Campaign For Khurshid Anwar
Ritwik Agrawal – 9873554908 | Ankita Chandranath – 9999821959
26 December 2013
Family and Friends of Khurshid Anwar start campaign, look to tap into social media
Family members, friends and co-workers of the recently deceased Executive Director of the Institute for Social Democracy, Khurshid Anwar have come together to press for a thorough investigation into events leading up to his death, particularly what they consider an unfair ‘trial by media and social media’ that the late activist was subjected to.
It may be recalled that Anwar, a well-known name in activist circles in Delhi, allegedly committed suicide on the morning of the eighteenth of this month, after being accused of rape by a fellow activist.
Members of Anwar’s immediate family, including his elder brother, Delhi University professor Ali Javed, and friends have banded together as the Campaign for Khurshid Anwar. They allege that the late activist was forced to take the extreme step due the mental trauma and public humiliation caused by a targeted vilification campaign on Facebook and certain TV programmes broadcast on the days immediately leading to his death.
“He was convicted, tried and hanged without any process of law. For over three months, no FIR had been filed against him. The complainant was not subjected to a medical test. Dr. Anwar had challenged those accusing him on Facebook to go through these elementary steps, but nothing was done” says Ankita Chandranath, spokesperson of the Campaign.
“Dr Anwar was one of the leading women’s rights activists of the country. He was a genial figure, an elder brother and it is unthinkable that such allegations are being brought against him” said Shruti Chaturvedi, programme in-charge at the Institute for Social Democracy, the NGO headed by Anwar.
The Campaign is keen to tap into social media to take its message far and wide. A Facebook page ‘Justice for Khurshid Anwar’ has been created, and activity has also started on twitter. A WordPress blog has been started. “Dr Anwar’s condolence meeting saw leading academicians and activists come together to express shock and dismay at his untimely death and the events that precipitated it. Saeed Naqvi, Teesta Setalvad, Purushottam Agrawal, Narendra Singh and other leading figures raised pertinent questions and pressed for thorough investigations. We are circulating videos of these figures and other multimedia material through our web campaign”, said Ritambhara Agrawal, a team member.