time.Aseemanand told me that Bhagwat said of the violence, “It’s very important that it be done. But you should not link it to the Sangh.”

Aseemanand told me about a meeting that allegedly took place, in July 2005. After an RSS conclave in Surat, senior Sangh leaders including Bhagwat and Indresh Kumar, who is now on the organisation’s powerful seven-member national executive council, travelled to a temple in the Dangs, Gujarat, where Aseemanand was living—a two-hour drive. In a tent pitched by a river several kilometres away from the temple, Bhagwat and Kumar met with Aseemanand and his accomplice Sunil Joshi. Joshi informed Bhagwat of a plan to bomb several Muslim targets around India. According to Aseemanand, both RSS leaders approved, and Bhagwat told him, “You can work on this with Sunil. We will not be involved, but if you are doing this, you can consider us to be with you.”

 Aseemanand continued, “Then they told me, ‘Swamiji, if you do this we will be at ease with it. Nothing wrong will happen then. Criminalisation nahin hoga (It will not be criminalised). If you do it, then people won’t say that we did a crime for the sake of committing a crime. It will be connected to the ideology. This is very important for Hindus. Please do this. You have our blessings.’

Chargesheets filed by the investigative agencies allege that Kumar provided moral and material support to the conspirators, but they don’t implicate anyone as senior as Bhagwat. Although Kumar was interrogated once by the CBI, the case was later taken over by the NIA, which has not pursued the conspiracy past the level of Aseemanand and Pragya Singh. (Joshi, who was allegedly the connecting thread between several different parts of the conspiracy—including those who assembled and those who planted the bombs—was killed under mysterious circumstances in December 2007.)

Sixty-three-year-old Aseemanand dedicated almost his entire adult life to the tribal arm of the RSS, the Vanvasi Kalyan Ashram (VKA). At the time he planned the terrorist attacks, he had been the national head of the VKA’s religious wing, the Shraddha Jagran Vibhag—a position created especially for him—for a decade. In honour of Aseemanand’s service to the Sangh, in December 2005, he was awarded a special Guruji Samman on the occasion of the birth centenary of MS Golwalkar. The award came with a one-lakh-rupee cash prize and the veteran BJP leader and former party president Murli Manohar Joshi gave the ceremony’s keynote address. Not only have the RSS and the BJP never disowned Aseemanand for his roles in the terrorist attacks, or taken back the awards, Aseemanand confessed to The Caravan that RSS-affiliated lawyers are providing his legal aid.

Knowing the national relevance of the sensitive information that Aseemanand revealed to The Caravan journalist, in an interview which was conducted with the full consent of Aseemanand, we place these facts in front of the public, along with a tape recording and transcript of parts of the conversation that mention Mohan Bhagwat. The full story is atcaravanmagazine.in/reportage/believer – See more at: http://caravanmagazine.in/print/4150#sthash.Weap2Mpb.dpuf

Aseemanand also states that his confession to involvement in blasts, recorded in front of a magistrate, was not done under torture:

“They brought me to Delhi. Then the judge asked me “Kya bata rahein hain aap? Yeh sab sahi hain kya? Main likh ke rakh raha hun yahan — ki aapko phaansi ho sakta hain, yeh aap ko pata hain? Yeh main aapse pooch raha hoon, aap kya jawab denge? So I said, haan main taiyyar hoon. (What are you saying? Is this the truth? I am writing this down here – that I have asked you this, whether you understand that you could be hanged for this. What is your answer to that? I said, I am ready for the consequences.) Then the Sangh’s lawyers told me, aapko hum ab bacha nahin payenge. (We can’t save you now.) Then they said that I should give a statement that I was tortured. I said write whatever you want, and I will sign it. But sahi mein torture nahin hua hain. (But in truth they didn’t torture me.)”

Aseemanand’s words on his work in Gujarat during the 2002 genocide is also significant:

“Gujarat mein, main Hindutva ka kaam ke liye gaya. Aur aap ko kya main bataoon, 2002 mein jo Godhra aaya, Gujarat ke us adivasi area mein jo Mussalmano ka safaya kiya, usmein bhi main bahut active raha. Usme par main samne nahi aaya tha, isi liye me choot gaya. Adivasi area mein jo kaam kiya hain, woh direct adivasi ne hi kiya. Hum saamne nahi aaye. Abhi tak wahaan koi waapas nahi aaya. Baki sab jagah jo gaye woh waapas aaye. Yahaan pe aa hi nahin saktein. Dang mein nahi tha: par Panchmahal se leke uttar tak.

(I went to Gujarat for the work of Hindutva. Let me tell you this, in 2002, when Godhra happened, the cleansing of Muslims from the adivasi areas, I was very active in that. I didn’t reveal myself at the time, so I went free. The work done in adivasi areas was done directly by the adivasis. I did not come forward. And no one [no Muslim] has returned there so far. They’ve returned to all the other places. Here they cannot return. They weren’t in Dang, but from Panchmahal to the north.)”




Yatra to Visit DU Colleges and Localities across the City and Collect Signatures on a Petition to the President Demanding Roll Back of FYUP!!

Roll Back FYUP! Save Our Future!


Delhi wide ‘FYUP Hatao Bhavisya Bachao’ Yatra organised by AISA was flagged off from Arts Faculty, North Campus, Delhi University. The Yatra was flagged off by Delhi University Teachers Association (DUTA) President Prof. Nandita Narain. The Yatra will travel across the city of Delhi  and visit all colleges under DU and colonies and localities. In the course of the Yatra signatures will be collected on a petition addressed to the President of India, who is also the Visitor of DU, demanding the rollback of FYUP.

Speaking at the inauguration of the Yatra AISA leader Niraj said, ‘While the Congress-led UPA forcibly imposed FYUP, the BJP, despite being the principal opposition and having hundreds of MPs and MLAs, extended support through silence. While UPA awarded Padamshree to the DU VC, BJP’s Prime-ministerial Candidate Narendra Modi made DU VC an honoured guest at his Education Summit. Common students and teachers had hope in the AAP for intervention. Unfortunately the AAP too, during its 49 days stint in Delhi Govt and despite getting daily high-voltage media presence, remained significantly silent and non-interventionist on this massive corruption with education system of the largest central university of this country. And, the DUSU leadership, despite being elected on an anti-FYUP mandate, never led sustained struggle and allowed FYUP to continue.  Through this Yatra we will go to the students, teachers of DU and also to the citizens of Delhi and ask them to join the movement to roll back FYUP save Delhi University’

Flagging of the Yatra DUTA President, Nandita Narain said, ‘I congratulate AISA for undertaking this Yatra and DUTA will extend all its support to the Yatra when it visits various DU Colleges. It is very important for teachers and students to stand united against FYUP and fight a decisive battle to roll back FYUP. The DU VC should understand that we are not going to be scared of his intimidating tactics. I wish all success to the Yatra organised by AISA’

The Yatra visited Ramjas College, Kirori Mal College, Hansraj College and Hindu College where pamphlets were distributed and signatures collected on the petition. The Yatra will will visit Shradanand, Aditi Mahavidalaya and also visit the localities of Narela, Bawana and Alipur localities on 27.2.14.

Since 15 January, AISA had undertaken a massive campaign, seeking feedback on Four Year Under-Graduate Proframme, (FYUP) in Delhi University, from more than 17000 students. More than 90% of these students have stated that they still want to finish Honours in 3 years. Students openly proclaimed in the feedback that FYUP has proved to be a disaster. Thousands of teachers and students participated in numerous protests since the day it was unilaterally implemented. In a Referendum on FYUP held in August 22, 2013 out of 11,556 students 10,519 students (91.02%) voted against the FYUP. Yet the DU VC remains adamant in his authoritarian attitude and FYUP isn’t being scrapped. His aim is to reduce DU into a private teaching shop that churns out semi-skilled students as a reserve army required for low-paid jobs in the mushrooming corporate sector.

Our Experience in the First semester :-

  •  Most non- DC papers are an utter waste of time and energy. The burden of sub-standard foundation courses don’t allow us to concentrate on courses of the main discipline. These unwanted courses and lack of infrastructure forcing us to stay in college till 5 pm.
  • The ‘multiple exits’ options are nothing but attempts to get rid of dropouts. If we move after second year with a ‘DIPLOMA’, it will be a diploma in which subject?
  • The Fourth year is also an extra financial burden of nearly 2 lakh rupees which most of us cannot bear. The FYUP enhances existing inequality in Indian society as hard working students of Hindi medium or rural background are overburdened with useless courses forcing them to drop-out in between.
  • In FYUP, only 20 out of 50 papers in FYUP is from DC I; whereas, in 3 Yr Hons. 75% of the papers were from core discipline. So, despite spending both time and money on an extra year, the students will have less knowledge of their core discipline!
  • In short, FYUP means un-specified ‘drop-out’ degrees (diploma) for those who cannot afford 4 years; and less knowledge and more costs for those who are forced to spend 4 years.

Honours in 3 Years for Present Batch is still Possible : If in the next two years (or four semesters) students are given a choice to NOT study the remaining 4 FCs, 4 Applied Courses, 6 Cultural Activity papers and 4 out of 6 DC II, than in our second and third year we shall get rid of 14 non-honours courses. In these 14 slots one can easily study those 6 DC1 + 2 Research (main honours) papers which are forced currently in the fourth year.

Students and Teachers of DU are fighting for the roll back of FYUP. However, all those political forces who have strong presence in the Parliament, Assembly and DUSU never chose to oppose and stall FYUP.

While the Congress-led UPA forcibly imposed FYUP, the BJP, despite being the principal opposition and having hundreds of MPs and MLAs, extended support through silence. While UPA awarded padamashree to the DU VC, BJP’s Prime-ministerial Candidate Narendra Modi made DU VC an honoured guest at his Education Summit. Common students and teachers had hope in the AAP for intervention. Unfortunately the AAP too, during its 49 days stint in Delhi Govt and despite getting daily high-voltage media presence, remained significantly silent and non-interventionist on this massive corruption with education system of the largest central university of this country. And, the DUSU leadership, despite being elected on an anti-FYUP mandate, never led sustained struggle and  allowed FYUP to continue.

It is now clear that if FYUP is allowed to stay and spread than it will completely ruin the higher education system of our country. It is a larger game. There is indeed a vested interest in degrading the affordable and quality education of DU – so as to benefit the private and foreign universities that are making a business of education! 

And no country can build a secure future without securing the quality of its universities and the future of its students. The need of the hour is to unite and strengthen the honest movement to roll back FYUP.

We demand an urgent intervention of the President of India who is also the Visitor of our University.

We appeal to DU students and the Citizens of Delhi to sign the petition to the President and volunteer, support the ongoing Delhi-wide March ‘FYUP HATAO-BHAVISHYA BACHAO YATRA’, starting on 26 February, 2014

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DUTA President Prof. Nandita Narain Addressing the Meeting

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DUTA President Prof. Nandita Narain Flags off the March

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DU Students Marching Through DU Arts Faculty











Second Day

FYUP Hatao Bavishya Bachao Yatra Reaches Shradhanand College and Shyama Prasad Mookherjee College!!!

 Students and Teachers Respond Enthusiastically to the Yatra and Sign Petitions in Hundreds!!!

On its Second Day the FYUP Hatao Bhavishyo Bachao Yatra reached Shradhanand College and Shyama Prasad Mookherjee College. The students and teachers of both the colleges responded enthusiastically to the Yatra and signed the petition addressed to the President in Hundreds. AISA activists campaigned in the colleges and addressed the students in classrooms and within the college premises and distributed pamphlets. Students and Teachers congratulated AISA on undertaking the Yatra and making FYUP a city wide issue.

day 2 fyup Shraddhanand College

March Reaches Shraddhanand College on day 2

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Comrade Sunny Addressing in Shraddhanand College

The students and teachers shared their experiences about FYUP with AISA activists and told them the kind of problems they are facing under FYUP. Rahul a student of Shradhanand College said, ‘I congratulate AISA for undertaking the Yatra against FYUP and making it a question of saving our future. All political parties have betrayed us on FYUP we hope the President will heed to the signatures of teachers and students.’
On its 3rd Day the Yatra will visit Shivaji College, Rajdhani College and Lakshmi Bai College Tomorrow (28/2/14).


Sunny kumar

All India Students’ Association
9013757372, 9213974505

Comrade TP Chandrashekharan: Embodiment of the Undying Spirit of the Communist Movement

tpc port

“… The fate of Chandrasekharan illustrates the plight of political leaders who do not want to be part of the LDF or the UDF. As someone from Kannur told me, ‘The CPI-M people would tell us that if you oppose us, we will thrash you (thachum) and the Congress people tell us that if you oppose us, we’ll get you thrashed by the police….’ (Gilbert Sebastian, The martyrdom of Com. T P Chandrasekharan and the future of transformative politics in Keralam, Sanhati, 7 July, 2012)

“…I see Communism in India today as being threatened in two ways: either being hegemonised by bourgeois liberalism, or as falling prey to a feudal-Stalinism. What is common to both these trends is an implicit lack of conviction about socialism, an implicit subscription to the neo-liberal “development” agenda, and an implicit denial of scope for people’s empowerment. Succumbing to either or both these threats would be disastrous and totally against the interests of the people…” – Prabhat Patnaik (in his  clarificatory public e-mail,  to noted social scientist KT Rammohan who  questioned Patnaik’s participation in ‘the Chintha Ravi Memorial Seminar’ in Kozhikode in 2012,immediately after Com. TPC’s assassination. since Patnaik continued to belong to the “killer-party”.

Com.TP Chandrasekharan was a leader of CPI(M) for a long time and based his activism around Vadakara, in the district of Kozhikode, Kerala. He hailed from the Martyr’s Village of Onchiyam, where ten comrades sacrificed their life fighting the feudal landlords and mighty state machinery on 30 April 1948. He started his political career as an SFI activist and then he continued with DYFI and CPI(M). He was very much disturbed by the steady right-wing, pro-corporate trend in the Party. His differences with the right-wing degeneration of CPI(M), like many others in different parts of the state, took a decisive shape following the Party State Conference held at Kottayam in 2008. This led to the creation of independent left alternatives (parties) in various parts of Kerala by erstwhile CPI(M) cadres such as Thalikulam Communist Party (TCP) of Thalikulam, Thrissur; Janakeeya Vikasana Samithi (JVS) of Shornur, Palakkad; Adhinivesha Prathirodha Samiti and Revolutionary Marxist Party (RMP) of Onchiyam. Later TPC took the historical task of co-ordinate these various left breakaway groups/parties along with independent activists in to the single platform called ‘Kerala Left Co-ordination Committee’. Then he went further by linking this to the similar movements going on in the rest of the country by making KLCC as a part of All India Left Co-ordination (AILC). TPC was aware that left politics requires as well as ensures an active and vibrant public space for detailed and in-depth debates and dialogues of all issues of struggle for the common masses. But the arrogance and violence unleashed by the official ‘left’ itself will eliminate these public spaces. CPI(M), however, maintained that TPC had displayed “a naked desire for position, parliamentary greed and absence of communist values”.

One of the crucial issues which he took up after he left the CPI-M was the issue of land acquisition for road development during the period of the Left Democratic Front (LDF) government at the Onchiyam area in Kozhikode district where he lived. He was known to be a sincere leader and had garnered considerable popular support in the area. On 4 May 2012, he was brutally hacked to death. The brutality of this murder with 51 slashes by swords, mostly on the head, was striking. All the available evidence pointed fingers at the CPI-M for this murder although the United Democratic Front (UDF) government led by the Congress party also cannot be absolved of its responsibility of not heeding his request to provide him security after previous attempts on his life.

In the wake of massive popular outrage against Com. TPC’s assassination, the divide within the faction-ridden Kerala CPI(M), ‘ became clear: while, the CPI(M) State Secretary of CPI(M) Pinarayi Vijayan called TPC a ‘kulamkuthi’ (‘traitor’) just after a couple of days of the murder, Com V S Achuthanandan called TPC a “martyr!” Comrade TPC’s murder has exposed the CPI(M)’s intolerance, arrogance, and degeneration dramatically.

Indeed, TPC’s assassination was one more evidence of CPI(M)’s grisly politics of eliminating dissent by eliminating the dissenter. It was also a message for all those who questioned the mighty power of CPI(M). Let us remember that TPC left a party which enjoys great power, money, and scope for parliamentary positions. Unlike many others in Kerala, he did not leave the CPI(M) to join the UDF and seek power there. Instead, he took the hard, arduous road of building a revolutionary party from scratch, without any backing of the moneyed or powerful. Was this a sign of ‘naked desire for position’ and ‘parliamentary greed’? Or was it, in fact, the sign of true communist spirit and dedication? 

Another related question is: “Why is it that the CPI-M does not feel the need to eliminate those who leave its fold and join the Congress or the broader political formation, the UDF? In fact, the CPI-M is quite at ease in competing with the Congress-led UDF with its right-wing credentials. They feel quite superior and self-righteous in doing this. The UDF does not threaten the system of which CPI-M is a co-beneficiary.(– Gilbert Sebastian, The martyrdom of Com. T P Chandrasekharan and the future of transformative politics in Keralam, Sanhati, 7 July, 2012)

Most common people in Kerala have no hesitation in believing the CPI(M) to be behind the gruesome murder. Not just because a series of CPI(M) local leaders have been arrested for their links with the hired killers. But because they know that the CPI(M) had, for the past four years, a history of attacks and threats against RMP comrades. What makes their belief even stronger is CPI(M)’s behaviour towards those who are speaking in support of Comrade TPC.  When a leading Malayalam writer, C.V. Balakrishnan, spoke at a cultural gathering at Payyanur against the murder, a poster appeared on the walls of his home, warning that he should “not forget” that he was “leading a peaceful life in the red village due to the courtesy of the Marxists.” All Kerala heard CPI(M)’s Idukki Secretary MM Mani boasting of how his party “hacked, stabbed, and shot dead’ political rivals in the past,” and warning that the party would continue to thus eliminate those who ‘rebel’ against the party.

On 28th January 2014, the Special Additional Sessions Judge in Kozhikode delivered the verdict in the case which held CPI(M) members and leaders K.C. Ramachandran, Manoj and Kunhanandan guilty of the murder which exposed the involvement of CPI(M) leadership in the murder of TPC. The party in all these times maintained that it was not involved in the murder of TPC. Now, a CBI enquiry has been ordered into the political conspiracy behind Com.TPC’s murder after the hunger strike by the wife of slain communist K.K. Rama.

It is clear that the communist movement in Kerala is at a crossroads. Leftists are experiencing deep anguish over Comrade TPC’s murder. In Kerala, it is apparent that for most genuine Left sympathisers, there is no doubt that Chandrashekharan was a true comrade. And they are unconvinced by CPI(M)’s denials, and outraged by the abuse heaped on TPC by the CPI(M) and the CPI(M) leaders’ violent language. At many places, CPI(M) activists and members joined RMP following this gruesome assassination. In an editorial, the English daily, The Hindu, had commented that “Political murders are non-events in Kerala, and, in any case, the course of the CPI (M) will not turn on whether Chandrasekharan is seen as a traitor or martyr.” Well, the CPI(M) had once believed that its fate would not rest on whether the peasants of Singur and Nandigram were seen as ‘martyrs’ or ‘traitors.’‘Kulamkuthi-Onchiyam Rakthasakshi’ (which can be translated as ‘Traitor-Onchiyam Martyr’) is a book edited by Geetha, a renowned writer associated with the literature of resistance and liberation of the oppressed. The book is nothing new in the sense that it is the detailed collection of various pieces of writings in various newspapers and magazines regarding TPC. In the first section of the book some of the very important speeches delivered by TPC as the RMP leader is given. The book also contains various pieces of writings regarding the relevance of alternative left politics. The articles of Prabath Patnaik, Appukuttan Vallikkunnu etc are included. Interviews with K.K. Rama and the veteran CPIM leader V.S.Achuthanandhan are also included. Various poems, cartoons, paintings, news paper cuttings are also given. The book, in general, presents a detailed account of the political struggles led by TPC when he was alive as well as a martyr.

AISA activists visited TPC’s home and met the family members of him immediately after his murder. AIPWA leader Kavita Krishnan, AISA leaders and then JNUSU President Sucheta De and SSS Councillor Shivani Nag and AISA-JNU activists Sarath and Lal Vijayan were very much part of the political movements which followed the TPC murder in Kerala. AISA also a co-organiser  of the memorial meeting at Kerala House, New Delhi, which was participated among others by Sumit Chakravarty, Mangath Ram Pasla and Kumaran Kutty.


AIPWA leader Kavita Krishnan, AISA leaders Sucheta and Shivani with Comrade TPC’s Family Members

Statement Condemning the Lenient Attitude of Kashmir police and the J&K Pradesh Congress Committee on the case of sexual harassment against Shabir Khan

We, the undersigned, strongly condemn the lenient attitude of Kashmir police and the Jammu Kashmir Pradesh Congress Committee on the extremely serious case of sexual harassment against former health minister and Congress MLA, Shabir Khan. The Congress party has asked Shabir Khan to resign but he continues to be an MLA, attends assembly sessions and has been granted bail, thus putting the entire investigation in jeopardy. In a recent development, the SHO who was investigating the case has been transferred.

Shabir Khan, was accused of molesting a female doctor and was booked under Sections 354 and 509 of the Ranbir Penal Code. Following outrage over the incident, he was forced to resign as minister on the 7th of Feb but he continues to be a Congress MLA. After warrants were issued against him, he went absconding and applied for bail. In his bail application, he reportedly made a case for himself on the basis of his “nationalist credentials”. After being granted bail, he attended the assembly session while all the mainstream parties maintained silence over his presence in the house.

The Minister called the complainant to his office repeatedly on the pretext of discussing funding for the health centre where she works. After she refused to turn up, she was forced to report to him! His office was full of people but he made her wait in a small cabin. She initially refused to go there but he convinced her to sit in the cabin. Inside the cabin, Khan, who had called her to discuss funding, started talking about a lot of irrelevant topics and then offered her several favors including a plum posting on the condition that she serves him Kehwa in the circuit house- a statement clearly loaded with suggestive phrases. When she tried to leave the room, “the minister made physical advances amounting to molestation”.

It is shocking to see the complacency of the National Conference and Congress coalition government in Jammu & Kashmir on the issue, the reluctance to sack the accused coupled with the decision to transfer the investigating officer in the case. We are strongly concerned about the fairness of any trial that will be conducted in such a situation.We demand that the Congress party should expel Shabir Khan at the earliest and that Chief Minister Omar Abdullah should personally ensure a fair trial. It may be recalled that, in the aftermath of the 16th December Delhi gang rape case, Mr. Abdullah had affirmed his commitment to gender justice and he had promised that there would be no leniency in cases of sexual violence, acid attack, etc. It is time to live up to those promises.

The culture of impunity prevailing in Kashmir, with or without the Armed Forces Special Powers Act, is a matter of grave concern for progressive forces. The invocation of nationalist credentials in the bail application strikes us as problematic. Human rights abuse, sexual harassment and rape all go unpunished in the absence of any accountability. On the 23rd of Feb,2014 civil rights groups in Kashmir are observing the Kashmiri Women’s Resistance Day in commemoration of the extremely shameful Kunan Poshpora mass rape that took place on 23rd Feb, 1991. Not a single army man has been punished in the case. While extending support to the observance of this day, we condemn the continued occupation of Kashmir through weapons of rape, torture and fake encounter and denial of the right to self-determination to the people of Kashmir.


  1. Kavita Krishnan, Secretary, AIPWA
  2. Akbar Chawdhary, President, JNUSU
  3. Sucheta De, National President, AISA
  4. Shehla Rashid, AISA
  5. Aslam Khan, National Vice President, RYA
  6. Vrinda Grover – Advocate – New Delhi
  7. Anuradha Bhasin Jamwal, Executive Editor Kashmir Times
  8. Basharat Peer, Journalist
  9. Arundhati Dhuru, NAPM
  10. Amitabh Kumar, Head of Media and Communications, Centre for Social Research
  11. Bishakha Datta, Executive Director, Point of View
  12. Lata Pratibha Madhukar, Research Scholar at TISS and CSD, Hyderabad
  13. Akhil Kumar, Sub-Editor, Youth Ki Awaaz
  14. Ravi Nitesh, Core Member- Save Sharmila Solidairty Campaign
  15. Kamayani Bali Mahabal, Feminist and human rights activits, Mumbai
  16. Chinmayee Subash, Free lance development professional.
  17. Mithilesh Pande, Mission Bhartiyam
  18. Chhaya Datar, Ex-Professor at TISS Mumbai
  19. Sabha Husain, Researcher/Women’s Rights Activist
  20. Rohit Kumar Social Activist (FB)
  21. Shahid Ayoub from P G college Rajouri (FB)
  22. Ms. Virginia Saldanha, Woman Activist
  23. Devika Mittal, Mission Bhartiyam
  24. Saheli and Women Against Sexual Violence and State Repression
  25. Juhi Jain, Feminist activist and writer, New Delhi
  26. Dr Fayaz Ganaie, Senior Manager (Cargill group)
  27. Dr. Showkat Bashir, Kashmir
  28. Jitender Singh, Post Doctoral fellow, JNU SLS
  29. Rajesh Umadevi, Activist
  30. Roopashri Sinha, Mumbai
  31. Ayesha Kidwai, Professor, Jawaharlal Nehru University
  32. Chayanika Shah, Member, LABIA Queer Feminist LBT Collective
  33. Sagari R Ramdas, Hyderabad, India
  34. Dipak Dholakia, Member, People’s Alliance for Democracy and Secularism (PADS)
  35. Shipra Nigam, Consultant Economist, Research and Information Systems for Developing Countries
  36. Vasanth Kannabiran, Director,Asmita
  37. Kaveri Indira
  38. Madhuri Jads
  39. Kiran Shaheen, Convenor, Women for Water Democracy
  40. Citizens collective against Sexual Assault, Delhi
  41. Farhana Latief, LLM Student, Tata Institute of Social Sciences
  42. Mantasha Binti Rashid, Civil Servant
  43. Khurram Rasool, Journalist
  44. Mir Imaad Rafi, President, Kashmir Foundation for Social Change
  45. Dr Gazalla Amin, Entrepreneur
  46. Firdous Ganaie, Civil Servent
  47. Bincy Mary George, Student, JNU

23 Years After Kunan-Poshpora: We Remember, We Resist!



On 23 February, 1991, an entire village was
raped. And truth and justice have been throttled. The rapists haven’t been tried or punished. Instead the complaint of rape was never even investigated!
Kunan Poshpora is a festering wound – and it is no aberration. Kunan Poshpora reminds us of the reality of Kashmir, where India’s Army systematically terrorises the people in the name of protecting ‘the rest of India’ and the ‘country’s integrity’. 

On 23rd February, the 68th Brigade of the Fourth Rajputana Rifles surrounded Kunan Poshpora for a ‘cordon and search operation’. As Abhijit Dutta writes, “Such operations – also known as ‘crackdowns’ – were a common enough occurrence in the first decade of the conflict in Kashmir. They were also, without exception, an utterly dehumanising experience for the Kashmiri, who was literally and figuratively kicked around by the jackboots of the Indian army. The purpose of inflicting such a terrorising experience on the local population was not only the discovery of arms and militants, but also to make it clear that the Indian army was in complete control and the Kashmiri lived his or her life at its mercy. The standard procedure for these operations involved yanking men, including teenage boys, out into a gathering space (usually a nearby field) where they were generally made to wait in the freezing cold while the Army searched their homes. Women and very young children would cower into corners as these men stomped around the frail wooden houses, turning everything upside down with brutish callousness. Most operations took place in the night, beginning around 10 or 11 pm and lasting till 4 or 5 am in the morning; the idea was to maximise discomfort.”

The men who had been separated from the women, were also subjected to brutal torture including torture and mutilation of the genitals.

The 2011 judgment by the J&K State Human Rights Commission (JKSHRC) on ‘Complaints regarding Kunan Poshpora atrocities lodged by victims and inhabitants of the Village V/s J&K State and Others,’ described the testimonies of rape of “at least 36women” including girls as young as 8 years old, during the night of 23rd and 24th February 1991. It was noted that a policeman who tried to sound the alarm was killed. And that subsequently, the police failed to conduct an identification parade to allow the women to identify the rapists.

In March 1991, a confidential letter sent by the District Magistrate of Kupwara was leaked to the press, in which the DM, having visited Kunan a week after the mass rape, wrote that “the armed forces had turned violent and behaved like beasts”. The Ministry of Defence denied the whole thing.

The then Divisional Commissioner, Wajahat Habibullah led a team comprising of a colonel from Army HQ, a commandant of the Border Security Force, the Deputy Commissioner of Kupwara district and the Superintendent of Police, Kupwara. After gathering statements from 41 women, he decided that there was sufficient cause for a more detailed enquiry and recommended this in his report to the Governor. When the state government published his report, they deleted this recommendation. A former Chief Justice of the J&K High Court, Mufti Bahauddin Farooqi, who also led an independent fact finding mission to Kunan Poshpora in March, concluded that “he had never seen a case in which normal investigative procedures were ignored as they were in this one”.

The normal investigations never took place! But the Army ‘requested’ an ‘investigation’ by two Press Council representatives, who obligingly declared the mass rape story to be a “massive hoax, orchestrated by militant groups and their sympathizers and mentors in Kashmir.”

However, the truth refused to be buried and the survivors continued their struggle to have the truth acknowledged. The 2011 JKSHRC judgment, which was primarily dealing with specific petitions made to it by a few victims, reported that the then Director General of Police (DGP) of J&K, the ‘top cop’ of the State who had initially “tried to brush aside this serious matter with just a casual approach”, later came forward “with a little bit of truth and tried to open the closed doors of investigation”.

The DGP had in fact, in a report dated 22-05-2010, “affirmed that during the intervening night of 23/24 of Feb-1991 Army personnel cordoned village Kunan Poshpora,” and that men were dragged out of their houses, women interrogated. Crucially, the DGP’s report also acknowledges that the petitioner’s medical report “has proved the allegations of torture and ‘rape’ to be correct”. However, the report also took the standard stonewalling line of defence, arguing that “as no identification parade of the army personnel was made, the investigation of the case was finally closed as ‘untraced’.” The judgment asks, “…can for God’s sake the police chief of the state answer a simple question as to why in such a serious and heinous case the identification parade was not held? Who was responsible for this intentional dereliction of duty and what action the DGP J&K has taken against the erring officials?”

The JKSHRC further accuses that “it prima facie appears that all the officers from top to bottom were in a hurry and wanted to scuttle the investigation of the case and they have succeeded in their evil design but in a very bad and crude way. The main complainant in the lead case has clearly and unequivocally mentioned that she is and was in a position to identify the offenders, but investigating officer(s) and their high-ups were not in a mood to proceed with the investigation of the case in a fair and impartial manner.” It similarly chastises the Director Prosecution responsible for the case for scuttling the investigation of the case and for playing “a pivotal role in this whole incident where by due to his intentional omissions/commissions and negligent approach he has deterred the investigating agency from taking due action as warranted under law and thereby has been responsible for violation of human rights.”

In its conclusion, the JKSHRC bench recommended that proceedings for prosecution be initiated against the Director Prosecution under section 19 (1) of the J&K Prevention of Human Rights Act 1997; that a minimum Rs. 2 lakhs each be paid to all victims; and that, most importantly, the FIR lodged at the time of the incident be re-opened and re-investigated through a special investigative team not below the rank of an SSP and that “the investigation must be taken to its logical end without any further delay and hiccups within a specific time bound period.”

In June 2013, the Chief Judicial Magistrate Kupwara dismissed the closure report of Jammu and Kashmir police in the Kunan Poshpora case, and asked the police to “further investigate to unravel the identity of those who happen to be perpetrators.”

Kunan Poshpora was no aberration, nor the last rape. From Kunan Poshpora to Shopiyan, rape is a recurring reality in Kashmir under Army jackboots.

23 years after the Kunan Poshpora mass rape, we support the call for Kashmiri Women’s Resistance Day. Justice for Kunan Poshpora and for Kashmir’s women is inextricably linked with the struggle of the Kashmiri people to be free from Army suppression, to have control over their own lives and their own future.

AISA ने 13 फरवरी को एक कारगर ‘कम्युनल वायलेंस (प्रिवेंशन,कंट्रोल एंड रिहैबिलिटेशन ऑफ़ विक्टिम्स ) बिल’ के लिए किया ‘मार्च टू पार्लियामेंट’

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AISA ने 13 फरवरी को एक कारगर ‘कम्युनल वायलेंस (प्रिवेंशन,कंट्रोल एंड रिहैबिलिटेशन ऑफ़ विक्टिम्स ) बिल’  के लिए ‘मार्च टू पार्लियामेंट’  किया. साथ ही इस बिल को इसी सत्र में पास करवाने तथा  धारा 355 के तहत UP में हस्तक्षेप करने की मांग को लेकर क़रीब 1000 हस्ताक्षर भी होम मिनिस्टर को दिया. 

मार्च में JNU,जामिया मिल़िया इस्लामिया और दिल्ली विश्वविद्यालय से क़रीब 100 छात्र शामिल हुए.

JNU स्टूडेंट्स यूनियन के अध्यक्ष अकबर चौधरी ने कहा कि ‘आज एक तरफ़ दंगा पीड़ितों को ‘कुत्ते का पिल्ला’, ‘पेशेवर भिखारी’, ‘ISI का एजेंट’ कहकर उनका अपमान किया जा रहा है तो उसी समय पिछले 5 फरवरी को संसद में  ‘कम्युनल वायलेंस (प्रिवेंशन,कंट्रोल एंड रिहैबिलिटेशन ऑफ़ विक्टिम्स ) बिल’ को एक बार फिर से भारी विरोध का बहाना करके टाल दिया गया. संसद में यह बिल लम्बे समय से लंबित है. UPA सरकार पहले भी अलग अलग बहाने से इस बिल को टालती रही है. साम्प्रदायिक हिंसा पर रोक लगाने, दोषियों को सजा देने एवं पीड़ितों के उचित पुनर्वास हेतु लम्बे समय से एक कारगर कानून की मांग देश का प्रगतिशील तबका कर रहा है. मजबूत हस्तक्षेप एवं आन्दोलन के बाद UPA सरकार सांप्रदायिक हिंसा पर बिल लाने को मजबूर हुई. लेकिन अपने कार्यकाल के दस वर्षों में UPA सरकार ने कभी भी इस बिल पर कोई ठोस चर्चा या पहलकदमी करने की ज़हमत नहीं की. हाल में हुए मुजफ्फरनगर दंगे के बाद सांप्रदायिक हिंसा पर बिल लाने की मांग तेज हुई. इसके दबाब में सरकार ने विगत 5 फ़रवरी को राज्यसभा में ‘कम्युनल वायलेंस (प्रिवेंशन,कंट्रोल एंड रिहैबिलिटेशन ऑफ़ विक्टिम्स ) बिल’ को पेश किया. जिसे भाजपा, माकपा, सपा, द्रुमुक, अन्नाद्रुमुक जैसे दलों के विरोध के बाद वापस ले लिया गया. भाजपा शुरु से ही इस बिल का ‘हिन्दू विरोधी’ कहकर विरोध करती रही है. इस बार सपा, तृणमूल, द्रुमुक, अन्नाद्रुमुक जैसे तथाकथित सेक्युलर पार्टियों ने भी इसका विरोध किया. ये दल इस बिल को राज्य के मामलों में केंद्र की दखलंदाजी मानते है. माकपा के पोलितब्यूरो मेम्बर सीताराम येचुरी ने कहा की संसद इस कानून को नहीं बना सकती. इन तथाकथित सेक्युलर पार्टियों ने शर्मनाक तरीके से भाजपा द्वारा इस बिल के विरोध को और मजबूती दी. भाजपा के अरुण जेटली ने इस बिल का  विरोध  इन्हीं  दलों के सुर में सुर मिलाकर   किया . इस कारण संसद में एक बार फिर से सरकार को साम्प्रदायिक हिंसा संबंधित बिल को टालने का मौका मिला.’

CPIML के असलम खान  ने कहा कि  ‘कम्युनल वायलेंस (प्रिवेंशन,कंट्रोल एंड रिहैबिलिटेशन ऑफ़ विक्टिम्स ) बिल’ में शामिल मुद्दों पर बहस करने के जगह ये दल गैरजरूरी बहसों में उलझे रहे. इतिहास गवाह है कि आज़ादी के बाद जितने भी दंगे हुए हैं उसमें किसी को भी सजा नहीं हुई है.  1983 के नेल्ली नरसंहार, 84 के  सिख विरोधी दंगे, बाबरी मस्जिद ध्वंस, 2002 के गुजरात दंगे या हाल में हुए मुजफ्फ़रनगर दंगों जैसी साम्प्रदायिक घटनाओं के पीड़ितों को आज तक न्याय नहीं मिला है. ये दंगे सुनियोजित एवं टार्गेटेड थे. सरकारी मशीनरी भी दंगाईयों के साथ थीं.

दिल्ली आइसा के joint सेक्रेटरी पीयूष ने सभा को संबोधित करते हुए कहा कि ‘ एक ऐसा कानून हो जो सांप्रदायिक दंगों को रोकने में कारगर हो, सुनियोजित एवं टार्गेटेड दंगों के दोषियों को तुरंत सजा मिले, पीड़ितों के पुनर्वास के ठोस उपाय हो, दंगा रोकने में विफल अधिकारियों को सजा मिले तथा प्रशासन एवं पुलिस की जबाबदेही तय हो, दंगों के समय महिलाओं पर किये गए अत्याचार के लिए अलग से प्रावधान हो. दरअसल  ‘दंगे होते नहीं करवाये जाते हैं’ इसलिए यह जरुरी है कि  दंगों के लिए आलाधिकारियों पर प्रशासनिक जबाबदेही  तय हो  और   दंगे रोकने में विफल होने पर ऐसे अधिकारियों को सजा मिले. अधिकारियों को  सजा के प्रावधान से दंगों के समय पुलिस कारवाई में राजनीतिक हस्तक्षेप पर भी लगाम  लगेगी. चूकीं दंगों का चरित्र हमेशा सुनियोजित एवं टार्गेटेड होता है और इसमें सबसे 

ज्यादा समाज के गरीब तबके के लोग प्रभावित होते हैं. इसलिए हमारी मांग है कि दंगा पीड़ितों के लिए इस बिल में पुनर्वास के ठोस प्रावधान हों और सरकार को इस के लिए जबाबदेह किया जाए.’     

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जाम़िया आइसा के सचिव फरहान ने कहा कि लोकसभा चुनावों से पहले संसद का यह अंतिम सत्र है. पूरे देश में साम्प्रदायिक तनाव का माहौल पैदा करने की कोशिश हो रही है. आरएसएस और मोदी के नेतृत्व में कारपोरेट-फासीवादी ताकतें अपने को भ्रष्ट UPA के विकल्प के तौर पर पेश कर रही है. भाकपा-माकपा जैसे वामदलों ने तीसरे मोर्चे के नाम पर जदयू, सपा, अन्नाद्रुमुक जैसी अवसरवादी  पार्टियों के सामने घुटने टेक दिए हैं. ऐसी स्थिति में देश के सच्चे सेक्युलर एवं जनवादी शक्तियों को एक कारगर ‘कम्युनल वायलेंस (प्रिवेंशन,कंट्रोल एंडरिहैबिलिटेशन ऑफ़ विक्टिम्स ) बिल’ के लिए एकजूट होना होगा.

‘कम्युनल वायलेंस (प्रिवेंशन,कंट्रोल एंड रिहैबिलिटेशन ऑफ़ विक्टिम्स ) बिल’ को  अविलम्ब संसद से पास करो !!

  मुजफ्फ़रनगर के पीड़ितों को न्याय दो !!

धारा 355 के तहत UP में हस्तक्षेप करो !!                                                       

Afzal Guru’s hanging : A Year After

Denied fair trial, hanged without evidence and despite reasonable doubt


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In the year 2002, Afzal Guru was sentenced to death on flimsy grounds and without any evidence. Over a decade later, on 9 Feb, 2013 he was hanged in complete secrecy. His mercy petition had been rejected and he was hanged in an extreme hurry without even informing his family. After about a year, deciding on petitions filed by 15 death row convicts, on 21st Jan 2014 the Supreme Court of India framed guidelines regarding death penalty which include, among others, that death sentences should be commuted to life sentence in case of inordinate delay in deciding on the mercy petition. Afzal Guru was hanged despite a decade of delay in deciding on his death penalty. Why was this principle – evoked now by the Supreme Court – not applied to the Afzal Guru case? Had the Supreme Court framed these guidelines earlier, Afzal Guru would be alive today.

 Double Standards of ‘Justice’ : When we look at the Afzal Guru case in the light of the Supreme Court’s guidelines, then it is apparent that his execution is a glaring case of double standards of ‘justice.’

Guru’s execution was wrong on several levels. First and foremost is the entire question of death penalty itself. India continues to be one of the very few democracies which still award the barbaric death penalty. Second, the death penalty should not be awarded if guilt is not established beyond reasonable doubt. The scope of doubt in this case was immense. In fact, there was no evidence against Afzal Guru. Third, the decision to execute him in complete secrecy was an act of political expediency by the discredited UPA – II government. The execution reeks of competitive jingoism in view of the rising Modi wave. Fourth is the fact that Afzal Guru was denied a chance to file a review petition! This is clearly unlawful and further confirms the fact that the UPA was merely trying to appear ‘strong’ by hanging Guru even at the cost of lawful procedure. Fifth, his family was not even informed that his review petition had been rejected. The 21st Jan judgment clearly mentions that a person who is to be executed should be allowed to meet his family.

Political double standards too abound. Today, many parties – including the Akali Dal (close ally of BJP) and AAP – call rightly for commutation of the death sentence of Devinder Singh Bhullar, convicted in a blast case, quoting the Supreme Court guidelines. The same parties, however, hail the execution of Afzal Guru! The people demanding revocation of Bhullar’s (or Rajoana’s) death sentence are NOT subjected to hate speech, curfews, and violence, unlike Kashmiris who mourn the death of Afzal. We must keep reminding ourselves that in this country, death penalty has not been awarded to the perpetrators of the 1984 Sikh riots, to the murderers and rapists of the 2002 Gujarat genocide, to the accused in the Bathani Tola massacre, to the killers in Khairlanji or to the killers of Graham Staines. In many of these cases, the perpetrators roam free, protected from any punishment.

Some of the unanswered questions:

The judicial proceedings recorded two occasions on which Mohammad Afzal spoke before the law: his ‘confessional’ statement before the police and his statement under ‘Section 313 of the CrPC’. The Supreme court verdict itself admits Afzal’s much publicized ‘confession’ which was extracted in police custody was ‘UNRELIABLE’. But after the Supreme Court rejected the prosecution’s theory based on Afzal’s ‘confession’, the latter’s CrPC 313 statement was the only basis left on which his role in events that led to the attack could be probed. The Court has found his only role in it was to help a man suspected to be involved in the Parliament attack, to find a house in Delhi and to buy a car. Afzal never denied or falsified this role rather admitted it.In his statement he,  in fact, named an STF officer Davinder Singh who ordered him to perform those acts. Yet, Davinder Singh was mentioned neither in the FIR nor chargesheet, nor was he made a witness in the case. He did not figure anywhere in the trials, despite the presence of his phone numbers in Afzal’s phone records. How come the Supreme Court chose to believe one part of Afzal’s statement under Section 313, while conveniently ignored the rest?  Why wasn’t the link with the STF probed? 

After the Parliament attack, a former Police Commissioner of Thane S.M. Shangari, claimed in a press conference that one of the killed terrorist (Abu Hamza) had been arrested in Maharashtra in December 2000 along with three others (one year before the Parliament house attack) and had subsequently been handed over to the J&K Police. Therefore at the time of the Parliament house attack. Abu Hamza was supposedly in the custody of the J&K police. However, K Rajendra, then inspector general of the J&K Police, dismissed Shangari’s enquiries calling it a case of mistaken identity and arguing that Hamza is a common Muslim name. Perhaps so. But then what happened to those four militants including Abu Hamza in J&K STF custody? The Thane court issued repeated summons to the J&K Police to produce them in Thane. They were never sent nor any explanation provided! WHY? (See Mihir Srivastava,The Question of Reasonable Doubt,The Open Magazine 14/2/13)

The so-called ‘masterminds’ behind the attack (Masood Azhar, Ghazi Baba and Tariq Ahmad) were never arrested and produced in any court, to verify the prosecution’s story. Of these, Ghazi Baba was claimed to be shot dead by security forces in 2004. Then, where is Tariq? Why can’t the STF produce him? After Kasab’s arrest, we saw a flurry of diplomatic exchange, with India providing proof of Pakistan’s involvement, demanding extraditions and so on. WHY didn’t we see a similar diplomatic exchange demanding that these three be produced in Indian courts?

And finally, the big question that the Indian State must answer: Afzal being a surrendered militant was under constant State surveillance. Could a man constantly watched by our security forces, and who, even according to the Court, did not belong to any terrorist organisation at the time of Parliament attack, manage to execute a terrorist attack of such magnitude? If a person under the watchful eye of the STF could be part of a conspiracy to wage war against the state, how can anything less than a public inquiry do? For this is not about the guilt or innocence of one man, but about how a system works and what it means, to democracy, sovereignty and the security of the state. Whose pawn was he really?

It is true that the attack on Parliament was most highly condemnable and an assault on what is known as the highest seat of our democracy. Precisely because of this, it was imperative that the police and investigation agencies should have carried out an honest investigation to book the perpetrators. Instead, what did we get? The Supreme Court, while admitting that there is no direct evidence of Afzal’s guilt, has held that he must die to satisfy the ‘collective conscience’ of the Indian nation. It was almost as if there was a need to at least ensure one death sentence so that the faith of the public in the efficacy of the prosecution and the judiciary and the Legislature would not be shaken. A range of Indian citizens – teachers, writers, lawyers, Gandhian and Left activists, ordinary people – have raised their voice to declare that they are NOT part of this contrived ‘collective conscience’. Truly, the conscience of democratic and peace-loving citizens can be satisfied only if there is a guarantee that there is no witch-hunting or scape-goating, and those really guilty for terror and genocide are identified and punished.


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Activists being detained for Protesting Afzal’s Hanging


AISA led JNUSU protests against the brutal rape of a minor girl from Manipur: the Culprits are Arrested

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The shocking news of brutal rape of a minor 14 year old North-East girl in Munirka on Friday night (7th February,2014) has once again shaken all of us. The moment this gruesome news came out, the AISA led JNUSU gave the call for an immediate protest. At JNUSU’s call hundreds of students from the campus poured out in protest at the Vasant Vihar police Station. Students and activists from North-East also joined in large number in this spontaneous protest. It was only after hours of protest by around 500 students and citizens at the Police Station, did the Police finally file the FIR where, we have been told that the culprit has been booked under Sections 376(2i), 342, 324,363,366,509 of IPC. JNUSU along with numerous people from the city held a Candle light March from VV Police Station to the neighbouring area. Today JNUSU joined in solidarity with the students from the North-East, who organised a silent Sit-In at Patiala House to demand that the process of justice in the case is not subverted through crafty cover-up by any nexus of the  investigation agencies and local power groups.

Just last week, Delhi saw the brutal broad daylight murder of 19-year-old Nido Tania, from Arunachal Pradesh, in Lajpat Nagar market. A massive and sustained protest broke out in the city. But shockingly, even as the city-wide protest against this racist lynch-mob murder of Nido was at its peak, two Manipuri women were beaten up near Kotla. And now, we are witnessing this horrific barbarism against a minor North-East girl in the heart of South Delhi.

As the popular protest snowballed against in Nido’s murder, various ruling parties did make the mandatory ‘condemnation’ noises. But it is indeed revealing that while they continue to indulge in competitive blame game to reap political harvests, none of them have chosen to recognise the deep-seated racial and anti-women prejudices that dominate not just the social psyche but more dangerously the security agencies, police, State policy and politics, which they directly command and define. They refused to be accountable for the highly condemnable police inaction, ‘inefficiency’ and orchestrated ‘cover-up’ that local police routinely display in dealing with such cases of racist and sexual violence.  So we have to be extra vigilant that the vested power groups do NOT manage to subvert justice. We have to take to the streets with renewed vigour against  this growing trend of racist and sexual violence in the city. We must resolve to stop this shame NOW!