One Year of Binayak Sen’s Imprisonment

‘Binayak Sen epitomises the kind of doctor India desperately needs, he has developed a model for working with the poorest people, devoting his whole life to this work. Instead of persecuting him the Indian government should be supporting and promoting his work’.

Christian Medical College (Vellore) Alumni Association – UK Branch

‘The government at state and national level are trying to silence Dr Sen because he has the courage to expose what they are doing to the poor – using terror tactics to drive them from their land to make way for multinational corporations. We must not allow them to succeed’

– South Asia Solidarity Group

“The massacre of Muslims in Gujarat in 2002 was widely recognised as an experiment in the Sangh Parivar ‘laboratory’ of Gujarat: a sort of curtain-raiser for the fascist project in the rest of the country. The developments in Chhattisgarh should be seen as no less. In fact, these are all the more disturbing and serious because Gujarat 2002 happened with a BJP-NDA Government at the Centre, whereas the Chhatisgarh ‘experiment’ is being conducted with the tacit consent of the Congress-UPA Government at the Centre... the footsteps of fascism can clearly be heard in the taming and silencing of the media; the repression of potential people’s resistance in Bastar, not just by army jackboots but also by invoking a manufactured ‘people’s uprising against naxalism’ in the name of Salwa Judum; and the witch-hunt of all voices which speak of humanity, democracy and dignity. The ‘campaign against Naxalism’ is a convenient cover which allows ruling class forces including even Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to maintain an approving silence on the assault on democracy in Chhattisgarh.”

– from the CPI(ML) Statement issued on May 14



Indian doctors in Britain, progressive South Asian organisations and human rights groups gathered on 13 May in London for a vigil outside the Indian High Commission demanding the immediate release of award-winning doctor, public health campaigner and human rights activist Binayak Sen. This was part of a global day of action with other events in cities across the US, in Paris and Stockholm, as well as in India.

In Britain, the protest had been supported by 22 MPs who signed an Early Day Motion about the case, and by well-known public health campaigner Dr Wendy Savage and eminent expert on tuberculosis Sir John Crofton among others.

The protestors shouted slogans for Dr Sen’s release and held placards reading ‘Dr Binayak Sen – jailed for exposing state violence’, ‘Standing by the poor is not a crime’ and ‘Disband Salwa Judum, free Binayak Sen’. A delegation presented a letter to the High Commissioner and also condemned the recent arrest of Dr Sen’s fellow Chhattisgarh PUCL activist Ajay. The protest was followed by a short meeting where future activities in the UK as part of the worldwide campaign to free Binayak Sen were planned. Organisations supporting the campaign include South Asia Solidarity Group; Christian Medical College (Vellore) Alumni Association – UK Branch; South Asian Alliance; The 1857 Committee; Indian Workers Association (GB), International League of People’s Struggles and many others.

Demonstration in Delhi Demanding Binayak Sen’s Release

On May 14, marking the first anniversary of Dr. Binayak Sen’s imprisonment, doctors, teachers, students, democratic rights groups and individuals from all walks of life got together to hold a demonstration at Parliament Street demanding his immediate release. In spite of a severe rainstorm, a successful and well-attended protest was held, following which a delegation submitted a memorandum to the Chhattisgarh Governor at Chhattisgarh Bhawan. A protest march was preceded by a public meeting which was conducted by Radhika Menon of Forum for Democratic Initiatives, and addressed by Ilina Sen, Justice Rajinder Sachar, Swami Agnivesh, Harsh Mandar, Dr. Imrana Qadir, Kamal Mitra Chenoy, Sandeep Singh (JNUSU President), Kavita Krishnan of AIPWA, as well as representatives of the Bhopal Union Carbide Victims’ struggle, PUDR, PUCL, NAPM, Saheli, and many other groups. A large number of AISA activists participated in the demonstration. The memorandum, along with the demand to release Dr. Sen, also demanded the release of filmmaker T G Ajay, scrapping of the Chhattisgarh Special Public Security Act, and disbanding of the Salwa Judum.

Liberation Archive