Need to talk not only of gram swaraj, but also of nagar swaraj and Lok swaraj, today!
Ahmedabad, March 14: The Mumbai- Delhi DMIC Virodhi Sangharsh Yatra reached Gujarat Vidyapith, Ahmedabad, after conversing with farmers in Kheda today. A discussion was held on the topic “DMIC: progress or destruction?” at Ahimsa Mandap in the afternoon, and veteran Gandhian Chunni Vaidya, Ila Bahan Pathak, Rajni Dave, Sagar Rabari, Indu Bhai, Raju Purohit, Vidyut Bhai, Anand Mazgaonkar, Swati Desai and other social activists participated in it along with the Mithivirdi Parmanu Virodhi Sangharsh Samiti and farmers currently fighting against the DMIC’s Palanpur hub.
Addressing the gathering, Chunni Bhai said that there is rampant destruction in the name of developmet in the county today, and that the time has come for the people to rightfully demand from the government that this “bulldozer” of development be stopped. He said that it is society that has the right to the country’s resources, not the government or corporations. He called for everyone present to stand together and say, “Village land belongs to the village, not to the government!”
Vasuram Bhai, associated with the Mithivirdi agitation, said, “we refuse to believe the false claims of the government, it is a statement of borne out of conviction that the farmers and labourers together will not allow anyone to trespass upon their land”.
Talking about the DMIC in Gujarat, Rajendra Purohit stated that the situation in the state, already suffering from misuse of resources for industrial development, will worsen in coming times. Anand Mazgaonkar said that Gujarat is witnessing a fight over the sale of everything from séeds to land, and the false propaganda of zero resistance is being carried out with the help of money power and political power aimed at ensuring open grab and use of natural resources. Agitations are on in Umargaon, Bhavnagar, Mahua, Dahej, Sarbhan, Mithivirdi and Kachch, even as the politically powerful continue their false propaganda for the sake of their political ambitions.
NAPM’s Madhuresh Kumar rested his case saying, “the ruling class has always been attracted towards the big projects and big dreams which are shown to the common man, but development with justice and equity is never discussed. DMIC is yet another fantasy of the megalomaniac ruling class, which is against the rights of the people, and the opposition of which is in the better interests of all society. In the name of progress and industrial development, lakhs of hectares of land, forests and mineral resources have been acquired, but have these ever been used righteously? No. Then why are requisitions being considered? The need of the hour is to address the problems and questions raised due to all the developmental processes till date, for the creation of a peaceful society. Today, we need to talk of not only gram swaraj but of nagar swaraj and Lok swaraj, or else our future generations will never forgive us”.
The meeting came to a close with a discussion about the establishment of a Gram Swaraj Samiti, and the farmers of Palanpur and Mithivirdi announced that they would be participating in the Kisaan Khet Mazdoor Mahapanchayat to be held at Jantar Mantar, Delhi on 18th March. The Yatra will be visiting Pithampur Industrial Area in Indore tomorrow.
Lingraj Azad, Prasad Bagve, Suhaas Kolhekar, Utpal VB, Milind Champanerkar, Krishnakant, Ateek Ahmed, Nasreen Bi, Anwari, Mukesh, Yuvraj Bhatkal, Viabhav Joshi, Mansaram.
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