Condemning the crackdown by Enforcement Directorate (ED) on its premises in Bangalore on Thursday, Amnesty International has attacked the central government, accusing them of trying to silence organizations like them.
In an official statement released on Twitter after the raids were conducted, Amnesty India has called such activities by the agencies as a disturbing pattern. Their message read:
"After a crackdown on a no. of NGOs, Enforcement Directorate hits at Amnesty. The 10 hour long raid conducted at our Bengaluru office ended at midnight. Our staff fully cooperated with officials. We reiterate, our structure is compliant with Indian laws."
"ED raid on Amnesty India shows a disturbing pattern of the government silencing organisations that question power. It is clear that the government wants to instill fear among Civil Society Organisations."
"Over 5 ED officials raided Amnesty’s Bengaluru office. Ordered employees to not leave, shut their laptops and searched their desks. Employees were not allowed to use their phones to call friends and families."
The raids, which began at 2 pm, saw the agency looking at FCRA and other violations. ED had also released documents on the basis of which the search operations were conducted: