Global Support for Dr Binayak Sen Grows

Posted at February 17, 2011 // Press ReportsTimes of India, MUMBAI: The international support for incarcerated doctor Binayak Sen seems to be growing. After the British Medical Journal and the Lancet carried editorials in support of the doctor who is serving a sentence in a Chhattisgarh jail, a Nobel Peace Prize-winning group will speak in his support in the city on Thursday.

Physicians for Human Rights’s founder Dr Jonathan Fine will talk about the need for physicians to engage with human rights at KEM Hospital in Parel on Thursday. “This is a part of our Free Binayak Sen Campaign. Who better than medical students to address in this case,” asked social activist Kamayani Mahabal, one of the organizers.

The talk has been organized by the Medical Humanities Cell of Seth G S Medical College & KEM hospital and the Forum for Medical Ethics. Dr Fine set up Physicians for Human Rights in 1986 because he believed that health professionals, with their specialized skills, ethical duties, and credible voices, are uniquely positioned to investigate the health consequences of human rights violations and work to stop them.

Dr Fine has led human rights missions to Chile and Guatemala to seek the release of physicians who had been imprisoned by their governments. Dr Fine is at present working in rural India on public health projects.

On December 24, 2010, the Chhattisgarh High Court convicted Dr Sen for conspiring to commit sedition and was sentenced to life imprisonment. He was first arrested in May 2007 on the suspicion that he served as a courier for Maoist ideologue Narayan Sanyal. Prison records indicate that Dr Sen visited Sanyal several times in the Raipur Jail. Dr Sen maintained that the visits were in his capacity as a doctor and as the Chhattisgarh Secretary of the People’s Union for Civil Liberties. Last fortnight, the court rejected his bail application.

Related posts