Friday, November 7, 2008

Press Release - 6 NOV 2008 (Women in Black)

Press Release

06th Nov 2008

Dear Madam/Sir,

Sub: Women In Black organised by CSMR to defend the human rights of sexworkers and sexual minorities and to denounce brutal police violence on peaceful human rights defenders.

Campaign for Sexworkers and Sexual Minorities Rights (CSMR) have organised a week long protest against the brutal violence on human rights defenders by the Banashankari police personnel on 20th November 2008.

On November 6, around 300 human rights activists held a Women in Black vigil at the BDA Shopping Complex in Banashankari. Dressed in black, standing in silence with placards and candles in their hands they drew attention to this barbaric act of violence against hijras and human rights defenders perpetrated by the police. This action drew its inspiration from the global Women in Black movement that stands in silent protest against all acts of violence and wars against women in different countries and cultures. The Women in Black actions in India were initiated in Bangalore at the time of the demolition of the Babri Masjid in 1992 to protest against the increasing politics of fundamentalism and communalism within the country.

CSMR sent the Memorundam letters to Prime minister, Chief minister of Karnataka, Minister of Law justice and Human rights karnataka, DG and IG of police karnataka, minister for child and women development of karnataka, chief justice of karnataka high court minister for home-karnataka, chair person of karnataka state human rights commiossion, minister for health &family welfare karnataka, KSAPS, Chairperson of UPA, NACO, chairperson of national comminion for women, minister of NHRC.

On 5th November 2008 , over four hundred human rights activists got together at Banashankari BDA Complex, Bangalore. Those gathered in support included those working on the rights of dalits, women, workers, students, youth urban poor, religious minorities, sexual minorities, sexworkers, people living with HIV and on the issues of environemnt, peace, working for communal harmony, cultural activists, Students (UTC), activists working for social change and many organisations across Karnataka state came together to participate in the human chain to show solidarity and support to sexuality minorities and sex workers in Bengaluru. The response from the public for all events has been one of solidarity and support.

On 4th November 2008 through Gandhigiri Hijras and sexual minorities visited important police stations in Bengaluru and gave flowers, leaflets, reports and information on sexual minorities to the police, to sensitise them on their issues. They assured their support to sexual minorities. For a few people’s fault in the community punishing entire community is wrong and cannot brand a community as criminals. They stated this clearly to the police. More than 70 police stations visited by sexual minorities.

On 3rd November 2008 CSMR distributed more than one lakh leaflets about this issue all over Bangalore in 35 locations. After reading the leaflets many people have come farward to support the struggle.

Program outside Bangalore on NATIONAL DAY OF ACTION (7th November, 2008)

Bangalore - Public Rally and Public Meeting

Delhi - Dharna

Calicut - Public Rally


Ramanagar - Dharna

Doddaballapura - Dharna

Hyderabad/ Secunderabad

Kumbakonam - Dharna

Programs will also be held in Kolkatta (9th November), Mumbai (13th November) and Chennai (14th November)

We request you to kindly pubish this note in your papers and support us in the programmes of the campaign.

For further information contact :- Sumathi – 9845165143, Lakshmi: 9845113792 & Gurukiran: 9880365692.

In Solidarity


Director (Sangama)

on behalf of CSMR

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