(11/20/2019, Chicago) – Today Justice For All flatly condemns the raid on the offices of Amnesty International India conducted by India’s Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). The raid is a clear attempt to intimidate and silence an organization that has been an outspoken critic of the Indian government’s violations of human rights, particularly in Assam and Kashmir, and will have a chilling effect on other, similar organizations that are doing their best to hold governments accountable.
Citing dubious claims of funding irregularities, the CBI’s raid is part of a longer pattern of harassment targeting the human rights organization since it has publicly criticized the policies of the Indian government, especially in Jammu and Kashmir, whose autonomy was recently revoked by the government. Muting human rights organizations like Amnesty International contributes to the government’s preferred narrative of “normalization” in Kashmir, following the unprecedented revocation of its own constitutional article granting formal autonomy to the region.
“This hamfisted attempt on the part of the Indian government to silence its critics will only embolden them,” said Abdul Malik Mujahid, Chair of Justice For All. “India only admits its guilt as a violator of human rights when it brazenly tries to intimidate neutral, nonpartisan organizations like Amnesty International, denies them entry into Kashmir, and generally prevents them from doing their work. If they have nothing to hide, as they claim, then why the crackdown?”