BENGALURU: The Indian Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Friday conducted raids at the Offices of Amnesty International in Bengaluru, another attempt to suppress the organization for exposing the New Delhi government’s genocide in Indian Occupied Jammu & Kashmir (IOJ&K).
The Offices of Amnesty International India Private Limited and Indians for Amnesty International Trust (IAIT) were raided by the CBI in Bengaluru City, the Capital of India’s southern Karnataka State.
In its statement, the UK-based non-governmental organization working for human rights worldwide stated that over the past year, a pattern of harassment has emerged every time Amnesty International India stands up and speaks out against human rights violations in India. “Amnesty International India stands in full compliance with Indian and international law. Our work in India, as elsewhere, is to uphold and fight for universal human rights. These are the same values that are enshrined in the Indian Constitution and flow from a long and rich Indian tradition of pluralism, tolerance, and dissent,” the statement said.
It said that “As part of the Nobel Prize-winning movement, Amnesty International India holds itself to the highest evidentiary standards. Over four million Indians have supported Amnesty International India’s work in the last six years and around 100,000 Indians have made financial contributions. Our work in India, as elsewhere, is to uphold universal human rights and build a global movement of people who take injustice personally.”
Lambasting the Indian government for carrying out raids at Amnesty International Offices, a human rights activist and senior journalist from India said that they are trying their best to make out cases through Enforcement Directorate and CBI, and for Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) violation.
The human rights activist said that nothing seems to be coming out of the raids which have been carried since October last year. She added that in addition to the sedition charges for four years which fell through and were dismissed by the High Court, they are gunning for the Head of Amnesty Akar Patel and a few others.
The activist further said that although the Enforcement Directorate have all relevant information for a year with them, they have been unable to even file an FIR more than a year later; hence the CBI raids now. She said that the High Court had unfrozen all accounts of Amnesty last year shortly after they were blocked as there was no prima facie reason to block them.
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Friday conducted raids at the offices of Amnesty International India’s (AII) offices in Bengaluru and New Delhi. According to ANI, the CBI team is investigating the human rights organisation over alleged irregularities in the funds it obtained through the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA). Amnesty India, however, is contesting the charges and views these raids as “harassment” by the Union government.
“The Central Bureau of Investigation today conducted searches at the offices of Amnesty International India Private Limited and Indians for Amnesty International Trust (hereinafter referred to as ‘Amnesty India’) in Bengaluru and New Delhi. Over the past year, a pattern of harassment has emerged every time Amnesty India stands up and speaks out against human rights violations in India,” a press release issued by AII said.
Agencies add: An employee of AII, on the condition of anonymity, told The Wire that the CBI raids have come at a time when the organisation has been seriously campaigning against human rights abuses in Jammu and Kashmir following the Centre’s moves to read down Article 370.
In October last year, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) had conducted searches at two locations of AII in Bengaluru over alleged Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) violations. AII had then categorically stated that its functioning has been transparent and that none of the allegations were true.