Petition Put Out By Churcil

Honorable Javier Perez de Cuellar

The Secretary General, United Nations

New York, NY 10017

I have the honor to submit a petition in respect of Simranjit Singh Mann, a former police officer of Indian Police Service, who remains imprisoned in Indian jail without trial for over two years. The hapless individual is now being administered “drug treatment” to alter his mind and personality and is being denied the well-established norms of treatment in respect of detainees. Bried details of the violations follow.

Simranjit Singh Mann was Group Commandant of Central Industrial Security force in Bombay when the military attack on the Golden Temple —— the holiest Sikh Shrine —— took place in early June, 1984. He protested against the attack and tendered his resignation to the Indian Government on June, 18, 1984. He was arrested three months later on numerous charges including sedition and waging war against India. Mr. Mann has ever since been in jail under conditions which clearly violate the various United Nations Conventions. These are:

Firstly, Universal Declaration of Human Rights, General Assembly Resolution 217 A (IID). Article 5 (torture inhuman and degrading treatment), article 9 (arbitrary arrest and detention), Article 11 (1) (right to be presumed innocent till proven guilty), Article 12 (arbitrary interference with privacy, family, reputation and correspondence of an individual); Secondly, International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, General Assembly Resolution 2200 A (XXI). Article 9 (arbitrary arrest and detention), 14 (2), (right to be presumed innocent till proven guilty), 14 (3c) (early trial without delay) and 17 (interference with privacy, family and home correspondence); Thirdly, Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners, Economic and Social Council Resolutions 663 C (XXIV) of 31 July 1957 and 2076  (LXII) of 13 May 1977 Article 15 (provision of facilities for personal hygiene Article 17 (adequate clothing and bedding ), article 20 ( appropriate food), Articles 22 to 26 (Medical services).

Mr. Simranjit Singh Mann has been arrested arbitrarily on baseless charges, has not been tried for over a period of 42 months, has been refused reasonable visits by the close members of his family, and has been denied proper food, clothing and bedding while in detention. During the last eight months Mr. Mann has been administered “drug treatment” to alter his mind, break his will and adversely affect his personality. This has had profound effect on his health and mental poise. As a result he lost over 20 pounds of weight in this period.

I request that the Indian government be urged to treat Mr. Mann according to the universally agreed provisions of various articles of the United Nations. Furthermore I request the following actions:

  1. Mr. Mann be released from imprisonment or tried without further delay;
  2. He be allowed appropriate food, bedding and clothing, living facilities, medical care and the like;
  3. He be allowed visits from close members of his family (wife and children);
  4. Administering of the “Drug treatment” be stopped without delay and Mr. Mann be examined by a team of doctors appointed under the aegis of International Red Cross.

Human life — be it that of Sakharov or Mann or any innocent person —— is equally important. We look up to you for an urgent action, Please do help save this innocent man. Thanking you in anticipation.

Article extracted from this publication >> April 22, 1988