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'Not in My Name': 114 Military Veterans Write to PM Modi Against Lynchings

The letter, dated July 30, also expressed concerns over “clampdown” on free speech and the “climate of fear”. The letter, which was also sent to chief ministers of all states, has been signed by 114 armed forces veterans.

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Updated:July 31, 2017, 12:46 PM IST
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'Not in My Name': 114 Military Veterans Write to PM Modi Against Lynchings
File photo of Not in My Name protest.
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New Delhi: More than 100 armed forces veterans have written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, condemning mob attacks by cow vigilantes on Muslims and Dalits.

The letter, dated July 30, also expressed concerns over “clampdown” on free speech and the “climate of fear”. The letter, which was also sent to chief ministers of all states, has been signed by 114 armed forces veterans.

“It saddens us to write this letter, but current events in India have compelled us to register our dismay at the divisiveness that is gripping our country,” the letter said.

The 114 veterans who signed the letter include Admiral L Ramdas, Major General Dipankar Banerjee and Major General MPS Kandal, The Hindu reported.

“We stand with the ‘Not in My Name’ campaign that mobilised thousands of citizens across the country to protest against the current climate of fear, intimidation, hate and suspicion,” the letter added.

The ‘Not in My Name’ campaign was organised in June and saw people take to the streets to protest lynchings of Muslims and Dalits across several cities by self-styled gau rakshaks.

"We have spent our careers working for the security of our country. Collectively, our group holds no affiliation with any single political party, our only common commitment being to the Constitution of India," the letter said.

In the letter, the veterans said that media outlets, civil society groups, universities along with scholars had been branded “anti-nationals” and were being intimidated.

“We can no longer look away. We would be doing a disservice to our country if we do not stand up and speak for the liberal and secular values that our Constitution espouses. Our diversity is our greatest strength. Dissent is not treason; in fact, it is the essence of democracy,” the veterans said.
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