Attack on adivasi activist Soni Sori: protest held in Raipur

Surabhi Singh

A protest march was held at Raipur city condemning the brutal chemical attack on AAP leader and Tribal Activist Soni Sori on Saturday. Aam Aadmi Party leaders along with members of CPIM and Human Rights Activists raised slogans for immediate Removal of Bastar IG SRP Kalluri and arrest of members of Samajik Ekta Manch who have perpetrated the attck on Sori. Speaking to the crowd, a visibly anguished Sudha Bardwaj, a human rights activist stated that since the last couple of years the State Police has been hounding Sori for her brave stand in support of Aadivasis in Bastar. The recent attack is a way to thwart the investigation against the fake encounter of Hidme, a 55 year old father of five children Adivasi farmer whose cold blooded murder the Police has been staging as an encounter..Bhardwaj added that eversince Soni Sori began meeting the police high officials regarding justice for Hidme in Mardum village..the IG began hounding not only her but even the Jagdalpur Legal Aid group of lawyers..Malini Subramanium the journalist and social activist have already left Bastar after their homes and close aides were continuously harassed and threatened by the Bastar Police. Sudha Bhardwaj demanded immediate removal of IG Kalluri from Bastar and punishing the guilty police officials responsible for the 40 gang rapes in three villages and those who killed Hidma in Mardum.’

Protest against attack on Soni SoriAam Aadmi Party State President Sanjeev Tiwari stated that Soni Sori has been a stalwart Adivaasi activist who has faced phenomenal atrocities on personal level as well. But this has made her more resolute. Be it the gang rapes in villages or the repeated fake encounters of innocent Adivaasis. All this has made her a danger for the local police. First they tried to silence her with threats and then they made sure those helping her were thrown out. Undetterred when she went on to SC St Thana for registering report against those guilty of the Mardum encounter..the Police through its social wing Samajik Ekta Manch first caught her 10 year old daughter and pointed a knife at her. Then they smeared a dark chemical on her face while uttering “forget about Mardum encounter or we will do this to your daughter too. ” If at all the police thought Mardum encounter was legal and they had killed a Naxal, why did they offer 10,000 Rs to the family, as compensation?

CPI LEADER Ramchandra stated that we have declared a war against the Hindutva bregade and attack on Soni Sori shows people at helm of affairs are scared.

The protesters then marched till Jai Stambh chowk and demanded immediate removal of Bastar IG SRP Kalluri.. and justice for Soni Sori.. the protestors included members from AAP, Chhattisgarh Mukti Morcha Mazdoor Karyakarta, PUCL, Chhattisgarh Sa yukta Nagrik Sangharsh Morcha,Bharat Jan Aandolan, Chhattisgarh Mahila Adhikar Manch,Joint Action Samity Bilaspur, Dalit Mukti Morcha, CPI (Red Star)and several other activists..

Meanwhile Soni Sori would be flown to Delhi AIIMS for her further treatment. Last heard she remains in critical condition.

UPDATES FROM RAIPUR AIRPORTSoni Sori's face is swollen like anything. No one could recognise her face. She spoke to the media briefly at the airport before being taken inside. She expressed her strong fear for life. She expressed her fear for her children. She mentioned the way some elements have been mobilising against her. Her fear also include that of the life of many of Adivasis under the paramilitary cordon in South Chhattisgarh. Here is a small clip. The pictures follows.

Posted by Goldy M George on Sunday, 21 February 2016