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Archive of entries posted on May 2011

Exclusion from Planning Commission Panel would be unjustified: Binayak Sen

BHUBANESWAR: Civil rights activist Binayak Sen on Sunday took a dig at BJP’s opposition to his being part of a Planning Commission committee on health, saying the Supreme Court while granting him bail observed there was no evidence of his committing sedition, which meant he was falsely convicted and it would be unjustified to deprive him of panel membership.

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Scrap Posco Project: Binayak Sen

BHUBANESWAR: Human rights activist Dr. Binayak Sen on Saturday demanded immediate scrapping of the Posco project. He said the State Government was going out of its way to support the company. Sen was delivering the fifth Loknath Memorial Lecture here.

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Binayak Sen calls for Repeal of Sedition Law and for Universal PDS

Bhubaneswar: Stating that governments use sedition provisions to target people opposing it, rights’ activist Binayak Sen on Saturday said People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL) will submit a memorandum to Parliament with 10 lakh signatures, demanding abolition of the law.

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An interview in Hindi with Dr. Binayak Sen

An interview with Dr Binayak Sen which was recorded before the announcement of his appointment to the Planning Commission. http://mohallalive.com/2011/05/27/an-interview-with-dr-binayak-sen/ (Thanks to “Anshu”)

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Understanding the conviction of Binayak Sen: Neocolonialism, political violence and the political economy of health in the central Indian tribal belt

The health of adivasis’ (Scheduled Tribes or indigenous peoples) is far worse than the general Indian population. Binayak Sen, a renowned Indian public health practitioner, has worked with adivasis in central India for over thirty years. On Christmas Eve 2010 Sen was convicted of involvement with Maoist insurgents and sentenced to life in prison. Sen’s conviction has been condemned by Amnesty Interna- tional and Human Rights Watch, and medical journals such as The Lancet and the British Medical Journal are campaigning for his release. This short report addresses the apparently vexing question of how such a miscarriage of justice could happen to a well-reputed physician in a country that is widely referred to as ‘the world’s largest democracy’. Both Sen’s conviction and the health crisis among adivasis in central India are symptoms of what Paul Farmer (2005) refers to as ‘deeper pathologies of power’; speci␣cally, the neocolonial political economy in which the state is very active in dispossessing adivasis but inactive in providing benevolent functions. Thus, the case demonstrates the manner in which public health is intimately related to social, economic and political processes.

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