By Claire Ferris-Lay
Court detains five men accused of organising a march to back Indian anti-graft activist
Five men accused of organising an illegal demonstration in support of Indian anti-corruption activist Anna Hazare have had their bail pleas rejected by a Dubai court.
Dubai Public Prosecution on Friday rejected the pleas of the five men, who were arrested on charges of unlawful assembly, AFP reported.
The alleged organiser was detained at the event while two others were arrested by Dubai police on August 23. Two other supporters were arrested on August 24.
The case is expected to be heard after the Eid break.
Hazare, who on Sunday ended his 12-day fast in support on anti-corruption laws, has gained a host of supporters across the UAE, home to an estimated one million Indian expats.
More than 150 Indians took part in a 3km walk at Dubai’s Mamzar Beach last week to show their backing for his anti-graft campaign.
The Indian consulate in the UAE has cautioned nationals against staging any illegal protests in support of the 74-year old self-styled Gandhian activist.
“Sometimes, an emotive reaction encourages behaviour that falls foul of local laws and sensitivities,” Sanjay Verma, the Indian consul general, wrote on his Facebook page.
“I do understand that many Indians here feel strongly about the protests in India. A simpler way of conveying concerns is by petitions.”
Indian expat KK Sarachandra Bose last week organised a second trip for Indian expatriates from the UAE to New Delhi to join in the protests, which have rallied much of the Indian population and tapped a groundswell of public anger against endemic corruption.
“We want to show the government of India that we all support [Hazare] and that we are all against corruption,” he told Arabian Business.
“We want to have a corruption-free India,” he added. “Last time I took part [in protests] I was arrested but I want to show my support for the cause.”
India’s parliament on Saturday expressed its support for tougher anti-corruption legislation, meeting key demands set by Hazare. Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee told both chambers of parliament that there was support for putting forward tougher anti-corruption legislation. There was, however, no vote which had been expected.
Hazare broke his fast early Sunday morning before being taken to hospital to receive medical treatment.
“I have only suspended my agitation. I will not rest until all the changes that I look to are achieved,” he said to thousands of his supporters.
It is a foolhardy reaction by the supportes to go out on streets despite knowing the local reguations which are very specifica about such actions. I hope people stick to their key objective of earning a livelyhood in foreigns lands and adopt alternative methods or go to their homeland to exhibit their sympathy. I think the law enforcement has acted correctly in this case.
My personal feeling is that the Indian Consulate should have intervened and ensured these five Indian citizens were released. Have not come across anywhere that they have committed any henoius crime. The Courts would only open on 4th Sept due to EID holidays. Hope they get released before that.
They should have obtained permission to do that.
Indians have a feeling (while in India) that they could flaunt the Law as they wish. This is UAE, Machaa....!! There is a system and procedure here to follow if you wish to do anything that is permitted under Law. Respect it. Next time should you wish to support India or before you take yourself to grab attention, be a good boy and listen to the Consul General first. Feel sorry for your situation now but someone's action is a lesson for others. However wish Hazare and his supporters all the best and pledge my support too in the fight against corruption.
Yet again the Indian Consulate proves it's supreme efficiency and commitment to protect it's nationals. Well done.
Demonstrations and protests are not welcome in UAE or in other members states of the GCC, even more so since the advent of the Arab Spring. Also like all the other expatriates Indians are residents not UAE citizens and certainly not passportholders. To be honest, the five people in custody will probably be deported.
The expats should know to abide by the regulations of UAE. The courts will go by the rules and regulations only. The Embassies should not get involve in this; it is not that people can do this and the Embassies get release them - in this case there will be no respect for the rules and the regulations in force
Huh? If I remember right the UAE is signatory to the Vienna Convention, I quote for your benefit (Article 36):
"(c)\tconsular officers shall have the right to visit a national of the sending State who is in prison, custody or detention, to converse and correspond with him and to arrange for his legal representation. They shall also have the right to visit any national of the sending State who is in prison, custody or detention in their district in pursuance of a judgement. Nevertheless, consular officers shall refrain from taking action on behalf of a national who is in prison, custody or detention if he expressly opposes such action."
You can find it here http://untreaty.un.org/ilc/texts/instruments/english/conventions/9_2_1963.pdf