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Arbitrary arrest of human rights defender and Dalit rights activist Durga Jha

Durga Jha

Human rights defender



HRDA has issued an urgent appeal to the National Human Rights Commission of India on 17th July, regarding the arbitrary arrest of human rights defender Ms. Durga Jha. Ms. Durga Jha is a Dalit rights activist and has also been engaged in defending civil and political rights of people.

On June 14, 2018, while the Prime Minister was visiting Raipur, a delegation tried to meet him inside the airport. However, they were not allowed to meet him and so, they decided to protest by shouting slogans. Some of them waived black flags as well.

Based on this incident, two FIRs were registered by the police. One filed on June 14, 2018 another on June 15, 2018. On June 18, 2018, a bail application was moved. Ms. Durga Jha and Ms. Varnita Sinduria were not presented in the court. The 12 men who were present in the court were rearrested and sent to judicial custody in the second case. The two women remained in jail and were not rearrested. They were kept for two extra days without any reasonable reason and were released on June 20, 2018. This created a problem as on June 24, 2018, all 12 men were granted bail but since the women were not taken into judicial custody their bail applications were not entertained. As per records, they were not arrested. On July 12, 2018, both Ms. Durga Jha and Ms. Varinita Sinduria were called by the Mana police station's SHO and when they reached at the police station they are purposefully made to wait till 1 PM and then taken to the court. Bail applications were filed for both of them in the Court of Judicial Magistrate which were rejected by the magistrate and both of them were sent to judicial custody.

HRDA prayed for thorough investigation and to take immediate actions on the perpetrators of the case.

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