2016-03-05 15:57:00

Kandhamal wives seek justice for jailed husbands

A group of women from Kandhamal District of eastern India’s Odisha state is in the national capital ‎seeking justice for their husbands who are languishing in jail for allegedly murdering a Hindu religious ‎leader eight years ago.  “Our men are innocent. They could never have committed such professional ‎murders,” said Nilandri Nayak, wife of one of the seven men given life term after convicted of killing ‎Swami Laxmanananda Saraswati and his four associates on August 23, 2008, even though Maoists claimed the murder.  The wives of six convicts ‎on March 3 released a book on the case written by journalist and rights activist Anto Akkara at a ‎function in New Delhi’s Constitutional Club.  Veteran journalist Kuldeep Nayar, Hindu social reformer ‎Swami Agnivesh and political leaders such as Oscar Fernandes and Annie Raja attended the function ‎where the women narrated their sufferings.‎

In 2013, a Fast Track Court awarded their husbands life term and their appeal in the Odisha High Court ‎has been pending since October 2014.  The book, “Cry of the Oppressed,” attempts to prove that the ‎men were falsely implicated as part of a sinister game plan hatched by Hindu radical groups. The ‎convicted men are members of Christian sects.  ‎

Addressing the function, Akkara said the men were convicted “despite hardly any convincing ‎evidences being produced against them in the Fast Track Court.”  He appealed to the Chief Justice of ‎India and other constitutional authorities in the country to “end the travesty of justice and release the ‎seven innocent.”  (Source: Matters India)‎

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