SHAFAQNA – People protesting peacefully against India’s new citizenship law are facing a brutal crackdown by the Indian Government.
More than 1000 people have been arrested and over 5000 detained. Internet services have been shut down in many parts of the country, and at least 30 people have been killed. People in India continue to face threats to their rights to freedom of expression and peaceful assembly and association. The authorities continue the use of legislation that prohibits the gathering of more than 4 persons and imposes a blanket shutdown on internet services.
In December 2019, the Indian Government passed the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA) that discriminates on the basis of religion, particularly Islam. The CAA fast tracks Indian nationality for non-Muslims from three Muslim-majority neighbouring countries – Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan – who came to India before 2015, Aljazeera mentioned.
Hundreds and thousands of people took to the streets in protest of the law and many were met with police brutality, arbitrary detention under repressive or colonial laws and ill-treatment in detention. Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that the new law “does not affect any citizen of India of any religion,” but many people disagree, usnews told. Opposition parties and critics say the CAA violates India’s secular constitution by making religion a marker of citizenship, and have challenged the law in the Supreme Court.
Woman have been at the forefront of protests in India against a new law, with some women literally sitting on the streets day in and day out for more than a month. With this approach, India stands in absolute violation of international human rights laws and standards. Amensty have reacted and for his part, call for sign the petition urging India’s Prime Minister to respect people’s right to dissent and participate in peaceful protests.
“Join us in urging Prime Minister Modi to respect people’s right to dissent and to stop the crackdown on peaceful protests in India”, Amnesty International said. Sign the petition demanding Prime Minister Narendra Modi to:
- Unequivocally condemn the excessive police and vigilante violence used on peaceful protesters and drop the charges against the peaceful protesters.
- Ensure peaceful protesters detained and arrested are treated with dignity and respect in line with international human rights standards.
- Take necessary measures to establish a fully independent investigation into reports of excessive use of force towards protesters and vigilante violence and ensure those guilty of perpetrating violence are prosecuted.