Student leader Veewon Thokchom, who is a former president and now advisor to Manipur Students’ Association Delhi, was critical of the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019 and was very vocal about his opinions on the same on social media. The Manipur Police alleged Veewon for spreading “provocative messages” regarding the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019 which led to protests in Imphal, Manipur. A local court in Delhi issued the transit remand to a team of Manipur police against which Veewon’s brother filed an appeal in the Delhi High Court. After hearing the appeal, Justice Sunil Gaur dismissed the plea challenging Veewon’s transit remand order.
If there is a bona fide conspiracy against the Indian State, there are enough laws in the statute book to look into them. A mature, liberal democracy cannot fight its own citizens. The Law Commission in its August 2018 report pointed out that “while it is essential to protect national integrity, it should not be misused as a tool to curb free speech. Dissent and criticism are essential ingredients of a robust public debate on policy issues as part of a vibrant democracy”.
On Tuesday, February 5, 2019, noted journalists P. Sainath and Niranjan Takle and noted author Urmila Pawar and activists from Mumbai, Jatin Desai and Feroze Mithirborewala condemned the police action against Prof. Anand Teltumbde and urged people to speak up against the undemocratic practices of the current government, which Mr Sainath said was criminalising dissent.
The attempt to demonise Gandhi and sacralise the man who killed him is however, a deeply worrying sign for India’s polity. The burning of Gandhi effigy is a political motive to invert the symbols of good and evil, right and wrong, and create moral confusion in the social sphere. It is an attempt to forcibly establish a new morality into the nation’s psyche.
The working conditions of BSF are much tougher than that of the Army. An infantry soldier after two years deployment in field gets to live with his family in peace station. Other arms and services of Army have it much easier. This luxury is unimaginable for a BSF soldier because he is deployed almost round the year on borders where he performs long hours of duty — mostly extending beyond sixteen hours a day. To add insult to injury, the Seventh Pay Commission has declared BSF and other paramilitary forces employees as civilian employees, even though the service conditions and duties performed by them are much harsher than that of the Army.
In a deja vu, it appears that the United States has been preparing the ground for a military invasion with thousands of troops rumoured to be massing in neighbouring Colombia. US National Security Adviser John Bolton sparked intense discussion on Monday after he was photographed carrying a note which appeared to read: “5,000 troops to Colombia” as he left a press conference. It comes days after US Republican Senator Lindsey Graham revealed that President Donald Trump had discussed the use of military intervention as imperialist powers ramp up their efforts to bring down democratically elected Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro.