Ishrat Jahan case: activists, intellectuals come together to demand justice

Photo courtesy: Mukul Dube

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6th July was being observed as a day of solidarity with Ishrat Jahan across the country with vigils and solidarity meetings being organized in Hyderabad, Lucknow, Ahmedabad, Purnea and Delhi.

Even in our political and policing culture so riven with violence and impunity, the cold-blooded execution of 19-year-old college student has evoked an unprecedented revulsion for the brutal and calculated manner in which this young innocent college student was abducted and killed by the officers of the Gujarat Crime Branch in connivance with officers of the Intelligence Bureau. It is this changing popular mood along with the thoroughness of investigation being monitored by the Hon’ble Gujarat High Court that has sent waves of panic across the establishment that engineered the fake encounter. The CBI chargesheet has reaffirmed what the Justice Tamang report in 2009 and the SIT in 2011 had also established: that Ishrat was an innocent college student executed in a fake encounter.

In absence of any defence, we are now seeing the conspirators launching renewed attacks on the character of the teenaged Ishrat Jahan through false and defamatory stories. She is being declared guilty on account of being poor, young, and travelling for work. Dubious CDs of conversations are broadcast (not authenticated admittedly by the channels which run them), ‘missing’ paragraphs of Headley’s report suddenly appear. (See separate press release).

The day of solidarity was observed to send a clear signal to those who perpetrated this atrocity, to those who are protecting them and to those who would like to make political capital over the dead bodies of innocents. People of this country are watching. They will not allow the subversion of the CBI investigation.

The meeting in Delhi was addressed by the family and lawyer of Ishrat Jahan. Their valiant and long struggle to secure justice for their daughter was saluted by a large number of activists, academics, filmmakers, writers, lawyers, students and youth who attended the meeting. The solidarity messages were interspersed with recitations of poetry, songs and cultural performances. The meeting resolved to strengthen the struggle for justice for Ishrat Jahan.

Justice for Ishrat Jahan Campaign