#India- In Custody: Five Years in Jail and Innocent #sedition #dissent #Prison #Justice

  • January 15, 2013, 

    By Michael Edison Hayden, Wall street journal, India 

Roberto Schmidt/Agence France-Presse/Getty Images
A man peeked through an opening of a door to a prison ward at the Tihar jail, New Delhi, April 26, 2012.

This week, India Real Time presents an in-depth look at the country’s prison and custody system.

It is a system that still carries many attributes of its origins in British-run colonial India, and gives a high degree of discretion to how state governments apply the penal code — and who ends up behind bars, whether serving prison sentences, or in temporary army or police custody.

Experts note that the national government, over decades, hasn’t funded the expansion of the prison system to meet the increasing ranks of prisoners. In part, those ranks have increased because India’s court system is backlogged with 65% of India’s 240,000 people in jail yet to face a verdict in court, according to government data. They also point to allegations of abuse in army custody, which the army denies. 

In four chapters this week, India Real Time will examine different aspects of life under custody, as well as attempts to improve it. They include the experience of those facing trial as well as efforts being made to promote rehabilitation over punishment.

Arun Ferreira
Pictured, Arun Ferreira.

MUMBAI, India – When Arun Ferreira went to prison in 2007, his son was only two. Today, they are reunited, and a tide of private anguish has at last begun to roll back and wash away.

“My family didn’t tell him that I was in jail, they told him I was away on business for five years,” Mr. Ferreira says.

“Today, my son still doesn’t believe it. Recently, he saw a picture of Nelson Mandela somewhere. I explained who he was, and then I mentioned [what happened to me], and he thought I was fibbing.”

On an unusually sunny afternoon during monsoon season in the residential neighborhood of Bandra, Mr. Ferreira is gracious and funny as we sit in a local coffee shop to discuss his experience in jail. Mr. Ferreira was arrested under the auspices that he was a Maoist rebel, planning to blow up the Deekshabhoomi Complex, a monument in the town of Nagpur, where the Dalit icon Ambedkar is believed to have embraced Buddhism for the first time. Mr. Ferreira spent most of the following roughly four years and a half years in Nagpur’s Central Jail.

The Communist Party of India (Maoist), are also known as Naxalites, a reference to the West Bengal town of Naxalbari, where their movement began. Started as a left wing political group in the 1940s, in the 1960s they launched an armed struggle against the Indian government, which they have been violently opposing ever since.

Their largest support base comes from local tribes who seek to retain their land resisting industrial interests. In 2006, Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh famously described Naxalism as “the single biggest internal security challenge ever faced by our country.” Members of the group could not be reached.

Mr. Ferreira was charged with attacking a police station, firing on police, and booked under the Unlawful Activities Act of 2004, a law created to bolster security against possible terrorist attacks.

Mr. Ferreira claims he was held for organizing slum-dwellers to unite in protest against the demolition of their homes. Such demolitions are a frequent source of strife here in Mumbai, often pitting poorer locals against police and property developers. Mr. Ferreira is currently out on bail and contesting two additional charges – allegations that he illicitly possessed arms and fired on police – that were leveled against him by plain-clothes officers during his time of awaiting trial in Nagpur. Mr. Ferreira denies any wrongdoing.

The Wall Street Journal
Source: National Crime Records Bureau

In Sept. 2011, a court ruled that Mr. Ferreira was innocent of all eight of the charges that were placed against him, over four years and eight months after his initial arrest.

Justice Hosbet Suresh, 83, is a former judge of the Mumbai High Court whose experience working inside the system has driven him, during his retirement years, to become an advocate for prisoners’ rights. He says that India’s slow trials are being made even slower by a lack of judicial manpower.

“There are simply not enough judges to handle all of the cases,” says Mr. Suresh. “We just have too few of them relative to the population here.”

According to the Indian Bar Association, as of 2010, there were over 30 million cases pending in courts across India due in large part to a ratio of 11 judges per million people. This leaves India with a persistent backlog of cases waiting to be heard.

As a result, “more than half of the prison population here is under trial,” Mr. Suresh estimates.

The Wall Street Journal
A graphic showing total inmates segregated by convicts, detainees and undertrial.

It’s a lot more than half: The most recent survey conducted by the National Crimes Record Bureau, a government agency, found that as many as 64.7% of Indian prisoners have not yet been convicted. And while prisoners who are ultimately convicted will see their time spent in jail while waiting for trial reduced from their sentence, such provisions provide very little consolation to the innocent, like Mr. Ferreira.

For some it’s even worse: According to the study, 1,486 under trial prisoners, or 0.6% % of the total, had been jailed for five years without having had a single day in court.

Another reason prisoners sometimes wait years for their trial is that, according to government data, the majority of those arrested are too poor to afford bail and legal counsel.

India lacks a federal department of prisons, like that of the United States. Instead, prisons are a responsibility of individual states, although the ministry of law lays out broad guidelines on how to administer them.

Mr. Ferreira believes his politics may have played a role in his prolonged detention. He says he was shuffled between several different facilities during his time at Nagpur Central. He spent his first year in the high security Anda barrack, and his final two years were spent in what’s known as the Gunah Khana, or punishment cells.

In between that time, Mr. Ferreira says he was placed with convicts in the Phasi yard. The Phasi yard is the gallows; it’s where death row inmates are kept. Mr. Ferreira says that guards told him that he was placed there for being a security threat.

When I reached out to Nagpur Central Jail, a senior official said the prison does not comment on the cases of specific inmates. The official added that it is the policy of the prison to keep convicts and prisoners who are under trials separated in adherence with the law. According to Mr. Ferreira’s account, he found himself rubbing shoulders with those convicted of the 1993 bomb blasts that rocked Mumbai, and with the perpetrators of the Kherlanji massacre of 2006, where Dalit men and women were slaughtered by upper caste Hindus.  He had little choice but to remain calm and do his best not to draw attention to himself for that entire year. A spokesman for Nagpur Central Jail declined to comment on Mr. Ferreira’s allegations.


– Vibhuti Agarwal contributed to this post.

Michael Edison Hayden is an American writer currently living in Mumbai. 


No Aadhar card? You could be a suspect #UID #WTFnews


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Published: Tuesday, Jan 15, 2013, 8:00 IST


By Sanjeev Devasia | Place: Mumbai | Agency: DNA




If you are among those who think that obtaining an Aadhar card is not important, then you could be a suspect to officials of the state carrying out the Aadhar card enrolment.



Also, officials at the collectorate level will soon match and collate data of voters, data of those availing the Public Distribution System (PDS), data of electricity connections and also those availing scholarships among other schemes with the Aadhar card data to cross-verify whether there is duplication or false information and, more importantly, find out whether they are falsely claiming benefits from any government scheme.



A senior official of the state government said, “With the collation of data, we are expecting a 10-15% saving for the government in the form of stopping leakages in the system due to false data provided by false beneficiaries.”



He added, “For example, if there is a 45-year-old man who is claiming the benefits of a senior citizen, then the truth will be out as the data of various agencies will be matched with the Aadhar data, which will have the person’s photograph and biometric identity.”



An official of the state IT department said “Officials of various collectorates will start the exercise of matching the data procured from various agencies and we will be providing with software to match the data. But this exercise will only start after maximum enrolment is carried out and only a few is remaining to be enrolled. If even after maximum enrolment is carried out and there are citizens who have not opted for an Aadhar card, then we will feel they have something to hide.”



However, the progress of enrolment for Aadhar cards has not been very fast in Mumbai. Of around 1.25 crore people, only 70 lakh have enrolled, while in districts such as Wardha and Amravati have registered about 90-100% enrolment.



Punjab &Haryana High Court-issues notices to Centre over mandatory UID for licence #Aadhaar

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200 px (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Express news service : Chandigarh, Tue Jan 15 2013, 02:04 hrs
On a petition filed against Aadhaar cards, the Punjab and Haryana High Court on Monday issued notices to the centre and UT Administration.
A petition filed by Sanjiv Pandey came up for hearing before a Division Bench comprising Chief Justice Arjan Kumar Sikri and Justice Rakesh Kumar Jain. The bench has issued notices for March 4.
The petitioner has sought quashing of executive order of Deputy Commissioner, UT Administration dated December 5, 2012, which has made the UID card mandatory for registration of vehicles and grant of learner/ regular driving license.
The petitioner’s counsel Gagan Geet Kaur submitted that UID cards are unconstitutional and have no legal sanctity as the National Identification Authority of India Bill – 2010 is pending in Parliament.
Kaur further pleaded before the bench that application form for the registration of UID cards clearly states that Aadhar enrollment is free and voluntary and that there is no grounds for the government to be forcing the public to get enrollment by making its requirement in essential public services.
The court was also informed that unfortunately, UID cards are given too much importance than the other proofs of identity and residence such as voter card and passport which are issued by Election Commission of India and the Ministry of Foreign respectively.




Dear Barkha Dutt: The Buck Stops Where?

JANUARY 16, 2013

On the of latest edition, (telecast a few hours ago, on the evening of the 15th of January, 2013) of ‘The Buck Stops Here’, (a flagship news show on NDTV anchored by Barkha Dutt) – ‘India-Pakistan:Another Tipping Point‘, Admiral (Retd.) Ramdas, former chief of the Indian Navy said he knew that Indian forces have beheaded Pakistani soldiers in the past. Gen. (Retd.) V.P. Malik, former chief of the Indian Army contradicted him, and said this had never happened. Barkha Dutt was silent on this matter.

Below is a summary of some highlights of the discussion.

Around 21:15 minutes into the programme, Admiral Ramdas says, “Beheading of Troops has been going on from both sides has been for some time, I mean there is evidence of this…”

Barkha Dutt, eager to change the subject, nervously interjects and says ‘I want you to comment, Sir, on Sporting and Cultural ties, because that is what has been hit today…’. Why is she so anxious to change the subject? Is it because Admiral Ramdas is clearly speaking about something she personally does not want spoken about?

Then, a little later, Ms. Dutt asks Gen. Malik to speak, she also asks him to talk whether ‘Sporting and Cultural Ties should become the fall-guy’.

Gen. V.P. Malik says (around 24:40 minutes into the program), “…And I don’t agree with Admiral (Ram) Das that both sides have been doing this, I would like to see anybody give me one instance where this kind of inhuman act has been done by the Indian army… I know that with great respect, we not only buried their bodies with great respect…we returned any body that they asked for.”

Barkha Dutt knows what Admiral Ramdas was talking about. As has been pointed out before on Kafila, she has written about it (the decapitation of Pakistani soldiers by the Indian army during the Kargil conflict in the summer of 1999) herself in Himal magazine (June, 2001).

I had to look three times to make sure I was seeing right. Balanced on one knee, in a tiny alley behind the army’s administrative offices, I was peering through a hole in a corrugated tin sheet. At first glance, all I could see were some leaves. I looked harder and amidst all the green, there was a hint of black—it looked like a moustache. “Look again,” said the army colonel, in a tone that betrayed suppressed excitement. This time, I finally saw.

It was a head, the disembodied face of a slain soldier nailed onto a tree. “The boys got it as a gift for the brigade,” said the colonel, softly, but proudly. [Archived at The Hoot]

So that is an instance where ‘this kind of inhuman act’ did happen. So why did she not say so to Gen. Malik. She is not ‘anybody’, she was there, and this is an issue that is being discussed on a show that she is anchoring. How long can it be before she gets called out for the gross irresponsibility of her reticence on this very crucial matter. Was she lying in 2001, or, is she concealing the truth now?

But the buck, doesn’t stop here.

Then, a BJP Politician and spokesman for his party, Ravi Shankar Prasad is asked by Barkha Dutt about the NDA’s record on India-Pakistan relations. She mentions Vajpayee as the architect of the India Pakistan Peace Process , Kargil, Parliament Attack, Hijacking of IC 814, Historic Ceasefire of 2003 etc.

Ravi Shankar Prasad begins, not by immediately addressing Barkha Dutt’s question, but by contradicting Admiral Ramdas. Around 26:39 minutes into the program, Ravi Shankar Prasad says – “…Mr. Ramdas has been a distinguished Naval chief, but for him to make a comment that even Indian forces have been beheading, I am happy Gen. Malik contradicted him very conclusively, Admiral Ramdas you need to understand that Pakistani people will lap up your comment, and seek to condemn Indian army in no uncertain terms, I am seeing that happening, for heavens sake don’t make these sweeping comments.”

“Don’t call on Heaven, Mr. Prasad” (Admiral Ramdas says, attempting to interject) but Barkha Dutt doesn’t let him speak. Once again, she does not contradict, question or challenge Ravi Shankar Prasad. Her evasion in this matter, at this point, when it has popped up on her program for the third time now, is a truly sweeping statement.

Then, Barkha Dutt moves on to Congress spokesman, Avishek Manu Singhvi, and other matters, and other panelists, Ashutosh Varshney and Leela Ponnappa, the question that Admiral Ramdas raised is forgotten, but it lingers, silent, and sullen, like the ghost of a beheaded soldier in the studio.

At the end of the programme, Shahvar Ali Khan, a musician from Lahore, Pakistan says “All the peace loving people of Pakistan are with the grief of the people of India.” He hopes that the present situation will not affect cultural and social ties.

Ravi Shankar Prasad says that he loves Pakistani Ghazal songs, but says artists, sportsmen and people who want peace are “fringe players”.

Then, Barkha Dutt asks Admiral Ramdas for a comment. He says, “If for so many years things have gone wrong, the fault lies not with sportsmen and artists, why punish them for what why have not done?”

Who makes the constituency of peace a fringe, and who makes the dogs of war, the people Shahvar Ali Khan calls the ‘hate-mongers’, on either side of the LOC, occupy the centre-stage, again and again?

If an important television journalist like Barkha Dutt talks about the fact that both armies have committed acts of savagery, which, I repeat, she says she knows, because she has said that she has seen this with her own eyes, it will weaken the dogs of war. This admission, coming from a public figure like her, will make it more difficult for the war-party on either side of the LOC to point their fingers only at people across the border.

Nothing can strengthen the constituency of peace more at this crucial juncture, than a little honest and public introspection, on both sides. Let us hope that will occur. Barkha Dutt can set the ball rolling, if she chooses to. The buck, starts with her.

#Kerala Now, a Facebook ‘like’ leads to sedition charges #ITact #WTFnews

Jan 16, 2013, 04.13AM IST TNN[ Mahir Haneef ]

It is alleged that Ali clicked ‘like’ on a Facebook page titled ‘I Love Pakistan‘.
KOCHI: Clicking on the ‘like’ button on Facebook has landed K H Muhammed Ali, a native of Eloor and Dubai municipality employee, in deep trouble. He has been charged with sedition and insulting national honour.The only crime that Ali remembers doing is clicking ‘like’ on the Facebook profiles of friends, including a few Pakistanis, he earned in Dubai.Now, the Kochi police have booked him for sedition, sending offensive message (66A of Information Technology Act, 2000), and for insulting the national flag (section 2 of Prevention of Insults to National Honor Act, 1971).In the FIR filed in September 2012, it is alleged that Ali clicked ‘like’ on a Facebook page titled ‘I Love Pakistan’ and that a picture showing a dog clothed in the national flag was seen in his Facebook profile page.

On Tuesday, Ali filed a petition at the Kerala high court, through advocate K K Ashkar, challenging the FIR registered by the Eloor police.

Ali has contended in the petition that his Facebook account doesn’t bear the message ‘I Love Pakistan’, doesn’t have any pictures showing disrespect to the national flag, nor has sent any offensive message or pictures showing disrespect to the national flag.

He further pointed out that registering of FIR in cyber cases without a pre-investigation inquiry by an investigative agency with expertise in information technology is against the rules stipulated in the cyber crime investigation manual, the only such manual in India that was released by the Union home secretary.

After police registered the FIR alleging sedition, he and his family have been facing social stigma, Ali’s petition said. His family has been isolated by the local community and relatives and they are being treated like traitors. His wife and younger child have been traumatized by the ordeal, the petition stated.

Kochi city police commissioner arrived at a hypothetical inference that amounts to character assassination, the petitioner alleged.

The petitioner has cited the commissioner’s remark, which is extracted in the FIR, stating “as petitioner was working in UAE and his remark in the Facebook ‘I Love Pakistan’ and his close relation with Pakistanis in UAE may indulge in antisocial activities”. Such a casual statement prejudicially affects the liberty of the petitioner and has caused mental trauma, social ostracism, and persecution, it is alleged.



W.P.(C) No. 1436 of 2013

K.H. Muhammed Ali, aged 42 years,
S/o. Hameed,
Residing at Kanappilly House, Eloor North,
Udyogamandal – 6883501,
Now working at Dubai Municipality, Post Box No. 36701,
Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

Respondent/ Respondent:
1. State of Kerala,
Represented by the Chief Secretary,
Government of Kerala,

2. The Secretary, Dept. of Home Affairs,
Government of Kerala,
Thiruvananthapuram – 69500.

3. Sub Inspector of Police,
Eloor Police Station, Udyogamandal. P.O,
Pin- 683501.

4. Circle Inspector of Police,
Ernakulam Town, North Circle,

5. The District Police Chief,
Kochi City,

6. Sub Inspector of Police,
Cyber Crime Investigation Cell, Ernakulam


The Petitioner most respectfully submits as follows:

1. The petitioner herein is a Non Resident Indian citizen who has been working as welder at Dubai Municipality in United Arab Emirates since 21.01.2009. He has been in U.A.E since 27.07.2005 for earning daily bread for him and his family lives herein Eloor in Ernakulam district of Kerala. He is the sole bread winner of his family consisting of wife, aged and cardiac ailment suffered mother and two children aged 10 and 7 years. Petitioner is a believer of Communist ideology and was a member of CPI (M) and its youth wing DYFI and a sympathizer of Left Democratic Front. He was actively engaged in cultural and social activities and library movement in his home town Eloor prior to his emigration to UAE for employment. He was an office-bearer of the public library situated in Eloor. His family has the tradition of left sympathizers and patriotic secular social outlook. He had concern for ecology and environment, especially being a resident of Eloor, which was declared to be India’s 24th Critically Polluted industrial cluster by Ministry of Environment and Forest.
2. Petitioner’s family was residing in a rented house till 26.08.2012 on which date petitioner completed construction of his house in the property he inherited, at Eloor North. He found finance for the construction of his house having plinth area of 1250 Sq. feet by advancing home loan to the tone of Rs.10 lacs from State bank of Travancore,Udyogamandal and Rs.7 lacs from Dubai Islamic Bank. In the early week of July 2012, one police officer visited petitioner’s rented house in Eloor and enquired about petitioner’s job, salary, whereabouts and estimate cost of construction of his house and its source. It was told by the police that it is part of usual enquiry about the Non Resident Keralites who are employed abroad. But after that, policemen from Special Branch and Crime Branch used to visit petitioner’s house intermittently enquiring about the whereabouts of petitioner and his expected arrival in home. Petitioner’s mother who was a chronic patient suffering from cardiac ailments, had distress following the intermittent visit of policemen enquiring about the son who toils in the desert for livelihood. His wife and younger child has developed mental trauma. Thereafter one policeman from Special Branch contacted petitioner over phone from a cell no. 9497936163 and enquired about his job, construction of house and its source of finance and passport details. Petitioner insisted the policeman for the reason why he and his family has been repeatedly quizzed by the police and what wrong he has committed for persecuting him and his family and go through fear psychosis. Then he was told that Dy S.P of Police, Crime Branch CID, Ernakulam has received a complaint from Standing Council of Trade Unions, Ernakulam against Mr. Purushan Eloor and his organisation Periyar Malineekarana Virudha Samithi alleging link with anti national forces and some pictures showing disrespect to national flag and a message ‘I Love Pakistan’ were produced alleging to be taken from facebook account of the petitioner, describing to be the close friend of Purushan Eloor to buttress their allegation against him.
3. Petitioner has neither facebook account bearing message that “I Love Pakistan” and pictures showing disrespect to national flag of India nor sent any offensive message or pictures showing disrespect to national flag of India and national honor to anyone using internet or any communication devices. On 20.09.2012, the Sub Inspector of Police, Eloor (3rd respondent herein) registered Crime No. 923/2012 by lodging First Information Report against petitioner upon a complaint made by Kochi City District Police Chief (5th respondent herein) dated 10.09.2012 which is extracted in the 4th page of FIR. Certified copy of the First Information Report in Crime No.923/12 registered against the petitioner is produced herewith and marked for reference as Exhibit-P1. By Ext.P1, the offences registered against the petitioner are under section 124A IPC, section 66A, Information Technology Act and section 2 of Prevention of Insult to National Honour (PINH) Act.
4. It is a trite proposition that a person, who is named in FIR as an accused, suffers social stigma. If an innocent person is falsely implicated, he not only suffers from loss of reputation but also mental tension and his personal liberty is seriously impaired. After lodging Ext.P1 FIR, the petitioner’s family has been isolated by the local community and relatives, as so grievous offences are alleged against the petitioner like sedition and insult to national honour. Petitioner and his family have been treated like traitors and betrayers of nation by local public as petitioner has been named as accused in Ext.P3 with allegation of sedition. His wife and younger child has developed mental trauma. Information Technology Act, 2000 deals with crimes using computer and internet and computer related crimes, but it doesn’t prescribe the method and mode of cyber crime investigation which is still in nascent stage in India and widely abused by police by inadequate experience and knowledge in information technology and internet. There are divergent precedents regarding conducting preliminary enquiry before registering FIR by an investigation officer. But in cyber crimes, offences are committed on virtual cyber space, it not easy to identify the author only by the name reflected in the web as of real world crimes. Hence the manual of cyber crime investigations prepared by International Telecommunication Union and the only Cyber Crime Investigation Manual in India released by Home Secretary, Government of India being prepared by Data Security Council of India and NASSCOM, discuss about the necessity of a pre-investigation inquiry by an investigative agency having expertise in information technology, lest liberty and reputation of netizens and citizens would be under peril being foisted in false accusations.
5. The allegation against the petitioner in the complaint is based on mere surmises and conjectures and made in vague, casual and cavalier manner with grave accusations that may peril the liberty of the petitioner. Honorable Supreme Court admonished the investigative agencies in dealing with charges of sedition that graver the offence, greater should be the care taken so that the liberty of a citizen is not lightly interfered with. It is alleged in the complaint of the 5th respondent extracted in FIR that petitioner had remarked in his Facebook that one of his favorite messages is that “I Love Pakistan which has been seen from somebody’s facebook. As per the statement, 5th respondent has not seen such remark in petitioner’s facebook, but it was seen from somebody’s facebook. Who is the said somebody who has seen such remark in petitioner’s facebook is not mentioned. The 5th respondent went to the extent to arrive at a hypothetical inference that amount to character assassination of the petitioner that “as petitioner was working in UAE and his remark in the facebook “I Love Pakistan’ and his close relation with the Pakistanis in UAE may indulge in anti-social activities”. Without verifying whether such remarks appear in the facebook account of the petitioner and the facebook account alleged to have been seen from somebody’s facebook is really belonged to petitioner, by conducting a scientific and reliable preliminary inquiry by Cyber Crime Investigation Cell or any agency having expertise in investigation of crimes regarding information technology, and without inquiring and finding whether petitioner has close relationship with Pakistanis in UAE, how can a police officer who is none other than the chief of Kochi City Police, make such a comment in a casual and cavalier manner resulting in character assassination of petitioner and that too may prejudicially affect the liberty of the petitioner.
6. The honorable apex court upheld that it is the mandate of Art.21 which requires a police officer to protect a citizen from baseless allegations. The scheme of the Criminal Procedure Code is that after the police officer records an FIR under section 154 Cr.PC, he has to proceed to investigate under section 156 Cr.P.C and while investigating, the police officer has power to arrest under section 41. As two of the offences lodged against the petitioner are non bailable offences and of grievous character such as sedition and insult to national flag, the personal liberty of the petitioner would be at casualty. The 3rd respondent arbitrarily lodged FIR against the petitioner mechanically on the direction from his superior officer to register a case and without applying mind whether the allegations in the complaint of 5th respondent even if it taken its face value make out offences leveled against the petitioner. In this state, there is a specially trained police wing having expertise in information technology, namely Cyber Crime Enquiry Cell to investigate into cyber crimes. The action of the 5th respondent is highly arbitrary to direct the 3rd respondent to register case against the petitioner involving offence under Information Technology without referring it to the Cyber Crime Enquiry Cell.
7. It is learnt that 5th respondent made the said complaint directing the 3rd respondent to register case against the petitioner relying on the facebook pages showing remark “I Love Pakistan” and pictures showing disrespect to national flag produced by Standing Council of Trade Unions, Ernakulam alleging to be taken from petitioner’s facebook account and treating the same as gospel of truth. Petitioner has no facebook account bearing such message and pictures showing disrespect to national flag and in the facebook account that petitioner holds, trade union standing council or its members are not in the friends’ list to access his facebook account, hence the act is punishable under section 43 (a) & (b) read with section 66 of Information technology Act. Section 156 of the Code empowers the 3rd respondent to investigate cognizable case and section 41 empowers to arrest any person who has been concerned in any cognizable offence or agisnst whom reasonable complaint has been made. All three offences leveled against the petitioner are cognizable offences and two of them are non bailable offences. As the actions of the police including 3rd and 5th respondents showing mechanical proceeding with the case, it is likely to be proceeded with investigation of Ext.P3 and on that instance petitioner would be deprived of his liberty.
8. On 18.11.2012, The Hindu reported about a delegation led by Prakash Karat, General Secretary of the CPI(M) delegation to meet President Shri Pranab Mukherjee regarding targeting and persecution of scores of Muslim youth in terrorism related cases. The delegation made memorandum expressing their strong exception and anger thus”
“Grave miscarriage of justice to scores of Muslim youth who were and are being wrongly arrested and charged in cases related to terror attacks in different parts of the country. In some cases, these young men have been incarcerated for ten to fourteen years as undertrials and then finally acquitted by the courts as being innocent. Several reliable groups of concerned citizens and organizations who have collected the details of these cases, have revealed how the court judgements themselves have strongly indicted the investigation agencies for the biased mentality against the Muslim youth and in several cases the manipulation and presentation of concocted evidence against innocent young men. It would appear that the investigation agencies are more driven by the requirement to show “results” in their investigation rather than to ensure that it is the actual culprits who are caught.
Muslim youth are the most vulnerable targets today. The draconian provisions of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act are used to deny the normal processes of justice, while there is no time bound procedure for the judicial processes. There is a growing feeling of fear and apprehension on the one hand and anger on the other that innocents are being implicated. Young lives have been destroyed, families stricken, forced into social isolation, driven into debt to pay the huge expenditures in legal fees —the terrible conditions caused by State led injustice.
As an illustration, the cases of the four young men Md. Aamir from Delhi, Syed Maqbool from Srinagar, Wasif Haider and Mumtaz Ahmed from Uttar Pradesh are presented before you. They were arrested arbitrarily when they were just eighteen or nineteen years of age, implicated in dozens of cases, incarcerated for over ten years and each one of them was, as held by the courts, innocent. They are today without jobs, considered unemployable, with dark and uncertain futures.
While no quarter can be given to any individual or group which is responsible for dastardly terror attacks, the arrest of innocent Muslim youth has reached serious dimensions which require immediate attention. It is a blot on the principles of secular democracy. At the same time, the arrest of innocent people means that the actual culprits go free.—the terrible conditions caused by State led injustice.
9. The 5th respondent made fanciful allegation merely based on hypothetical deductive thinking that may snatch away the liberty and reputation of an innocent citizen like petitioner. Petitioner has no facebook account having remark that “I Love Pakistan” is his favorite messages and pictures showing disrespect to National flag. Petitioner has reasonable apprehension that he has been tagged to be a scapegoat only because his name reflects a religious identity against which investigative agency has prejudice. It is learnt that 5th respondent made such complaint upon pictures produced by the Standing Council of Trade Unions Ernakulam in order to wreck vengeance with environmental activists and to indict them with accusation of link with anti national forces. If the police officer would register FIR without application of mind on any such seditious pictures alleged to be taken from the facebook account of someone, without verifying the authenticity and author of such online postings by a duly enquiry and procedure applying information technology by a specially trained police like Cyber Crime Enquiry Cell or any other agency having expertise in information technology, liberty and freedom of citizen would be at jeopardy and our republic made on Socialist, Secular and democratic pillars would slip into one made on the peels of banana.
10. As well discussed by honorable apex court in Lalita Kumari & others v. Govt. of U.P & others, 2012 (4) SCC 1 and in series of many other judgments, recording of FIR is not an empty formality upon receiving a complaint. In the petitioner’s case, Ext.P1 FIR has been lodged against him alleging offences of sedition, insult to national honour and sending offensive message under Information Technology Act. The allegation of all offences was based on his alleged postings in his facebook account claimed to be seen by somebody. For proving the accusation that it has to be verified whether the original counterpart of the printout produced before the police by somebody really exist in facebook, the online social networking website. And if it really exists in facebook, it has to be ascertained from which e-mail account that facebook profile was logged in and that the IP address of the computer by which such impugned postings and pictures were made in the facebook profile and that whether petitioner is the custodian or owner of the computer having that IP address and e-mail ID. For these enquiry and findings it requires an investigative agency like Cyber Crime Investigation cell having trained expertise in Information Technology and it requires much correspondence with Facebook, the e-mail service provider with which facebook was used to log in, the internet service provider, foreign government, if the computer system situates in another country. In normal practice it requires 6 to 10 months to complete this preliminary enquiry. But the respondents avoid the said pre-investigation enquiry applying information technology before registering Ext.P1 against petitioner. After registering FIR, the crime was forwarded to Circle Inspector, Ernakulam Town North Circle (4th respondent herein) for investigation. It is learnt that 4th respondent sought pictures in the facebook account of the petitioner from Cyber Crime Enquiry Cell, Ernakulam (6th respondent herein) on 22.09.2012. After that scientific cyber crime enquiry, if it’s found that impugned postings and pictures are not created by petitioner in his facebook profile, how the mental trauma, social ostracism and persecution suffered by petitioner and his family by being named as accused in a FIR of grave crime like sedition, would be made good by the police and the state? If petitioner is arrested and detained in the meanwhile during the said cyber crime enquiry is pending, how its consequential loss of his reputation, liberty and livelihood will be compensated by the state and police? Whether the police would be satisfied in throwing petitioner and his family to street of disrepute and penury?
11. Anyone can create any number of facebook profile by any name, even though terms and conditions of facebook user agreement restricts creating account for anyone other than the user and creating of more than one personal account. There exist more than 50 facebook profiles in the name of the opposition leader Sri.V.S. Achuthanandan and more than 10 facebook profiles exist in the name of the Chief Minister Sri. Oommen Chandy. It is not sure whether all accounts or any of the accounts were created by them. If one make a complaint that one of the facebook profile bearing the name of Chief Minister or Opposition Leader contains some seditious post or photos and produces a printout of the same before the police, whether the police officer would mechanically register FIR against Chief Minister or Opposition Leader alleging offence of sedition. If such FIR is lodged what would be its results, newspapers and Televisions screens across the country will flash with scrolling news of them being named as accused. If the investigation officer is having a prudent mind he would not register FIR on such complaint as it would have unforeseen ramification to the liberty and reputation of the person alleged with the offence as the allegations are so absurd and inherently improbable on the basis of which no prudent person can ever reach a just conclusion that there is sufficient ground for proceeding against the accused. The police were discriminatory in their action against petitioner in lodging Ext.P1 denying the petitioner equality before law violating Art.14 of the Constitution of India.
12. The 3rd respondent lodged FIR against the petitioner alleging offences punishable under sections 124A of Indian Penal Code, 66A of Information Technology Act and 2 of Prevention of Insult to National Honour Act. The contents of the FIR is thus:
“dÉÄß §LcX ØßxßØY ¦ÏßøßæA ¿ßÏÞæa çËØíÌáAßW §LcX çÆÖàÏ ÉÄÞµæÏ ¥ÉÎÞÈßAáK ÄøJßW ¥ÕçÙ{ȺßdÄ¢ dÉÆVÖßMߺîᢠ“I Love Pakistan” ®KÄÞÃí Äæa §×í¿æMG ØçwÖæÎKᢠµÞÃߺîí çËØíÌáAßW çø¶æM¿áJßÏᢠÎxᢠæºÏñí dÉÄß çÆÖÕßøái ÕßµÞø¢ dɵ¿ßMߺîᢠ¥Äí ÎxáUÕVAí dÉçºÞÆÈ¢ ÈÜíµÃæÎKâU ©çgÖçJ޿ᢠµøáÄçÜ޿ᢠµâ¿à dÉÕVJßºî µÞøc¢.”
13. It can be seen that the 3rd respondent lodged FIR without seeing and verifying the facebook account of the petitioner and the pictures showing disrespect to national flag alleged to be created by petitioner in his facebook account, but mechanically upon the direction of the 5th respondent. The allegations in the complaint of 5th respondent upon which Ext.P1 FIR has been lodged are vague and cryptic on the basis of which no prudent person can ever reach a just conclusion that there is sufficient ground for proceeding against the petitioner. The pictures and remarks alleged to be made in the facebook account of the petitioner are referred to in the complaint to indict the petitioner of the offences alleged in Ext.P1 were stated to seen from the face book account of somebody. It is not stated who is the said somebody who has seen impugned objectionable pictures in petitioner’s facebook account and brought the attention of the police to the alleged offence. The whole allegation in the complaint is based on an indirect hearsay. The act of the 3rd and 5th respondent is highly arbitrary to proceed against the petitioner on mere hearsay and that too alleging grave offence which attracts social isolation, chance of loss of liberty and ill-repute to the petitioner as a consequence to be named as accused in a FIR of such offences.
14. Petitioner refutes the entire allegation of the complaint and FIR as he has no facebook account bearing remarks that “I love Pakistan” is his favorite message and pictures showing disrespect to national flag. Despite it, even if the allegations are taken at their face value and accepted in their entirety, do not prima facie constitute any offence or make out a case against the petitioner. One of the offences alleged in the FIR is section 66A of Information Technology Act, 2000. The basic ingredient of section 66 A of the Act is sending of an information that is grossly offensive or has menacing character or that is false, but for the purpose of causing annoyance, hatred etc. or sending of any electronic mail or message for the purpose of causing annoyance or inconvenience or to deceive or to mislead the addressee or recipient about the origin of such messages. There is no allegation in the FIR or its relying complaint that petitioner has sent impugned remarks or pictures to anyone by means of computer resource or communication device. The only accusation is that petitioner remarked in his facebook account that his favourite message is “I Love Pakistan” and two photographs showing disrespect to National flag were created in his facebook. There is no act of sending of alleged offensive remark or pictures by the petitioner to anyone. As per Ext.P3 FIR, somebody has seen the impugned remarks and pictures in petitioner’s facebook and there is no case that the said anonymous viewer was invited by the petitioner or he accessed the facebook account of the petitioner with his permission otherwise such unauthorised access is punishable under section 66 read with 43 (a) & (b) of the Information Technology Act, 2000. If the allegations in the FIR taken on its face value, as the petitioner has not send the offensive remark and picture to anyone, it will not attract the ingredients of section 66A of Information Technology Act, hence it is liable to be quashed.
15. Another offence alleged against the petitioner in Ext.P3 is section 124A of Indian Penal Code. Honourable Supreme Court defined the meaning, scope and object of sedition under section 124A in Nazir Khan And Others v. State of Delhi, 2003 (8) SCC 461. “Sedition in itself is a comprehensive term, and it embraces all those practices, whether by word, deed, or writing, which are calculated to disturb the tranquillity of the State, and lead ignorant persons to endeavour to subvert the Government and laws of the country. The objects of sedition generally are to induce discontent and insurrection, and stir up opposition to the Government, and bring the administration of justice into contempt; and the very tendency of sedition is to incite the people to insurrection and rebellion. “Sedition has been described as disloyalty in action, and the law considers as sedition all those practices which have for their object to excite discontent or dissatisfaction, to create public disturbance, or to lead to civil war; to bring into hatred or contempt the Sovereign or the Government, the laws or constitutions of the realm, and generally all endeavours to promote public disorder. The decisive ingredient for establishing the offence of Sedition under S.124A, IPC is the doing of certain acts which would bring the Government established by law in India into hatred or contempt etc. In this case, there is not even a suggestion that appellant did anything as against the Government of India or any other Government of the State. The allegations made against the appellant contain no averment that appellant did anything as against the Government, hence it is liable to be quashed.
16. Another offence leveled against the petitioner in Ext.P3 is section 2 of Prevention of Insult to National Honour (PINH) Act, 1971. Section 2 states that “Whoever in any public place or in any other place within public view burns, mutilates, defaces, defiles, disfigures, destroys, tramples upon or otherwise shows disrespect to or brings into contempt whether by words, either spoken or written, or by acts) the Indian National Flag or the Constitution of India or any part thereof, shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years, or with fine, or with both. The allegations in the FIR are so vague and cryptic to attract the ingredients of the said offence. Petitioner’s account in the domain of facebook is not a public space. The complaint of the 5th respondent upon which Ext.P3 FIR has been lodged states only that the other pictures crerated in the facebook are also showing disrespect to the National Flag of India. Petitioner’s account in the domain of facebook is not a public space. It states nothing about the picture and how it shows disrespect to national flag. By the allegations made in the FIR are patently absurd and by that no prudent person can ever reach a conclusion that there is sufficient ground for proceeding against the petitioner under section 2 of PINH Act.
17. It is learnt that lodging of Ext.P1 FIR arose from the complaint made by Standing Council of Trade Unions, Ernakulam before DySP, CB CID, Ernakulam, to wreck their vengeance with environmental activist like Mr.Purushan Eloor and other members of Periyar Malineekarana Virudha Samithi. The Trade Union leaders produced the printout of facebook pages containing impugned remarks that I Love Pakistan is a favourite message and pictures showing disrespect to national flag to buttress their allegation against Purushan Eloor and others alleging link with anti national forces. On 23.07.2012 Mr.Purushan Eloor was quizzed by the DySP, CB CID, Ernakulam on the said complaint and sought his explanation on the produced facebook pages alleging disrespect to national flag. As he has not found such pictures and remarks showing disrespect to national flag and honour in his facebook account or of the petitioner, he made an application under RTI act for copies of the facebook pages produced by them for making complaint before Cyber Crime Enquiry Cell, but which was denied stating that RTI Act does not apply to Crime Branch CID. Then Purushan Eloor made a complaint before the DySP, CB CID, Ernakulam on 01.08.2012 seeking investigation against the Trade Union leaders for fabrication of false evidence after verifying the authenticity of impugned facebook pages produced by them. Two ministers of state government, namely Minister for Public Works and minister for Fisheries, Ports and Excise decorate the patrons’ post of Standing Council of Trade Unions, Ernakulam in violation to the mandate of section 22(3) of the Trade Union Act. Thus the trade union standing council has good access and influence in the state government. Ext.P1 was hastily lodged by the police malafidely to shun away the investigation sought against the Trade Union Standing Council, despite no FIR has been lodged on the complaint made by Purushan much earlier on 01.08.2012. Ext.P1 is liable to be quashed as the proceedings seem to have been initiated with mala fides/malice for wrecking vengeance or to cause harm to environmental activist like Purushan Eloor and others and for which petitioner has been made a scapegoat.
18. Petitioner’s mother is aged and sick having cardiac ailment. After the spreading out of news about the lodging of Ext.P1 against the petitioner, neighbors and relatives used to avoid social contact with petitioner’s family. This social ostracism and absence of petitioner who toils abroad for winning daily bread at deserts in Gulf and his unavailability of petitioner in her immediate presence, broke her. She wants to see the petitioner. Petitioner’s wife and children are also panic and longing for seeing him. Petitioner would get only short leave and he want to see his old mother, wife and children to pacify them, but he apprehends that his liberty would be periled being arrested by police who are arbitrarily proceeding with the false complaint initiated on the vengeance of a group of trade union leaders and on that instance he would lose his employment and means to repay the loan of Rs.17 lacs and subsistence for family and they may be finally dragged to street.
19. Petitioner is ready to face any investigation, but it should be free and fair. Petitioner crave before this honourable court until it has been found by the Cyber Crime Enquiry Cell that petitioner’s facebook account contains objectionable remarks and pictures showing disrespect to national flag or national or honour or of any seditious character, his personal liberty should not be curtailed. If it is found by the cyber crime inquiry cell that petitioner has made offensive and seditious remarks or pictures, petitioner bind himself before the investigative officer or the court to uphold the majesty of law. Petitioner apprehends that by the influence of Standing Council of Trade Union who has easy access and influence in government, he might have been made a scapegoat by the police for the feud of Trade Union Leaders against petitioner. If it is found in the inquiry that petitioner has not made such seditious remark and pictures in his facebook account, it will boomerang to the Trade Union Leaders indicting them of fabricating false evidence. In this circumstance there will be great pressure on investigating agency and cyber crime enquiry cell to get tailor made report by the Trade Union Leaders, the hasty lodging Ext.P1 reflects nothing different of petitioner’s apprehension. Hence the investigation and cyber crime enquiry should be under the guidance of this honorable court .
By the arbitrary and capricious action of the police, the reputation, life and personal liberty of the petitioner is under serious threat, petitioner having left with no other alternate efficacious remedy is compelled to approach this Honourable Court under Article 226 of the Constitution of India, on following among other
A) The 3rd respondent malafidely without application of mind lodged Ext.P1 FIR on the direction of 5th respondent without satisfying whether allegations made in the complaint even if taken on its face value, makes out any offence alleged.
B) Ext.P1 was lodged on a vague and cryptic complaint which has the character of only hearsay. It is liable to be quashed.
C) The allegations in the complaint are so absurd and inherently improbable that no prudent person can ever reach a just conclusion that there is sufficient ground for proceeding against the petitioner.
D) In enquiry of cyber crimes, a pre-investigation enquiry of the authenticity and author of computer by which cyber crime has been committed is indispensable to proceed with the investigation. But police were malafidely haste to register Ext.P1 without verifying the authenticity and author of the impugned facebook pages. The action of the police was arbitrary and discriminatory and Ext.P1 liable to be quashed.
E) Even if the allegations in the FIR is taken its face value, it does not make out the offences under sections 66A, IT Act, 124A IPC, 2 PINH Act. Hence it is liable to be quashed.
F) Ext.P1 originally arose from the complaint of Trade Union Standing Council against one Mr. Pursuhan Eloor and the environmental organization he is associated with alleging link with anti national forces. For buttressing the said allegation they have produced the facebook pages which also contained the seditious remark and pictures alleged to be taken from petitioner’s face book account alleging that Purushan Eloor is petitioner’s close friend. It was with intention to wreck vengeance with environmental activist like Purushan Eloor. Purushan Eloor made a complaint against Trade union leaders seeking inquiry about the authenticity and authorship of the facebook pages which contain seditious pictures by referring to Cyber Cell and prosecute them alleging that it has been fabricated by the Trade Union leadership. Patron posts of the Standing Council of Trade Union is decorated by two ministers of state government in violation to the mandate of section 22 (3) of Trade Union Act. Trade Union standing council has easy access and influence in the state government. If it is found in the cyber crime inquiry that petitioner has not made such seditious remark and pictures in his facebook account, it will boomerang to the Trade Union Leaders indicting them of fabricating false evidence. In this circumstance there will be great pressure on investigating agency and cyber crime enquiry cell to get tailor made report by the Trade Union Leaders, the hasty lodging Ext.P1 reflects nothing different of petitioner’s apprehension. Hence the investigation and cyber crime enquiry should be under the guidance of this honorable court.
G) The mandate of Art.21 which requires a police officer to protect a citizen from baseless allegations. The respondent police officer arbitrarily and hastily proceeded with the allegation without verifying whether it is reliable or baseless. The life and liberty guaranteed under Art.21 is under peril by discriminatory treatment of Police by violating Art.14 of the Constitution of India.
For these and other grounds that may be urged at the time of hearing, it is most humbly prayed that this Hon’ble Court may be pleased to:
i) Issue a writ of certiorari or any other appropriate writ, order or direction quashing Ext.P1 First Information Report lodged by the 3rd respondent upon the direction of the 5th respondent ;
ii) Issue a writ of mandamus or any other appropriate writ, order or direction directing the 4th respondent investigation officer not to arrest the petitioner until the receipt of report from Cyber Crime Enquiry Cell that confirms the allegations in the complaint;
iii) Issue a writ of mandamus or any other appropriate writ, order or direction directing the 4th respondent investigation officer and 6th respondent to conduct investigation and cyber crime inquiry under the guidance of this Honourable High Court;
iv) Call for the information from the 5th respondent to make complaint against the petitioner and the supporting documents to make serious seditious allegation against the petitioner
Dated this the day of January, 2013.

Counsel for the Petitioners


For the reasons stated in the accompanying affidavit and in the Memorandum of Writ Petition, it is most humbly prayed that this Hon’ble Court may be pleased to stay the further proceedings of Ext.P1 First Information Report, pending disposal of this writ petition.

Dated this the day of January, 2013.



APPLY- CREA’s 6th Sexuality, Gender and Rights Institute in Hindi, 18- 23 March 2013, Gurgaon


क्रिया का छठवां यौनिकता, जेंडर और अधिकार – एक अध्ययन
सिद्धांतों और अभ्यासों की जांच
  18 – 23 मार्च 2013
द रिट्रीट, टेरी, गुडगाँव, हरियाणा

इस कार्यक्रम के आवेदन पत्र को आप यहाँ  से डाऊनलोड कर सकते हैं.  इस कार्यक्रम के ब्रोशर और क्रिया के अन्य कार्यक्रमों की जानकारी के लिए आप www.creaworld.org पर जा सकते हैं. भरे हुए आवेदन पत्र भेजने की आख़िरी तारीख: 25 जनवरी, 2013

‘यौनिकता, जेंडर और अधिकार – एक अध्ययन’ क्रिया द्वारा संचालित एक सप्ताह का आवासीय अध्ययन कार्यक्रम है. इस प्रशिक्षण कार्यक्रम में समुदाय आधारित संस्थाओं में कार्यरत महिलाओं को यौनिकता, अधिकार, जेंडर और प्रजनन स्वास्थ्य के वैचारिक सिद्धांतों से अवगत करवाया जाता है और इसके  सांस्कृतिक, सामाजिक और कानूनी मामलों के बीच के जुड़ाव और सम्बन्ध के बारे में जानकारी दी जाती है. इस कार्यक्रम में यौनिकता, जेंडर और अधिकार से सम्बंधित हिंदी संसाधन सामग्री भी उपलब्ध होंगे.

प्रमदा मेनन: एक क्वीयर नारीवादी एक्टिविस्ट और स्वतन्त्र कन्सल्टेंट के रूप में कार्य करती हैं। प्रमदा मेनन पिछले पच्चीस सालों से यौनिकता, यौन अधिकार, जेंडर, महिलाओं के खिलाफ हिंसा, संस्तागत विकास और बदलाव और जीविका के मुद्दों पर कार्य कर रही हैं। यह क्रिया की सह संस्थापक हैं और क्रिया के कार्यक्रम निर्देशक के रूप में 2000 से 2008 तक कार्य किया है। क्रिया का सह संस्थापन करने से पहले इन्होने दस्तकार (क्राफ्ट से जुड़े लोगों की जीविका पर कार्य करने वाली संस्था) के एक्सेक्यूटिव निर्देशक के रूप में कार्य किया है।

शालिनी सिंह: सामजिक विज्ञान की पृष्ठभूमि के साथ शालिनी एक वकील और प्रशिक्षित काऊंसलर है। महिला मुद्दों के क्षेत्र में 15 साल से कार्य करते हुए पिछले आठ साल से  क्रिया के समुदाय आधारित कार्यक्रम में शालिनी महिला संस्थाओं के नेटवर्क के क्षमता वृद्धि का कार्य करते हुए, महिला हिंसा, जेंडर, यौनिकता, और महिलाओं से जुड़े कानून पर प्रशिक्षण देने और लिखने का कार्य करती हैं।

अन्य शिक्षकगन 

  • चयनिका शाह
  • रत्नाबोली रे
  • रितुपर्ना बोरा
  • इशिता चौधरी
  • मनक मटियानी

और कई और शिक्षक


2000 में स्थापित, क्रिया, नई दिल्ली में स्थित एक नारीवादी मानव अधिकार संस्था है। यह एक अंतर्राष्ट्रीय महिला अधिकार संस्था है, जो समुदाय, राष्ट्रीय, क्षेत्रीय, और अंतर्राष्ट्रीय स्तर पर काम करती है। मानव अधिकार आन्दोलनों और समूह के विभिन्न भागीदारों के साथ मिलकर, क्रिया महिलाओं और लड़कियों के अधिकार को आगे बढाने और सभी लोगों के यौनिक और प्रजनन स्वतंत्रता पर कार्य करती है। क्रिया राष्ट्रीय और अंतर्राष्ट्रीय मंचों पर, सकारात्मक सामाजिक बदलाव के लिए पैरवी करती है और दुनियाभर के सक्रियतावादी और पैरवीकारों को ट्रेनिंग और सीखने के अन्य मौके प्रदान करती है।


वह सभी महिलाऐं जो सामाजिक बदलाव के मुद्दों पर कम से कम चार साल से कार्य कर रही है, इस प्रशिक्षण के लिए आवेदन दे सकती हैं. सभी सत्र और संसाधन हिंदी में होंगे, इसलिए सभी प्रतिभागियों को हिंदी में पढना और लिखना आना चाहिए. आवेदन पत्र के बलबूते पर 25-30 प्रतिभागी चुने जायेंगे. सभी प्रतिभागियों को पूरे पाठ्यक्रम के लिए कार्यक्रम स्थल पर ही रहना होगा. चुने गए साथियों को 10 फरवरी  तक सूचित किया जायेगा.

आवेदन प्रक्रिया  

आवेदन पत्र भरकर हमें crea@creaworld.org या ssingh@creaworld.org पर 25 जनवरी 2013 तक ईमेल कर दें, 011- 24377708 पर फैक्स करें या 7, मथुरा रोड, दूसरी मंजिल, जंगपुरा बी, नई दिल्ली 110014 पर पोस्ट कर दें. आप हमें 011- 24377707/24378700 पर संपर्क भी कर सकते हैं. ईमेल करने पर, सब्जेक्ट में  ‘Application/आवेदन पत्र’ लिखें और पोस्ट या कुरियर भेजने पर भी लिफाफे पर ‘Application/आवेदन पत्र’ लिखें।


यह अध्ययन कार्यक्रम निशुल्क है. 

इस पाठ्यक्रम का आयोजन फोर्ड फ़ाउन्डेशन, भारत के आर्थिक सहयोग से किया गया है. क्रिया इस सहयोग के लिए उनका धन्यवाद करती है. 

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#Goarapecase – Special investigation team to probe #Vaw

Edited by Pritika Ghura | Updated: January 16, 2013 11:14 IST

The police have released a sketch of the accused. The accused is suspected to be 21-23 years old, thin to medium built and has henna coloured hair with a ponytail. The police have also announced a reward of Rs. 50,000 for any information that would lead to his arrest.

The Crime Branch has also registered an offence against an unknown person under Section 378 of Indian Penal Code (IPC) and Section 8 of Goa Children Act for raping a minor girl
The victim has been sent to the Goa Medical College and Hospital at Bambolim for medical examination and her report would throw more light on the case.

Taking strong note of the incident, the Chief Minister had directed the Director General of Police to hand over the case to the Crime Branch for further investigation.

Thousands of agitated people, including parents, protested against the rape in the school premises and demanded immediate arrest of the school headmistress, and the culprit who committed the rape.

The Chief Minister, along with top administration and police officials, had to rush to the school after irate residents and friends of the victim’s parents laid siege and did not allow the staff to step out.

According to the information available, the victim, who is a class II student of the high school, was allegedly raped by a stranger who entered the school premises during the interval session at around 10.30 am.

The incident came to light after the victim complained to her class teacher about pain.

The headmistress, taking immediate note of the incident, intimated the victim’s parents. As the parents could not be present in the school in time, the incident was later brought to the notice of the Mormugao police at around 2.30 pm.

The delay in intimating the police created panic among the agitated people, who had started gathering in the school premises.

Despite the incident occurring at around 10.30 am, the victim was made to sit in the office room of the school for about eight hours and only then was she sent to the GMC for medical examination. This further angered the crowd and parents who had gathered in the school.

(With PTI inputs)


An open letter to Madhu Kishwar on her visit to Gujarat #Vaw #Development #NarendraModi

by- Zahir Janmohamed

JANUARY 15, 2013

Dear Madhu ji,

I was very excited when I learned you were coming to Ahmedabad and I was honoured that you expressed interest in possibly meeting with me.

I was sitting with a journalist friend when I read your Tweet about visiting Ahmedabad and he told me you are a “pioneering feminist who did ground breaking work.” He also told me that in 2005 you signed a very strong petition calling for Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi’s dismissal because of Modi’s role in the 2002 Gujarat riots. He also added that you have been veryvocal on behalf of Kashmiri Pandits. After I witnessed the Gujarat riots in 2002, I returned to the United States—where I was born and raised—and I gave lectures for six months about the violence I saw. In each lecture, an audience member would inevitably shout at me that I have ignored the plight of the Kashmiri Pandits. It is true. I know very little about Kashmir, and for that matter Kashmiri Pandits, and I would have enjoyed and benefited from listening to your views on the conflict there.

I understand from your Twitter feed that you have left Ahmedabad. I know your days in Ahmedabad were limited and I fully understand that you were not able to meet. Therefore in this letter I will try to convey some of the things I had hoped to tell you in person, in particular about your Tweets.

I am pleased that you have enjoyed your stay in Ahmedabad. To quote some of your remarks:

@madhukishwar: Friends say auto rickshaws never refuse passengers, never over charge in Ahmadabad or elsewhere in Gujarat. Why are Delhi autos lawless?

@madhukishwar: Photographs of young men and women past mid night having soda in Ahmedabad. Young men don’t have menacing presence

@madhukishwar: North Indian friends I’m staying with in Ahmedabad took me for midnight drive to see how safe is gujarat for women- even on  highway.

@madhukishwar: I am out on Ahmedabad streets past 1 am enjoying uniquely satvic nightlife of Gujarat. Will write more about it

Indeed, Gujaratis are exceptional with their hospitality and kindness. As a Gujarati whose grandparents are from Kutch, I am pleased you feel welcome here.

But I take exception to your comment that women are safe in Gujarat or that “young men don’t have menacing presence.”

According to the National Crime Bureau, the number of rapes in Gujarat increased from 408 cases in 2010 to 439 in 2011. When we look at other forms of violence like dowry deaths, this number becomes more staggering.

From the Indian Express, March 28, 2008:

In a span of twelve years, more than 50,000 cases of violence against women have been reported from 12 districts of Gujarat. With 640 dowry deaths and 1,443 rape cases, the chart is topped by a staggering 14,998 cases of cruelty by husband and in-laws, followed by accidental deaths which is pegged at 14,631.

The article cites a report from an NGO called Navsarjan that conducted research in 12 districts in Gujarat during a twelve year period (1995-2007). According to the report, “7894 women committed suicide and 3,006 women were abducted during this period in these districts.”

In a December 28, 2012 story, DNA reported that in Gujarat only 1 out of 5 got life term for rape and that in over 50% of the cases, the rapist had to serve only 6 to 10 years in prison. Just this week, IBN-Live reported that an ex-MLA’s nephew and three friends gang raped a girl for over three years.

I recognize that these numbers might be better than other states in India but the statistics show that violence against women in Gujarat is increasing.

At a forum I attended this weekend sponsored by Apna Adda called “Rape and Me,” female students from various universities in Ahmedabad said they no longer feel comfortable going out alone or with only girls at night. One said she had faced so much sexual harassment in Gujarat that she is now advising girls to take self-defence classes. Another young woman told me that at her college an elderly man flashed his genitals to her on three occasions. She said she rarely goes out past dark alone for fear of these incidents happening again.

Parents at this forum on Saturday—many of whom were born and raised in Ahmedabad—said Gujarat was not always like this and that it is getting progressively worse. I am happy that you felt comfortable staying out as a woman at 2 am. In my two years of research, I have met very few women in Gujarat who would say the same.


However the main reason I write to you, Madhu ji, is to take issue with your Tweets about the “inclusive development of Gujarat”. Some of your tweets:

@madhukishwar: Modi sure knows how to address and strengthen self esteem of his people. Give hope and confidence

@madhukishwar: 2\4 If I as much as say Gujarat roads are best in country, see Modi’s inclusive development for urself I become political untouchable. Why?

@madhukishwar: Those upset at my Gujrat observations: challenge me on facts. Don’t hurl ideology or prejudice at me. I’ll be 1st to apologise 4 inaccuracy

Since you have requested facts, here are some to consider.

In an article in the Business Standard, Mihir Sharma takes issue with the notion that Gujarat is growing at a much faster rate than other states. He writes:

…between 2004 and 2012, Gujarat’s GDP growth left the national average, 8.3 per cent, far behind. It grew at 10.1 per cent. But, in the same period, Maharashtra grew at 10.8 per cent and Tamil Nadu at 10.3 per cent.

Sharma acknowledges that Gujarat has grown faster during the period of Modi’s rule but its rate of growth has not been as impressive as in other states:

Gujarat in 2004-12 grew 3.6 per cent faster than it did in 1994-2002. Meanwhile, Bihar grew 6.5 per cent faster, if from a lower base. But better-off Maharashtra’s growth was 5.8 per cent faster in that period, and Tamil Nadu’s was 4.7 per cent.

As a resident of Ahmedabad, I have seen much of the progress myself, something Sharma acknowledges in his piece. But should Modi be given credit for Gujarat’s successes yet be given a clean sheet for the state’s failures? Sharma notes:

Still, is this chief minister somehow special? The evidence seems indisputable that Gujarat’s bureaucracy is responsive, decentralised and innovative. It is possible that Mr Modi is somehow personally responsible for this; Professor Debroy says to deny him all credit would be unfair and uncharitable. I agree. Though I do note that less objective observers of Mr Modi than Professor (Bibek) Debroy are hypocritically happy to suggest that he is individually responsible for the emplacement of every handpump in north Gujarat, but somehow had nothing whatsoever to do with the complete failure of the entire state machinery in 2002.

In an article in Rediff, Shivam Vij writes cautions against simple explanations of Gujarat’s growth. He writes:

Look at the per capita net state domestic product, a better indicator of prosperity than the mere rate of growth. Gujarat has been occupying 6th or 7th rank on this list since the early ’70s and it’s not as if Narendra Modi’s leadership made Gujarat jump up to the top end of the list.

Given your claim of “inclusive” development in Gujarat, I want to point out to you some more numbers:

According to a study by Rakesh Basant of the IIM Ahmedabad University entitled “Education and Employment among Muslims in India: An Analysis of Patterns and Trends,” he concludes that Muslims carry a double burden of being labeled as “anti-nationalists” and being appeased at the same time.

But he cautions us to think that the “appeasements” have helped Muslims in any way. He states:

The fact that the so-called appeasement has not resulted in any benefits is typically ignored. Identity markers often lead to suspicion and discrimination by people and institutions. Discrimination too is pervasive in employment, housing and education. Gender injustice is usually identified purely with personal law to the exclusion of gender-related concerns in education and employment that Muslim women do face on a continuing basis.

Basant acknowledges that while education rates for Muslims in Gujarat remain woefully low, the trends show that Muslims are improving in this category. But this is stymied, he argues, by “identity based discrimination (which) reduces access, enhances inequity and adds to insecurity.”

This inequity exists in other areas of life too. In an article in the New York Times, Hartosh Singh Bal writes that “Gujarat has an urban poverty ratio of almost 18 percent, compared with almost 21 percent for the country as a whole.” According to Bal, “42.4 percent of the Muslims in urban Gujarat are poor, compared with 33.9 percent of Muslims in urban India overall.” Bal illustrates the disenfranchisement of Muslims in Gujarat by citing the refusal of the Narendra Modi government to release 53,000 scholarships for Muslim students. Vij writes in his Rediff piece that “Gujarat is the only state to not have implemented central government scholarships for students from minority communities, started in 2008.”

Indeed in my neighborhood of Juhapura, often called one the largest ghettoes of Muslims in India, there are only four high schools for a population of 300,000. Of these four high schools, one is private, two are partly aided (ie the teachers salary is provided by the state) and only one is fully aided up to the 12th standard.

VK Tripathi, an IIT Delhi Physics professor, has been coming to Juhapura, the Muslim ghetto of Ahmedabad, every two months since 2007 to fight for schools. In a 2009 article in the Times of India, Tripathi says there were only “24 educational institutions for a population of more than 3.5 lakh.”

Most schools in Juhapura do not have paved roads, let alone enough class rooms, and Tripathi has been fighting the Gujarat government to provide better educational opportunities for residents of Juhapura. I saw Tripathi sahib just last weekend in Juhapura and he told me that while there is some progress, it is still “abysmally low”.

Muslims do not just lag behind in education. In an article in Outlook magazine in 2011 by Pragya Singh, she cites statistics from the Sachar Committee Report and the NSSO (61st round) that state that urban poverty among Muslims in Gujarat is 800% higher than upper caste Hindus; 50% higher than OBCs. Rural poverty among Muslims is 200% more than Hindus and about 60% of Muslims live in urban areas.

Citing research by Abusaleh Shariff for International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), Singh says that Gujarat’s high levels of hunger are akin to Bihar, Orissa, and Maharashtra, and Karnataka. Singh writes that “Gujarat’s Muslims are most likely to be self-employed where wages have increased the least,” and that “Muslims are least likely to get organized sector and salaried jobs”.

For Shariff, who conducted extensive research on Gujarat’s Muslims, the explanation is straight forward: “The economic and social life of Gujarati Muslims is worse than in some least developed states. The reason is discrimination.”


I could continue to cite statistics but as one of India’s most accomplished social scientists, you know far more reports and statistics than I do.

What I really want to do in this letter is to explain what I would have shown you in Ahmedabad.

I would have taken you to Siddiqabad, a colony of about 200 homes built for survivors of theGulbarg and Naroda Patiya massacre. Siddiqabad is tucked behind the main road in Juhapura just down the street from my flat. Siddiqabad was meant to be temporary housing for riot victims. But it has been ten years and residents have grown weary of promises that they will get regular electricity, a gutter line, or access to a school nearby.

I would have taken you to Narol (Bombay Hotel), a row of homes occupied by survivors of the Naroda Patiya massacre. Narol is next to a massive trash dump and the builder, a Muslim, told me no one else wanted to sell land to him after the 2002 riots. Each year during the monsoon, water runs from the trash dump into people’s homes. As a result, children in Narol have grown up with deformities. When I visited, a young boy of about 12 years interrupted his cricket game to talk with me. “Yes we see dead bodies here all the time,” he said casually as he tossed a ball into the air.

I would have taken you to Vastrapur, where I lived last year for six months in an all Hindu building. My friend said I could live there on one condition: I could not use my real name. It was humiliating. It was also in Vastrapur where my friend Nida Yamin, an IIM research associate from Delhi, was recently denied housing because she is a Muslim. She left Ahmedabad after just a few months. “This place,” she told me, “is not for us.”

I would have introduced you to Asif bhai, the director of the Crescent School in Juhapura who built his school in 2008 because he realized that the Gujarat government was never going to build adequate schools for Muslims.

I would have introduced you to Kiran Uncle, a tireless advocate for secularism who has fought both Hindu and Muslim communalism and has been ostracized from his family for speaking out so vociferously for Muslims after the 2002 riots.

I would have introduced you to Hemanshu Uncle, a restaurant owner in Ahmedabad. He tells me that every day someone comes into his restaurant and criticizes him for serving non-vegetarian food. Sometimes they tell him he is a bad Brahmin and he has grown tired of the “holier than though attitude of Gujaratis.” This is not the Gujarat, he tells, that he experienced in his childhood. It was more tolerant then.

I would have introduced you to Sheba ji, a remarkable advocate for women’s rights in Gujarat who has been working tirelessly to address Gujarat’s rising problem of violence against women. I would have introduced you to Sheba ji’s staff, many of whom themselves are survivors of domestic violence.

I would have introduced you to Pravin bhai, a film maker who has conducted extensive interviews with farmers in Gujarat who tell him farmer suicides are on the rise in this state.

I would have introduced you to Jila, a 24 year old Ahmedabadi who was displaced in the 1992 and the 2002 riots. She still hopes to live in a Gujarat where people don’t always look at her as a Muslim first.


Of course I know, Madhu ji, that you have met many Muslims here and I commend you for that. You mentioned businessman Zafar Sareshwala in one of your Tweets. Zafar bhai is a friend and I have no interest in criticizing him or anyone else. But I will say this: it has taken me an awful amount of time to get Muslims to open up about their experiences in Gujarat. When I first started conducting research in 2011, most of the Muslims I met told me that everything was great and that they have moved on.

But as I spent more time with them, as I shared my own horror story of watching mobs attack people in 2002, as I spoke about the depression that I plummeted in for years after the riots, as I talked about the counseling I went through to help me cope with the memories of dozens of women who shared their stories in the relief camps of being rapedduring the 2002 riots, then people gradually—and very slowly—people start telling me their own stories. But it has taken long, two years actually, to get to this point.

Gujarati Muslims are often afraid to say what they really think about Gujarat or Narendra Modi. In Gujarat, Modi has become a “god” for so many—given all the Muslims face in Gujarat, why should a Muslim face further isolation by criticizing Modi or life in Gujarat? I hear this all the time: “Zahir you can criticize Modi or the Gujarat state because you do not have family here. But for us, our life will become hell if we speak out.”

And yet the outrage, the anger of Gujarat’s Muslims is there in the pauses, in the things they are afraid to say, in the silent articulation of their faces.

Last year I interviewed a BJP Muslim politician, whose name I will withhold, and he kept praising Modi. I try to speak to everyone I can and his story was equally important to me. As we pulled out of his drive way, his car got stuck on his unpaved road outside his home in Juhapura. He pulled out his phone and called his friend in the government.

“About that paved road. Is it coming?” he asked. I could not hear the response on the other hand. When the BJP politician hung up the phone, he could no longer make eye contact with me. Two years later he still does not have a paved road.


I wish I could write more but there is no electricity in my flat in Juhapura right now and I am writing this sitting on charpai outside my building, trying to catch some light from my neighbor’s generator powered well lit bungalow. I have not had regular running water for the past two days (the same happened last weekend) and when I told my society manager, he told me “yeh hai Juhapura.”

That seems to be the root problem here in Gujarat: Muslims—and so many others in this state—have come to accept less, to ask for less, to be content with less, and then told by society that they should complain less.

I know you Tweeted that such problems do not exist in Gujarat.

@madhukishwar: 8\9 Modi doesn’t rest. Already every rural urban household has 24×7 power, most hv high quality piped water. But guj govt working on further

@madhukishwar: 9\9 Gujrat working on amazing improvements in water policy. It was water scarce state, today it is water surplus with water table rising

Perhaps we will have a chance to meet in the future and you can show me this Gujarat: where Muslims do not face prejudice, where women do not report that sexual harassment is increasing, where farmers do not feel that their livelihood is being threatened.

Yes, some people do indeed have more after Modi. But many others do not. This profoundinequity upsets me, not because I am a Muslim, but because I love Gujarat and my Gujarati people and I would not be writing this letter if I did not want more for Gujarat and all its people.

My invitation is still open to you, Madhu ji. I have emailed you my mobile number and it would indeed be an honor to meet you and to meet you in Ahmedabad.

With fondness and respect,

Zahir Janmohamed,
January 15, 2013.

(Zahir Janmohamed is a freelance writer living in and writing about Juhapura, the Muslim neighbourhood of Ahmedabad. He previously served as the Advocacy Director for Amnesty International and Senior Foreign Policy Aide in the U.S. Congress. He tweets as @ZahirJ.)


India’s cancer burden: Why the govt’s CL ruling is so important #drugpricing #goodnews

Jan 15, 2013, First post

Early last year, when the Union government allowed the production of
Nexavar, a liver and kidney cancer drug, by an Indian company against
the wishes of multinational pharma major Bayer, the prices of several
indigenously made cancer drugs tumbled.

It was a complete game-changer in affordable healthcare in India,
which not only reduced the price of Nexavar from a prohibitive Rs. 2.8
lakh a month to Rs. 6,600, but also led to the reduction of prices of
a few other cancer drugs as well.

The step that led to this dramatic fall of prices was by an
intervention of the Union government called “compulsory licensing
(CL), by which a national government can allow somebody to produce a
patented drug without the consent of the patent owner.

After Nexavar, the government of India has begun steps to issue
compulsory license for three more cancer drugs – Trastuzumab,
Dasatinib and Ixabepilone.

Compared to Nexavar, the impact of this move is going to be
unprecedented because Trastuzumab is a wonder drug against a certain
type of breast-cancer that affects about 100,000 women in India.
Breast cancer tops the cancer burden in urban India, and an aggressive
HER+2 type of cancer is increasingly more prevalent among young women.

Indian companies don’t have a generic alternative to the breast
cancer drug yet. Reuters About 28-35 per cent of all cancers among
women in major cities is breast-cancer. Trastuzumab not only reduces
the mortality of patients with HER+2 cancer, but also is effective
against the spread of malignancy to other parts of the body.

So far, there is no other drug against HER+2 cancer with such
efficacy. It can be administered alone, along with chemotherapy and
after surgery. In many cases, it even helps avoid surgery, which many
find disfiguring.

However, majority of women with HER+2 breast cancer do not benefit
from the wonder-effect of the drug because of the prohibitive prices
by its manufacturer and patent-holder, Roche, the multinational drug
company. A full course of the drug costs anywhere between Rs six to
eight lakhs. A generic version – in this case a bio-similar product –
should not cost more than a tenth of this price.

Unlike Nexavar (chemical name Sorafenib), no Indian company has yet
started making generic versions of Trastuzumab. According to available
information , three Indian companies are currently involved in
creating this molecule, but it is a difficult process because they
have to take the biotechnological route to replicate it.

Commonly, generic versions of patented drugs are chemical copies made
by reverse engineering of the final molecule through chemical
processes. In simple terms, what it entails is taking the final
molecule (of the drug) and working backward to create the same
molecule through an alternative process.

Technical expertise, research facilities, appropriate investment and
availability of high quality human resources are important for such
processes. Endowed with all the four, India is a leader in generic
production of drugs. What it requires, however, is an enabling
environment, most of which is legal and patent-related.

In the case of Trastuzumbad, the generic version will be a biological
equivalent and not a chemical copy because this drug cannot be
replicated chemically. A biological process is trickier and more

The government decision on Trastuzumbad and the other two cancer drugs
will be significant because Indian companies are reluctant to invest
on developing a bio-equivalent, if the drug is still under patent. The
patent on this wonder drug is due to expire in 2014, but Roche has
filed several patent applications to Indian patent offices to block
any such development even beyond 2014.

Under such uncertain patent regimes, no company would risk its
investment. If the government issues a CL, the Indian drug companies
can safely invest and fast track the process. Apparently, one of the
Indian companies developing the drug is in the third stage of the
process and hence if a compulsory license comes through, the Indian
version will be out in the market sooner than later.

The latest development is yet another example of informed civil
society pressure leading to concrete results as seen in countries such
as Brazil and Thailand. In November 2012, the Campaign for Affordable
Trastuzumab, a citizens’ collective, wrote an open letter to the Prime
Minister, signed by around 200 cancer survivors, women’s groups, human
rights and health rights campaigns and treatment activists from around
the world, urging the government to make the drug affordable and
freely available to patients.

Drug companies are holding our health hostage to their greed for
profits” said Kalyani Menon-Sen, coordinator of the Campaign. “Roche
should not be allowed to get away with such predatory prices. Courts
and other authorities like the Competition Commission must take suo
moto action against Roche for abusing its dominant position in the

She also called on Indian manufacturers to expedite the production of
bio-similars of Trastuzumab.

Compulsory licensing is one of the two flexibilities provided under
the TRIPS (Trade Related Intellectual Property Rights) to allow member
countries of WTO (World Trade Organisation) to prevent the abuse of
patents. Contrary to the general belief, compulsory licenses are
issued not only by developing countries, but also by countries such as
Canada, USA, UK, France and Australia, whenever it suits them.

India joined TRIPS and complied with its rules in 2005 by amending the
patent act of 1970, which also meant giving up a lot. However, it does
have flexibilities such as CL to ensure that its citizens have access
to affordable care and multinational companies don’t get away with
predatory pricing. All that it takes for such a move is immunity from
vested interests and political will.

“Such a move will not only make healthcare more affordable, but will
also lead to domestic competition among generic manufacturers, which
in turn will lead to further fall in prices” said KM Gopa Kumar, legal
advisor and senior IPR researcher at Third World Network, a global
think tank on development issues.

The other TRIPS flexibility that WTO allows its members to protect its
citizens’s health is parallel importing, under which countries without
technical capability to produce the generics can import from other
countries. India may not be a beneficiary of this provision, but it
can help other countries. Indian generic drugs are imported by several
countries in the world.

Generic manufacture of potent MNC drugs against HIV and multi-drug
resistant TB and their dramatic price falls are the inspiring success
stories of the last decade. Cancer seems to be the new frontier. There
are also illnesses such as hepatitis-C, the treatment of which can
become affordable if a generic version of the MNC drug is available.
The MNC drug at present costs about Rs. 6 lakhs and the country has a
huge hepatitis -C burden.

In the coming years, the generic intervention and similar price cuts
will have considerable impact on treatment of cancers and other
non-communicable illnesses as well as infections such as hepatitis-C.

Without being apologetic to anybody – the MNCs and their parent
countries – the government just has to take proactive steps that are
vital for its citizens.



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