In a free country, forceful acceptance will never work: Cartoonist Aseem Trivedi

Cartoonist and activist Aseem Trivedi was charged with sedition in 2012 for his cartoons under the Cartoons against Corruption campaign

Chandrani Banerjee | February 26, 2016


#Sedition law   #JNU row   #Aseem Trivedi  


Is the freedom of expression being systematically suppressed in recent years?

I do believe that there is a constant effort to do that, which is depressing. A free-thinking society signals growth, equality and development. But the changing scenario certainly puts a question mark on these.

Is political intervention a reason for this shift?

The right to express views freely has always been targeted. In the past, efforts were made to curb the medium that raised questions on policies and systemic challenges. I did not mention student politics. But when the society is being affected, student politics which is already politically influenced can’t remain untouched. This is all turning from bad to worse and we need to draw a line.

Do you think sedition has been used for vested interest?

I have no two views about it. The legal shelter is the safest. Government and  political parties feel free to create a certain perception. A similar thing is happening in the JNUSU case. The perception has already been created for a greater audience because the facts are not available to everyone.

Should there be some restrictions as far as college and universities are concerned?

Yes, the entire world feels the same. Free thinking in campuses is an indication of free-thinking society.

Has freedom of speech become a threat?

I would say it again. The aim is to create a perception that disapprove a particular viewpoint and then instigate it politically. 

Has sedition become a political tool?

Politics is always behind pressing such charges. The law needs to be amended and needs a relook.

Why this clampdown on people with dissenting and with one particular viewpoint?

The clampdown aims to inject a particular viewpoint. This cannot be accepted by a free society. Everyone has the right to live, the right to speak and the right to follow a particular thought process. In a free country, forced acceptance will never work out.

Was it fair to charge Kanhaiya with sedition?
I disagree and believe that there is something terribly wrong. Students are the section of the society that reflects growth, tolerance level and free thinking. Pressing such charges on them will create a fearful environment which will not be in favour of the country.

 

Comments

 

Other News

On a personal note: DIVINE

An underground rapper who grew up on Mumbai streets, Divine spins his music around his environment and poverty. His breakout single, ‘Meri Gully Mein’, along with fellow rapper Naezy caught Bollywood’s attention. The Hindi film ‘Gully Boy’ is inspired by their lives and gr

The role model for an IAS officer

Anil Swarup, an IAS officer of Uttar Pradesh cadre who retired in 2018, is a model bureaucrat who retained his optimism right till the end of service and exemplified dedication and commitment. His excitement at the opportunities that a job in the IAS provided is evident on every page of his new book publis

Reform of the civil services: At home and away

The question of reform of the civil services has been debated extensively at all levels at least over the last five to six decades after independence. Indeed, it was soon perceived that the Indian Administrative Service (IAS) may not be well equipped to deal with the problems of an emerging developing coun

The greatest challenge for any government

Shouting vengeance at all and sundry while wriggling out of holes of our own making seems to be our very special national characteristic. Some recent instances are illustrative of this attribute. A number of business tycoons with thousands of crores of unresolved debts have fled abroad with the government

The mysterious case of CBI’s legality

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) came into existence, based on a Resolution of the home ministry, dated April 1, 1963 – a sheer coincidence that it also happens to be April Fool’s day. Over the past few months, we have seen the CBI live up to its founding day with great zeal, being i

The Evolution of Modi

Gujarat was passing through a turbulent phase in the 1980s. The decade began middle class agitations against new reservation policies, and the caste friction turned communal under the watch of chief minister Madhavsinh Solanki, alienating majority of urban population on both counts. The ground was ripe for

Current Issue

Current Issue

Video

CM Nitish’s convoy attacked in Buxar

Opinion

Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter

Twitter