Dr. G N Saibaba is Assistant Professor in the Department of English at Ram Lal Anand College, University of Delhi. He is a well-known democratic right activist at the forefront of opposing the gross violation of rights of the tribals and peasants of India. He has been a leading campaigner against a war that the Indian state has waged on its own people at the behest of large corporations to forcibly acquire land, rivers, mountains, forests, and everything that these profit hungry corporations are asking. He was abducted by the police, in complete contravention of the extant laws, on 9th May 2014. Later, the police showed him arrested and falsely charged under a draconian law, Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act. He has been kept in the isolation cell of Nagpur Central Prison in Maharashtra, more than 1000 kilometres away from his home and family in Delhi since then. We believe that he is being punished for his acts of resistance against such blatant and brutal repression unleashed by the Indian state on the poorest of the poor of this country. We vow to fight against this condemnable act of attempting to silence his voice. We stand by him and his rights to have an opinion no matter what the Indian state thinks.
G N Saibaba is a person with severe physical disabilities (90 per cent disabled as certified by the medical authorities) with both lower limbs paralysed after polio since he was five year old. He also suffers from serious cardiac ailments. He has further suffered, while in prison, dislocation of spinal chord and gradual paralysis of the left hand due to the tortuous conditions of solitary confinement. We see a clear danger to his life as his frail and weak body may not be able to bear prolonged incarceration.
The courts have denied him bail, even when there is no risk of absconding by the accused, a wheel chair bound person! There are clear provisions in the law suggesting that a person with disabilities should not be arrested and may be asked to face trial without being put in prisons. But the courts so far have turned a blind eye towards this. The prejudiced media and the draconian law, combined with the impunity of law enforcing agencies, ensure that the entire legal process becomes nothing more than political witch hunting, and his political view becomes a crime!