Kerala cops blacklist pro-Palestine activist

published on January 1, 2013

MALAPPURAM: Kerala Police have decided to blacklist Free Gaza Movement co-founder and globally-known advocate of the Palestinian cause Paul Larudee, who was taken into custody from Tirur in Malappuram district on Saturday night, for violating visa norms in India. On Sunday evening, police issued a “quit India” notice to the American human rights activist, asking him to leave India as early as possible. If blacklisted, Larudee can never visit India again.

After police received information that Larudee, who has been in India since last three days on a tourist visa, was to attend a conference of Student Islamic Organisation at Tirur, a police team led by Malappuram SP K Sethuraman reached the venue took him into custody. The police team took Larudee into custody soon after he finished his speech on ‘Youth and Arab Spring’. Larudee was the chief guest at the conference.

Sethuraman told TOI that foreign personalities who have come to India on tourist visa cannot be allowed to attend functions or deliver speeches here as it will affect the law and order. “No case was registered against Larudee as it will force him to stay in India for a long time. We want to avoid the situation that the Italian marines faced here, hence we have decided to issue a notice asking him to leave country,” the SP said.

Larudee said he never expected such a humiliating approach from Indian police. “I came here to speak about the Palestinian people. Once, great Indian leaders such as Mahatma Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru Nehru had raised the same demand for Palestine. I never want to hurt Indian people or speak against India.”

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