Thursday, January 30, 2014

Shruti Nagvanshi: a grass root women power

Shruti Nagvanshi, born on 2nd January 1975 in the city of Varanasi is an Indian social activist committed to promote social justice and defend civil rights of  the marginalised and vulnerable sections in the caste ridden Indian society in order to overcome their social exclusion. She brings to her work 15 years of direct experience with marginalised communities mainly the untouchable caste known as Dalits, women and children in the eastern part of Uttar Pradesh. 

A dedicated social worker, Shruti has been the District General Secretary of Bachpan Bachao Andolan (Save Childhood Movement), a national movement against child labour from 1996 to 1997. Shruti is the founder of Savitri Bai Phule Women’s Forum, a social organisation which works for the empowerment of women members to fight against social evils like caste and gender based discrimination and the Hindu conservative patriarchal value system. The organisation draws inspiration from Savitri Ba Phule who was the first Indian woman to become a teacher and founder of the first shelter home for the battered women victims. When her husband died Savitri went against the social traditions by accompanying the dead body and also lighted the pyre. The Forum celebrates 10th March as Indian Women’s Day, as this is the death anniversary of Savitri Ba Phule.

 In 1999, Shruti became the founder trustee and managing trustee of Jan Mitra Nyas (People Friendly Trust), the governing body of People’s Vigilance Committee on Human Rights, (PVCHR) Varanasi. Jan Mitra Nyas is a public charitable trust, for carrying out work on crucial issues of governance and human rights in the adopted villages around Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh. Shruti has been the co-initiator of Jan Mitra villages (People Friendly Village), which works for the civil and political rights of vulnerable Dalit community and focuses especially on issues related to women and children based on the ideals enshrined the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of United Nations Assembly of 1948.

People’s Vigilance Committee on Human Rights, (PVCHR) was formed in 1996 in collaboration with famous Hindi poet Gyanendra Pati, internationally well known Sarod maestro Vikash Maharaj, Historian Dr. Mahendra Pratap Singh and Human Rights activist and her husband Dr. Lenin. The approach of the organization is two-fold: to have a strong grassroots organization to work for the democratic rights of those in marginalized communities and secondly, to create the structure and dynamics to receive the assistance of national and international institutions.  PVCHR, a “peoples’ forum” is located in Varanasi in the eastern region of Indian state of Uttar Pradesh.  Though there has been a plethora of laws in Indian constitution that prohibits the practice of treating people as “untouchables” or subhuman for many decades, the practice still persists in Indian society. PVCHR works as a guiding force to bring about social change.

During the past eleven years Shruti with the help of the organisation has taken up around 3500 cases of discrimination against women, children and Dalit community. Efforts of her organisation have been able to secure interventions by the Government, Commissions and administration (namely local panchayat administration) on almost three hundred cases. Out of these some two hundred cases had positive results. These are the cases taken up personally by her, besides many other cases taken up on behalf of her organisation.

Shruti has been the convenor of Voice of People, state wide joint alliance of civil society organisations working for the promotion of children rights since October 2013. Shruti has also severed on the District Food and Supply Advisory Committee of Varanasi as a member appointed by Governor of Uttar Pradesh.  In recognition of her contribution, she has been awarded HT Women Appreciation Certificate by the leading Indian daily English newspaper, The Hindustan Times. Shruti has also been honoured by Shri P.L.Punia, Chairperson, National Commission for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes for her commendable work for Dalit rights.

Shruti participated in Gwangju Human Rights Award ceremony in 2007 in South Korea along with her husband Dr. Lenin who received 2007 Gwangju Human Rights Award from May 18 Foundation along with Ms. Sharmila Irom of Manipur.

Shruti attended the Star Peace award from Association for Communal Harmony in Asia (ACHA) in the US in 2008.

Shruti participated in International Human Rights Award ceremony in 2010 in the City Council of Weimar in Germany.

 Shruti has written many articles in both Hindi and English languages. Her article about corporal punishment of Dalit Mushar children in school of Pindara, Varanasi in India published in and then published on editorial page of National Hindi daily ‘Jansatta’, which became a suo-motto petition and taken up by the High Court of Uttar Pradesh. Intervention of High Court brought the justice and hope for the dalit children.
Shruti along with Dr. Archana Kaushik of Delhi University wrote an article on plight of weavers of Varanasi, which is translated into French by Mr. Ben Deboc.

Shruti was born and brought up in a middle class family as the eldest child. Her father was employed with the Life Insurance Company. She studied up to intermediate (Pre-University studies) at Basant Kanya Vidyalaya founded by Annie Beasant of the Theosophical Society of India. Since her childhood days, Shruti nourished the idea of a just and equitable society and often used to get deeply disturbed by looking at the existing social inequalities and exploitation and especially the widening gap between the rich and the poor in her native city of Varanasi where poor people were often forced to go to bed without food. Despite family opposition to her ideas, Shruti took up the challenge to work and help the poor and the deprived.

Shruti got married to Dr. Lenin on 22 February, 1992. Despite all social pressures from her family, she daily walked two kilometres to Uday Pratap College and completed her graduation. Mother of a boy child, Shruti is also an example of someone who has balanced her work life with family life exceptionally well. Her life is a shining example of working for the society selflessly and making the best use of knowledge for the civil and political rights of the less privileged sections of the society.

Born on 2 January 1975 at Varanasi
Married to Lenin Raghuvanshi on 22 February 1992; has a 15 year old son, Kabeer Karunik
1993: District General Secretary of Bachapan Bachao Andolan (Save the Childhood Movement), Varanasi.
1996: Founded People's Vigilance Committee on Human Rights (PVCHR) along with Lenin Raghuvanshi, in association with Dr. Mahendra Pratap (Historian), Vikash Maharaj (Musician), GyanedraPati (poet) to work on child labour free village.
1999: Founded Jan Mitra Nyas, a public charitable trust, for carrying out work on crucial issues of governance and Human Rights in five adopted villages near Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh.
2001: Elected to the Executive Council of Voice of People (VOP, 25000 membership), a state wide people's alliance to highlight and bring into national focus the child right in Uttar Pradesh.
2002: Campaigned and mobilized at State and national level for prevention of torture.
2003: Established Savitri Bai Phule Mahila Panchayat, a women forum

2004: Created Model Village "people Friendly Village" to enable and amplify the voice of the marginalized  with especial focus on realization on child right in field.
2004: Organized Benaras Convention in order to assert the discourse on the politics of marginalized people in the national mainstream. The convention attended by thinkers and activists across the nation unanimously declared that the City of Varanasi was the symbol of Shraman Sanskriti (culture of the working classes) as opposed to that of the Brahminical Sanskriti (Culture of the feudal classes).
2005: Conceived and convened People's SAARC at Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh. The objective was to bring the issues faced by the people of SAARC countries on to a common platform and forge a forum based on people to people relationship to fight against the evil designs of caste, communal, ethnic, and fascist forces in the region. The most important declaration read, "We cherish and uphold the Rule of Law, sovereignty of the people, a system of governance that ensures devolution of power, People' right to self-rule and control over resources." The core committee comprised of PVCHR (India), INSEC (Nepal), People's Forum for Human Rights (Bhutan), Human Rights Commission of Pakistan, LOKOJ (Bangladesh) and Wiroslokh Institute (Srilanka).This convention also triggered off a series of similar conventions across the SAARC countries. Two major outcomes of the convention were the inclusion of Afghanistan in the SAARC, and the inclusion of civil society voices in the decision making process adopted in the Dhaka declaration in SAARC, 2005.
2007: Established Folk School for Dalits in Belwa region.
2007: PVCHR and Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) along with 210 NGOs across the state conducted the Uttar Pradesh Election Watch (UPEW). The objective was to sensitize the electors about the governance processes. By providing background information of the candidates, UPEW facilitated for the citizens of Uttar Pradesh to make informed choices.
2007: Participated in 2007 Gwangju Human Rights Award of May 18 Foundation of South Korea.
2010: Participated in 2010 International Human Rights Award ceremony at City council of Weimar in Germany.
2011: Received Usmania Award from Madarsa Usmania, Bazardiha, Varanasi in India for the development and welfare of education.
2011: Establishing Neo dalit movement as new non-violent peoples movement to formulate positive conflict resolution all different identities against injustice, culture of silence with impunity, neo liberalism and communal fascism.
2012: Jan Mitra Nyas, a public charitable trust for PVCHR received ISO 9001: 2008 Certification for quality management system.

2013: Convenor of Voice of People (VOP)
Contact: SA 4/2 A, Daualtpur, Varanasi-221002, India
Email: Web:
Mobile: +91-9935599331/0

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

श्री ज्ञान प्रकाश को नव दलित सम्मान

National Consultation on Women Rights

Dear Friends,

Greetings from PVCHR/JMN

National Alliance on Testimonial Therapy (NATT) in collaboration with the Dignity: Danish Institute Against Torture is organizing National Consultation for preparing the Alternate Reports to the IV and V Periodic Report for its review by the CEDAW Committee in July 2014. It is a part of a year for Stayagarha for Neo dalit. 

Therefore, NATT is inviting you to join in this National Consultation at Patna, Bihar on 12th April, and give your specific inputs and any other special concerns to the preparation of the IV and V Alternate Report. 

We are looking forward to highly engaging discussion and enthusiastic inputs from all of you. We will be able to provide Sleeper class Train or Bus fare. The detail of the venue and logistics will be shared shortly. 

• Submission to the UN Special Rapporteur on violence against women by PVCHR
• Submission by PVCHR regarding India for the Universal Periodic Review: State of Impunity

Please confirm your esteem presence at email

Thanking You
On the behalf of NATT secretariat 
Prof. Shahina Rizvi, Bindu Singh, Shruti Nagvanshi, Sandhya Jha, Sakuntala, Sandhya, Shirin Shabana Khan, Chhaya Kumari and Lenin Raghuvanshi

Event on Facebook:

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

PVCHR through photography

Photography is the common language of Modern history." Holland Carter

Monday, January 27, 2014

A 'Broken People' in Booming India

Comment of Anup Kumar Srivastava in Washington Psot:

"India is not a true democracy," said Anup Srivastava, a researcher with the People's Vigilance Commission on Human Rights in Varanasi who is investigating complaints filed by Dalits about discrimination among neighbors, in schools, at hospitals and at work. "The country is independent. But the people aren't. How can there be a democracy when there are still people known as untouchables who face daily discrimination?"
Read full article:

Saturday, January 25, 2014

You have a problem in hand. Own it to solve it: Prof. Dr. Ahmad Saghir Inam Shastri

India is the world’s largest liberal democracy. After its independence from the British colonial rule in 1947 India adopted the path of social and economic development and modernisation. The growth process led to increased levels of literacy, education, wealth, and social mobilization. Decades after the economic reforms in 1990 India achieved the economic status which is often portrayed as among the success stories of the developing world. This national progress was not without its pitfalls. Almost after more than 60 years of independence, a large section of Indian population still complain for not availing the benefits of development. The most marginalised sections of Indian society mainly the tribals, minority communities especially the Muslims and lower castes also known as Untouchables still live in stark poverty and without any civil and political rights.

India may be known as one of the world’s oldest living civilisations with a vibrant culture and diversity of its people and languages. Paradoxically, this enormous Indian diversity also hides a darker side in the shadows of its culture known as the caste system. Embedded in Indian culture for the past many centuries, the Hindu caste system is considered as one of the world's longest surviving forms of social stratification. It divides society into social classes or castes and this graded inequality has the sanction of classical Indian religious scriptures.

In India the caste hierarchy dictates the lives of its citizens even today. The tribals, Muslims and the lower caste or untouchable communities face discrimination and oppression due to their social status. As a result they have been further marginalised in the society and denied their basic rights. The People’s Vigilance Committee on Human Rights (PVCHR), Varanasi took up the challenging and exemplary task to raise voice against the social, political, cultural and economic discrimination being practiced against the “Untouchable” communities mainly the Mushahars and the human rights violations of the minority Muslims in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh.[i]

Mushahar means “mouse-eaters”. They are considered “Untouchable” – people tainted by their birth into a caste system that deems them impure, less than human. Mushahar are relegated to the lowest jobs and live in constant fear of being publicly humiliated, paraded naked, beaten, and raped with impunity by upper-caste Hindus seeking to keep them in their place. Merely walking through an upper-caste neighbourhood is a life-threatening offence. The main business for them, even today, is to kill rats.

Despite the fact that untouchability was officially banned when India adopted its constitution in 1950, discrimination against lower castes and Musahar has remained so pervasive.  In order to prevent discrimination based on caste and religion, the government passed legislation in 1989 known as The Prevention of Atrocities Act. The act specifically made it illegal to parade people naked through the streets, force them to eat faeces, take away their land, foul their water, interfere with their right to vote, and burn down their homes. Many of the youngest in the community do not found entry in the schools since the upper castes do not want their children to study along with the Musahar children. Since then, the violence has escalated largely as a result of the emergence of a grassroots human rights movement among Musahar to demand their rights and resist the dictates of untouchability. After the sustained efforts and various community capacity building programme in Mushahar localities by People’s Vigilance Committee on Human Rights (PVCHR), the community has gradually undergone many changes as they have gained confidence to resist caste based atrocities and now they are gradually opting for alternative sources of food by changing their diet. Many of them can now afford to eat pork, chicken and fish.

In December 2013 PVCHR successfully completed the project on “Reducing police Torture against Muslims at Grass Roots Level by Engaging and Strengthening Human Rights Institutions in India” with the support of European Union. The project was implemented in the four districts of Uttar Pradesh namely; Aligarh, Meerut, Moradabad and Varanasi. The experiences of the project revealed that in India the poorest members of the religious minorities have been the targets of all kinds of discriminations, torture, cruel and degrading treatment. Muslim minority has been no exception as far as social prejudices are concerned. In a caste driven social and economic structure of Indian society there is a deep rooted perceptions about Muslim community as being inferior category in the given caste hierarchy. They are viewed below the status of the most deprived lower castes or untouchables. This perception has helped in justifying the acts of torture and other degrading treatment with greater acceptance to the use of torture against the Muslim community. Discrimination has taken institutional form and its manifestation can be seen in the working of crucial constitutional institutions of public importance like police and judiciary. Religious bias against Muslims has been found all pervasive in legal institutions and governing structure. An analysis of total 806 cases after the completion of fact finding exercises from January 2011 to April 2013, it has been observed and testified by the survivors that many of them were subjected to torture just because they belonged to the minority Muslim community.

Conflicts arising out of religious differences and violations of human rights of the marginalized sections especially Muslim minority have reached at a stage where they pose an imminent threat to the survival of democratic values and governance system. In an attempt to develop a communication framework so as to bring together policy makers, legislators, social activists from Muslim community and human rights defenders, an “Interface meeting was organized with the Parliamentarian, policy makers and political parties on the issue of Muslim minority in Uttar Pradesh” on 9th December, 2013 in Constitution Club in New Delhi. The programme was jointly organized by People’s Vigilance Committee on Human Rights (PVCHR), Varanasi and Human Rights Law Network (HRLN), New Delhi with the support from European Union and Dignity: Danish Institute Against Torture. A comprehensive report, “Repression, Despair and Hope” - Mapping of Police torture in four districts of Uttar Pradesh and Strengthening Human Rights Institutions” was released on the occasion. PVCHR also screened a 36 minutes long documentary titled “Muslim & Police: A Perspective”. The documentary was prepared on the basis of interactions for almost three months at the grass root level with the members of Muslim community in various Muslim dominated districts of Uttar Pradesh. The film chronicled in historical perspective the role and status of the Indian Muslims and highlighted the views of the members of Muslim community reflecting on their deprivation in the fields of education, employment, business, socio economic development, political representation and physical and psychological insecurities.

Lenin Raghuvanshi is the Secretary General and Executive Director of PVCHR. He has been working for the rights of bonded and child labourers and other marginalized people in Varanasi and eastern part of Uttar Pradesh in India. In 1996, he and his wife Shruti founded the PVCHR, a community-based organization; to break the closed, feudal hierarchies prevail in conservative Indian villages and urban slums by building up local institutions and supporting them with a high profile and active human rights network. He has become the symbol of nonviolent resistance among the Musahar communities fighting for dignity. Due to his commitment on behalf of the marginalized, he has periodically suffered death threats.

Rightly Lenin Raghuvanshi says, “Change the word "Race" by "caste", the word "Angola" by "Kashmir", the word "Mozambique" by "North East states”, the word "South Africa" by" dalit Ghetto" and the word "African" by "Indian" in the song of Bob Marley, the renowned Jamaican singer-songwriter, then you can have an Indian revolutionary song[ii]

Until the philosophy which hold one race superior and another inferior
Is finally and permanently discredited and abandoned -
Everywhere is war -
Me say war.

That until there no longer first class and second class citizens of any nation.
Until the colour of a man's skin is of no more significance than the colour of his eyes -
Me say war.

That until the basic human rights are equally guaranteed to all,
Without regard to race -
Dis a war.

That until that day
The dream of lasting peace,
World citizenship
Rule of international morality
Will remain in but a fleeting illusion to be pursued,
But never attained -
Now everywhere is war - war.

And until the ignoble and unhappy regimes
that hold our brothers in Angola, in Mozambique, South Africa
Sub-human bondage
Have been toppled,
Utterly destroyed -
Well, everywhere is war -
Me say war.

War in the east,
War in the west,
War up north,
War down south -
War - war -
Rumours of war.
And until that day, the African continent will not know peace,
We Africans will fight - we find it necessary -
And we know we shall win as we are confident in the victory
Of good over evil"[iii].

Lenin believes that "India's many problems are interconnected. In order to understand and solve them, they must not be divided. What is needed is a comprehensive multi-layer and multi-dimensional approach that takes into account economic, cultural, political and social factors.” Lenin Raghuvanshi and his organization PVCHR are actively attempting to fill this opportunity space by courting constructive dialogue with other of all stripes and ideological leanings. Focusing on the diversity of caste experience, rather than counter-intuitive to movement goals of creating Dalit self-esteem, represents a primary step toward creating lasting structural change in the process of creating Dalit self-esteem. Dialogic interaction among different castes is making this clear. For an independent society, education is a primary requirement. Therefore PVCHR creates space for free thoughts – folk school, schools and kindergartens teach basics from the grassroots level. Model village process of the PVCHR is a unique way of the non-violent peoples’ movement based on inculcating empowerment of hope, honour and human dignity.[iv]    

According to Lenin, unless Indian society deals with the injustices of the caste system head-on, it will not attack social conflict at its root. Translating these convictions into action, Lenin has built local, national, and regional institutions that challenge caste. His People's Vigilance Committee for Human Rights (PVCHR) is a large membership organization that draws in people from different walks of life. Among its fifty thousand members in five northern states, three thousand are former torture victims whom the Committee has helped. Their solidarity demonstrates how Lenin is creatively building an inclusive social movement. Also participating are famous intellectuals whose integrity and credibility raise the coalition's public image.

The father of independent India, Mohandas Gandhi, clad in his homespun loincloth, launched his nationalist movement to defy colonialism by encouraging Indians to stop wearing cheap British machine-made cloth in favor of Indian-made fabrics, partly as a gesture of self-reliance. The hand-loomed saris from Varanasi became a national symbol for India's independence.[v]

Varanasi Sari, a six yard long piece of cloth, signifies the elegance, charm, grace and beauty of Indian women, with almost eight hundred years old tradition, has an important niche in the cultural contours of India. For centuries Varanasi was the cradle of ancient Indian tradition in the tailoring of the Sari. Today however, the lives of the weavers (or creators) of these wonderful saris are not as beautiful as the creation itself. Majority of small artisans and their families, though mostly on the brink of survival (on average they work 10 -12 hours a day to earn about 0.5 dollar), are dependent on this traditional craft for a living. In the era of globalization, the traditional art of hand weaving of the Baranasi sari is under serious threat by electrical looms and also by new technologies coming from China. The life of the weavers, passing through a time of crisis, is characterized by abject poverty, chronic malnutrition, varied health hazards and even starvation death and suicides.[vi]

Lenin Raghuvanshi said "This is the ugly, painful side of globalization. It's a real crisis. If India is booming, you don't see it among weavers or farmers or other rural laborers, which is to say most of the country," "Helping those left behind is India's greatest challenge."
Lenin, despite his name, does not want to overthrown the capitalist system; he wants to bring it in. He wants to eliminate feudalism but preserve the art of weaving, using the Internet to market handcrafted silk. For this he needs to unravel the free trade agreements made by the Indian government under the WTO. 

This is not a Ghandian type of thing, this is a democratic capitalist thing: we want to create a weavers' trust, a joint company to cut out the middlemen and sell our produce to the world direct. I want to eliminate the feudal system but in the feudal system some things are good. No body wants to destroy the Taj Mahal for instance! In the same way I think it is possible to preserve our economic status, our social rights and our art.[vii] 

Despite economic growth, a majority of the Indian population still lives in extreme poverty and disease. Behind India's new-found economic strength are 300 million poor people that live on less than $1 per day. Government figures may indicate a reduction in poverty. But the truth is, with increasing global food prices, poverty is spreading everywhere like a swarm of locusts. These pictures are taken in rural areas where conditions are worse than the cities and where close to 70% of India's population reside today. Statistics show that 2.1 million children under 5 years old die of malnutrition annually.

Advocacy at national and international fora has succeeded in prioritizing hunger in Government expenditure policy. Active mobilization of the poor Dalit, weavers and Muslim has forced political parties to include the improvement of Dalit, weaver and Muslim with elimination of hunger and malnutrition in their electoral manifesto. The liberation from social inhibitions has resulted in creation of Martyrs' domes in village where hunger deaths occurred and has created a pool of indigenous hunger activists among the poor. As a result of PVCHRs' pressure the UP Panchayat Act was amended to include a clause which directed each local self-Government of village to hold a fund of Rupees one thousand to mitigate emergency hunger situation.

Neo Dalit movement is a sign of hope, honour and human dignity for most marginalized people facing discrimination based on race, caste, religion and gender. Nelson Mandela legacy is path for PVCHRs' Neo dalit movement to bring unity of different communities against Caste system, feudalism, Communal-fascism and Neo- Liberalism in India through reconciliation for justice.[viii]

With less financial resources, but rich with confidence and conviction, Lenin in a short period of time has managed to amplify the voice of the marginalized in national and international fora through "Peoples SAARC", rehabilitation and resettlement of weavers of Varanasi; Benaras Convention; Election Watch; prevention of torture; voice against hunger and many such activities. Recognition by the international community of Dr Lenin's work is indeed the recognition for the millions whose hopes and aspirations rest on his slender shoulders.

“Introspect to realize what went wrong, only then you find new approaches to engage with various problems of India.

To get in touch with the many problems, still existing in Indian society, the work of Lenin,Shruti and PVCHR should be a symbol to feel and don’t forget, what’s still worth to fight for-the beauty and variety of India and its people. Don’t leave them behind!

You have a problem in hand. Own it to solve it.” 

24th January, 2014

Prof. Dr. Ahmad Saghir Inam Shastri

It’s (almost) final: EU to slash aid to middle-income countries

Lenin Raghuvanshi, CEO of the EU-funded NGO People’s Vigilance Committee on Human Rights, said the Indian government doesn’t speak for him and urged the EU bilateral aid program to reconsider its pullout from India.
“[Aid] is not peanuts,” Raghuvanshi said, referring to the now-Indian president’s comments on the U.K. aid program. “Hopefully, the EU will take public opinion, not just the bureaucrats’ opinion.”

Friday, January 24, 2014

'मेरे बेटे को फांसी मत देना, एक बार उसको मेरे सामने खड़ा कर दो'

वाराणसी. सर्वोच्च न्यायालय ने 15 लोगों की फांसी की सजा को आजीवन कारावास में बदल दिया है। इस ऐतिहासिक फैसले से इनके परिवारों में ख़ुशी की लहर दौड़ पड़ी है। वाराणसी के रामजी और उनके बहनोई सुरेश का परिवार भी उन्ही लोगों में से एक है।
उम्मीद छोड़ चुके इस परिवार में लंबे संघर्ष के बाद फांसी माफ़ी की खबर किसी संजीवनी से कम नहीं है। नैनी जेल में सजा काट रहे इस परिवार के दो सदस्यों को अब राहत मिल गई है। अस्सी साल की रामजी की बूढ़ी मां बस दिन रात यही कहती थी कि उसके बेटे को फांसी के फंदे पर मत लटकाना, वह बेकसूर है।
क्या था पूरा मामला
दरअसल अक्टूबर 1996 में भेलूपुर थानाक्षेत्र के बजरडीहा चौकी निवासी सुरेश चौहान का भाई रमेश से संपत्ति विवाद चल रहा था। उसी दौरान सुरेश ने अपने साले रामजी के साथ मिलकर रमेश और उसकी पत्नी समेत तीन बच्चों की हत्या कर दी थी। पुलिस जांच में सुरेश और रामजी पकड़े गए थे।
1998 से मानवाधिकार जननिगरानी समिति ने इस मामले को उठाया था। कई बार राष्ट्रपति से सजा माफ़ी की गुहार भी लगाई गई। जननिगरानी समिति के सचिव डॉ लेलिन ने बताया कि 19 दिसंबर 1997 से सजा काट रहे सुरेश और रामजी को वाराणसी के सेशन कोर्ट ने फांसी की सजा सुनाई थी। अब कई वर्षों की लड़ाई के बाद सुप्रीम कोर्ट ने इस परिवार को राहत दी है। 
क्या कहती है बूढ़ी मां
इस अस्सी वर्षीय बूढ़ी मूला देवी का कहना है कि उनके बेटे को सामने खड़ा कर दो। वह अपने कलेजे के टुकड़े को जी भर के देखना चाहती हैं। उसे बिना देखें डेढ़ दशक से भी ज्यादा का वक़्त हो गया है।
आगे देखें कैसे सुरेश और रामजी के परिवार में खुशी की लहर दौड़ पड़ी है...

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Commute the death sentence into imprisonment for life

In the cases of Suresh,Ramji, Bilavendran, Simon, Gnanprakasam, Madiah,Praveen Kumar, Gurmeet Singh, Sonia, Sanjeev, Sundar Singh, Jafar Ali, Magan Lal Berala, Shivu and Jadeswamy,Honorable Supreme Court commuted the death sentence into imprisonment for life.

Thanks Advocate Yug and Advocate Colin Gonsalves.
PVCHR is fighting case of Suresh and Ram ji from 2001.
Please find the links:

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Need of time

Friday, January 17, 2014

Lenin Raghuvanshi meeting with French President Mr.Jacques Chirac(

Solidarity letter from Germany on Muzzafarnagar riots

Urgent appeal:

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Muzaffaranar victims: Displaced, hounded and killed in a bloody path of politics

 Last year during the month of December,2012 the whole country witnessed a series of protest and condemnation in Nirbhaya rape[v] case but a deafening silence on the part of the civilized civil society groups on the reported 13 incidents of rape and molestation of riot affected women of Muzaffarnagar till 5 November, 2013 puts a question mark on their role in society.

The incidents of molestation and mindless killings during the communal violence of Muzaffarnagar and consequent blocking of the news clearly speak of a nexus among the Hindu fascist force, communal section of media in local, administration and communal forces from Muslim community. It clearly confirms the remarks made by the renowned Anglo-Irish political thinker and philosopher, Edmond Burke on India, “In that Country the law of religion, the laws of the land, and the law of honour, are all united and consolidated in one, and bind a man eternally to the rule of what is called his caste.”

Monday, January 13, 2014

Parul Sharma in India and thanks to Swedish donors

About the visit of Ms. Parul Sharma to Varanasi,Jaunpur and Sonbadra of UP,India,where Swedish donors supported different projects through Ms.Parul Sharma ji to PVCHR and JMN( to all 200 hundred Swedish donors by PVCHR,Dr. Lenin Raghuvanshi and Ms. Parul Sharma.

Documentary made by Mr. Rohit Kumar of PVCHR(

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Urgent appeal: Truth of riot victims of Muzaffarnagar's relief camps: Displaced, Hounded and Killed - in a Bloody Path of Politics

Urgent appeal: Truth of riot victims of Muzaffarnagar's relief camps: Displaced, Hounded and Killed - in a Bloody Path of Politics
     Will India rise to the cries of humanity?

In reference to the displaced riot victims as internally displaced person[i]  mostly poor Muslims lodged in pathetic conditions in the relief camps of communal riot-hit Muzaffarnagar district, Uttar Pradesh in India after the communal violence, forcible eviction of women survivors from shelter camps by the state government, dismantling the temporary make-shift shelters, playing dirty politics on the deaths of innocent children and violations of the human rights of the survivors of communal riots.
No action taken by the state government and police administration on the miserable plight of the displaced persons from the poor minority Muslim community who are affected by the communal violence, no concrete measures to provide relief and rehabilitate to the survivors and removal of relief camps by  police with the brutal force.
5, January, 2014 Muzaffarnagar, Uttar Pradesh, India

Dear friends,
On December 2013, a joint committee formed by the Voice of People(VOP) and People’s Vigilance Committee on Human Rights (PVCHR) visited the riot affected areas of Muzaffarnagar to take stock of the situation after three months of the rioting which took place in Uttar Pradesh. The shocking reports of infant deaths in the ill-equipped relief camps due to the onset of winter were making the headlines in the national dailies. One could very well imagine the grim situation in which people were living under just plastic sheets held up with bamboo sticks in these camps. A look at the sprawling shelter camps conveyed the horrifying story of hatred. In these circumstances it was necessary to visit the affected areas to assess the ground realities. Some families, who got the compensation, had already left the camps. But those families, who were left, had no place to go to live safely. They were forced to live in the dilapidated tents in these make shift camps.  But life has not been easy for them in camps. They are being forced by the administration to move from their camps. Even the state administration is trying to get rid of its responsibilities by dismantling these camps with the help of bulldozers. Representatives of various political parties are engaged in accusing each other instead of visiting the survivors in relief camps and arranging relief material and services for them. Children and women from the minority community living in the camps are denied of their basic rights available to all citizens such as protection and rehabilitation.
As the news of the rioting came in, we wrote letters to National Human Rights Commission, Minority Commission and the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh Government for immediate relief and rehabilitation. Social activists of the organisation immediately prepared a report after the riots and sent it to the administration.  People’s Vigilance Committee on Human Rights (PVCHR), Varanasi and Human Rights Law Network (HRLN), New Delhi released a report[ii] on the socio economic conditions of Muslim minority in Uttar Pradesh along with a video documentary on the issue[iii]. An interface meeting was also organized with the Parliamentarian, policy makers and political parties on the issue of Muslim minority in Uttar Pradesh in the Indian capital, New Delhi. During a live discussion on the plight of victims in relief camps broadcast on Rajya Sabha national television channel, Dr. Lenin Raghuvanshi briefly explained about the initiative launched by the People’s Vigilance Committee and Voice of People and appealed to various other organisations to help in relief efforts. Various donor agencies like CARITAS India, Catholic Relief Services, Child Rights and You (CRY) and European Union announced the economic relief package for riot victims living in camps through OXFAM[iv]. Clippings of the testimonies and interviews with the survivors living in relief camps after Muzaffarnagar riots are attached here: 

Video link of the group discussion of political representatives, academicians along with Dr. Lenin broadcast in Rajya Sabha TV on Muzaffarnagar riots:

On December 23 in the afternoon I got a call from Meherunisha, a survivor of communal riots of Muzaffarnagar. She told me they have been forcibly evicted from the relief camp and they have no other place to go. She said, “Where can we go now? For god sake help us, we desperately need your help.” Meherunish was crying inconsolably for help. She was repeatedly saying “where can they go in this chilly winter? She said at present she is outside a house in the village at Gokulpur with her little children and mother-in-law. Many other families like her need help who have no place to stay. Madrasa management all of a sudden removed their tents, they kept on requesting but they did not listen”.  We immediately informed the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, Shri Akhillesh Yadav, National Human Rights Commission and the Central Government through an e mail and registered post and appealed all of them to intervene immediately to help the riot victims.

Our team with four members which included Dr. Lenin Raghuvanshi (Director, People’s Vigilance Committee on Human Rights (PVCHR), Major (Dr.) Himanshu Singh, a renowned social worker of Meerut, Mohammed Taj, a human rights worker and myself, Shruti Nagvanshi, (Convener, Voice of People, Uttar Pradesh) visited the temporary relief shelter camp built in open space for riot victims at Islamia Madrasa in Shahpur village on December 21, 2013. Some of the families from this camp had already left to an unknown destination. There was filth and grime everywhere. Those staying in the camp were mainly daily wager labourers. On December 23, residents of this camp were forcibly evicted and asked to go back to their homes. This created a problem for them because they had no place to go. They did not want to go to their original village due to fear because they somehow escaped from their village to save their lives. Their houses were already ransacked by the unruly crowd. Survivors told us that they were taken to their villages to do a survey in official vehicles and when they saw the roof tops of their houses were missing, they told the officials that there is nothing left for them so how can they go back and put their lives in danger once again.

One of the survivors in her self-testimony said in a painful voice, “A panchayat held in Mandore on September 7 changed the course of our lives. For generations we had been living in our village. We are daily wage workers, whatever work we used to get, we used to earn our livelihood with that. But during the panchayat there was a fight between Jats and Muslims in which two persons from Jat community were killed. When their bodies were brought to the village, all hell broke out. A group of people from Jat community started driving us out from our houses. We somehow managed to escape and survived. Earlier we were living together in peace but now the same people were out to threaten and kill us. They were very angry; they were carrying arms in their hands. We were unable to understand as to what exactly was happening and why? Everyone was running in whichever direction one could to save themselves and their families. Had we not acted quickly, we would have been killed along with our children. Either our children would have been killed; if not, then we would have become the target. We were destined to suffer in any case”.

In Shahpura Islamia Madrasa camp around 300 affected families were living from different villages such as Sisoli, Hadoli, Kakde, Soram and Goila. At present 82 families were left in the make shift tents who were also driven out of their homes on December 23. Among these families there were five pregnant women who were having a pregnancy period running in between 5 to 7 months. They were as follows: 1-Afsana, age 19, w/o Wajid, 2- Parveen, age 30, w/o Aslam, 3- Shamshida, age 30, w/o Aas Mohammed, 4-Sanjida, age 26, w/o Mehboob, 5- Momina, age 30, w/o Dilshad.

Shahjana of Kankre village, age 30, w/o Kamil works as a daily wage labourer in brick making factory. When she came to the camp after saving her life and her family from her village, she gave birth to a girl child. She was helped by her mother-in-law during the delivery period. After eighth day of the birth the child became sick and suffered from pneumonia. They tried to get her treated but finally the girl could not survive and died. Shabana, age 30,w/o Nafis gave birth to a girl child after two months in the camp, the girl also died after one week due to pneumonia. Parveen, age 30, w/o Aslam said,“ We are living in the camp with great pain and guilt. When we go out to nearby shops to buy essential items, people often make remarks at us mockingly that we are greedy freeloaders and we are living in camp for the sake of relief materials like blankets. We just ignore their comments. In this shelter we pray to God for not letting anyone in such a situation. During the nights puppies come and sleep at our temporary kitchen and next morning we use the same kitchen to cook our food. It hurts our religious sentiments but god is witness and he will forgive us”.

Mehrunisha of Hadauli village told us, “My husband Sattar was missing during the riots. I and my 70 years old mother-in-law remained disturbed and extremely worried about his safety. After seven days we found him in Khatauli.  After listening to his story we were in a state of shock. In the evening when my husband was returning after selling clothes, he was chased by three people from Jat community riding on motorbike. He ran to save his life. But near a clinic they caught hold of my husband. While they were about to attack him with a sharp edged weapon, they were stopped by the doctor. When the doctor asked them the reasons to kill my husband, they replied that they just want to kill him for no reason. Due to the intervention of the doctor, my husband could flee the scene to save his life. The doctor belonged to the Jat community and due to him my husband’s life was saved. Had he not been there at the spot, my husband would have definitely been killed. We are thankful to him for showing his courage to retrain those who wanted to kill my husband. My husband fell ill due to the fear. I sold my gold jewelleries to get his medical treatment. He is still in a state of shock. He falls sick because of that experience. My sister has given him shelter and care. I am in the relief camp along with my children and mother-in-law. After all, we do not want to put the burden on our relatives.”

Chhoti of Sisoli village, age 28, w/o Idrish gave birth to a girl child, Aaksha in the relief camp. During the riots her brother Yasin was also present in Sisoli village. He was injured when he was attacked by a sword for which he was treated in Shahpur. Due to lack of proper medical facilities he has gone back to his home but he has not received any compensation so far. Khaton, age 35, w/o Noorhasan, has a two and half year old child. Besides her there are so many families with little children who never received any care and medical treatment here in the camp. We also came across an extremely disturbing fact that is, people belonging to at least 15 families from Soram, Sisoli, Hadauli and Gorla villages living in Shahpur relief camps were not considered as riot affected families by the administration. Sisoli and Soram are better known for their khap panchayats. Sisoli is also the village of a popular Jat Kisan leader. The women told us that in Soram they were stripped naked, bullets were fired on them, acid was also thrown but somehow they managed to flee and saved their lives. They were also beaten by the police. Just a day before in Soram, Muslim children returning from school were badly beaten. Masjid in Hadauli was burnt down. Saleha, the daughter of Hakimu of Dulhera is still missing.

We found that the soil in the camp was wet due to rain water and many places were water-logged. In many tents grass layers were also completely wet. Women and children took us to their tents to narrate their plight. They told us they do not sleep during the wintry night because it is too cold.  Children are falling sick due to exposure to cold and others infections. With temperatures plummeting children, old people and pregnant woman are especially at risk. After the riots doctors came to visit on one or two occasions but after that nobody came. Whatever clothing they had on their bodies, they sold them to arrange their medical treatment. Even now many infant children, their mothers and many pregnant women are forced to live in open areas in bone chilling cold while battling with poor conditions.

European Union has announced a financial package of one lakh and fifty thousand Eruos to help the survivors of communal riots of Muzaffarnagar and Shamli through OXFAM. Organisation like Child Rights and You (CRY) has also decided to extend direct assistance while taking into consideration the news of deaths of many children in the area.

Around nine thousand eight hundred and four (9804) children were estimated to be residing in the relief camps established in Muzaffarnagar and Shamli. Among them many children have died due to unpleasant conditions. Still there are many children and pregnant women left in the camps who are facing difficult times due to the lack of medical facilities and adequate care. They are the people who need the utmost care and help. Last year during the month of December,2012 the whole country witnessed a series of protest and condemnation in Nirbhaya rape[v] case but a deafening silence on the part of the civilized civil society groups on the reported 13 incidents of rape and molestation of riot affected women of Muzaffarnagar till 5 November, 2013 puts a question mark on their role in society.

The incidents of molestation and mindless killings during the communal violence of Muzaffarnagar and consequent blocking of the news clearly speak of a nexus among the Hindu fascist force, Communal section of media in local, administration and communal forces from Muslim community. It clearly confirms the remarks made by the renowned Anglo-Irish political thinker and philosopher, Edmond Burke on India, “In that Country the law of religion, the laws of the land, and the law of honour, are all united and consolidated in one, and bind a man eternally to the rule of what is called his caste.”

At present the riot affected people living in the camps are facing forcible eviction ordered by the administration. Their homes had already been ravaged. They have no ancestral property in their original villages. They are not even having the basic amenities available to citizens like ration card, MANREGA Job card etc. These families are forced to live as displaced persons. Therefore, it is crucial at this stage to identify those families who have been uprooted and displaced due to the communal riots and programmes should be initiated to provide them food security, housing, primary health care facilities for women and children and education facilities.

Community of psychologists would agree with the fact that these families require long term medical care because human mind is adversely affected by the violent incidents. The psychological trauma on the people is probably irreversible. The situation also gives rise to various physical and mental disorders which in turn also affects their work abilities, decision making and self-confidence. Low temperatures during the winter season also cause serious troubles for children and pregnant women who need special care and protection.

It appears that in the ongoing blame game and fights between various political parties, the riot victims have become mere pawns caught in a political game. Under these circumstances all political parties should jointly work together to help the riot affected people and should not indulge in misleading the general public. There is also the need to immediately launch rehabilitation programmes to protect the civil rights of the survivors without any discrimination and restore their self-dignity. Emphasis should also be given to their psychological and social restoration. As a reconciliatory measure, riot affected gram panchayats should apologise the survivors for their troubles and should work to rehabilitate them in their respective villages. If they fail to do that, the administration should immediately withdraw development funds earmarked for these gram panchayats.” From report of Shruti Nagvanshi (Convener, Voice of People, Uttar Pradesh)

Please send letter to:

1. The Hon'ble President of India,
Rashtrapati Bhawan,
New Delhi – 110001,

2.  The   Hon'ble Vice President of India,
Vice president House,
6, Maulana Azad Road,
New Delhi – 110011,
Tel - +91 – 11-23016422, 23016344.
Email –

3. The Prime Minister
Prime minister of India,
Prime minister office,
New Delhi - 110101 - INDIA
Fax no. - +91 11 - 23016857, 23019545.

4. The Chairperson
 National Human Rights Commission
Manav Adhikar Bhawan,
Block – C, G.P.O Complex, INA
New Delhi- 110023, INDIA.
Fax :- 011-2338 486

5. The Registrar
Supreme Court of India,
Tilak Marg, New Delhi - 110001 - INDIA.
Fax No. - + 91 11 23381508, 23381584.

6. Mr. Akhilesh Singh Yadav,
Chief Minister
Chief Minister's Secretariat
Uttar Pradesh - INDIA
Fax: + 91 522 223 0002 / 223 9234

7. The Director General of Police
1-B.N., Lahari Marg / Tilak Marg,
Lucknow - 226001 - Uttar Pradesh - INDIA
Fax No. - +91 522 2206120, 2206174

8. The District Magistrate,
Muzaffarnagar - Uttar Pradesh - 251001.
Fax No. - +91 05452 260201, 240240
E-mail -

9. The Superintendents of Police
Muzaffarnagar –251001
 Uttar Pradesh - India.

Urgent Appeal Desk ( )
Peoples' Vigilance Committee on Human Rights (PVCHR)
Telephone - +91-5422586688,
Cell. - +91 – 9935599333.