Citizens rally for Teesta
Setalvad and others
April 5, 2014
Saturday 5th April 2014! A day many will surely never
forget! The Mehdi Nawaz Jung Hall in the Paldi area of Ahmedabad,
which has a capacity of just about 250, was bursting at its seams,
as more than a thousand citizens had come in.
had gathered together under the aegis of the People’s Union for
Civil Liberties(PUCL) to protest against the vindictive actions, the
intimidation and harassment being meted out to human rights
stalwarts Teesta Setalvad and Javed Anand and to victim –survivors
from Gulberg Society Salimbhai Sandhi, Firoz Gulzar and Tanveer
Public meeting brought in people from all walks of life:
victim-survivors of the Gujarat Carnage of 2002 and human rights
activists; politicians and bureaucrats; intellectuals, academics,
lawyers and journalists- in fact several prominent citizens of the
city. The unexpected huge turn –out was a clear sign that they were
not going to take things lying down, any more!
Speaker after speaker strongly condemned the vindictive actions to
which Teesta and the others were subjected to; they commended Teesta
for her resoluteness , her dogged perseverance in ensuring justice
in several cases of 2002;for her generosity and large-heartedness
for helping those in need; everyone was clear about who were behind
the false cases that were being foisted. They strongly felt that all
like-minded citizens and groups should unite as fast as possible in
order to make their voice heard! We need to tell those responsible
for these heinous and divisive acts that “enough is enough!”,that we
will no longer tolerate these despicable acts.
those who addressed the large gathering were Mr Suresh Mehta, the
former Chief Minister of Gujarat; Mr Gyasuddin Shaikh MLA, Mr. S. M.
Peerzada retd. Sessions Judge,Mr R. B. Sreekumar the retd.
Additional Director General of Police, Gujarat;Mr Iqbal Shaikh , Sr.
Central Counsel Gujarat High Court: Ms Rupaben Mody and Ms Sairaben
Sandhi victim-survivors from Gulberg Society; Sophia Khan and Fr
Cedric Prakash, human rights activists. The Municipal Councillor
from Gomtipur Mr Iqbal Shiekh led a huge procession to the hall
carrying placards in defense of Teesta and condemning all that the
Govt of Gujarat was doing to harass those who were fighting for
peace and justice.
meeting ended with a clear statement “Don’t Intimidate those
marching for Justice and Reparation”…and a pledge that until the
false cases against Teesta and others, are not withdrawn- the
struggle of the citizens of Gujarat , will only intensify in the
coming days !