“Appalled by the abuse Father Stan faced while in custody”: US Congressman introduces resolution to honour Swamy’s life

06 July 2022

On 5 July 2022, one year since the Jesuit priest Stan Swamy died, Juan Vargas, a member of the United States Congress, announced the introduction of a resolution in the house to honour Swamy’s life. His fellow house members Andre Carson and James McGovern co-sponsored his resolution. Vargas spoke at a webinar titled “Persecution of Religious Minorities and their Defenders in India: Commemorating Father Stan’s Death in Custody,” which was co-organised by Front Line Defenders, Hindus for Human Rights, the Humanism Project, India Civil Watch International, and Survival International, and co-sponsored by human-rights collectives Adivasi Lives Matter, Dalit Solidarity Forum, the Federation of Indian American Christian Organizations of North America, and the Indian American Muslim Council. A joint press release from the event has been reproduced below. 

Speakers at the webinar included Neale Hanvey, a member of parliament of the United Kingdom; Alviina Alametsä, a member of the European parliament; David Shoebridge, a senator of Australia; and Mary Lawlor, a United Nations special rapporteur.

Swamy, a Jesuit priest who dedicated his life to defending the rights of India’s Adivasis, was arrested in 2020 in the Bhima Koregaon case. An octogenarian who lived with Parkinson’s disease, Swamy was repeatedly denied bail in spite of his advanced age and frail medical condition.