International lawyers' group files case against Yogi for crime against humanitytext_fields
Bellinzona: An international group of lawyers filed a criminal case against Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister (CM) Yogi Adityanath with the Office of the Swiss Federal Prosecutor, on Tuesday, for the crime he allegedly committed against humanity between December 2019 and January 2020 in the state in the name of confronting the people, mostly Muslims, who protested against the Citizenship Amendment Act.
The group, Guernica 37 Chambers, a specialist group of international criminal and human rights lawyers, moved the case under the principle of universal jurisdiction as provided in Article 264 of the Swiss Criminal Code in the wake of CM Yogi's visit to Davos to attend the World Economic Forum in the Swiss city between January 16 and 20.
Article 264 deals with ‘Genocide and Crimes against Humanity’.
A statement by Guernica 37 Chambers as reported by The News Minute said “Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath is reported to have ordered the false imprisonment, torture and murder of civilians between December 2019 and January 2020 in the state of Uttar Pradesh to suppress protests against the adoption of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) in India. As set out in the criminal report, these acts may amount to crimes against humanity as they are alleged to have been committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack against civilians, mostly the Muslim population in the country.”
The statement further claimed that the group has sufficient documents to indict the state government and its officials, including the Chief Minister and other senior members, in the criminal act of suppression and violence against the protestors by using the state police under their command.
“The Chief Minister’s role in the escalation of police violence is particularly apparent in a speech given on December 19, 2019, calling on the police to take 'revenge' against protesters. Despite being an Indian State official, the Chief Minister does not enjoy diplomatic immunity for these crimes,” the statement reads.
The TNN quoted the Founder of the Guernica 37 Group and Joint Head of G37 Chambers, Toby Cadman as saying that the safety of the victims, complainants and petitioners has made it to keep their details confidential.
Ever since the BJP-ruled Central government introduced the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, which enables the government to give citizenship on the basis of religion, excluding Muslims, in December 2019, many peaceful protests were staged across the country, including in the UP where the government dealt it with the iron fist in which many Muslims were killed.
“The UP police reportedly killed 22 protesters, at least 117 were tortured and 307 were arbitrarily detained,” Guernica 27 Chambers’ statement said. It also accused Yogi Adityanath, who is the final executive authority over police in the state, of not initiating an investigation into atrocities carried out against the protestors.
“The opening of an investigation by the Swiss authorities will serve as official recognition and acknowledgement of the gravity of the alleged crimes and recognition of the status of the victims, that they have thus far failed to receive at the domestic or international levels, and it will further serve as evidence that the culture of impunity will not be tolerated,” Guernica 37 Chambers asserted.