Watch: Tribals of Bastar also wants ‘Azaadi’, Soni Sori speaks up at JNU

In her first public appearance at JNU following the recent attack on her, Soni Suri an activist and Aam Aadmi Party member said “We tribals, adivasis also want azadi”.

“We want azadi from the government oppression, from the way we are targeted by the state. We cannot sleep peacefully at night inside our houses. There is always this fear that we will be picked up by the CRPF men and framed as naxals”.

Soni Sori was introduced by Kanhaiya Kumar to the audience at the varsity’s administration block as “a real hero” and someone who has been fighting for azadi in her own region. Taking the centre-stage, Sori said they fight for azadi, or freedom, is a common one.

It is to be noted that, Sori was attacked by an acid-like chemical on the night of February 20 in Chhattisgarh and had to be hospitalised.

Declairing her solidarity with the students of Jawaharlal Nehru University, Sori said that the condition of her face is reflective of the fight in naxal-hit Bastar area.

“My face today is the face of the fight in Bastar, the condition is the same. I was also jailed in a fake case of being associated with naxalites, the same way he (Kanhaiya) has been framed for his so called terrorist links. I am glad that JNU has started this massive movement which helped in getting bail for Kanhaiya”, she said.

“Government will not say anything when women are raped by policemen but in this case they applied all their tactics but could not find a single evidence against Kanhaiya. But JNU students have always expressed solidarity with my fight since 2011,” she added.

The 44-year-old Adivasi school teacher was arrested by the Delhi Police’s Crime Branch for Chhattisgarh Police in 2011 on charges of acting as a conduit for Maoists. During her imprisonment, she alleged that she was tortured and sexually assaulted by Chhattisgarh state police. By April 2013, the Indian Courts had acquitted her in six of the eight cases filed against her due to lack of evidence.