June 14, 2004
Indian Muslim Council-USA, an advocacy group of Indian Muslims in the United States dedicated to safeguarding the democratic and pluralist ethos of India, has condemned the harassment of eminent human rights leader Fr. Cedric Prakash by the Gujarat police.
Father Cedric Prakash, the Director of “Prashant” and a prominent Human Rights activist, has been constantly harassed by the Gujarat government. The state government, led by Chief Minister Narendra Modi, who is widely implicated in the Gujarat genocide two years ago, has initiated inquires to prove that Fr. Cedric Prakash is “anti-national” and have his passport impounded.
The harassment of human rights activists fits the pattern of an ongoing campaign of intimidation by the government of the Indian state of Gujarat against those engaged in the relief and rehabilitation work for the victims and seeking justice against the government officials involved in ethnic cleansing and genocide.
On April 11th, youth activists promoting communal harmony in Vadodara were physically attacked and on April 12th, prominent Human Rights activist Teesta Setalvad, a co-petitioner in the Best Bakery Case was threatened with dire consequences by those accused in Gujarat genocide.
The well-known dance artiste Mallika Sarabhai, who has spearheaded the movement to seek justice for the Muslims of Gujarat, has been harassed by the Modi government which has filed numerous dubious criminal charges against her.
In addition, the state Police, under instructions from the Gujarat Home Ministry, has been intimidating Christian and Muslim Institutions under the pretext of conducting inquires about the receipt of foreign funds.
IMC-USA ‘s national President Dr. Shaik Ubaid has expressed complete support and solidarity with Fr. Cedric Prakash and the human rights activists of Gujarat. He has appealed to the union government to take notice of this harassment and urged it to take prompt remedial steps.
Secretary General, IMC-USA
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