Imphal, Dec 24
The Four Left Parties- CPI, CPI(M), RSP and AIFB has expressed strong condemnation the decision to slap sedition cases against the leaders and activists of the Left Parties who were arrested in connection with the successful General Strike of December 19, 2019 against the CAA as a part of the nationwide protest.
“In connection with the General Strike Comrade L Sotin, Secretary Manipur State Council of CPI, was arrested on 20th December from the gate of his party’s state office at Imphal and slapped Sedition Law against him. The CJM Imphal West released Sotin on bail on 21st December but he was re-arrested from the court gate. Next day , he was produced in Bishnupur Court and remanded 15 days judicial custody and sent to jail for further interrogation”, a statement released by the four left party said.
It added that the Left Parties has always opposed the continuation of the Sedition provision after independence. This provision was brought in to protect the British crown and sovereign and had been used widely to detain and silence prominent Indian freedom fighters including Gandhiji. On this occasion when the country is observing the 150th anniversary of Gandhiji, it will be most appropriate to remove this provision from the statute books.
“Calling a General Strike against the unconstitutional, communal and undemocratic CAA is not a crime , it was a form of popular protest. Expressing opinions on important matters through protest cannot be constituted as a crime and be termed as anti-national. This is tantamount to punishing all those who have a dissenting opinion on the policies of the present government. This is a complete negation of democratic rights and reflects the growing authoritarianism in the country”, the statement said.
It expressed surprised on the order of the Judicial Magistrate 1st Class, Bishnupur to register this case, when the Supreme Court had ruled as early as 1962 that the sedition clause cannot be invoked unless there is a direct call or instigation of violence against the State.
The meeting of the Left Parties demands the release of Comrade L Sotin without any condition immediately and rescind the Sedition Law, the statement said.
- Published in News