Monday, May 12, 2008

Binayak Sen

We ... wish to express grave concern that Dr. Binayak Sen appears to be incarcerated solely for peacefully exercising his fundamental human rights, in contravention of Articles 19 (freedom of opinion and expression) and 22 (freedom of association) of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights—to which India is a state party—and that he is charged under two internal security laws that do not comport with international human rights standards. We are pleased to learn that Dr. Sen’s trial has, after numerous delays, now begun. While the judicial process involving our professional colleague moves forward, we respectfully request that Dr. Sen be freed from incarceration on humanitarian grounds to receive his award [2008 Jonathan Mann Award for Global Health and Human Rights] and to continue his important medical work.

From this letter (pdf) signed by 22 Nobel winners and addressed to the Prime Minister and the President of India (link via excellent blog of B.R.P. Bhaskar).

Last January, Lok Raj Sangahhan carried a column -- Dr. Binayak Sen Must Be Released Immediately -- by my colleague B. Ananthanarayan. In two days, Dr. Sen will have completed one full year in prison.

There's a lot more info at the Free Binayak Sen website.