T Peter peter.ksmtf at gmail.com
Tue Apr 22 16:27:03 IST 2008

PRESS RELEASE                           19 April 2008


The Kerala Swatantra Matsyathoyilali Federation (KSMTF) and Free Dr
Binayak Sen Campaign have decided to hold free medical camps in Kerala in
a unique show of support for the release of well known health and  human
rights activist Dr Binayak Sen.

On 14th May 2007, almost a year ago, Dr Sen was arrested by the
Chattisgarh police under the draconian 'Unlawful Activities Prevention
Act' on false charges of being a 'Maoist'.

Almost a  year later now Dr Sen continues to be in jail and hearings of
the case against him in the Chattisgarh High Court have commenced. In the
meanwhile Dr Sen, who has already lost 15 kilos in just ten months of
imprisonment and is in poor health, languishing in jail for the sole crime
of working with the poor and defending democratic rights.

" The arrest of Dr Sen is a  case of high handed behaviour of the BJP
ruled Chattisgarh government against an internationally renowned doctor
with three decades of  public service" said T.Peter, President, KSMTF,
C.Sarat Chandran, film maker and Satya Sivaraman of the Free Dr Binayak
Sen Campaign in a statement.

An alumnus of the Christian Medical College and of the Jawaharlal Nehru
University, Dr Sen is a respected physician much honoured for his
self-sacrificing commitment to social causes. In December 2007, the Indian
Academy of Social Sciences conferred on him the R. R. Keithan Gold Medal,
as an "indefatigable defender of human rights and Gandhian social activist
of rare courage and dedication". Currently, he has been nominated for the
Jonathan Mann Award 2008, the highest international award for health
professionals excelling in human rights activities.

KSMTF plans to join health and human rights activists around India who are
campaigning for Dr Sen's release through a series  of  Free Binayak Sen
Medical Camps to arouse public awareness about his case.

 Over 125 men, women and children attended the first Free Binayak Sen
Medical Camp held in New Delhi at the Jai Hind basti, a colony of
ragpickers and domestic workers. Other camps are planned every month for
the rest of 2008 in Chennai, Coimbatore, Bangalore, Trivandrum and

The medical camps are also part of an effort to take forward Dr Sen's
innovative public health work to new areas and highlight the issues of
nutrition, child health and the link between socio-economic rights and
health. India has one of the worst health indicators in the world, even
lower than that of sub-Saharan Africa, particularly in the areas of infant
and maternal mortality.

President, KSMTF
Ph: 9447429243

Satya Sivaraman
Free Dr Binayak Sen Campaign

C.Sarat Chandran
Film Maker

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