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Amnesty International halts India ops as govt freezes its bank accounts

Human rights organisation Amnesty International India on Tuesday announced that it has been “compelled to let go off staff in India” and halt all its work as all its bank accounts have been frozen.

In a statement, the organisation called the government’s move to freeze its bank accounts a witch-hunt “over unfounded and motivated allegations”.

“The continuing crackdown on Amnesty International India over the last two years and the complete freezing of bank accounts is not accidental,” said Amnesty International India Executive Director Avinash Kumar.

“The constant harassment by government agencies including the Enforcement Directorate is a result of our unequivocal calls for transparency in the government, more recently for accountability of the Delhi police and the Government of India regarding the grave human rights violations in Delhi riots and Jammu & Kashmir. For a movement that has done nothing but raise its voices against injustice, this latest attack is akin to freezing dissent.”

It alleged that its “lawful fundraising model” was being portrayed as money-laundering because it has challenged the “government’s grave inactions and excesses”.