Victims of the Emergency in 1975, seek status of freedom fighters

An organisation of persons arrested during the Emergency of 1975, moved Supreme Court seeking status of freedom fighters.Recently, the Bench of Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul , Dinesh Maheshwari and Hrishikesh Roy issued notice to the Central government in Vera Sarin’s plea, stating that it will hear petitions on the constitutional validity of the Emergency of 1975.

The All India Loktantra Senani Joint Action Committee, an organisation which is an umbrella unit of several organisations representing victims of the Emergency, has sought to intervene in the same plea.The intervention application was filed through Advocate Bharti Tyagi. The plea also stated that these victims who were prisoners during the Emergency were brutally tortured and made to lay on ice bricks for several hours.

The plea stated that few states such as, (Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Haryana, Punjab Bihar, Jharkhand, Maharashtra and Chhattisgarh), have recognised these applicants, extended their pensions, provided free health care and travelling passes. However, these welfare schemes are not consistent and change depending on the party in power.The applicant organization further states that they had approached the Kerala High Court for compensation and pension on account of the incarceration suffered during the Emergency. However, that plea was disposed of, on the grounds that the issue was one the Central government had to take a call on.The plea also stated that these victims had been deprived of their legal right to life and liberty by State authorities.

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