January 11, 2008


Fil Munas (USA)

Here is a brave man from India whose mind is without fear: Sharat Chandra Behar.

From INDIAN MUSLIMS http://www.indianmuslims.info/news/2008/jan/24/chhattisgarh_sacks_bureaucrat_who_met_jailed_activist.html?t=1201338618#comment-43041

Submitted by Mudassir Rizwan on Thu, 01/24/2008 - 08:59. India News

Raipur : The Chhattisgarh government has sacked its education advisor for meeting a human rights activist who is in jail for his alleged links with Maoist rebels in the state.

Sharat Chandra Behar, a former chief secretary of undivided Madhya Pradesh government, lost his job after he allegedly met Binayak Sen, a Maoist sympathiser, in central jail here, official sources told IANS Thursday.

"It's surprising how a government advisor who served as chief secretary of Chhattisgarh's parent state can meet a person in jail who is arrested for his link with top Maoist militants and also for acting as courier to rebels," a senior official said.

Sen, a paediatrician by profession and vice president of People's Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL), was arrested in May last year in Bilaspur city.

He is accused of having links with top Maoist leaders, including the outfit's ideologue Narayan Sanyal. He has been kept in Raipur Centra jail since his arrest under the stringent Chhattisgarh Special Public Security Act 2005 (CSPSA) and the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967.

The official added that government has decided to sack Behar as he first met Sen and then came down heavily on the authorities for being unjust to the jailed rights activist.

Behar has also raised question on the legitimacy of the government-backed civil militia movement, Salwa Juudm, launched in June 2005 against the insurgents in state's southern Bastar region.

Behar, who has also been director general of Makhanlal Chaturvedi National University of Journalism, Bhopal, was earlier considered a close aide of Congress leader and former Madhya Pradesh chief minister Digvijay Singh. But the state's Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government surprised everyone in October 2007 by appointing him as its education advisor.

Behar along with Narmada Bachao Andolan leader Medha Patkar and other rights activists met Sen in jail Jan 21, and then slammed the government for detaining Sen for his Maoist links. They also accused the government of ill-treating him in the jail.

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Dr. Binayak Sen
Submitted by Fil Munas (USA) (not verified) on Sat, 01/26/2008 - 09:10.
I have followed the saga of Dr. Sen since he was incarcerated by the nefarious government of Chhattisgarh on bogus charges. I knew Binayak Sen when he was a medical student and can attest to his gentle and caring nature. I remain very anxious about his situation - the perversity of the system is monumental. Dr. Sen is a rare hero in these cynical times and I applaud Mr. Sharat Chandra Behar for his courage and sacrifice in speaking out on this matter.

Submitted by Gyanoprobha (not verified) on Fri, 01/25/2008 - 15:09.
This report is typical of the way that the media often spreads the government's lie. After accurately saying that Dr. Sen is ACCUSED of having links with top Maoist leaders, it then says in the penultimate sentence that the government is "detaining Sen for his Maoist links", as if his links have already been established beyond reasonable doubt. Also, I note that you only provide the government version of the arrest, without a comment from Shri Behar. How difficult is it for Mr. Rizwan to obtain Shri Behar's version of the event? Or are IANS journalists trained to regard government sources as invariably truthful, when it is well known to everybody with a mind that government's lie through their teeth.

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