A call for trial observers
Trial update by Rajendra Sail,
Raipur, 15th September, 2008
The last dates of trial of Dr. Binayak Sen, General Secretary, Chhattisgarh PUCL were September 8th & 9th 2008. Strangely, nothing happened on these days, as the hon’ble Judge, Mr. B S Saluja, Additional District Judge (Fast Track Court), Raipur had gone on “Training”. So, the accused were brought from Raipur Central Prison only to sign on the Order Sheets.
The next dates are October 13, 14 & 15, 2008.
During the past few months, concern has been expressed by almost everyone attending the Court’s proceedings as to the seriousness of the prosecution in conducting the Trial. Some Observers have expressed these concerns in writing. We are circulating here two Notes and Letters on Trial Observations.
One, by Kavita Srivastava, Secretary of National PUCL, and General Secretary, Rajasthan PUCL, who has been closely following the Trial Proceedings.
Two, by Dr. Abhay Shukla, a member of the CORE GROUP OF NGO’s of National Human Rights Commission (NHRC). These provide deep insights into violation of national and international standards set up for a Fair & Just Trial. We must not forget that Dr. Binayak Sen is also a “defender of human rights”.
It is also very strange that the prosecution is behaving in such a manner while it is well known that the Trial is a matter of public attention. Even the European Union had sent two observers July 2008. Mr. Bruce from the French Embassy, Mr. Bart from the Nethelands, and Adv. Ms. Navaz Kotwal, a lawyer form Gujarat who was assisting the Team. We are told that their reports are presently being circulated amongst the EU Working Group on Human Rights.
The Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI) has also appointed an Observer for the Trial of Dr. Binayak Sen. The Chhattisgarh PUCL in its meeting held on 24th September 2008 has taken serious note of the Trial being conducted in the manner it is. Several questions have been raised: Is the Trial Fair? Are Provisions of Cr.P.C. followed in “letter” and “spirit”? Why is Chhattisgarh Police getting desperate? Why the delay tactics?
The Chhattisgarh PUCL has issued an Invitation to several Human Rights Organisations and Individuals to send Observers to the Trial of Dr. Binayak Sen, as it is becoming clear that the State Government of Chhattisgarh is using all kinds of un-ethical and illegal means and manipulations to delay and derail the Trial of Dr. Binayak Sen. The Director General of Police (DGP) of Chhattisgarh Government had even mentioned it to one of the journalists that the Government may not have evidence to get a conviction, but they were going to keep Dr. Sen in jail for a long time.
The linkage of Dr. Sen’s trial and attempts at pressurizing Ajay T G (another member of the CG PUCL Executive Committee) comes out clearly in the write-up by Kavita Srivastava, who has had several interactions with the police officials of Chhattisgarh Government. The nefarious designs of the Chhattisgarh Police have been exposed in falsely framing Ajay T G, against whom, the prosecution failed to file a Charge Sheet even today i.e. even after 130 days from his arrest. Although it is mandatory for the Police to file the Charge Sheet within 90 days. Ajay T G was released on bail in the absence of police filing the Charge Sheet. It is now that the DGP, Chhattisgarh Police keeps telling everyone who dares to meet him in this regard that they are preparing “supplementary charge-sheet” against Dr. Binayak Sen.
We do hope that these two Notes & Letters on Dr. Binayak Sen’s Trial Observations will provide deep insight into the mechanisms of the State in using draconian and anti-democratic law called The Chhattisgarh Special Public Security Act 2005 against innocent citizens, human rights activists, etc.
We invite all human rights organisations, social movements, intellectuals and people’s organisations to join us in keeping a vigil on the Court’s proceedings.
Look forward to meeting you during the next Trial Dates: October 13, 14 & 15, 2008.
Rajendra K Sail
President Chhattisgarh PUCL Mobile: 94242-01288
PEOPLE'S UNION FOR CIVIL LIBERTIES– CHHATTISGARH Post Box No. 87, Main Post Office, Raipur – 492001: Chhattisgarh: India E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.