Andhra Pradesh and Telangana
HRDA has issued an urgent appeal to the National Human Rights Commission of India on April 7, 2021, regarding harassment and intimidation of prominent HRDs including lawyers, gender activists, and writers in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana by the National Investigation Agency (NIA). These HRDs have been intervening in cases of human rights violation for decades and in the most difficult circumstances.
The NIA raided no more than 25 HRDs on March 31, 2021, which lasted for more than 24 hours, and seized books, computers, laptops, and reports from them. The raids were based on two FIRs filed in Munchingput police station, Visakhapatnam and Pindugurala town police station Guntur on March 23 and 24, 2021 respectively. It leveled charges against 92 HRDs under various sections of the Indian Penal Code, Public Security Act, Unlawful Activities Prevention of Act.
The NIA’s action, linking them to anti-terror activities and sedition, is a clear case of reprisal, resulting from their human rights work, which often includes questioning the government and being critical of its policies.