We condemn the arrest of five human rights activists, professors and lawyers in connection with the Bhima-Koregaon clashes early this year. The alarming arrest of Advocate and General Secretary of Indian Association of Peoples’ Lawyers (IAPL) Surendra Gadling, Committee for the Release of Political Prisoners (CRPP) Public Relations Secretary Rona Wilson, Head of English Department Professor Shoma Sen of Nagpur University and member of Women against Sexual Violence and State Repression (WSS), cultural activist and founder of Republican Panthers Jaatiya Antachi Chalwal Sudhir Dhawale and anti-displacement activist and Prime Ministers Rural Development Fellow (PMRDF) Mahesh Raut is a clear manifestation of state terror to crush the voices of dissent in this country. The intemperate use of sections of the IPC and Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) on all five reveals legal over-reach and exposes the desperation to foist extraordinary and excessive charges on all five to ensure they remain in the clutches of the Fadnavis-Maharashtra government. All the arrested have consistently worked for the assertion of oppressed and marginalised communities against majoritarian forces, spoken out against Brahmanical patriarchy, upheld peoples’ rights to land, life and dignity, and have strived for the release of political prisoners. Today, after standing for the assertion of dalits, adivasis, Muslims, women, workers, farmers, marginalised sexualities, and oppressed communities, upholding the principles of democracy, and, consequently, being a thorn in the side of a vengeful police force, they are under the custody of impunity. Meanwhile, the perpetrators of violence during the Bhima-Koregaon clashes enjoy the protection of the state, patronage of the RSS and walk free. Now, with concerted efforts to implicate the arrested, egregious narratives of plots of assassinations is being weaved to defame and keep them in jail. These retributive actions are intended to threaten anyone who speaks out for them and drive a wedge between all struggles for peoples’ rights. In the last few years, wherever people have asserted their rights, the political establishment has clamped down on them with brutal force – be it in Saharanpur or Una, Bhima-Koregaon or Thoothkudi. The assault on the democratic fabric of this country, through the abuse of the legal and judicial process, the stage-managing of media for public trials, and deliberate efforts to build a climate of fear is blatant and pervasive. Today, more so than ever, it is crucial to reiterate unity in the face of divisive majoritarian politics that uses structural hierarchies to violently suppress different sections of people and communities. We strongly condemn the arrests of these voices of democracy, demand the immediate and unconditional release of all five human rights activists, professors and lawyers and stand united in our opposition to the onslaught of Brahmanical Hindutva fascism.

In Solidarity,


1. Abha Bhaiya, Jagori Rural, Himachal Pradesh and One Billion Rising
2. Abha Dev Habib, Miranda House, University of Delhi
3. Abhay Regi, Department of History, SOAS, London
4. Abhijnan Sarkar, editor, Towards a New Dawn and documentary filmmaker
5. Achin Vanaik, Retired Professor, International Relations and Global Politics, University of Delhi
6. Adil Jussawalla, poet, magazine editor and translator
7. Aditya Shekhar, Faculty of Law, University of Delhi
8. AK Ramakrishnan, School of International Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi
9. Alok Rai, former faculty, Department of English, University of Delhi and writer and translator
10. Alokananda, alumni, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Hyderabad
11. Amandeep Kaur, Panjab University, Chandigarh
12. Amar Kanwar, filmmaker
13. Amit Bhaduri, Professor Emeritus, Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi
14. Amit Bhattacharyya, Professor, Jadavpur University and Secretary General, Committee for the Release of Political Prisoners (CRPP)
15. Anand Patwardhan, filmmaker
16. Anand Teltumbde, writer and General Secretary, Committee for the Protection of Democratic Rights (CPDR), Mumbai
17. Ananya Vajpeyi, fellow, Centre for Studies in Developing Societies (CSDS), Delhi
18. Aneeb PA, journalist
19. Anirban Kar, Associate Professor, Delhi School of Economics, University of Delhi
20. Ankit Grewal, advocate, Punjab and Haryana High Court, Chandigarh
21. Anu Arunima, Professor, Women’s Studies Department, Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi
22. Anubha Rana, School of Languages, Cultures and Linguistics, SOAS, London
23. Anubhuti Sharma, research scholar, School of Arts and Aesthetics, Jawaharlal Nehru University
24. Anupama Potluri, Hyderabad Central University, Hyderabad
25. Arijeet Mandal, Assistant Professor, Department of Film Studies, Jadavpur University, Kolkata
26. Arjun Sheoran, advocate, Punjab and Haryana High Court, Chandigarh
27. Arun Khopkar, director and actor
28. Ashok Bhowmick, artist
29. Asiya Shervani, Independent Consultant, Diversity and Social Inclusion, Hyderabad
30. Atamjit Singh, Punjabi playwright and Dakshinayan Abhiyan
31. Atul Dodiya, artist
32. Basavaraj Sulibhavi, activist and publisher of Ladai Prakashana, Karnataka
33. Benu Mohanlal, Ramjas College, University of Delhi
34. Bhupinder Choudhry, Maharaja Agrasen College, University of Delhi
35. Biswajit K. Bora, Syama Prasad Mukherjee College, University of Delh
36. Bittu Karthik Kondaiah, Associate Professor, Ashoka University, Sonipat and Telangana Hijra Intersex Transgender Samiti
37. Buta Singh Nawanshahr, Association for Democratic Rights, Punjab
38. C. Sadasiva, Dyal Singh College, University of Delhi
39. Chaman Lal, professor in Hindi translation at Jawaharlal Nehru University and Punjabi writer
40. Damodar Mauzo, Konkani writer and Sahitya Akademi awardee
41. Deachen Angmo, student, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai
42. Debaditya Bhattacharya, Kazi Nazrul University, Asansol
43. Deepak Yatri, mime artist
44. Devika N Menon, School of Arts and Aesthetics, Jawaharlal Nehru University
45. Farhana Latief, research student, Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi
46. Feroze Mithiborwala, National Convenor, Bharat Bachao Andolan
47. Freny Manecksha, independent journalist,
48. G Haragopal, Visiting Professor, NLSIU, Bengaluru
49. Ganesh Devy, Dakshinayan Abhiyan
50. Gauhar Raza, former scientist, CSIR
51. Gauri Gill, contemporary photographer, Delhi
52. Ghanshyam Shah, social researcher, Ahmedabad
53. Githa Hariharan, writer
54. Govindi Joshi, Retd. Associate Professor, Ramjas College, University of Delhi
55. Hany Babu MT, Associate Professor, Department of English, University of Delhi
56. Hari Sen, Ramjas College, University of Delhi
57. Hemlata Manishwar, Professor, Jamia Millia Islamia
58. Himo Aronno, student, Jawaharlal Nehru University
59. Ila Ananya, journalist and student, Department of Gender Studies, SOAS, London
60. Imran G, Advocate, J & K High Court and Subordinate Courts
61. Indira Jaisingh, Advocate, Supreme Court of India
62. Isha Khandelwal, Advocate, Jagdalpur Legal Aid Group
63. Jagmohan Singh, Association for Democratic Rights (AFDR), Punjab
64. Janaki Nair, Professor, Centre for Historical Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi
65. Jatinder, Assistant Professor, Punjabi University
66. Jawari Mal Parakh, writer
67. Jhelum Roy, activist, Bastar Solidarity Network (Kolkata Chapter)
68. Jhuma Sen, OP Jindal Global University, Sonipat
69. John Dayal, human rights and political activist, Secretary-General, All India Christian Council
70. Jose Maria Sison, Chair, International League of People’s Struggle
71. Joyraj Bhattacharjee, theatre practitioner, Kolkata
72. Kalyani Menon Sen, feminist researcher and activist and Women against Sexual Violence and State Repression (WSS)
73. Kamayani Bali Mahabal, feminist and human rights activist, Mumbai
74. Kanji Patel, poet and novelist in Gujarati and editor of journal Vahi
75. Karuna DW, researcher, Chennai
76. Kavita Srivastava, President, Rajasthan chapter of People’s Union of Civil Liberties (PUCL), Jaipur
77. Keki Daruwalla, poet, writer and former IPS officer
78. Keval Arora, Kirori Mal College, University of Delhi
79. Kiran Nagarkar, novelist, playwright, film and drama critic and screenwriter in Marathi
80. Kiran Shaheen, independent journalist and Women against Sexual Violence and State Repression (WSS), Delhi
81. Krupa Desai, research student, Birkbeck, University of London
82. Laltu (Harjinder), Hyderabad
83. Laxmi Murthy, journalist, Bangalore
84. Loi, Global Secretariat, International Indigenous Peoples Movement for Self-Determination and Liberation (IPMSDL)
85. Madhu Bhaduri, former diplomat
86. Mala Dayal, author and editor
87. Malem Ningthouja, writer and Chairperson, Campaign for Peace and Democracy, Manipur (CPDM)
88. Manasi Pingle, Bangalore
89. Manshi Asher, activist, Himachal Pradesh
90. Marie Boti, International Women’s Alliance
91. Meena Kandasamy, poet, writer, translator and activist
92. Megha Pansare, Assistant professor and head, Department of Foreign Languages, Shivaji University, Kolhapur and District President, National Federation of Indian Women (NFIW)
93. MN Ravunni, Vice President, CRPP, Wayanad, Kerala
94. Mohan Rao, Retd. Professor, Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi
95. Monica Sabarwal, Assistant Professor, Punjabi University, Patiala
96. Mridula Garg, writer
97. Mrittika Biswas, MA Social Work, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai
98. Mukul Kesavan, historian, novelist and essayist
99. Mukul Mangalik, Ramjas College, University of Delhi
100. N Raghuram, Professor and Dean, Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University, Delhi
101. Nachikethas MJ, engineer
102. Nalini Nayak, Retd. Associate Professor, PGDAV (M) College, University of Delhi
103. Nancy Adajania, cultural theorist, art critic and curator
104. Nandakumar KN, activist, writer and freelance journalist
105. Nandini Chandra, Department of English, University of Delhi
106. Nandini Dutta, Associate Professor, Miranda House, University of Delhi
107. Nandini Sundar, Professor, Department of Sociology, Delhi School of Economics, University of Delhi
108. Nandita Narain, St. Stephens College, University of Delhi
109. Narender Thakur, B. R. Ambedkar College, University of Delhi
110. Naveen Gaur, Dyal Singh College, University of Delhi
111. Navsharan Singh, author and independent researcher
112. Neha Sonawane, advocate, Punjab and Haryana High Court, Chandigarh
113. Nikhil Jain, Dyal Singh College, University of Delhi
114. Nirmalangshu Mukerjee, Retd. Professor, Department of Philosophy, University of Delhi
115. Nisha Biswas, scientist and activist, Kolkata
116. Niti Saxena, feminist activist
117. Nivedita Menon, Professor, Centre for Comparative Politics and Political Theory, Jawaharlal Nehru University
118. P K Vijayan, Hindu College, University of Delhi
119. P. Koya, Professor, Calicut, Vice President, CRPP
120. Padma Velaskar, Retd. Professor, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai
121. Padmakar Shaw, Retd, Professor, Journalism, Osmania University
122. Pankaj Tyagi, advocate, Punjab and Haryana High Court and People’s Union for Civil Rights, Haryana
123. Pargat Singh, teacher, GMSS Sector 26 Model, Chandigarh
124. Patricia Mukhim, social activist, writer, journalist and editor of Shillong Times
125. Paul Zacharia, short story writer, novelist and essayist in Malayalam
126. Pratik Sharma, student, University of Delhi
127. Prithvi, student, University of Delhi
128. Pulin Nayak, Retd. Professor, Department of Economics, University of Delhi
129. Pushpa Achanta, journalist and consultant, Bangalore
130. Radhika, lawyer and independent researcher
131. Rajeev Bhargava, political theorist, former director of CSDS and former professor at Jawaharlal Nehru University
132. Rajesh Azad, Lok Shikshak Manch, Delhi
133. Rajvinder Singh Bains, High Court advocate and human rights lawyer, Chandigarh
134. Rakesh Ranjan, Associate Professor, Shri Ram College of Commerce, University of Delhi
135. Ranbir Kaleka, contemporary multimedia artist
136. Ratna Raman, Sri Venketeswara College, University of Delhi
137. Ravinder Goel, Retd. Associate Professor, Satyawati College (E), University of Delhi
138. Ridhima Sharma, Centre for Women’s Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi
139. Rina Ramdev. Associate Professor, Sri Venkataswara College, University of Delhi
140. Rita Kothari, Ashoka University, Sonipat and author and translator
141. Rita Manchanda, writer and human rights activist
142. Rita Sinha, Janki Devi Memorial College, University of Delhi
143. Ritu Dewan, feminist economist and Director, Centre for Development Research and Action, Mumbai
144. Rohini Hensman, writer and independent scholar, Bombay
145. Roopa Dhawan, Ramjas College, University of Delhi
146. Rosemary Dzuvichu, Head, Department of English, Nagaland University, Kohima
147. Rossi D’Souza, Homi Bhabha Centre for Science Education, TIFR
148. Rudolf C. Heredia, Indian Social Institute, Delhi
149. Rukmini Bhaya Nair, linguist, poet, writer and critic
150. S Anand, publisher, Navayana
151. Saba Dewan, filmmaker
152. Sachin N, Dyal Singh College, University of Delhi
153. Sachinderpal Singh, editor, Mashaal
154. Sadhi Binning, Punjabi writer and activist, Canada
155. Sadhna Arya, Satyawati College, University of Delhi
156. Sagari Chhabra, writer and film director
157. Sagari R Ramdas, Veterinary Scientist and Member, Food Sovereignty Alliance India
158. Samantha Agarwal, PhD student, John Hopkins University
159. Samit Basu, writer
160. Samuel John, actor and cultural activist
161. Sananda Dasgupta, activist, Bastar Solidarity Network (Kolkata Chapter)
162. Sandeep, film editor and writer, Mumbai
163. Sandhya Devasan, Assistant Professor, Jesus and Mary College, University of Delhi
164. Sanjay Kak, filmmaker, Delhi
165. Sanjay Kumar, Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology, Mahatma Gandhi Central University, Motihari, Bihar
166. Sanjeev Kumar, writer and office-bearer, Janwadi Lekhak Sangh
167. SAR Geelani, Professor, Zakir Hussain College, University of Delhi and President, Committee for the Release of Political Prisoners (CRPP)
168. Saswati Ghosh, academic and activist, Women against Sexual Violence and State Repression, Kolkata
169. Satyam Varma, journalist
170. Seema Azad, writer, activist, editor of Dastak and Secretary, People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL), Uttar Pradesh
171. Shabnam Hashmi, social activist
172. Shabnam Sengupta, Women against Sexual Violence and State Repression
173. Shafey Danish, Assistant Professor, KKM College, Munger University
174. Shailza, International Politics, SOAS, London
175. Shakeel Anjum, research student, School for International Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi
176. Shanta Gokhale, writer, translator, journalist and social critic
177. Shashank Kela, writer, Chennai
178. Shaswati Mazumdar, Professor, Department of Germanic and Romance Studies, University of Delhi
179. Sheba Chhachhi, photographer, activist, writer, filmmaker and artist, Delhi
180. Shefali Saini, student, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai
181. Shinzani Jain, MA Sociology, Ambedkar University, Delhi
182. Shobhana Warrier, Kamala Nehru College, University of Delhi
183. Shovon Chowdhury, writer
184. Shreya K, Chhattisgarh
185. Shumona Goel, filmmaker, Bombay
186. Skand Priya, Assistant Professor, Shivaji College, University of Delhi
187. Sohini, activist, Jan Jagran Shakti Sanghathan, Bihar
188. Soumya Datta, South Asian University (SAU), Delhi
189. Sourav Banerjee, Jadavpur University, Kolkata
190. Srijani Kar, student, Department of Mathematics, University of Delhi
191. Sudha Bharadwaj, trade unionist and human rights lawyer
192. Sujato Bhadro, Vice President CRPP, Kolkata
193. Sukrita Paul Kumar, poet, critic, academician
194. Sumangala Damodaran, Associate Professor, Ambedkar University, Delhi
195. Sunil Kumar, Professor, Head, Department of History, University of Delhi
196. Surabhi Singh, freelance journalist
197. Susie Tharu, writer, professor, publisher, editor and activist
198. Suvojit Bagchi, journalist, Kolkata
199. Svati Joshi, Retd. Associate Professor, Miranda House, University of Delhi
200. Tamoghna Halder, PhD student, University of California, Davis
201. Tathagata Sengupta, Homi Bhabha Centre for Science Education, TIFR
202. Teena Anil, visiting fellow, Centre for the Study of Developing Societies, Delhi
203. Teesta Setalvad, civil rights activist, journalist and Secretary, Citizens for Justice and Peace (CJP)
204. TM Krishna, musician and author
205. Tultul Biswas, Madhya Pradesh Mahila Manch, Bhopal
206. Ujwal Punyark, Faculty of Law, University of Delhi
207. Ushmayo Dutta, University of Kashmir
208. Venugopalrao Nellutla, Editor, Veekshanam
209. Vidhya, student and activist, Women against Sexual Violence and State Repression (WSS)
210. Vidya Rao, Hindustani classical singer and writer
211. Vijay Singh, Retd. Associate Professor, Satyawati College, University of Delhi
212. Vijaya Venkarataraman, Associate Professor, Deparment of Germanic and Romance Studies, University of Delhi
213. Vijender Singh Chauhan, Zakir Hussain Delhi College, University of Delhi
214. Vikas Bajpai, Assistant Professor, Centre for Social Medicine and Community Health, Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi
215. Vikas Gupta, Assistant Professor, Department of History, University of Delhi, Joint Secretary, Sambhavana
216. Vineet Tiwari, National Secretary, All India Progressive Writer’s Association
217. Vineeta Bal, scientist, Pune
218. Vinita Chandra, Ramjas College, University of Delhi
219. Virginia Saldanha, Secretary, Indian Christian Women’s Movement, Mumbai
220. Vishnu Nagar, writer and poet
221. Vivek Narayanan, writer, poet and co-editor of Almost Island
222. Waseem RS, Secretary, Fraternity Movement
223. Windel Bolinget, Chairperson, Cordillera People’s Alliance and Co-Convenor of KATRIBU Kalinpunan ng mga Katutubong Mamamayan sa Pilipinas
224. Xavier Dias, former editor, Khan Kaneej aur Adhikar, Jharkhand
225. Yogesh Puri, Retd. Associate Professor, Kirori Mal College, University of Delhi
226. Yuvraj RS Singh, Law Student, Raipur
227. Zulaikha Jabeen, social activist, Delhi

(… More names are being added daily.)