Aakar Patel is the Director of Amnesty International India since 2015, he is also a senior journalist, author and a syndicated columnist. He ran a media services business in Mumbai from 2006 to 2010 and also collaborated with UNICEF including for projects like the Mid-day Meal scheme. He had a decade long stint in journalism working cities like Mumbai and Hyderabad as well as a regional daily – Divya Bhaskar in Gujarat. He is the author of the recently published book ‘Our Hindu Rashtra: What it is. How we got here’ and his upcoming book ‘Price of the Modi years’ will be out October 2021.
In the following interview, Aakar discusses his tenure at Amnesty International India including engaging with the State, raids by law enforcement agencies, the shrinking space of civil society and human rights advocacy in India. In September 2020, Amnesty International India was forced to halt its operations after the government froze its bank accounts without notice.