The writers’s forum and other organisations came in support of the ‘ Bahujan- Shraman’ issue of Forward Press and condemned the police action against it. Janwadi Lekhak Sangh issued a press release today (written below) while forum for  freedom of expression marked a protest March in Bhagalpur Bihar. The Convenor of forum, Om Sudha  asked the Home Ministry to immediate withdraw the FIR , lodged against ‘ Forward Press.’


Meanwhile a group of right wing students sent one another application to the ‘ Vasant Kunj Police Station,’ for taking action against the  artist of the illustration, which was made on its own interpretation of ‘ Durga Myth. The applicants ask the police to take action against a writer of the ‘Forward Press’, too.


Press Release


The raid by Special Branch of the Delhi police at the Nehru Place office of monthly FORWARD Press on October 9, in which four of its staffers were arrested and the confiscation of the copies of the latest issue of the magazine from bookstalls on October 10 are matters of deep concern and deserve outright condemnation. The police took these actions without order of any court or competent authority. It is said that the action was taken on the basis of a complaint registered at the Vasant Kunj police station.


The latest issue of the magazine is focussed on Bahujan-Shraman tradition. The issue carries articles that interpret the Puranic story of the killing of Mahishasur by Durga as a struggle between the Aryans and the non-Aryans. This may have angered the Hindutvadis, who have been routinely indulging in vandalism in the name of hurting religious sentiments. On the evening of October 9, activists of RSS’ students’ wing ABVP tried to block the organising of ‘Mahishasur Martyrdom Day’ function at JNU. The Delhi police action and the ABVP vandalism are closely interlinked and manifest the growing assertiveness of the reactionary, communal-fascist forces since the Modi government coming to power and the aid being extended to them by the government machinery.


The Janwadi Lekhak Sangh strongly condemns the action against the magazine without any proper court order and views it as a violation of the fundamental right of freedom of expression. We also condemn the violence indulged in by the ABVP activists during the observance of ‘Mahishasur Martyrdom Day’ at JNU. Action should, in fact, be taken against those who do not believe in expression of dissent while sticking to democratic norms. VHP leader Praveen Togadia’s recent statement that history books written by Romila Thapar and Bipin Chandra should be burnt is an example of such tendencies.


Janwadi Lekhak Sangh appeals to all democratic and secular forces to unite against such tendencies. We demand that action should be taken against police officials who ordered and conducted the illegal raid on FORWARD Press. We also demand action against the RSS activists who indulged in violence and unruly behaviour at JNU


Murli Manohar Prasad Singh (General Secretary); Sanjiv Kumar (Deputy General Secretary).

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