Completely unwarranted: India responds to UNHCR comment on Teesta Setalvad
“Authorities in India act against violations of law strictly in accordance with established judicial processes. Labelling such legal actions as persecution for activism is misleading and unacceptable,” the Ministry of External Affairs said
India has termed the UN Human Rights Commission for its remarks on the arrest of social activist Teesta Setalvad and two other persons as “completely unwarranted” and an interference in the country’s “independent judicial system”.
“We have seen a comment by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) regarding legal action against Teesta Setalvad and two other persons. The remarks by OHCHR are completely unwarranted and constitute an interference in India's independent judicial system,” Ministry of External Affairs Spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said in response to media queries on Wednesday.
“We are very concerned by the arrest and detention of Teesta Setalvad and two ex-police officers and call for their immediate release. They must not be persecuted for their activism and solidarity with the victims of the 2002 Gujarat riots,” the UN Human Rights Commission said in its tweet on Tuesday.
The MEA Spokesperson said, “Authorities in India act against violations of law strictly in accordance with established judicial processes. Labelling such legal actions as persecution for activism is misleading and unacceptable.”
Legal action was taken against activist Teesta Setalvad, former Gujarat DGP R B Sreekumar and ex-IPS officer Sanjeev Bhatt after the Supreme Court upheld the clean chit by the SIT to then Chief Minister Narendra Modi in the 2002 Gujarat riots.
The Ahmedabad Detection of Crime Branch arrested former Gujarat DGP R B Sreekumar from his home in Gandhi Nagar. His role had been called into question by the Court. Activist Teesta Setalvad, who backed the petitioner Zakia Jafri, was arrested from her home in Mumbai.