Indian govt under fire over NIA sending notices to farm activists

CHANDIGARH, Punjab—Union Government of India is under fire over its National Investigation Agency (NIA)’s sending notices to Punjab based activists, intellectuals, journalists, and farmer leaders who are taking part in the agitation against three “draconian” laws enacted by it.

All the humanist segments are harshly criticizing these notices wherein its recipients are asked to appear before the NIA personnel on different dates at its headquarters at New Delhi in a case registered against Gurpatwant Singh Pannu, legal advisor of the Sikhs For Justice (SFJ), a pro-Khalistan organization which is banned in India, and his aides under sections of sedition charges and Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA).

Taking serious note of the action, human rights advocacy groups—Khalra Mission Organization (KMO), Punjab Human Rights Organization (PHRO), and Manukhi Adhikar Insaaf Sangharsh Committee (MAISC)—issued a joint statement to condemn the move.

“This is a grave violation of human rights and abuse of democratic rights. It is a conspiracy to frame the farmer leaders, intellectuals, and other activists in the false cases of sedition and UAPA. This design’s sole motive is to torpedo the farmers’ agitation going on at the borders of Delhi,” reads the statement.

It reads, “On one hand, the government is negotiating with the farmer leaders to resolve the issue of farm laws, while on the other, it is demoralizing the struggling segments by dragging the activists into the false cases.”

Bibi Paramjit Kaur Khalra (Khalra Mission Organization), Gurbachan Singh (Punjab Human Rights Organization), and Baba Darshan Singh (Manukhi Adhikar Insaaf Sangharsh Committee) said in the statement that the NIA does not fall within the constitution of India and it should not have the right to register the case without intimating the state governments.

“This is a direct interference into the states’ matters as maintaining law and order is an internal matter of the states. So, the Punjab Chief Minister, Captain Amarinder Singh, supporting the farmers, should also condemn the NIA’s undemocratic practice. The stent of Punjab should not cooperate with this agency, and the Punjab Assembly session should be called to reject the NIA,” they said.

Meanwhile, political analyst Malwinder Singh Mali stated that the Centre had brought all the states under the control of one Police Station by constituting the NIA. 

Misuse of UAPA reveals the dictatorial attitude of BJP government – SGPC chief

The Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) president Jagir ‘Kaur’ has strongly condemned the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government’s “use of clumsy tactics to stifle the voice of farmers protesting against the black agriculture laws meant to destroy the peasantry.”

She said, “The issuance of notices to the farmers and those involved in the Kisan Sangharsh is a manifestation of the dictatorial policy of the government by misusing the UAPA (Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act) law to suppress the people associated with the agitation. The farmers of the country are fighting for their existence but the government of the country is misusing the government machinery to suppress the voice of truth and justice, which is not tolerable.”

She asked, “If anyone opposes the atrocities and injustice done to him, is that person an anti-national? Is worrying for one’s future generations and fighting for one’s rights a divisive act?”

The SGPC president said that the Modi government is destroying democracy with its ego and pride instead of seriously considering the farmers’ rightful demands.

“The attitude of the government towards the minorities, in particular, is repressive. The intention of the government should be to protect the interests of the people and not to pursue its own stubbornness,” said Jagir ‘Kaur.’

She said, “The Kisan Sangharsh is going on peacefully, but the BJP government is deliberately trying to tarnish it with its influence. The government is using every means to provoke people. Part of this is the NIA’s attack on the farmers’ agitation under the UAPA.”

She said that this government’s attitude proved that the BJP government of the country had become a dictator who is a major threat to India’s Constitution.

She said, “BJP government is constantly abusing government agencies by violating the constitution. The Prime Minister of the country should listen to the farmers’ demands through his agencies and resolve the issue by implementing them. Still, the government is pursuing a policy of suppressing the voice of the people.”

The SGPC president advised the PM that it was a matter of greatness to accept any wrong decision. The government should also accept any wrong decision taken concerning the farmers. She said that misuse of UAPA should be stopped immediately, and notices issued by NIA should be withdrawn.