[Reader-list] Fwd: On the arrest and torture of Indigenous Activist Jiten Yumnam

Sanjay Kak kaksanjay at gmail.com
Mon Sep 21 11:54:10 IST 2009

The news on Jiten Yumnam is not good — he has already been subjected
to torture (see the story below) and it seems his court hearing has
been posted for Sep 29th. Manipur's security apparatus is one to be
feared, perhaps more so than what even Kashmir experiences.

I would recommend that everyone put whatever kind of pressure they can
to secure an early release for Jiten Yumnam


Sanjay Kak


Another shocker from Manipur

Rahul Karmakar, Hindustan Times
Guwahati, September 21, 2009

A Manipur Police commando team had on September 14 picked up green
activist Jiten Yumnam from the Imphal airport before he could board a
flight to Delhi en route to Bangkok to attend a UN meet on climate

A day later, he had to undergo treatment at Jawaharlal Nehru Hospital
in Imphal. The medical report, accessed by HT, makes it apparent
Yumnan was tortured in custody.
“General weakness – 1 day, pain private parts after electric shock,”
reads the report.

Yumnam and the others were booked under the Official Secrets Act and
Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act. They were scheduled to be
produced before the court on 29 September.
Yumnam was one of the eight members of the All Manipur United Clubs
Organisation that had been upping the ante against the Okram Ibobi
Singh government after a series of “fake encounters”.

He also happens to be one of the strongest voices against the
controversial Tipaimukh Dam that Bangladesh is also opposed to.
Environmentalists have been opposing construction of the 1500 MW
Tipaimukh hydro-electric project on Barak and Tuivai rivers saying it
would displace tens of thousands of villagers and submerge
agricultural and forest land.

“Yumnam has been motivating youth to engage in constructive dialogues
with governments in the backdrop of development aggression and extreme
forms of militarisation... (in) Northeast,” said a spokesperson of
Asia-Pacific Indigenous Youth Network.

Kohima-based environment rights activist Mmhonlümo Kikon said the
police were waiting for Yumnam to move out of Imphal so that they
could legitimise arrest and imply he was trying to flee.

SSP Imphal West district L Kailun told HT, “I’ve not seen the medical
report.If such a thing has occurred, I will definitely look into

On Mon, Sep 21, 2009 at 8:16 AM, Danny Butt <db at dannybutt.net> wrote:
> Greetings all
> Does anyone on the list know anything about this issue? I've just
> received the forward.
> Cheers
> Danny
> -----------------
> September 16, 2009
> [ Recipient list below, petition and original at http://apiyn.org/home/?p=216
>  ]
> Sir / Ma’am,
> Jiten Yumnam, member of the Coordinating Committee of the Asia Pacific
> Indigenous Youth Network (APIYN), was arrested at Imphal Airport
> around 12:30 pm (India standard time). On the same day, at around 3:00
> pm, seven identified executives of the All Manipur United Club
> Organization (AMUCO) were also arrested after a combined team of
> Singjamei Police and Imphal West Police Commandos raided their office.
> The seven executives were Sungchen Koireng, Likmabam Tompok, A. Soken,
> Irom Brojen, Toarem Ramanda, G. Sharat Kabui and Thiyam Dinesh.
> Reports stated that an FIR case has been registered against the eight
> arrested men (including Jiten Yumnam) and booked under Section 121/121-
> A of Indian Penal Code (IPC), Section 16/18/39 of Unlawful Activities
> (Prevention) Act and Section O of the Official Secret Act. Section
> 121/121-A of the IPC deals with “attempting to wage war” and
> “conspiring to commit offences against the state”. Sections 16/18/39
> of UA(P) deal with “unlawful acts of supporting or motivating” of what
> the State considers as “insurgents”.
> Aside from being a founding member of the APIYN, Jiten Yumnam is also
> the Joint-Secretary of Citizens' Concerns on Dam and Development
> (CCDD) that had been vocal and active in motivating youth engagement
> in constructive dialogues with Governments in the background of
> development aggression and militarization in North East India. Jiten
> Yumnam has also demonstrated great wisdom and boldness while raising
> public awareness against construction of Big Dams, besides his in-
> depth knowledge of the way International Financial Institutions (IFIs)
> design and fund mega projects in the name of climate change
> mitigation. Jiten Yumnam, by the time of his arrest, was actually on
> his way to Bangkok for another international meeting on the United
> Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and shall
> proceed to New Zealand for the Indigenous Climate Connections (ICC)
> afterwards.
> Jiten Yumnam also worked dedicatedly to raise awareness of the youth
> and the people by being a field reporter of Imphal Free Press and as
> freelance writer in Manipur Mail, The Sangai Express and the Imphal
> Free Press. He also published several materials that shook  the
> Government like the "Insidious Intrusion of International Financial
> Institutions in India's North East" (2008);  "Militarization and human
> rights violations in Manipur" (December 2006) published by Asian Human
> Rights Commission in Hong Kong; “Mapithel Dam amidst Militaristic
> Development in Manipur” published in The Sangai Express last 14
> December 2008; “Damned Hearings of Tipaimukh High Dam in Manipur”
> published in New Nation, Bangladesh last May 5, 2008; and “Development
> Aggression: Imphal Airport and University Expansion” published in the
> Imphal Free Press  (March 15, 2008).
> We express grave concern for the arrest of indigenous youth activist
> Jiten Yumnam and the AMUCO officials. The arrests last September 14
> are not isolated cases, but actually part of the Government’s efforts
> to repress and oppress criticisms from its concern people. India is
> known to have used undemocratic Federal and State legislations to
> charge activists in attempts to immobilize processes that embarrass
> Governments.
> We also express serious alarm over the impunity with which citizens of
> that region are subjected to. These unjustifiable acts should end now.
> We demand that Police and law enforcement elements take the issue with
> utmost seriousness. APIYN and the world’s indigenous peoples, with
> concerned international agencies, state our abhorrence to the
> increasing cases of human rights violations in Manipur and demand the
> Government of India to ensure that its federal unit in Manipur:
> 1.    Ensure the immediate and unconditional release of Mr. Jiten
> Yumnam and the AMUCO officials, and provide safety and return to their
> family and work;
> 2.    Ensure that they shall be given the opportunity to speak and
> defend themselves in due process;
> 3.    Retract from the policy of “cutting-off” activists individually
> and systematically;
> 4.    Stop any form of repression and oppression to indigenous peoples
> activists and shall always use democratic spaces in resolving issues
> and concerns to the people of India;
> 5.    Stop state violence to its people.
> Chief Minister & Home Minister of Manipur,
> Chief Minister's secretariat Babupara,
> Imphal 795001 Manipur INDIA,
> Tel: +91 385 2221833, 2220137 (O); 2220136, 2222683 (R)
> Fax: + 91 385 2221817,
> Email: cmmani at hub.nic. in
> Pratibha Patil Devi,
> President, Office of the President, Rashtrapati Bhawan,
> New Delhi, 110004 INDIA Tel: +91 11 3016767 (Joint Secretary),
> 3014507 (Personal Secretary),  Fax: +91 11 3017290,
> 3014570
> E-mail: presssecy at alpha.nic.in  or  Pressecy at Sansad.nic.in
> Chairperson, National Human Rights Commission of India
> Faridkot House, Copernicus Marg
> New Delhi-110001 INDIA
> Tel: +91 11 23074448, Fax: +91 11 2334
> 0016E-mail: mailto:  chairnhrc at nic. in
> Mr. Chidambaram , Hon'ble  Ministry of Home Affairs,
> Griha Mantralaya Room
> No. 104, North Block Central Secretariat, New Delhi 110001
> INDIA  Fax: +91 11 2301 5750, 2309 3750, 2309 2763
> Email:  websitemhaweb at mha.nic.in
> Chairperson Manipur State Human Rights
> Commission Room No. VIP-II, State Guest House
> Sanjenthong, Imphal-795001 Manipur
> INDIA Tel: +91 385 2410473 (O) / 2447438
> (R),  Telefax: +91 385
> 2410472E-mail: mhrc at man.nic. in
> --------------------
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