Imprisoned for speaking out in India - with Dr Binayak Sen

  • What: Public meeting with famous Indian Doctor, activist and former political prisoner, Dr Binayak Sen, recipient of the Jonathan Mann award  (2008) for Global Health and Human Rights.
  • Who: Dr Binayak Sen, Dr Ilina Sen (social worker and activist), Shabnum Mustapha (Director, Amnesty Scotland)
  • Where: Meeting Room 6, Crystal McMillan Building, 15 George Square, University of Edinburgh            
  • When: Thursday 14 June, 4.00 – 6.00pm

As part of Dr Binayak Sen’s visit to the UK to receive the Gandhi Foundation International peace award, Dr Sen and his fellow panel members, will be discussing miscarriages of justice in India, his activism and how his attempts to speak out on behalf of the poor led to his conviction on trumped up charges.  

Dr Sen is an internationally acclaimed public health professional who has worked for over three decades with poor, indigenous and other marginalised people on issues of basic livelihood, health services and social justice in Chhattisgarh, one of the poorest states in India. As an outspoken defender of the marginalised and dispossessed indigenous people of India, Dr Sen has been a fearless critic of the inequitable policies and unconstitutional police and paramilitary action against the poor and displaced.

As a result of his activism, Dr Sen was accused of supporting the Maoist movement and was arrested under draconian ‘anti-terror’ laws. Dr Sen was imprisoned without bail for two years whilst awaiting trial. A local court in Chhattisgarh went on to convict and sentence Dr Sen to life imprisonment on the charge of ‘Sedition’. Dr Sen was eventually granted bail by the Supreme Court of India in April, last year.

Amnesty International declared him a prisoner of conscience and led a high profile campaign for Dr Sen, which included the support of 44 Nobel Laureates. A motion in support of Binayak Sen was tabled and passed in the Scottish Parliament by Shirley-Anne Somerville MSP.

The event on Thursday will hosted by the Centre for South Asian Studies and Global Public Health Unit (University of Edinburgh) and will be supported by Amnesty International Scotland, Scottish Action for the release of Binayak Sen, and Scotland Against Criminalising Communities.

We encourage as many people as possible to attend the event, as it will be a unique opportunity to see and hear from Dr. Binayak in person and hear first hand his opinions and experiences.

For further details, please email Anuj Kapilashrami at anuj.kapilashrami@gmail.com

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