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Assault, illegal detention, arrest and custodial torture of HRDs by West Bengal Police.

Malay Tiwari, Rudra Prabhakar Das, Soumi Jana and other activists


West Bengal


HRDA has issued an urgent appeal to the National Human Rights Commission of India on February 26, 2022 regarding assault, illegal detention, arrest and custodial torture of HRDs by West Bengal Police. 

On February 7, 20-22 activists including women HRDs began the rally. Police personnel in the plainclothes present at the spot launched an assault immediately. They threatened to lodge cases of rioting against activists, baton-charged them and forcibly pushed, shoved and dragged six protesters from the spot to the Narendrapur police station. Mr. Rudra Prabhakar Das, Mr. Akash Gupta, Ms. Chandrasmita Chaudhury and three other HRDs were detained at the police station for over five hours before being released on personal bond. 

Meanwhile, a large number of activists including Mr. Malay Tiwari as well as past and present students of Jadavpur University gathered in front of Narendrapur Police Station to protest against the police excess on the rally and the detention of six activists. 

At around 10.30 PM, they greeted the six HRDs released from police custody on personal bond with slogans and cheers. At this, police officials started another assault of them, punching, slapping and baton-charged activists, and physically assaulting WHRDs. 

In all, police detained 11 HRDs from the spot this time, including Mr. Malay Tiwari, Ms. Chandrasmita Chaudhury, Mr. Rudra Prabhakar Das, Ms. Soumi Jana, Ms. Barsha Boral and Mr. Soumendu Mitra. Police confiscated their mobile phones and other belongings and detained them in two separate rooms inside the police station for about half an hour. 

During this time, male and female police personnel present at the police station including Officer in Charge Mr. Prabir Sasmal abused the HRDs and threatened to shoot them or register false cases under serious charges. They repeatedly kicked and slapped HRDs; pinned them to the ground; hit them with batons on their backs, chest, abdomen and legs; shoved batons in their mouths to gag them when they tried to speak; and rubbed the underside of their shoes on HRDs’ cheeks. 

We firmly believe that police acted with malafide intentions to target HRDs protesting peacefully against recent incidents of police repression. These instances amount to a gross abuse of the HRDs’ fundamental right to life and personal liberty granted by Article 21 of the Indian Constitution as well as a complete violation of their human rights as guaranteed by national and international laws. 

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