K. G. Kannabiran (1929 - 2010)
30 Dec., 2010
I have to inform you with a heavy heart that K.G. Kannabiran, former National President of People's Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL), leading advocate of civil liberties and human rights and prolific writer breathed his last this evening at his home in Secundarabad. He had not been keeping well for the last few months.
K.G. Kannabiran, a distinguished human rights activist, was instrumental in mediating between the Naxalites and the State in Andhra Pradesh along with K. Balagopal who also passed away some time ago. He was also the President of the Andhra Pradesh Civil Liberties Committee. He had filed more than 400 public interest litigation (PIL) cases single-handedly. In spite of being a prominent lawyer instead of running for money, he chose social service instead and fought all these PILs and many more cases without charging any money. He had worked in the PUCL in the company of Justice VM Tarkunde, Justice Rajindar Sachar, Justice RB Mehrotra, Surendra Mohan and was for a long time President of the PUCL with Dr. YP Chhibbar as its General Secretary. For the tremendous amount of work done by him in the field of civil liberties he was considered to be a one man army by his colleagues.
Mr. Kannabiran was a prominent and most scholarly writer on civil liberties and human rights. He regularly wrote articles for the PUCL Bulletin apart from writing for various magazines and newspapers. He wrote many books. THE WAGES OF IMPUNITY: Power, Justice and Human Rights published by Orient Longman in 2004 is known to be his best and most read book.
In Kannabiranís death the civil liberties movement in the country has suffered an irreparable loss. This loss is particularly shocking as it has come within a fortnight of the passing away of Surendra Mohan, another stalwart in the field.
Mahi Pal Singh, Secretary, PUCL
Kavita Srivastava, Secretary, PUCL