New Delhi: Netizens, farmers' unions and activists are now demanding the immediate release from custody of Nodeep Kaur, a Dalit activist who was protesting near Singhu border along with thousands of farmers. The 23-year-old activist was arrested on January 12 after a demonstration in front of a metal-cutting firm, Sharan Elecmech in Haryana's Kundli industrial area. She was arrested under the charges such as (Section 307) attempt to murder, extortion and other offences. Nodeep has allegedly given speeches in Singhu border where the farmers' protest is taking place.
Family of the activist alleged that Nodeep is facing sexual assault and custodial torture. She has also been refused bail for twice. Following the arrest, several farmers' unions and human rights activists demanded justice for detained Nodeep Kaur. Recently Lawyer Meena Harris, US President Kamala Harris' niece also tweeted about the arrest of Nodeep. Following this, Nodeep's arrest has drawn International attention. Meena claimed that "Kaur has been arrested, tortured and sexually assaulted in police custody".
Later, Khet Mazdoor Union, members of farmers' unions and Association for Democratic Rights in Haryana raised their voice for the immediate release of Kaur. Jora Singh Nasrali, state president of Punjab Khet Mazdoor Union extended support to her and demanded "strict punitive action against those who framed Kaur".
Professor AK Maleri from Association of Democratic Rights called the arrest as "attempt to suppress the voice of dissent". However, police denied the allegation of custodial torture. According to the police, Nodeep and her associates lashed out and attacked the police team.
Rajveer Kaur, Nodeep's sister reportedly visited in Karnal jail and alleged that the 23-year-old has been brutally assaulted in police custody. Several Ambedkarites and Dalit activists also extended their solidarity to Nodeep. Writer, Meena Kandasamy condemned the arrest and the custodial torture of Nodeep. The arrest got media attention after Indian-origin Canadian poet Rupi Kaur tweeted in support of her on January 31.
Many others are using hashtag #FreeNodeepKaur for demanding justice for the arrested labour rights activist.