Tag Archives: politics

Don’t Forget AFSPA

28 Mar

AFSPAIn the run-up to the coming elections, there is an urgent need to create a political pressure for repeal of AFSPA. While political parties are focussing on secularism, democracy and development, they have completely ignored the long-standing demand of the people of Kashmir and North-East India to repeal AFSPA.  A march is being organised on 30th March, jointly by various organisations, activists and individuals  to bring the pressing demand to repeal AFSPA into the political theater before the elections. Join in to show your solidarity and support. 

When: Sunday 30th March, 1 pm onwards

Where: from Mandi House metro station to Jantar Mantar. 

All organisations can extend their support through participation in this march. Details will be updated from time to time at http://www.repealafspa.blogspot.in/


Jointly Organised By: Save Sharmila Solidarity Campaign, AIPWA, AISA, RYA, Voices Against 377, DSF, NAPM, Right Water Campaign & other like minded organisations

Contact info: savesharmila@gmail.com

What is AFSPA?

AFSPA or Armed Forces Special Powers Act, passed in 1958, rules all the north east states(except Sikkim) and Jammu and Kashmir. It was imposed to check insurgency. AFSPA allows shooting the “suspects” and provides legal immunity to the army men. Because of this, in the name of protecting law and order, AFSPA has led to extra judicial killingsfake encountersillegal detentionstorture and rapes. The law was enforced in Manipur in 1980 and was supposed to last six months but it continues to destroy it till today.

(Taken from http://www.repealafspa.blogspot.in/)

Why is AFSPA a queer feminist issue?

At the most basic level, it is an issue of human and democratic rights being grossly violated. You can read more about the violations under AFSPA here: http://repealafspa.blogspot.in/p/everyday-stories-of-torture.html

When the Supreme Court’s judgement upholding section 377  said that it only affects a ‘minuscule minority’ of Indians, many of us were rightly furious. A set of people can’t be treated badly because there are only a few of them. The government, constitution and state are all supposed to ensure that everyone in the country is treated equally and has equal access to their rights. In this case, several states are being systematically denied their rights and oppressed by violence, with no recourse to the law, and because of their minority/marginalised status, they cannot do anything about it. As queer people, we should stand in solidarity with them, because this is the same battle we are fighting, on another front. 

Violence under AFSPA is highly gendered: illegal kidnapping, rape, torture and murder all disproportionately affect women more. There are no substantiated studies about violence against trans* people under AFSPA but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist: trans* people are even less able to seek redressal against sexual or gendered violence than cis-gendered women. As queer women and genderqueer or trans* people, we should stand in solidarity against this violence.

 India supposedly prides itself on its diversity. At the same time, people who are different — who look different, who eat different food, who wear different clothes, who have sex differently, who believe or don’t believe in different faiths, who want different lives, — are constantly under pressure to conform. In a diverse country, wanting everyone to conform to one faith or ideology is as stupid as wanting them to speak only one language or follow only one sexuality. To do this via violence and oppression is even worse. So, as queer feminists, to ensure our own place in the diversity of possibilities, we have to stand in solidarity with others who are also trying to carve out their own spaces.
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Qashti Talks Politics!

26 Mar
vote

Elections are around the corner and everyone is concerned about which political party to vote for, and we are just as confused too. As queer people, as female assigned at birth, as genderqueer and transmasculine people, it’s high time we talk about why it is important to be politically conscious and to concern ourselves with not-explicitly-sexuality-related issues. What are the implications the upcoming election choices have on our lives and the linkages we try to draw between queer and progressive causes? Come join us for chai, debate and discussion with Jaya Sharma, a feminist, queer rights activist, from the NOMOre campaign. (https://www.facebook.com/CampaignNOMOre?fref=ts)
Date: Saturday, 29th March, 2014
Time: 5 pm
Venue : details to be sent out to those who confirm.
Please confirm there or write to qashtilbt@gmail.com if you plan to come. However, remember Qashti is a safe space for LBT people assigned gender female at birth. Apologies for being so strict!