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Authorities Misuse Laws to Punish Critics, Religious Minorities

This week, police in India’s Jammu and Kashmir region arrested an activist and politician, Talib Hussain, for publicly questioning the security forces’ killing of a Kashmiri man in October. Instead of investigating Hussain’s allegations, the…
A man in a face mask stands in front of a variety of protest placards
News

Removing Discriminatory Portrayals a Step Toward Rights-Respecting Care

India’s National Medical Commission has ordered publishers and medical schools to edit their textbooks and curricula to exclude discriminatory and unscientific portrayals of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex (LGBTI) people. The…
A participant waves a flag during Queer Azadi Pride, an event promoting gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender rights, in Mumbai, India on February 1, 2020.
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Summit Meeting Key Opportunity to Address Vaccine Inequities

Leaders from the “Quad” countries – the United States, Japan, India, and Australia – will hold their first in-person summit in Washington, DC, on September 24, amid a global Covid-19 vaccine shortage crisis and deeply inequitable access to vaccines.…
Activists stand outside Pfizer Headquarters demanding US President Joe Biden support the "TRIPS Waiver" in New York, NY on April 22, 2021.
News

Listing Achievements at UN Won’t Hide Failures to Protect Rights

India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi will join world leaders at the United Nations General Assembly this week, to address global issues and list his government’s “achievements on the domestic front.” But back home, authorities are targeting…
Farmers participate in a protest against farm laws in Haryana, India on September 7, 2021. 
News

Authorities Should Address Sexual Violence, Ensure Justice

Protests over sexual assault have renewed in India’s capital, Delhi, after a 9-year-old Dalit girl was killed on Sunday. Her family alleges that she was raped and murdered while fetching water from a crematorium in southwest Delhi. The crematorium’s…
Activists hold a candlelight march protesting the alleged rape and murder of a 9-year-old Dalit girl in New Delhi, India on August 4, 2021. 
News

Ending Military Use of Schools Protects Students, Teachers

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres recently called on India to endorse the Safe Schools Declaration, an intergovernmental political commitment to take common-sense measures to make it less likely that students, teachers, and schools are…
An Indian paramilitary soldier stands guard during a search operation in Srinagar, Kashmir, in August 2018.
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Civil Society Participation Key to Success at UN Climate Talks

At this month’s virtual climate negotiations several United Nations officials and governments highlighted the importance of civil society participation in climate action. Yet at the summit’s plenary session, time ran out before civil society…
Residents and environmental activists on Lamu island, Kenya, protest the proposed Lamu Port-South Sudan-Ethiopia (LAPSSET) project on March 1, 2012.  © 2012 Reuters/Joseph Okanga
News

Opportunity for Expanding Access to Justice for People with Disabilities

A recent judgment by India’s Supreme Court is a watershed moment for women with disabilities in India and worldwide. The case involved a 19-year-old blind woman who was raped by her brother’s friend. The court in its April judgment, rendered by…
A young girl with long hair portraid from behind, in front of a field.
News

Authorities Should Focus on Solutions, Not Misguided, Abusive Policies

Hundreds of corpses, many suspected victims of Covid-19, are being left along riverbanks in northern India. Local officials say that decomposition makes it difficult to determine whether they died of the coronavirus. But villagers say that fear of the…
Policeman stand bodies Ganges River India Covid
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Free Expression Crucial to Managing Covid-19 Pandemic

Indian groups trying to locate assistance for Covid-19 patients are finding that the requests keep coming. Although the government has attempted to increase medical supply stocks, distribution remains patchy. The authorities have often responded to…
People wait to get tested for Covid-19 in Hyderabad, India. A crowd stands before two health care workers.
News

Address Healthcare Shortages, End Mixed Messaging

As India faces the world’s fastest-growing number of Covid-19 cases, with 316,000 new confirmed infections on April 21, the highest single-day count in any country, and more than 2,100 deaths, the government’s response appears to have collapsed. A…
A hospital information board shows non-availability of beds in New Delhi, India, April 21, 2021.
News

International Women’s Day Should Prompt Real Reforms

As 2020 drew to a close, protesters across South Asia took to the streets, calling on their governments to take widespread sexual violence against women and children seriously, and to implement real reforms. But rather than listening to experts and…
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Government Quashing Basic Freedoms; Politicized Institutions Given Free Rein

The government of India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi is presiding over a dangerous regression in free speech rights in pursuit of its Hindu nationalist agenda. Peaceful activists protesting against discriminatory citizenship policies, or calling…
People attend a protest against new farm laws at the Delhi-Uttar Pradesh border, on the outskirts of New Delhi, India, January 29, 2021. 
News

Delhi Child Rights Commission Recommends an End to Risky Surgeries

The child rights agency for India’s capital city this week recommended a ban on medically unnecessary “normalizing” surgeries on children born with intersex variations. This follows the southern state of Tamil Nadu banning such operations in 2019…
The Intersex flag
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Government Mandates Reporting HIV Status, Deports People Living with HIV

In Jordan, medical professionals and health facilities are mandated to report an individual’s HIV status to the government. Foreign nationals found to be HIV-positive are summarily deported regardless of the consequences to their health and safety and…
Silhouettes are cast on a Jordanian national flag in Amman, Jordan, November 30, 2016. 
News

Authorities Blame Critics After Rape and Murder in Uttar Pradesh State

The rape, torture, and murder of a 19-year-old Dalit woman allegedly by a group of dominant-caste men in the village of Hathras, in India’s Uttar Pradesh state, has sparked widespread outrage. People across the country are protesting, demanding…
Chandrashekhar Azad, leader of the Bhim Army, a party advocating for the rights of Dalits, speaks during a protest against the gang rape and killing of a Dalit woman in Uttar Pradesh state, in New Delhi, India, October 2, 2020. 
News

Independent Review Recommends Funding to Address Harms

An external review of the World Bank Group’s private funding institutions found that social and environmental abuses caused by their development projects went largely unaddressed, leaving victims without remedies. The review focused on the…
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Independent Report Highlights Police Inaction in February’s Delhi Attacks

An independent investigation into attacks on Muslims by Hindu mobs in Delhi in February 2020 found that police were complicit in and even abetted the violence. The attacks came after weeks of peaceful protests against the Indian government’s…
Police stand guard during a protest against a new citizenship law at the Seelampur area of New Delhi, India, February 20, 2020. 
News

Father, Son Die After Arrests for Allegedly Violating Covid-19 Lockdown Rules

India’s Madras High Court on Tuesday said there is sufficient evidence to register a case of murder against police officials who allegedly tortured a father and son to death while in custody. The ruling was based on the men’s injuries, as well as the…
'The custodial death of Jayaraj and Bennix (Fenix), 2020', an illustration by artist Siddhesh Gautam.
News

Legal Amendment May Threaten Livelihoods and Living Standards

Like many governments around the world, Jordan has been forced to take urgent economic measures amid the Covid-19 pandemic. In April, it used emergency decrees to alter labor and social security laws, and on May 31, it further loosened labor…
 People shop for vegetables at the main market in Karak, Jordan, after a curfew was lifted for some southern cities, amid concerns about the coronavirus Wednesday, April 22, 2020.