Scuttling of Global Fund’s India CCM Election Process

My (representing Suraksha) candidature to contest India CCM Election was denied unfairly. Here is the letter explaining the same in detail:

Bangalore
4th April, 2009

Dear friends

We are shocked at the way our (Suraksha WRHCP) candidature to contest Global Fund’s India CCM CSO Elections 2009 (http://www.indiaccm-elections.org) under the sub sector ‘Organizations working on the issues of Sexual Minorities’ was rejected.

The stated reason for rejecting our application was “Your organisation has in fact not met the following criteria set by the CMM Election Sub-Committee.
– Primarily working in the specific sub-sector that is sought to be represented”

We are at a loss how the committee came to this conclusion given that most of our work and almost all of our funding in the past 4 years has been for working with sexual minorities, primarily from Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

We are also shocked at the blatant unfairness of the whole process, given that the India CCM election process claims to be transparent and fair. Below we list the events that lead us to come to the above conclusion.

– Finalized list of eligible candidates was suppose to be uploaded to the website on 2nd April however the same was put up only on April 3rdafternoon

– The email informing the rejection of our candidature arrived on the afternoon of 3rd April

– On April 4th morning when we contacted Mr. Pawan Varma (Election Secretariat, MAMTA Health Institute for Mother and Child) and enquired about reason for stating that Suraksha doesn’t primarily work with sexual minorities, he stated that it was the decision of the Election Sub-Committee. When asked about the detailed information for rejecting our candidature and to the process to appeal against the decision, he asked us to send a email to him, which he will forward to the sub-committee. He said that a we may not get a response till the 6th given that 4th and 5th are holidays

– Given the urgency of the matter (voting starts 9am on 7th April) how fair is it to have the rejection of the candidate and no time/ process to appeal?

– When asked about the composition of the Election sub-committee, he said that he is not authorized to reveal this info. When questioned about the lack of transparency and lack of a contact point to discuss this matter, he asked us to get in touch with  Komal Khanna and Ashima Mohan  from the Secretariat of the India-CCM for The Global Fund. He was willing to give us only the land line phone numbers and not mobile phone numbers. He also stated that they will not be working on the 4th and 5th April. We called the landline phone numbers mentioned in the India CCM website on 4th morning one of the numbers is invalid and there is no response to the other number.

This makes us believe that these elections are seriously compromised and raises serious questions about democracy, transparency and participation.

We appeal to all fair minded people and organization to raise your voice against this wilful scuttling of the election process.

Please feel free to contact us for more information.

In Solidarity

Elavarthi Manohar
Suraksha WRHCP
Bangalore, India

Copies to:
1. Communities Delegation to the board of the Global Fund
2. Developing Country NGO Delegation to the board of the Global Fund
3. Developed Country NGO Delegation to the board of the Global Fund
4. India CCM Secretariat

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How safe is Bangalore for Women? FEARLESS KARNATAKA to promote safety and reclaim public spaces.

Bangalore was known as a tolerant city, where women can walk safely.

In the past few days many women were attacked and insulted on the streets of Bangalore – for speaking in English, for wearing  jeans/ sleeveless shirts. The moral policing has spread from Mangalore to Bangalore. Some self-appointed custodians of morality want to dectate what we should do and what we should not.

In Mangalore, they attacked unmarried couples belonging to different religions, they even attacked students for speaking with classmates (same gender) of different religions.  They devided the society on religious lines. They attacked people for going to pubs. They destroyed peace and harmony in Mangalore. They forced people to live under constant fear. These fundamentalists have the active support of the present state government, who are known for spreading hate. They want to turn Karnataka into another Gujarat.

Their next target is Bangalore. They want to destroy the peaceful, tolerant and diverse nature of  Bangalore. They want to enforce their moral codes through intimidation and violence.

Many individuals and groups, who want to resist this moral policing have come together as FEARLESS KARNATAKA, to defend the freedom and rights guaranteed by our constitution.

Join the protest march to the office of Dr. Ajai Kumar Singh, DG & IGP (Karnataka), on March 7, 2009.

Join the ‘Take Back the Night’ campaign on March 8, 2009.

Lets join hands to defend – our freedom, our safety and our city.

More info about the attacks, FEARLESS KARNATAKA and planned actions: http://thepinkchaddicampaign.blogspot.com/2009/02/press-release.html

http://thepinkchaddicampaign.blogspot.com/2009/02/details-of-attacks.html

Time to build a new political party and new political culture in Karnataka

The people of Karnataka are fedup with the existing political parties in Karnataka. In the past 3 years BJP, JDS and Congress have proved to be corrupt, undemocratic, oppurtunistic and anti-people.

This is the time to build a new political party and new political culture based on the values of democracy, transparancy, ethics and social justice. A party that is committed to peace, pleasure, comfort and hope

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