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British MP's, Activists Urge UN Human Rights Commissioner To Seek Dismissal Of Yogi Govt
All the Dalit organizations in the UK, over 30 feminist groups and many diaspora organizations along with British Members of Parliament John McDonnell, Apsana Begum and Kim Johnson of the Labour Party have written to the UN Human Rights Commissioner Michelle Bachelet asking her to urge Prime Minister Narendra Modi to dismiss Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath.
They have also sought an international enquiry into the Hathras gang-rape and murder case, as well as other cases of rape and crimes against women, particularly from Dalit communities, since Yogi became CM.
“The UP police, initially reluctant to register a case against the four accused, left her lying on the concrete floor of the police station and when she was eventually taken to a hospital she was left in a generic ward. Only after pressure built up was she transferred to the ICU and later to Delhi’s Safdarjung Hospital, where she passed away on 29th September,” the letter notes, recounting the sequence of events.
“But even this scale of cruelty was not enough for the police and administration of UP and the local government led by Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath which gives them their orders. On the night of 30th September, they took away her dead body. Her mother’s pleas to be allowed one last look at her were ignored. Then, barricading her family in their house so they could not attend or perform funeral rites, the police forcibly and hurriedly cremated her body at 2:30 am to erase all evidence in the case.”
The letter mentions other recent instances of crimes against women: “What is most shocking is that far from being an isolated crime, this is part of a systematic attack on women and oppressed castes. Three other sexual assaults and deaths of women and girls took place in UP hardly 24 hours after the Hathras victim's remains had been consigned to flames by the UP police. In Balrampur a 22-year-old Dalit woman was raped and murdered. In Bhadohi, a 14-year-old Dalit girl was found dead, her face disfigured and head battered - rape is suspected - and in Azamgarh an 8-year-old girl was raped.
While attacks on Dalits and women have escalated vastly all over India since 2014, when the Hindu-supremacist Modi regime with its entrenched Casteist and misogynist ideology came to power, the Adityanath government in UP has seen by far the largest number of attacks and atrocities.”
The letter notes that Uttar Pradesh recorded 59,853 cases of crimes against women in 2019, the lion’s share of the 4,04,861 such crimes recorded across the country, according to data available from the National Crime Record Bureau. UP also saw 26% of all atrocities against Dalits.
-- Rosamma Thomas
(The writer is a freelance journalist based in Pune)