Amitabh Thakur and Advocate Nutan Thakur
Social activist and Lawyer
Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh
HRDA has issued an urgent appeal to the National Human Rights Commission of India on September 14, 2021, regarding the illegal arrest of social activist and former police official Mr. Amitabh Thakur and false FIRs against him and his wife Advocate Nutan Thakur.
Mr. Amitabh Thakur (53) is a former Indian Police Service (IPS) officer of Uttar Pradesh cadre who has held several key posts and was the Inspector General (IG) of the Civil Defence Department. He is the founder of the National RTI Forum. Advocate Ms. Nutan Thakur (48) is a social activist, journalist, and writer and also the Secretary of the Institute for Research and Documentation in Social Sciences (IRDS).
On August 27, 2021, around 20 police personnel without badges reached Mr. Thakur’s house and asked him to accompany them to the police station for interrogation. When Mr. Thakur asked them to show a copy of the FIR and an arrest memo or a notice, they clearly denied and forcibly took him to the police station. Mr. Thakur tried making a video on his mobile but that was snatched away by the police. The part recorded video has been shared on social media and shows how he was forcibly taken away.
After this incident, Ms. Thakur reached Hazratganj Police station, where she was not allowed to meet Mr. Thakur, either as his wife or as his advocate. The police didn’t even show her a copy of the FIR. An FIR was registered against Mr. Thakur and Mr. Atul Rai by Sub-Inspector Mr. Dayashankar Diwedi at the Hazratganj police station under various sections of the Indian Penal Code. On the same day, another FIR was registered against Mr. Amitabh Thakur and Ms. Nutan Thakur at Gomti Nagar police station under sections of the Indian Penal Code.
It seems that the action against Mr. Thakur and Ms. Thakur is backed by political vendetta for questioning the government. The arbitrary arrest of Mr. Thakur is a clear violation of freedom of speech and expression guaranteed under Article 19 (a) of Indian Constitution. It is also in violation of multiple DK Basu Guidelines, and of CrPC Section 41B where police is duty bound to inform the reasons of arrest and produce the document or memo and get it countersigned by the person arrested.