CBI raid at the premises of Teesta Setalvad condemned –
Human Rights Defenders Alerts – India (HRDA) has expressed its shock after hearing about the raids by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) at the premises of social activist Teesta Setalvad, her husband Javed Anand, Gulam Mohammed Peshimam and office of Sabrang Communications and Publishing in Mumbai. HRDA in release said that it strongly condemn this action by the CBI which comes in despite complete cooperation as submitted in writing by Teesta Setalvad to the CBI for all matters of investigation which is still ongoing.
“This is not the first time the activists working for justice and truth with regard to ‘Gujarat Riots’ have been targeted. Teesta Setalvad herself has been targeted in several other false criminal cases for which she had to seek anticipatory bail from the Supreme Court. It is clearly a part of repeated attempts to discredit human rights defenders and attacks on them,” said HRDA. –
HRDA also requested the National Human Rights Commission of India (NHRC) through its Chairperson, Members and Focal Point for HRDs to immediately move and direct adequate protection of Teesta Setalvad to ensure her non arrest and guarantee freedom of peaceful association and assembly and to carry out their mandates which in this case are the organisations Teesta Setalvad has been associated with.
Women rights group, AIDWA has also condemned in strongest terms the act of raids conducted by CBI on the office and house premises of Teesta Setalvad.
In Mumbai it is shocking and highly objectionable that a large contingent of CBI has been deployed for search operations the whole day, said AIDWA.
In a press release issued today AIDWA has stated that the real motive of such hounding of Setalvad is nothing but a clear cut vendetta of the central government as a revenge for her active role against the 2002 Gujarat Program.
AIDWA said, “She had been relentlessly continuing the legal fight for all these years so that politically influential culprits are brought to book and punished. Moreover such act of CBI can never be justified in view of Setalvad already assuring her full cooperation in any investigation into transactions and functioning of her NGO.”
Last week on July 8, 2015, the CBI registered a case against Setalvad and her organisation under Indian Penal Code (IPC) section related to criminal conspiracy (120-B) read with sections 35, 37 of IPC and sections 3, 11 and 19 of the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA) for receiving funds from abroad without seeking the home ministry’s permission.
In the First Information Report (FIR), the CBI also named Setalvad’s husband Javed Anand and Gulam Mohammed Peshimam, both directors in Sabrang Communications and Publishing based in Santacruz, Mumbai.