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HomeIndiaGovernanceEconomist Jean Dreze detained by Jharkhand police, released later

Economist Jean Dreze detained by Jharkhand police, released later

Dreze and the two activists of Right to Food campaign were detained for allegedly organising a meeting without permission.

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New Delhi: Renowned economist Jean Dreze and two other activists were Thursday detained by the police in Jharkhand’s Garhwa district for allegedly organising a meeting without permission.

They were released after two hours.

Dreze along with Vivek Kumar and Anuj, who have been working for the Right to Food (RTF) campaign, were detained for holding a meeting related to the campaign in Bishunpura without taking permission from the district authorities.

“We were organising a meeting with the people of Garhwa district. We have not been given permission for the meeting yet. We are trying to see what can be done now”, Kumar told ThePrint after his release.

Kumar claimed that during their detention, police asked them to sign a bond, declaring they have no complaints against the government. They refused to sign the bond, Kumar said.

Palamu’s DIG told The Indian Express, “They were holding a meeting on social issues and did not take permission from SDO (Sub-divisional officer). They were detained as the Model Code of Conduct is in place.”

The Garhwa Superintendent of Police and District Collector could not be reached for comments despite several attempts.

Also readModi govt’s data war: Economists & accountants are fighting for political power like rivals

Right to Food campaign

Dreze is a well-known Right to Food activist and has been active in Jharkhand for several years now.

“We consider that everyone has a fundamental right to be free from hunger and undernutrition”, reads the collective statement of RTF.

Rallies, media advocacy, and meetings similar to the one Dreze organised in Garhwa are common methods used by members of RTF campaign to raise awareness about the issue.

“In the present context, where people’s basic needs are not a political priority, state intervention itself depends on effective popular organisation. We are committed to fostering this process through all democratic means”, the statement stated.

Also read: 108 economists & social scientists accuse Modi govt of blocking unfavourable data


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