Condemn the arbitrary arrest of Prof. Hany Babu!
Stop the witch-hunt of human rights defenders by the NIA!
Immediately release all political prisoners!
Campaign Against State Repression (CASR) condemns the arrest of
Professor Hany Babu MT at Mumbai by the National Investigation Agency
(NIA) in connection with the Bhima Koregaon-Elgaar Parishad case.
Despite the surging cases of COVID-19 in both Delhi and Mumbai, Prof.
Babu of the Department of English in Delhi University was summoned as a
witness and forced by the NIA to travel to Mumbai after being denied the
option of video conferencing. Cooperating with the NIA since July 24th
2020, it quickly became clear that the questioning was merely a ruse to
force Prof. Babu into providing false testimony against other persons
and accepting allegations of being a functionary of the Maoists. Prof.
Babu vehemently and consistently refused to agree to these ridiculous
lies. It is because of this that after five days of continuous
harassment in the name of interrogation, the NIA, despite his presence
in the NIA office, has now made him an accused and formally arrested him
and is ironically seeking custodial interrogation. In September 2019,
Prof. Babu was subjected to a raid without a search warrant at his
residence by the Maharashtra Police. While several electronic devices
and books were seized, no hash value of any of the devices confiscated
were provided. This violation of procedure has left the seized devices
open to tampering. The investigating agencies have repeatedly denied the
hash value of the confiscated devices that can actually reveal the
timestamp of activities on the device. In fact, it is clear now that
there is a pattern of confiscating devices, planting fabricated evidence
and conducting a media trial on this basis. Unfortunately, the courts
have also turned a blind eye to these illegalities.
is blatant harassment and intimidation of persons who question the
State and struggle for the rights of the marginalised and oppressed
castes, classes and communities. Prof. Babu has been an anti-caste
activist who has been consistently fighting for social justice within
and outside the university space. He has also been a part of the
Committee for the Defence and Release of Dr. GN Saibaba and Committee
for the Release of Political Prisoners (CRPP). He has spoken out against
caste discrimination in institutions of higher education, the death
penalty and for the rights of political prisoners.
of Hany Babu by the NIA shows for a fact that the entire conspiracy
hatched in the aftermath of the violence at Bhima Koregaon is intended
to incarcerate and silence a range of activists who have been speaking
about the anti-people policies of the State. This is also being done to
divert attention away from the true perpetrators of the violence,
Sambhaji Bhide and Milind Ekbote, both with ties to the RSS. It is
intended to spread fear among the democratic and progressive spirited
academics, activists, artists, journalists, lawyers, poets and trade
unionists. This arrest is likely to follow the predictable narrative of
branding Prof. Babu a urban Naxal. These charges will remain unproven
and unsubstantiated except through the deployment of the fabricated
evidence which will not hold water under scrutiny of a fair trial.
However, as has been seen in multiple cases, the purpose is not to prove
guilt but to punish via a lengthy isolation and detention while being
demonised by a State sponsored media witch-hunt. These tactics are being
deployed without any consideration for the basic right to life of the
persons targeted as seen in the case of the revolutionary poet Varavara
Rao, Dr. GN Saibaba and Prof. Anand Teltumbde among others.
Against State Repression (CASR) urges all the progressive and
democratic sections of our society to unite and condemn the arrest of
Prof. Hany Babu and the threat of arrest looming over several more
activists, artists and journalists. We demand the
1. Immediate release of all activists and intellectuals charged in the fabricated Bhima Koregaon case.
2. Immediate release of all anti-CAA, NRC and NPR activists.
3. Immediate release of all political prisoners and immediate de-congestion of prisons.
4. Repeal of all draconian laws including UAPA, PSA, NSA and others.
Campaign Against State Repression
Team: AISA, AISF, APCR, BCM, Bhim Army, Bigul Mazdoor Dasta, BSCEM,
CEM, CRPP, CTF, Disha, DISSC, DSU, DTF, IAPL, IMK, Karnataka Janashakti,
KYS, Lokpaksh, LSI, Mazdoor Adhikar Sangathan, Mazdoor Patrika,
Mehnatkash Mahila Sangathan, Morcha Patrika, NAPM, NBS, NCHRO, Nowruz,
NTUI, Peopleʹs Watch, Rihai Manch, Samajwadi Janparishad, Satyashodak
Sangh, SFI, United Against Hate, WSS)