Greenpeace shoots off letter to MHA

Greenpeace shoots off letter to MHA

Launching a strong protest against the Centre for barring its activists from entering India, Greenpeace on Tuesday shot off a letter to Home Minister Rajnath Singh saying the action appeared “entirely arbitrary and lacking basis in law.”

Aaron Gray-Block, the Crisis Response Manager of Greenpeace International, was on Saturday denied entry into India with the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) saying his name figured in the “black list”, while the activist maintained that he possessed a valid business visa and necessary documents.

“This action appears to be entirely arbitrary and lacking basis in law, forcing us to seek an explanation from your office immediately. Please share with us the reasons for barring Gray-Block from the country,” the letter by Greenpeace India Executive Director Samit Aich stated.

Aich also asked the minister to clarify reports claiming that there is a plan to debar individuals expressing opinions and views on any issue considered by the government as detrimental to national interest.

“I request you to confirm and clarify on the existence of such a black list, the names of Greenpeace staff on it currently and the criterion that will be used to add names to such a list. I am concerned that this is a direct clampdown on the freedom of movement and expression of persons with absolutely no basis in either Indian or international law,” Aich said.

“Gray-Block's passport was taken away from him, he was denied entry into the country and put on board a flight back to Kuala Lumpur within 45 minutes to an hour after his arrival. He was provided no information as to why he was being denied entry,” the letter further stated.

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