Geneva, 28 August 2020
I am writing to you on behalf of IndustriALL Global Union,, which represents more than 50 million workers in the mining, energy and manufacturing sectors in 140 countries, including in India to call upon you to release our colleague and union activist, leader of Pragatisheel Cement Shramik Sangh union affiliated to IndustriALL Global Union, who is kept in prison based on arbitrary and unclear accusations for already two years in India.
IndustriALL Global Union condemns in the strongest terms the arbitrary arrest of Sister Sudha Bharadwaj, allegedly in connection with the Bhima Koregaon incident in January 2018.
We strongly believe that this is an egregious violation of trade union and human rights which affected trade unionists and human rights defenders in Ranchi, Delhi, Goa, Mumbai, and Hyderabad and was apparently orchestrated by the police forces, and in collusion with violent civil society groups, targeting those who raise their voices in defence of democracy, justice, and equality.
IndustriALL Global Union stands in solidarity with Sudha Bharadwaj and the members of the Pragatisheel Cement Shramik Sangh, and calls for her immediate release, and an end to the persecution of trade unionists and human rights defenders.
Sister Sudha Bharadwaj suffers from diabetes and other health issues. During this COVID-19 pandemic her life is now really under threat if she remains in prison. We urge you to do everything possible in order to release her immediately.
Looking forward to your prompt and positive reply and actions,