“I appeal to all human rights defenders right now to work with more energy to protect the rights of the people. It should be our responsibility to strive for justice at this juncture.”says Delhi University professor GN Saibaba who is being incarcerated in Nagpur jail’s anda cell for alleged Maoist links, charged with UAPA. Prof GN Saibaba is honored with Mukundan C Menon award of 2019, by National Confederation of Human Rights Organizations. In a meeting yesterday, Prof. Saibaba’s daughter Manjeera read out his message.
“I think democratic rights are the highest form of rights in our age. The human rights which are not just limited to the mere existence of life but the exist to fulfill all human aspirations. Life means the highest order of freedom to thrive and sustain. Even civil rights are restricted today and confinements of canonized laws that can never drench the thirst of human freedom. The democratic rights meet the highest requirement of human consciousness and life aspiration and include all forms of rights. Currently the need rises to defend these rights, and we must ensure the sustenance of the future generation. The future generation cannot be formed from the blood of the exploited. We have the duty as functions citizens and individuals of the earth to spread the message of human liberty and take forward the teachings of humanity. The defenders of the rights have greater responsibility at this particular juncture of crisis than ever before in the face of growing tyranny. No doubt first target of tyrannical forces are defenders of human rights. They are the greatest threat, they are the greatest destabilizing force.
The defenders of the rights have the historic role to play in the upcoming struggle which will be hard but we’ll have to fight it. This is the time of necessity of work of human rights defenders and I’m sad that currently I am in shackles, unable to work and defend those in crisis. Every day I read the newspaper and my heart bleeds thinking I cannot help those who are in need right now. I appeal to all human rights defenders right now to work with more energy to protect the rights of the people. It should be our responsibility to strive for justice at this juncture. In these regressive dark days, we need to look forward and not lose hope. As an Irish socialist Raymond Williams once said, “to be truly radical is to make hope possible, rather than despair convincing.” I’m glad to have the honor of being in this position right now and to see that so many people right now who are working and fighting to defend the rights of the masses, that is including mine.”
Prof. Saibaba’s wife and campaigner for his release, A S Vasantha Kumari, Delhi university professor and colleague of Prof.GN Saibaba Prof. Hani Babu MT, executive director of SAHRDC Ravi Nair, former president of DUTA Nandita Narain, NCHRO treasurer Adv. KP Mohamed Shareef spoke at the meeting. A collection of fact finding reports on various cases in states including south India, UP, Jharkhand, Maharashtra, done by NCHRO, ‘Facts Do not Lie’ was released in the function.