Black day

In a day which reminded many of emergency time, today nine rights activists were searched and five of them arrested over allegations of Maoist links after sweeping multi-city raids across the country. The raids are absolutely chilling and a virtual declaration of emergency. Pune police conducted the raids in connection with the Bhima Koregaon violence in January, in which Dalit activists had clashed with upper-caste Marathas. Most of the activists are left leaning and it is alleged that they have been deliberately targeted by ruling right wing regime. Strangely several right wing leaders who were named in the Bhima Koregaon violence are yet to face any police action.
Among those arrested lawyer Sudha Bharadwaj, and activists Arun Fereira, Gautam Navlakha and Venon Gonsalves have for years worked for the tribal and dalit rights. By arresting them government is targeting those who have been voices of tribal rights. It could be a ploy to take away rights of tribal on land, forest and mineral resources. The BJP-RSS sees left as the last remaining ideological force that opposes its right wing ideology tooth and nail. Therefore starting with arrest of JNU student leaders, they have been making every effort to portray left leaning group as anti-nationals. It is a dangerous political move and has potential to back fire in the long run. For years the left leaning groups have consistently worked tirelessly for poor and downtrodden especially for tribal and dalit. These groups will be extremely upset with government for targeting those who are working for them. Also by setting an example of hunting down the ideological and political opponents, the BJP-RSS is paving way for future governments to target its opponents using state machineries. Hopefully the judiciary will intervene and stop the government from misusing the power to harass innocent citizens.