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India - Release Comrade Ajith immediately!
Release Murali Kannampilly alias Ajith immediately from Pune High Security Central Jail which alone can save his life Democratic rights activists, intellectuals and civil liberties committees demand the Government of Maharashtra and the Central Government By now, people in all over the country and the world have come to know that Com. K Muraleedharan was admitted in a Pune government hospital since he was suffering with severe chest pain. Since the police have not allowed an attendant as advised by the doctors attending him, he has taken up a hunger strike. Then the Police, against the advice of the doctors, sent him back forcing him to withdraw the hunger strike. Now his health is in precarious condition in the prison.
So, along with Prof. Noam Chomsky and other democratic rights activists all over the country and the world, we demand that either he be given an interim bail or released to get him admitted in the hospital which alone can save his life. He has already undergone a bypass surgery for his heart ailment. In this context we give a brief profile of Com. K Muraleedharan here.
Murali Kannampilly, or K Muraleedharan, or Comrade Ajith as he is more commonly known (the alias he uses when writing) was a revolutionary who was aligned with Communist politics since his early student days and became attracted to the Naxalite movement while he was pursuing his graduation in engineering. Murali, who had joined the movement as a student, later shined as a teacher in the same movement- one of the finest scholars in political economy and Maoist ideology. He had worked with several comrades, including Com. S A Roof, an undaunted Maoist leader.
He was strongly opposed to the bourgeois idealist line that K Venu was trying to impose on the CRC-CPI (ML) in Kerala and worked tirelessly to sustain and grow the revolutionary movement there. His major political works include Bhumi, Jati, Bandhanam (Land, Caste and Bondage), a path-breaking study on land, reforms, caste and the agrarian relations in Kerala, Against Avakianism an ideological critique of Bob Avakian, the dogmatic-revisionist leader of the Revolutionary Communist Party of the USA. As one of the leading Maoist thinkers and theoreticians, Ajith has written several significant articles and replies on issues related to gender and caste from a Maoist perspective. He was the editor of the international magazine A World to Win, published by the Revolutionary International Movement, a coordinating center of various Maoist parties and forces across the world. An interesting aside- as a young kid who used to travel with his father Karunakara Menon Kannampilly, Counsellor, Indian Embassy, Peking, (1958-61), the People’s Republic of China, once had the rare opportunity to garland Chairman Mao.
He was arrested by the ATS in Pune in May last year, and has since been in the Yerwada prison there. Already a heart patient who had undergone a bypass surgery, he was admitted to the hospital on the fifth of this month following chest pain. However, the authorities have denied him even an attendant and he was later taken back to the prison cell without proper treatment. In a critical stage where timely and expert treatment is crucial, the authorities are inhumanely denying even these basic rights. No charges have been framed against Murali, other than booking him under the draconian Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA). He is one of the many victims of this draconian law, where people could be arrested for any reason and held almost indefinitely without any evidence or criminal cases being registered against them. In fact, Murali has been produced before the court only once in the past 15 months of imprisonment.
Human rights activists are urging that the authorities urgently ensure expert treatment to Murali, and allow, at the very least, his son to stay and help him as an attendant or otherwise grant him bail on medical grounds. A recent statement, signed by globally renowned scholars, academics and human rights advocates including Noam Chomsky, Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, Partha Chatterjee, Anand Teltumbde, Prabhat Patnaik, Bernard D’Mello, Meena Kandasamy calling upon the authorities “to ensure a fair, transparent and speedy trial of Muraleedharan or release him on bail” is reflective of solidarity and protest at an international level against the Indian state’s intent to silence or even to annihilate political prisoners and voices of dissent.
Prof. G Haragopal, Defense Committee, Committee for the Release of Political Prisoners
Varavara Rao, President, Revolutionary Democratic Front, Founder, Revolutionary Writers Association
Rajkishore, General Secretary, RDF
Prof. G N Saibaba, Deputy Secretary, RDF
Varalakshmi, Secretary, Virasam (Revolutionary Writers Association)
Prof C Sheshayya, President, APCLC
Prof. G Lakshman, President, Telengana Civil Liberties Committee.
8th September 2016