Authorities Raid Amnesty International's Regional Office
PRESS RELEASE: Government authorities are increasingly treating #humanrights organizations like criminal enterprises. Amnesty India is the latest target of the government’s assault on civil society in the country.#CrackdownOnAmnesty https://t.co/CkL8IW3CIO— Amnesty India (@AIIndia) October 26, 2018
Indian officials have raided Amnesty International's regional office in Bengaluru. Officials belonging to India's Enforcement Directorate (ED), arrived at the premises at 1:30pm (8:30 GMT) on 25th October 2018. The ED are a government agency that investigates financial crimes. In a statement released by the agency, authorities claimed the raid was conducted under suspicion of Amnesty India violating foreign donation laws. As previously covered on the CIVICUS Monitor, India's stringent regulations on foreign donations have targeted international and human rights CSOs. In a statement, Amnesty International condemned the allegations, by saying:
“Government authorities are increasingly treating human rights organisations like criminal enterprises. As an organisation committed to the rule of law, our operations in India have always conformed with our national regulations. The principles of transparency and accountability are at the heart of our work.”
Concerns for independent human rights groups has reached fever pitch. As documented by the CIVICUS Monitor, the routine arrest of HRDs coupled with judicial harassment of critical groups has placed the international spotlight on India. In fact, criticism of Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi's dismal attitude towards civil society has grown since he assumed office in 2014. Modi's crackdown on civil society has been well evidenced by domestic and international CSOs. The CIVICUS Monitor will continue to document the unfolding details of Amnesty International's case.
We’re worried about #civicspace in #India. In our latest update we document ongoing threats to civil society. While currently rated as #Obstructed in the #CIVICUSMonitor, the case is growing to downgrade India’s rating to #Repressed. Read & stay tuned: https://t.co/4e872Kmcnn pic.twitter.com/KdYlICVIq0— CIVICUS Monitor (@CIVICUSMonitor) September 25, 2018