Condolence Statement

Date: September 13, 2020

INSEC family is saddened by the news of the demise of Swami Agnivesh, a social worker from India, who passed away at the age of 81 on September 11, 2020. We would like to pay our heartfelt condolence to him. He was a supporter of Nepal’s human rights movement, democracy and Nepal’s campaign against bonded labour.

As a humanitarian, Swami had spoken against bonded labour, violence against women and discrimination against Dalits in South Asian countries. Swami Agnivesh, worked closely with Nepal’s political parties and human rights activists in the anti-Panchayat movement and advocated for the rights Bhutanese refugees sheltered in Nepal.

He had been close to INSEC since its inception, had repeatedly visited Nepal in connection with the Kamaiya Mukti Andolan (movement against bounded labor) and various other campaigns, and raised his voice in favour of Nepal’s marginalized citizens. He was a good friend of INSEC’s founder Sushil Pyakurel and the late Prakash Kafle. Awarded the ‘Right Livelihood Award’ for his contribution to the social movement, he had always been a target of extremists.

His demise has caused irreparable damage not only to India but also to the Dalit movement, bonded labour movement, women’s and minority movement and campaigns in South Asia. We pay our heartfelt tribute to Swami Agnivesh in this hour of sorrow, believing that he will live for many generations to come because of the path he has shown to humanity and his lifetime contribution for social transformation.

Signature of Chairperson_Dr. Indira Shrestha

Dr. Indira Shrestha