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Iran asked to stop persecution of Baha段s
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 19
Expressing concern over the recent arrest of members of Iran痴 national Baha段 leadership, several prominent Indian personalities have urged the Iranian government to abide by international human rights conventions and release the detainees immediately.

In an open letter signed by former Chief Justice of India Justice J.S. Verma, former Supreme Court judge Justice V.R. Krishna Iyer, former Chief Justice of Delhi High Court Justice Rajinder Sachar, former Attorney General Soli Sorabjee, member, Planning Commission, Syeeda Hameed, member, Law commission, Tahir Mahmood, former chairperson, National Commission for Women, Dr Mohini Giri, editorial director, Hindustan Times, Vir Sanghvi, senior columnists George Verghese and Kuldip Nayar, president, World Council for Arya Samaj, Swami Agnivesh, director, Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative, Maja Daruwala and president, CII International, Arun Bharat Ram, they have said that it was appalling that Baha段s are discriminated against in the land where their religion was born.

They have said that despite of being the largest minority in Iran, their religion is neither recognised nor are they allowed to practice their religion freely. Further, there has been a carefully orchestrated official policy of oppression against them.

The letter claims that recently there had been a new wave of persecution against the Baha段 community which included arbitrary arrests, attacks against schoolchildren, dissemination of false information, denial of means of livelihood and expulsion from universities.

Stating that such discrimination against the Baha段s was unacceptable, the letter added that it was shocking that Iran, a country renowned for its great civilisation, philosophy and culture would resort to such flagrant violation of the fundamental right to freedom of religion. The letter also expresses concern over the new draft penal code which mandates death for anyone who converts from Islam to any other religion.



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