Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Report on Protests in Punjab and Mumbai by Harsh Thakor



Today the flame of resistance shimmered all over Punjab like a spark turning into a prairie fire.

It comprised of mass organizations of students ,youth, intellectuals, women,workers and peasants belonging to every section of the Communist revolutionary camp ably backed by the Association for Democratic Rights.

In every district not less than 200 persons were mobilized and in some upto 500 participated.

The working class and peasantry could connect the fascist repression with their own movements related to their day to day class struggles which was significant as well as the students and women. Speaks volumes of the preparations and grassroots work done .

Unity of so many revolutionary forces has great significance in the overall movement to counter fascism..

Contribution of Association for Democratic Rights is very noteworthy.

In Mumbai around 37 organizations comprising around 170 people participated mainly those representing the oppressed Dalit class like the Republican Panthers and most of the speakers highlighted the Brahmanical fascist angle of the arrests.

Very encouraging participation from the student and youth community but hardly any presence of people from the legal fraternity and intellectuals.

Salim Saboowala was the chief speaker and slogan chairer Bigul Mazdoor dasta activists also , made a significant contribution.

Very significant in the financial hub Mumbai where fascism is at it's supreme height activists came out so boldly at Dadar railway station. Joint protests held across Punjab against the arrests of public intellectuals


In a press release, Prof. A.K.Maleri and Prof. Jagmohan Singh, respectively State president and General secretary of Association for Democratic Rights Punjab reported that in solidarity with the All India call against the arrests of five rights activists from across India, joint protests were held at Ludhiana, Barnala, Sangrur, Bathinda, Patiala, Mansa, Jalandhar, Nawanshar, Faridkot district headquarters and and Guru Harsahai sub division of Firozepur. 

On the call of AFDR, Punjab, many organizations of workers, peasants, youth, students, women, rationalists and various democratic and cultural activists participated in large numbers. 

The protesters demanded immediate release of Prof. Varavara Rao, Gautam Navlakha, Advocate Sudha Bhardwaj, Arun Ferreira and Vernon Gonsalves who were arrested recently for their alleged involvement in the Bhima Koregaon violence and for a concocted story of Maoist plot to kill PM Modi. These activists, who have been fighting for the rights of the oppressed for decades are being called ‘Urban Naxals’ by the ruling Sangh Parivar. 

The protesters also sought release of Prof. Shoma Sen, Advocate Surendra Gadling, Sudhir Dhawle, Mahesh Raut, Rona Wilson, Bhim Army chief ChanderShekhar Azaad and Prof. GN Saibaba, who is ninety percent disabled and is in a critical conditions in jail. 

It was emphasized that the this chain of police raids, searches and arrests under the name of ‘Urban Maoists’ is a planned crackdown by the ruling party to stifle the voice of dissent and this should be stopped immediately. Instead, the main Hindutva culprits Sambhaji Bhide and Milind Ekbote should be arrested and punished who are the mastermind behind Bhima-Koregaon violence and all the false cases registered against the Dalits should be scrapped.

Paying tribute to the martyr Journalist Gauri Lankesh on his first anniversary, all the speakers alleged that the ruling BJP is trying to divert the attention from the terror network and the larger Hindtva conspiracy behind the murders of rationalists and journalists which was exposed threadbare in the recent police investigations. They alleged that the Hindu extremists are being treated with kid glove treatment and garlanded publically, but the justice loving people are put behind bars under the draconian UAPA ensuring their indefinite incarceration.

The protesters condemned the amendments 295AA for sacrilege cases passed by the Punjab government and termed it draconian law provisions which will be used against the rationalists and other progressive people by the ruling class to send them behind bar for life. They demanded scrapping of these draconian amendments.

In the protests it was unanimously emphasized that only a broader democratic consciousness among the people can protect the democratic rights and put a stop to suppressive crackdown on people’s assertion for their genuine rights.

Buta Singh Report


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