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#India – IO probing Hem Mishra and Prashant Rahi case gets over 20,000 letters from across the world

Vivek Deshpande : Nagpur, Thu Jan 02 2014,

The investigating officer (IO) in cases pertaining to Hem Mishra and Prashant Rahi, arrested by the Gadchiroli police in August-September last year, has received over 20,000 letters from across the world declaring the alleged Naxal couriers “innocent activists” and pleading for their release.

The continuing flood of 40-50 letters a day has given Suhas Bawche an opportunity to collect stamps of various countries. “Initially, it bothered me since I used to get 300-500 letters every day. Now, I am trying to get over it by comforting myself with the thought that it is actually an opportunity to collect stamps of so many different countries,” the IO said.

A majority of the mail has come in from Europe and the US, with the Netherlands sending 60 per cent. Some letters are from China, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Bangladesh. The flow has reduced since, and now 40-50 letters come daily. “The contents are the same. The writers say the two (Mishra and Rahi) are innocent and honest activists. They say Rahi was arrested in 2007 and was tortured in jail. The writers have urged me not to harm him in custody,” Bawche said.

The source draft of the letter posted on online  urges people to write to Bawche. “Detained journalist Prashant Rahi at risk of torture in India”, says a headline on the site with an ‘Amnesty International’ byline under it, and calls on people to urgently write to the IO.

Bawche has replied to only two of the letters — one from Amnesty and the other from NHRC. “We have explained we have ample evidence against the two and they are being treated fairly in custody,” he said, adding, “Rahi has said in a newspaper interview that he has been treated well.” Asked why there was a deluge from Netherlands, Bawche said, “We have no clue.”

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#India – Wheelchair-bound professor of English in DU, Maoist – Maharashtra Police #WTFnews

DU professor GN Saibaba is a Maoist leader: Maharashtra Police Arunima,

CNN-IBN | Updated Sep 19, 2013 at 03:46pm IST

Is GN Saibaba, the wheelchair-bound professor of English in one of the country’s premier university, the new face of Naxalism? Last week, the Maharashtra Police raided the home of Delhi University professor GN Saibaba, alleging that he is an active member of the banned CPI-Maoist. Police officials claimed Saibaba was named by JNU student Hem Mishra, who was arrested earlier in September for being a courier between Saibaba and the Maoists based in Abujmad, Chhattisgarh.

According to RG Kadam, DIG, Gadchiroli, Hem Mishra was carrying some explicit documents and named Saibaba. “We have enough evidence against him,” he said. Saibaba accepts that he knows Hem Mishra and his alleged accomplice Prashan Rahi arrested on the same charges as Mishra. But he denies having ever sent any letter to the CPI-Maoist. He said, “I don’t think communicating with the Maoist is a crime. But I myself have never done it.”

The Gadchiroli police claim that Saibaba runs an organisation called Revolutionary Democratic Front, which is a front for the CPI-Maoist. He is known in Maoist circles as Prashant alias Chetan and he uses these names to interact and hatch conspiracies with over ground Maoists through online chat forums. The police also claim that not just Hem Mishra, but two other arrested Maoist leaders Kobad Gandhy and Bacha Prasad Singh have also named Saibaba as their urban contact. Saibaba vehemently denies these charges. He said, “I have never heard of Bacha Singh. But I know Kobad. They have chargesheeted me in that case. But Kobad doesn’t know Telugu and the police claim that his letter to me about the Maoist activities were in Telugu.”

Saibaba claims 50 policemen from Gadchiroli police, Delhi police, IB and other security and intelligence agencies raided his Delhi University residence on September 12. They searched his house for 3 hours, but asked no questions.

CNN-IBN has learnt that Gadchiroli police has sent summons to Saibaba asking him to join the investigation as soon as possible.

Read more at:

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#India – Two champions of people’s causes , both from Uttarakhand arrested in the name of Maoism #fabricated


Sanjay Singh : Dehradun, Mon Sep 16 2013,

The two alleged Maoistcouriers arrested in Gadchiroli are both activists who have taken up various social causes in Uttarakhand.Prashant Rahi, 54, is an engineer-turned-journalist who hails from Maharashtra and whose daughter Shikha is a filmmaker, an assistant director for Taare Zameen Par. He was arrested in 2007, too, for alleged Maoist links and got bail thee years later. He participated in labour and other movements in Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh in the 1990s before settling in what is now Uttarakhand, where he worked as a journalist. He was working on providing legal aid to suspected Maoists — “political prisoners” — when he was arrested, allegedly while organising a Maoist training camp.

Hem Mishra, 30, cut his teeth as a student-activist in Almora before moving four years ago to JNU to study Chinese. The causes he took up included water, forest and land, and a shift of the capital from Dehradun to Gairsain. Every year, he would join a programme to pay tribute to those killed in the Rampur Tiraha firing incident in 1994 during the statehood agitation, say people who know him.

Mishra was arrested in August while allegedly couriering material on behalf on Maoists. The arrest of Rahi came days later, in September.

“As part of the Progressive Students’ Front, Hem used to participate in street plays and recite poems written by Girish Tiwari Girda,” says Shamsher Singh Bishta, himself an activist in Almora. “He participated in a padyatra in support of the demand for shifting the capital.”

Retired teacher Keshavdutta Mishra describes Hem, the youngest of his three sons, as “an intelligent boy who loves to participate in cultural activities”. Hem graduated from the SSJ campus of Kumaon University. “Four years ago, he was selected for MSc in mathematics and also for Chinese in JNU,” his father says. “He chose the JNU course… Yes, he is very social and a lover of music. But he has never carried home any literature that would suggest he is involved in Maoist activities.”

He says it is normal practice in Gadchiroli to describe any person after his arrest as a Naxal.

Rahi, 54, or Prashant Sangalikar — police also call him Navin and Mahesh — hails from Nashik. He won a B Tech from Banaras Hindu University in 1982, followed by an M Tech, and worked in a power company in UP’s Sonbhadra district, a left-wing extremism-affected area.

Intelligence sources in Uttarakhand cite a long history with movements — a labour movement in Maharashtra in the 1990s, work with youth organisation Purvanchal Nauzwan Sabha in UP, and a movement for rehabilitation of people affected by the Tehri dam project in what is now Uttarakhand. He had arrived in this region in 1993 and worked till 2000 as a journalist with a local newspaper. What raised suspicion that he was a Maoist sympathiser were his efforts to provide legal help to people arrested for spreading the Maoist ideology.

“Police got information in 2004 about the presence of Maoists in the forest areas near Saufutia. They found evidence suggesting training camps,” an intelligence officer said. This led to a watch on suspected sympathisers and Rahi was arrested from Nanakmata in December 2007. He was charged under the IPC sections for waging or abetting war against the state, sedition and other offences, and under UAPA for being a member of a terrorist organisation or gang.

Police claimed to have recovered copies of a magazine, Aamukh, with articles relating to the CPI (Maoist)’s expansion to Uttarakhand and suggesting it had set up a zonal committee.

His daughter Shikha, then 24, had fought a long legal battle for his release. In 2011, after his release on bail, she had told The Indian Express that the police had accused her father of having conducted training camps in villages.

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#India – Delhi University professor under lens for Maoist ‘links’ #fabricated

Bharti Jain, TNN | Sep 13, 2013, 08.10 PM IST

NEW DELHI: A day after raiding the residence of Delhi University (DU) professor G N Saibaba in a purported clamp down on the urban network of Naxalites, the Maharashtra Police linked him to a CPI (Maoist) front outfit and claimed it had evidence of his being in direct touch with ultra leaders, including party chief Ganapathy.

According to sources in intelligence agencies, the Gadchiroli Police has evidence that Saibaba was in direct communication with the absconding central committee (CC) members of CPI (Maoist) through two pseudonyms, ‘Prakash’ and ‘Chetan’. The probe, they added, had revealed that he was also in direct touch with CPI (Maoist) chief Muppalla Laxmana Rao alias Ganapathy and carried out his directives on Maoist strategy for overground/underground activities both at home and abroad.

Saibaba told TOI, “My house was searched for three and half hours. They have taken my laptop, pen drives full of academic work. Police rummaged my house, and we were put in one room. I don’t know what all they have done.” He said, “Gadchiroli Police is trying to implicate me in Hem Mishra case. It is entirely fabricated.”

Gadchiroli Police – acting on a search warrant issued by a Maharashtra court – had on Thursday raided the north campus house of Saibaba, who teaches English at Ram Lal Anand College. His computer hard disk, laptop and some literature have been seized.

The seized electronic items have been sent for forensic examination and agencies hope these will yield significant leads on his association with Revolutionary Democratic Front (RDF) – a CPI (Maoist) front outfit proscribed in Andhra Pradesh and also having direct links with the CPI (Maoist).

The action against Saibaba came after two overground members of CPI (Maoist), Hem Mishra and Prashant Rahi – arrested by Gadchiroli Police while on their way to Abujmarh to meet top Naxal leaders – named Saibaba as the source of the `incriminating’ material recovered from them.

Earlier, arrested CPI (Maoist) politbureau member Kobad Gandhy had allegedly named Saibaba during his interrogation, describing him as the all-India coordinator of mass organizations of CPI (Maoist). This was later corroborated by CC member Bacha Prasad during his interrogation in 2010.

The search at Saibaba’s house was conducted before independent witnesses and was videographed.

The investigation of this case is in progress and further arrests of the urban network of the CPI (Maoist) cannot be ruled out, according to Gadchiroli Police.

Intelligence agencies believe RDF is a front organization of the CPI (Maoist) active in different parts of the country.

In the CPI (Maoist) strategy for ‘revolution’ in India, the role of “front organizations” or “mass organisations” is to recruit ‘professional revolutionaries’ for the underground movement, raise terror funds, provide legal help to incarcerated members, mobilize urban population and carry out anti-State propaganda.

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Press Release and teachers’ statement on Hem Mishra, cultural activist’s arrest

Press release

Today various students’ organizations like DSU, AISA, AISF, SIO, Krantikari Naujawan Sabha, Paribartankami Chhatra Sangh, United Dalit Students’ Forum, All India Backward Students’ Forum, Revolutionary Cultural Front, Viplab Sanskritik Manch, krantiukari Sanskritik manch, political organizations like CPIML(New Democracy), Inquilabi Majdoor Sangh, and noted journalists from Uttarakhand Suresh Notiwal, Charu Tiwari, poet Ranjit Verma, DU professors Rakesh Ranjan, Ish Mishra, Anirban Kar and various students and activists from Delhi Uttarakhand and Punjab came to gether to protest against the unjust and illegal arrests of Hem Mishra and Prashant Rahi. All the organizations unitedly condemned the arrest and demanded their immediate release. Hem’s father KD MIshra who had visited Hem, informed that Hem was picked up on 20th august from Ballarshah in MAharashtra, the police informed them on 23rd august, produced him in court on 24th august, and shown the arrest from Aheri. Hem was also tortured in the first three days of illegal custody and now he has been booked under UAPA, Section 120 (B) of IPC and sedition charges. The police are still refusing him to meet his lawyer till he is in Police custody.

Sometime between the 20th and the 23rd of August, Hem Mishra, who was till very recently a student of Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) and is a member of Democratic Students’ Union (DSU) and Revolutionary Cultural Front (RCF) was illegally arrested and detained by the Maharashtra State Police. At the beginning, the police did not produce him within 24 hours of his arrest. Later after being pressurised by media persons they acknowledged that he has been arrested as a ‘prominent Naxal Courier’. This is a ludicrous claim. Hem is a known students and cultural activist in Uttarakhand and Delhi who has been working for the people by raising social issues since his early days in student activism. He is a physically disabled person. Being a sensitive activist and having heard a lot about the Lok Biradari Hospital run by Dr. Prakash Amte, where it is said more than 60000 people visit a year, Hem wished to visit this place in Bhamaragrh. Possibly he was also keen to know if there is any treatment for his persistent pain in the left hand where he had undergone two major surgeries from Vellore in Tamil Nadu. At some point in his journey, he was illegally detained on the 20th August 2013 and till his arrest was declared on the 24th August 2013 he was tortured physically and mentally by the police. He was remanded to police custody for ten days during which time he was not allowed access to a lawyer which is a gross violation of his constitutional rights. It was also reported in the media that two adivasi youths, by the name of Mahesh Tirkey and Pandu Narote were simultaneously picked up by police and were also shown as ‘Naxal Couriers’ along with Hem.

On the 2nd September, a freelance journalist and people’s activist in Uttarakhand, Prashant Rahi, was picked up by the police somewhere in Chhattisgarh and then shown as arrested in Gadchiroli, Maharashtra. Prashant Rahi was on his way to visit political prisoners in the various prisons of Chhattisgarh. Media sources and independent civil rights activists confirm that Prashant Rahi was arrested from near by the Raipur Court, Chhattisgarh. He was then produced the next day morning in Gadchiroli, Maharashtra in front of the local magistrate. He has been remanded along with Hem Mishra to police custody for fourteen days. This is a pre-meditated move from the side of the investigating agencies to incriminate both Hem Mishra and Prashant Rahi in a case together. Prashant Rahi a people’s activist was arrested and charged under 121, 121A, 124A, 153B, 120B IPC and section 20 UAPA and was under trial at the Session Court of Rudrapur, Uttarakhand. After languishing in the prison for 3 years and 8 months, he was released on bail on August 21, 2011. Since
then he managed to stay in Rudrapur as his trial was continuing there and
was supposed to conclude this month end. It goes without saying that the
arrest and possible frame-up of Prashant can also prejudice the trial that
is about to conclude. Prashant proclaimed infront of the magistrate that he was abducted by the police in Raipur, Chhattisgarh while the police claimed he was arrested from Maharashtra. The police is spreading virulent false lies to club Hem and Prashant, and trying to implicate them both in false cases.

We strongly condemn the false arrests and framing of student, cultural and democratic rights activists and branding them as ‘maoist’ courier. A memorandum was submitted to the home minister against this. in the coming days we are going o take up various other rprogrammes till Hem and Prashant are released.


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PRESS RELEASE- Arrest of Hem Mishra and Prashant Rahi – Silencing voices of dissent

Press Statement – 4th September 2013
Arrest of Hem Mishra and Prashant Rahi:
Silencing voices questioning violation of fundamental rights

The CDRO strongly condemns the arrest of Prashant Rahi and Hem Mishra, accusing them of Naxal links. Though the exact date of Hem Mishra’s arrest is yet to be ascertained, he was most probably picked up by the police around around 15th August. Prashant Rahi was on the other hand was arrested on the 2nd September. The allegation against both of them is that they were carrying some documents/ literature. Both have been charged under the notorious Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act [UAPA]. Both are serving a long period of police remand without being provided a lawyer.

Hem Mishra had been active with a student organization in Uttarakhand before coming to Delhi, when he obtained admission at the Jawaharlal Nehru University. In the year 2007/08, a number of activists involved in organizing youth and the rural poor in Uttarakhand were arrested on the allegation of Maoist links. So potent was the terror unleashed, that few would dare to question the allegations or meet the arrested persons for fear of being implicated. Hem Mishra, handicapped in one hand, was the person who visited all the arrested in jail and helped them get legal support. One of the arrested at that time was Prashant Rahi.
Prashant Rahi (52 years) worked as a journalist in Uttarakhand. He was also passionately involved with a host of protest movements ranging from issues of forest-dwellers, and of rural labour, to the displacement by the Tehri dam. Arrested in December 2007, alleged to be a most-senior Maoist leader, Prashant was kept in solitary confinement through most his 3 year 8 month stay in the jail. Once released on bail, Prashant took upon himself to visit those imprisoned as Naxalites all over the country and to help them obtain access to a lawyer. To this end, he was regularly travelling to across the country collecting details of cases and reaching the same to lawyers.

That there is no real allegation of any crime against both Hem Mishra and Prashant Rahi, it is evident from the fact that both have been charged solely on the basis of the UAPA. For, it is this law that makes normal social and political activity into a crime solely on the whims and fancies of the police. Banning of political organisations and converting any association with such organizations and their opinions into a crime is what opens the gates to the law becoming an instrument of injustice.

In addition, the illegal, yet reasonably settled practice of the police of not registering a panchnama at the time of the detention, makes it difficult to ascertain the exact date, time and place of arrest. Such unlawful detention leaves much scope for abuse. It is ironical, in cases where UAPA is applied, courts have been less critical of the blatant violations of procedure, in the name of larger security concerns.

Thus while the alleged “crime” as well as the circumstances of the arrest remain suspect, a vilification campaign has been mounted by the police that masquerades as information in the newspapers. No doubt, that this has become the preferred method to silence those working for basic civil liberties and implementation of fundamental rights.

Another favourite practice of the police has been to foist new cases against accused, especially under the UAPA and its previous incarnations, when those accused are either released on bail or else when acquittal in the existing cases is at hand. This has been done ad nauseum to frustrate the bail or acquittal orders of the court and has not yet found serious criticism from the judiciary. In the case against Prashant Rahi too, no incriminating evidence has been found against him in the case in Uttarakhand and he would be acquitted soon.
We therefore demand the immediate dropping of all charges under the UAPA and the immediate release of those arrested.


  • #999; padding: 2px; display: block; border-radius: 2px; text-decoration: none;" href="" target="_blank"> #India – Prashant Rahi, who was trying to help cases of political prisoners arrested #WTFnews
  • #999; padding: 2px; display: block; border-radius: 2px; text-decoration: none;" href="" target="_blank"> #India – Hem Mishra- JNU student and 2 others sent to 10 days police custody in Gadchiroli #WTFnews
  • #999; padding: 2px; display: block; border-radius: 2px; text-decoration: none;" href="" target="_blank">Press Release- Condemn arrest of Hem Mishra and witchunt by Maharashtra Police – DSU
  • #999; padding: 2px; display: block; border-radius: 2px; text-decoration: none;" href="" target="_blank">CRPP Statement on arrest of JNU student and Cultural Activist Hem Mishra
  • #999; padding: 2px; display: block; border-radius: 2px; text-decoration: none;" href="" target="_blank"> #India- Condemn arrest of Hem Mishra, a JNU student and a cultural activist by Maharashtra Police


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#India – Prashant Rahi, who was trying to help cases of political prisoners arrested #WTFnews

Prashant Rahi, who was single-handedly trying to help with the cases of political prisoners all over India, and visiting them in jail was arrested day before yesterday. He was picked up by Maharashtra ATS when he was in Raipur court to arrange for legal matters of some prisoners there. The Maharashtra police took him to Gadchiroli secretly, and charged him with the same case as Hem Mishra. They have also cooked up a story of arresting him from Gondia in Maharashtra.

After JNU ex-student, 2 more held for Naxal link

Soumittra S Bose, TNN | Sep 3, 2013,

After JNU ex-student, 2 more held for Naxal link
Rahi, alias Prashant Sanglikar, who had his schooling in Mumbai, was picked up from the Deori bus-stand in Gondia district on Sunday.
NAGPUR: Gadchiroli police have arrested 52-year-old Prashant Rahi, an Uttarakhand-based journalist-turned-activist and front organization member, and Vijay Teerki, of Chhattisgarh, for their alleged links with Naxalites. Rahi, alias Prashant Sanglikar, who had his schooling in Mumbai, was picked up from the Deori bus-stand in Gondia district on Sunday, while he and Teerki were “heading to Naxal-stronghold Abujmadh to meet a central committee (CC) member”, according to the cops.

Sources in Gadchiroli police said they learnt about Rahi’s mission from Hem Mishra who was arrested on August 22 from near Morewada village in Aheri, south Gadchiroli. Mishra, a former Jawaharlal Nehru University student and who is also from Uttarakhand, was arrested along with Pandu Narote and Mahesh Teerki. According to the police, the trio was carrying messages to senior Naxal cadre Narmada-akka, a divisional committee member, in Abujmadh. The Naxal HQ, which is on the Maharashtra and Chhattisgarh border, is about 80kms from Aheri as well as Deori.

Police said that Rahi too was carrying documents to a senior central committee member based in Abujmadh. His arrest may not be a big catch but it shows the increased inroads that Naxalites have made into urban areas. Earlier, Naxal cadre Kobad Gandhy was caught in New Delhi, Vernon Gonsalves and Shridhar Srinivasan in Govandi in Mumbai, and Sudhir Dhawale who used to reside in his wife’s nursing quarters in Byculla in Mumbai.

Rahi, who was one of the main campaigners during the Tehri dam protest in the ’80s and ’90s, attended school and college in Mumbai and then moved on to complete his engineering degree from Benaras Hindu University. His daughter Sikha assisted Aamir Khan in ‘Taare Zameen Par‘.

Sources in the Gadchiroli police department said that there was intelligence input about a senior-level meeting of the Naxalites to be held in Abujmadh for which several top rebel leaders were to assemble. The police and intelligence wing is now scanning through the Naxal literatures and other related documents found with Rahi and Teerki.

The two were produced before a Gadchiroli court which remanded them to police custody for 13 days after being slapped with charges under relevant sections of Unlawful Activities (prevention) Act. The court has also extended the remand of Mishra and two others for another 13 days. Mishra was also allegedly carrying a microchip to be delivered to Narmada. The cops have now ‘cloned’ the microchip to uncover the contents.

Police feel that information regarding the Naxalites’ plans and networks in the metros as a part of their objective to spread the rebel movement in urban centres could be retrieved from the documents and records seized from Rahi and Mishra. The Naxalites’ aim to combine jungle welfare with urban movement is now well documented. A senior officer said that the seized materials would help corroborate and bring forth many new facets regarding Naxalites’ plans.

Rahi, who originally hails from Nashik, had earlier served a three-year term in Uttarakhand after being arrested by the police in Dehradun in 2007. Later, his wife Chandrakala Tiwari too had been picked up. According to the police, the couple was actively working with the Uttarakhand Zonal Committee of the banned Communist Party of India (Maoist). Rahi and Tiwari were released about 18 months ago.

DIG (Naxal Range) Ravindra Kadam said that Rahi has so far remained tight-lipped about his destination. “Rahi was accompanied by Vijay who claims to be a sarpanch from Beloda village of Kanker in Chhattisgarh but we strongly believe they have close links with the Naxalites,” said Kadam.

He added that the duo was set to enter Abujmadh on foot from Aldendi village after reaching there from Beloda on bike. It’s learnt that the cops had been trailing Rahi from Uttarakhand. He was pinned down through his mobile phone location in Delhi and Raipur before being finally trapped in Deori. “After nabbing Mishra, we knew that there was another person who would be heading towards Abujmadh accompanied by local guides. We also knew that he would be coming with important documents,” said Kadam.

Sources in the police department also claimed that Rahi worked with the front organizations like Forum Against War on People, Revolutionary Democratic Front (India) and Committee for Release of Political Prisoners.

Who is Prashant Rahi?

Grew up in Mumbai, studied at St Stanislaus School in Bandra, followed by Ruia College, Matunga.

Went on to study engineering at Banaras Hindu University in 1977.

At BHU, briefly met human rights activist Dr Binayak Sen and was inspired by his work in impoverished villages.

Was exposed to various youth movements and was involved in fighting for the rights of villagers in Uttar Pradesh. Was an integral part of the struggle against the Tehri dam.

Worked as a journalist with Himachal Times and the Statesman.

Arrested in December 2007, seven months after Sen was arrested on charges of sedition.

Spent three years and eight months in jails in Uttarakhand, including Haldwani, Udham Singh Nagar, Dehradun, Pauri Garhwal and Haridwar. Most of his prison years were spent in solitary confineme

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Press Release – JNU teachers, various student , cultural organizations and the protest, Hem Mishra’s arrest

Protest outside Maharashtra Sadan, New Delhi on August 26th, 2013


In a press conference held earlier today (26th August) at the students union office in JNU, the teachers, students and an large number of student as well as cultural organizations of JNU along with the JNUSU, strongly condemned the arrest and profiling of Hem Mishra, who till very recently was a student in the Center for Chinese and South East Asian studies in SLL&CS, JNU. Hem is a known student and cultural activist who was arbitrarily arrested by the Maharashtra police, who is now showcasing him as a ‘prominent Naxal  Courier’ to the media. He is a known mass activist. He is physically challenged and he has undergone two major operations in his left hand in the recent past.

JNUSU General Secretary Shakeel Anjum said ‘On ebehalf of JNUSU, we condemn the fictitious and surreptitious arrest of Hem. He was here last week, before he left for treatment. This is clearly an act of state terror’.

Prof. K.J. Mukherji from School of Bio Technologysaid, “It is not just the case that he is our student, we are concerned how the police picks up people. The state has a way of labelling people and branding someone as a Naxalite, and then it seems as if his civil rights do not exist after that. We have high profile cases – like that of Binayak Sen. Even Soni Sori’s case is an example. Anyone cannot be arrested for his beliefs, as Surpreme Court has said. The police use the JNU label to say brand people in a certain way, since people here speak about progressive and revolutionary transformation of the society. We as teacher stand in solidarity with our student” Prof. D.K. Lobiyal also reiterated that this is a way of defaming JNU. He considered Hem’s arrest as a clear instance of state terrorism and expressed his solidarity for his release.Prof. Alone recounted how similarly the Maharashtra state has repeatedly arrested dalit activists protesting against the Khairlanji massacre whose cases are still pending. Mausumi Basu expressed deep concern about the safety of the persons arrested. “Just saying that he is in police custody is not enough. We know what all happens in the police custody. It is very very important that we should know when he was picked up.”

Hem’s brother Deepak was also present and stated that he got to know of his arrest yesterday from media reports. His family members were concerned as they had been trying to call him for the last three days. “He had come here to study, These are baseless charges. I had met his friends who also told me that they also could not get through him for the past 3 days.”

Student organization representatives ranging from AISA, SFI, AISF, Students Islamic Organization, Naga Study Forum, United Dalit Students Forum, Untouchable India, Krantikari Nawjawan Sabha – all unequivocally condemned the arrest of Hem. Several cultural organizations like RCF, Bahroop and IPTA, JSM also condemned the incarceration of Hem. They said, “It shows how the fascist forces are scared of people who speak of justice. Hem Mishra is one of us, he does what we also do – to make people aware through the medium of culture. If we raise our voice, the government is afraid of it. It is a shameful act. This is what has happened to Kabir Kala Manch activists, Jeetan Marandi and others too”. Noted poet Ranjit Verma was also present in the press conference and condemned the arrest.

The Students then were about to go to Maharashtra Sadan to protest. But shamefully the Delhi Police confiscated the bus and tried to stop people from going. But despite that students reached the venue and did a vibrant protest. In the demo too, everyone condemned this illegal and unjust arrest of Hem. A memorandum was submitted to the Resident’s Commissioner.

We are yet to know for sure from where and when was Hem picked up. We suspect that he might have been tortured or intimidated by various other coercive means by the police. We demand that Hem must be allowed to meet his lawyer as soon as possible. We appeal to democratic and progressive sections of the country and the media to raise their voice against this continued witch hunt of mass activists and stand by Hem. We demand his unconditional release.

  • #999; padding: 2px; display: block; border-radius: 2px; text-decoration: none;" href="" target="_blank"> #India- Condemn arrest of Hem Mishra, a JNU student and a cultural activist by Maharashtra Police
  • #999; padding: 2px; display: block; border-radius: 2px; text-decoration: none;" href="" target="_blank"> #India – Hem Mishra- JNU student and 2 others sent to 10 days police custody in Gadchiroli #WTFnews
  • #999; padding: 2px; display: block; border-radius: 2px; text-decoration: none;" href="" target="_blank">Press Release- Condemn arrest of Hem Mishra and witchunt by Maharashtra Police – DSU
  • #999; padding: 2px; display: block; border-radius: 2px; text-decoration: none;" href="" target="_blank">CRPP Statement on arrest of JNU student and Cultural Activist Hem Mishra
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#India – Cultural Activist Hem Mishra has no links with Naxalites

‘My son has no links with Naxalites

Soumittra S Bose, TNN | Aug 27, 2013,

NAGPUR: Keshavdutt, father of Hem Mishra, the student of New Delhi‘s Jawaharlal NehruUniversity (JNU) who was arrested for allegedly being courier for Naxalites, has alleged thatGadchiroli police had framed his son in false cases.

Keshavdutt, a retired teacher, claimed Hem was actually picked up from Ballarshah in Chandrapur and not Aheri in Gadchiroli as the police claimed. “False charges were framed against my son as is routinely done by police in Naxalite areas by planting materials on his person. My son is a meritorious student and was never an outlaw as police are projecting him,” he said. Keshavdutt, who spoke to TOI from Almora in Uttarakhand, stated his only knowledge regarding Naxaliteswas what he had gathered from media.

He said that the family was in touch with Hem till August 20 when his mobile phone was suddenly switched off. “We learnt about his arrest and charges from Hem’s contacts in Delhi,” he said. “I spoke to SP Gadchiroli (Mohd Suvez Haque) on phone. The senior officer was telling me about all sorts of charges he framed against Hem which I believe were not true,” the distressed father said.

Police had claimed that Hem was arrested along with Pandu Narote and Mahesh Teerki from Morewada in Aheri Taluka on August 22. The trio, remanded for 10 days in police custody, has been arrested for its alleged connection to top Naxalite cadre and divisional committee member Narmada Akka. Police said Hem was carrying a microchip having details about Naxalite activities in urban centres. A letter and some cash were also found in possession of Hem who, police claimed, was likely to meet Narmada.

Keshavdutt also claimed his son had a congenital problem in his left hand and he was heading to Dr Prakash Amte‘s hospital. “Hem had earlier visited Chennai for treatment and had been visiting elsewhere in the country during vacations. He had already undergone surgery on his hand but was not relieved,” he said. Dr Amte said he was unaware of any development as his Lok Biradari Project Hospital at Hemalkasa in Gadchiroli had been cut-off from rest of the district due to heavy rains. “Am yet to know of any arrest,” he said.

Keshavdutt said his son had an inclination towards culture and stated that he would request son’s party colleagues to ensure legal help for him. “My son wanted to get a job as soon as possible. He was working hard towards it,” he said. The father also called Hem a helpful soul. “Hopefully cops are not torturing him for anything,” he said.

  • #999; padding: 2px; display: block; border-radius: 2px; text-decoration: none;" href="" target="_blank"> #India – Hem Mishra- JNU student and 2 others sent to 10 days police custody in Gadchiroli #WTFnews
  • #999; padding: 2px; display: block; border-radius: 2px; text-decoration: none;" href="" target="_blank"> #India- Condemn arrest of Hem Mishra, a JNU student and a cultural activist by Maharashtra Police
  • #999; padding: 2px; display: block; border-radius: 2px; text-decoration: none;" href="" target="_blank">CRPP Statement on arrest of JNU student Hem Mishra
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Students, unemployed youths and marginalized section on Radar of Maharashtra Police #Hemishra #Sudhirdhawale

Shreya Roy Chowdhury & Soumittra S Bose, TNN | Aug 25, 2013,

NAGPUR/NEW DELHI: Gadchiroli police have arrested a former student of New Delhi‘sJawaharlal Nehru University, identified as Hem Mishra, at Morewada village in Etapalli taluka of Aheri tehsil in the Naxal hotbed of Gadchiroli district, on Thursday. Mishra was picked up along with two others, in the forests adjoining the village, for their alleged links with Naxalites.

Police said that the trio, from whom a microchip and crucial documents have been recovered, was working as Naxal couriers at the behest of a top cadre. The other two have been identified as Pandu Narote and Mahesh Teerki. The three have been remanded to police custody for 10 days. The Facebook profile of Mishra shows him as a “believer in Leninist-Marxist and Maoist views”.

The arrest of Mishra, who has completed his masters in mass communication from JNU, once again underlined the reach of the Naxals in urban areas. Police said that Mishra, a native of Almora inUttarakhand, had the microchip and a letter meant to be delivered to top woman cadre Narmada akka, is a divisional committee member. Police have also come across some sensitive mobile clips which they claim were messages from the Naxals to the cadres in city areas.

In his interrogation, Mishra told Gadchiroli police that he was not a student of JNU. “However, he claimed to be residing in a JNU hostel,” said Mohd Suvez Haque, the SP of Gadchiroli.

TOI learns that Mishra was a member of JNU’s Democratic Students’ Union (DSU). According to fellow DSU member, Bono, Mishra had a “problem in his hand” which required surgery. He was heading for Prakash Amte‘s hospital in Hemalkasa for it. “We were told that he was on the way to the hospital when he was picked up. We were not being able to contact him for the last three-four days and we were told by the local journalists what had happened. It’s a sensitive area. Otherwise, they can’t possibly have any real case against him. He’s just a student,” said Bono.

Morewada, where Mishra was picked up, is around 140 kms from Hemalkasa. “Mishra did not tell us about any medical problem nor did he mention Amte,” said Haque.

Haque said that the trio was spotted moving around mysteriously in Morewada. “When caught, Mishra had the microchip deceptively wrapped in a piece of paper which he had in his pocket. The materials recovered from Mishra are leading us to several crucial links and soon another major operation may follow,” said Haque.

Based on the information, the SP did not rule out the possibility of flushing out some top Naxal cadres from their hideouts soon. “The three has specifically revealed that they were working for Narmada. Narote and Teerki are also ready to repeat their statements in court,” added Haque. “We are also investigating into Mishra’s JNU connections as well as if Naxals had made any inroads into the university.”

Narote and Teerki have no previous records and reside in Morewada. “Narmada had asked them to bring Mishra to her,” said Haque.

DIG Ravindra Kadam (Naxal range) said the Naxal journal ‘Our Urban Perspective’ clearly revealed how they were planning to expand into towns and cities. “Students, unemployed youths and marginalized section of the society were in their radar,” he said.

A social networking site was flooded with messages supporting Mishra whom was being described as an “activist championing the cause of the poor and downtrodden”. The Revolutionary Democratic Front, a so-called rightist body, has condemned the arrest of Mishra.

In 2011, the state Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS) had nabbed Mumbai-based Sudhir Dhawale in Wardha where he had come to attend a symposium. Dhawale had been conducting his activities from his wife’s official nursing quarters at Byculla’s Central Railway hospital in Mumbai. In 2007, the ATS had nabbed two top cadres from Govandi in Mumbai _ Vernon Gonsalves and Shridhar Shrinivasan. Naxal think-tank Kobad Ghandy was nabbed from Delhi in 2009. While Gonsalves has been released, the other two are still in jail.

Earlier this year, Gadchiroli police had rounded up one Mahesh Raut and Harshala Potdar under suspicion for being Naxal sympathisers. While Raut was from Brahmapuri in Chandrapur district, Potdar hailed from Virar near Mumbai. The duo claimed to be students doing research in Gadchiroli under fellowship obtained through Prime Minister Gram Vikas Yojana.

About Hem Mishra:

Is a student of Centre for Chinese and South East Asian Studies in New Delhi

A second year student in BA Chinese but “deregistered” this year

Had collected a diploma in engineering before coming to JNU

Member of Democratic Students’ Union in JNU

Cultural activist and sings, performs in concerts regularly

  • #999; padding: 2px; display: block; border-radius: 2px; text-decoration: none;" href="" target="_blank"> #India – Hem Mishra- JNU student and 2 others sent to 10 days police custody in Gadchiroli #WTFnews
  • #999; padding: 2px; display: block; border-radius: 2px; text-decoration: none;" href="" target="_blank">CRPP Statement on arrest of JNU student and Cultural Activist Hem Mishra
  • #999; padding: 2px; display: block; border-radius: 2px; text-decoration: none;" href="" target="_blank"> #India- Condemn arrest of Hem Mishra, a JNU student and a cultural activist by Maharashtra Police
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