Rule of law

AHRC TV: Indonesian corruption watchdog arrests Bekasi Regent and other stories in JUST ASIA, Episode 238

This week Just Asia begins with Indonesia, where the Corruption Eradication Commission arrested Bekasi’s Regent, Mrs. Neneng Hassanah Yasin on Sunday. She was arrested together with 10 other persons including government officials and employees of the Lippo Group. The Lippo Group apparently agreed to provide 13 billion rupiah for the Regent and her officials in order to […]

INDIA: Deportation of Rohingya refugees against international law

Statement | India | 17-10-2018

The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) is concerned by India’s decision to deport seven Rohingya refugees back to Burma. The seven are among around 40, 000 refugees that have fled to India over the years, escaping the discrimination and violence faced by the minority group in Burma. Last year, two Rohingya immigrants, Mohammad Salimullah and […]

AHRC TV: Over a thousand deaths in Indonesia earthquake and other stories in JUST ASIA, Episode 237

This week Just Asia begins with Indonesia’s Central Sulawesi province, which was hit by a 7.5-magnitude earthquake last Friday, followed by a tsunami. Official figures are reporting the deaths of 1,234 people. Indonesia’s geophysics agency (BMKG) has faced criticism over its handling of a tsunami warning. Indonesian President Joko Widodo is accepting international help for […]

AHRC TV: India’s Supreme Court decriminalizes homosexuality and other stories in JUST ASIA, Episode 235

This week Just Asia begins with India, where the Supreme Court has decriminalized sexuality. In a landmark and much-awaited judgment, the country’s top court held that Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code violates Articles 14,15,19 and 21 of the Constitution of India, insofar as it criminalizes consensual sexual acts between adults in private. India […]

BURMA/MYANMAR: Journalists’ arrest threatens free press

On 12 December 2017, two Burmese journalists, Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo, were arrested through a police sting operation in Yangon, and charged with breach of the Official Secrets Act, 1923. The Yangon district court filed charges against them under Section 3.1 (c) of the Act that penalises a person who “obtains, collects, records […]

AHRC TV: Thai authorities arrest asylum seekers and other stories in JUST ASIA, Episode 234

Announcement | | 07-09-2018

This week Just Asia begins with Thailand, where 181 ethnic minority refugees and asylum seekers, most with UN refugee status, were arrested on August 28. Including some 50 children, the detainees are mostly from the Montagnard population in Vietnam and Cambodia. The arresting officials showed little knowledge about refugees, or government obligations to protect them. […]

INDONESIA: Woman convicted of blasphemy for commenting on Mosque’s loudspeaker volume

Dear Friends, The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has received information regarding criminal charges against Mrs. Meiliana, for requesting to lower the volume of the Azaan (call to prayer) in the Mosque near her house. The local prosecutor then arrested her and indicted her under the Blasphemy article of the Indonesian Penal Code. Although Meiliana’s […]

NEPAL: Government must investigate custodial death of Ram Manohar Yadav

Statement | Nepal | 04-09-2018

The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) strongly condemns the custodial death of Ram Manohar Yadav, 30, a resident of Janaki Rural Municipality, Banke district. Yadav died in Police custody while on the way to Kathmandu for medical treatment. Police had admitted him to the Bardiya District Hospital in Gulariya and subsequently to the Bheri Zonal […]

WORLD: International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances: Powerlessness before extra-judicial killings

Statement | World | 30-08-2018

Today, the world commemorates the International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances. Enforced Disappearances is one of the recurring tragedies that is happening throughout the world. Many countries, particularly less-developed countries, now adopt enforced disappearances as the easiest way of dealing with problems that Governments find difficult to cope with. The twin evils of […]

WORLD: Looking for Raju

A poem in support of the International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances. This poem has been previously published and is also included in an anthology on Enforced Disappearances published by the Amnesty International. By Basil Fernando Amnesty International Poetry Competition ‘Silenced Shadows’, 10 September 2015 What kind of a father are you,  Asked his […]

AHRC TV: Nepal police fire tear gas at protesters and other stories in JUST ASIA, Episode 232

This week Just Asia begins with Nepal, where police fired five rounds of tear gas and baton-charged protesters in Kachanpur district. Two protesters were injured, while another two were arrested. The protests were against the arrest of Dilip Singh Bista on the rape and murder charge of 13-year-old Nirmala Pant. Kanchanpur residents claim that Dilip […]

INDONESIA: Environmental activists convicted by Semarang Court

Dear Friends, The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has received information from the Commission for the Disappeared and Victims of Violence (KontraS), a national human rights organization, regarding criminal charges against five environmental activists who advocated against pollution caused by the RUM company. The five protested against the Company due to the complete lack of […]

INDIA: CBI verdict in Udayakumar case finds police guilty 13 years after custodial death

Statement | India | 17-08-2018

On 25 June 2018, a CBI Special Court in Thiruvananthapuram awarded the death penalty to two police officers accused of murder in a custodial death case for the first time, while another three accused are facing three years in jail. The case is infamously known as the ‘Urutti Kola’ case due to the torture technique used; the rolling […]

SRI LANKA: Understanding what governance means in a democracy

Phrases like ‘good governance’ are often used in less developed countries without attaching a specific meaning to them. The experience of the present government in Sri Lanka is a clear example of this. Since the January 2015 election victory, ‘good governance’ has been used to talk about everything. In actual fact however, the country has […]

INDIA: Women workers in Kerala win prolonged battle for ‘right to sit’

Statement | India | 08-08-2018

The struggle for the right to sit is not a new one for female workers in Kerala. In Kerala, eight years ago, a women’s collective Penkootu, took up the issue of the right to sit (‘iruppu samaram’) at the workplace, especially in saree and jewellery showrooms. Without this right, saleswomen were not allowed to take […]

AHRC TV: Indian police given death sentence for torture and other stories in JUST ASIA, Episode 230

This week Just Asia begins with India, where two police officers have been awarded the death penalty for the custodial torture and death of 27-year-old Udaya Kumara in Kerala in 2005. For more than 10 years, Udaya’s mother was steadfast in her pursuit of justice. Udaya’s case is a reminder not only of police brutality […]

INDONESIA: Military court III-19 Jayapura Papua must examine witnesses from victim’s family

Dear Friends, The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has received updated information from the Commission for the Disappeared and Victims of Violence (KontraS), a national human rights organization, regarding the trial of Mr. Isak, who was tortured to death by military personnel. So far, the trial in the Military Court III-19, Jayapura, Papua has only […]

AHRC TV: Ganga Maya finally receives some justice and other stories in JUST ASIA, Episode 229

This week Just Asia begins with Nepal, where justice is finally being served to Ganga Maya Adhikari. Ganga Maya had been staging a fast-unto-death at Bir Hospital demanding stringent action against the murderer of her son. The main culprit, Chhabilal Poudel, has surrendered before the Supreme Court, and is now in jail awaiting trial. The government has […]

NEPAL: Government finally agrees to medical reforms after 27 days of Dr. Govinda K.C.’s hunger strike

The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) salutes the undeterred courage of Dr. Govinda K.C., who singlehandedly brought Nepal’s government to its knees after staging a fast-unto-death hunger strike for 27 days. Dr. Govinda K.C. started his 15th hunger strike from Jumla district on 30 June 2018, demanding that the medical education law should be drafted based on […]

BANGLADESH: Civic space denied and ruling party takes laws in hand

Bangladesh’s human rights situation has alarmingly deteriorated over the past years, and it tends to get worse. Exercising of basic freedoms by the ordinary people appears to be impossible under the current regime. Freedom of peaceful assembly and association is being denied and dealt with cruelty. Both the law enforcement agencies of the state and […]