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What Is The Kistnen Case?


kistenen case in mauritius

BACKGROUND

Throughout 2020, the current Mauritian government became increasingly unfavourable due to several reasons:

  • Their handling of the Wakashio disaster, and the subsequent supressing public protests and arbitrary arrests of activists

  • A series of corruption cases, including the Angus Road Affair, and allegations of electoral fraud in the 2019 general election. People who were critical of the Prime Minister on social media faced arrests, while investigative journalists and media were blocked and harassed by police

  • Suspending Parliament during at key times- a move the opposition leaders have called “illegal”

These allegations and complaints were lodged in court, but it’s rumoured that the government’s ‘tactics’ (lengthy suspensions of Parliament, emergency COVID-19 measures, and the State of Emergency caused by the Wakashio) have delayed any court proceedings to take place.


These, combined with restrictions on human rights in forms of media blackouts and arrests, has led to a series of protests in Mauritius over the past year, calling for the government to resign. The largest protest was in August 2020 after the Wakashio disaster, where 100,000 descended on the streets of Port Louis.


WHO IS KISTNEN AND WHY IS HIS NAME HEADLINE NEWS?

Now, since October 2020, there have been a series of suspicious deaths in Mauritius- the first being Soopramanien Kistnen. His charred body was found in a sugarcane field, yet a verdict of suicide was given by the police before further investigation took place.


It was allegedly later found out that Kistnen was an ex-political agent in Prime Minister Jagnauth’s constituency of Quartier-Militaire, and had proof showing how the government and senior ministers allegedly lied about their campaign spending for the 2019 general elections.