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11 February, 2011

Mahasweta Devi proposes sit-in at Raipur jail for Binayak Sen's release

Demanding unconditional release of Binayak Sen, noted social activist and litterateur Mahasweta Devi has called for a sit-in demonstration in front of the Raipur Central jail, where the physician has been lodged following a life sentence allegedly for having collaboration with Maoists.

''I would suggest that a team goes to Raipur and stages a sit-in in front of the jail. I shall participate in it,'' she said at a press conference in Kolkata, according to a UNI report.

''The time demands that the protests raised across the country against Sen's unjust conviction spread further among the people,'' she said.

The Magsaysay award winner alleged that Sen was not given any scope to defend himself in the court and the charges levelled against him did not call for life imprisonment.

She said Sen, who was engaged in social activism in Chhatisgarh, had devoted himself to the service of the poor poeple without any self interest.

''But this was considered by the administration as the greatest punishable offence,'' she said.

The programme was organized by Bandi Mukti Committee (Committee with the demand for release of political detenus), a human rights platform with several luminaries drawn from different fields.

Among other speakers, noted poet Joy Goswami said Sen's conviction came to the people of the country as nothing but a 'gross unjust' act of the administration.

Prof Ashokendu Sengupta said the conviction was a part of the countrywide violation of democratic and human rights.

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