The conviction of and life sentence for peasants’ struggle leader Dr. Sunilam, founder-president of the Kisan Sangharsh Samiti (KSS) is the latest shameful and glaring instance of injustice and targeting of people’s struggles.
Dr. Sunilam has been convicted in a case related to the Multai Police Massacre, where police fired at and killed 24 protesting peasants at Multai, Madhya Pradesh in 1997. The peasants’ crime had been that they demanded compensation for crops devastated by storms, and waiver of farm loans. The then Congress Government headed by Digvijay Singh, instead of meeting these just demands, chose to unleash terror and bloodshed which brought the Jallianwala Bagh massacre to mind. Ironically, the police personnel who massacred protesting peasants are yet to be charged, prosecuted, and punished – while the peasants’ leader is being persecuted and sentenced to prison after 14 years!
By targeting Dr. Sunilam in a host of false cases, the powers that be at MP and at the Centre also seek to weaken ongoing peasant struggles being led by the KSS.
The CPI(ML) demands the release of Dr. Sunilam, withdrawal of all the false cases against him, his acquittal in the Multai case, and prosecution of those responsible for the police firing and massacre of peasants in Multai 1997.