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Egypt: disturbing trends above, contradictory trends below

A World to Win News Service.

Recent events in Egypt indicate attempts by the US-backed military regime to restabilize the situation on a basis that goes against the aspirations and expectations of many of the youth and others who toppled Hosni Mubarak.

The attacks on women demonstrators in Cairo 8 March were a weather vane. There is a rising cold wind representing a convergence between the regime, the Muslim Brotherhood and other Islamists as a force standing against basic social change, and what must be frankly seen as the force of tradition and backwardness that is contending with the people’s deep longing for liberation.

What was called for as a “Million Woman March” on International Women’s Day, in a reference to one of the final demonstrations before Mubarak was forced out, did not reach its goals. The crowd in Tahrir Square numbered only a few hundred or a thousand at most, according to news reports. But it was extremely important in two ways. First, the radicality and relevance of its demands for equal rights for women can be seen in the viciousness with which it was attacked. Second, it brought together a broad section of women, especially but not only young, including women wearing hijab (head scarves) and those whose heads were defiantly uncovered. Some men came out with them as well. These are brave forces with broad roots who are determined to keep the movement going forward.

The protest was surrounded by a far larger crowd of men, who heckled them and chanted that women’s place is in the home. There was a long period of shouting and debate. Some men argued that this demonstration, held in honour of the martyrs of the anti-Mubarak movement as well as demanding rights for women, was an insult to men. They were incensed by the women’s demand that women be allowed to run for the presidency, since, they said, women shouldn’t be involved in politics at all.

The women persisted in the face of verbal and physical abuse and danger. Many argued vigorously with their accusers. Groups of women and men fought to free women who were being grabbed at and abused. Army security forces in the square did not intervene, except to fire shots in the air at the end as the demonstrators were finally forced to withdraw. Continue reading

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March 31, 2011 Posted by | A World to Win, articles, Breaking with the old ideas, communalism, culture, History, kashmir, movements | Leave a comment

Justice Links Our Struggles Together


Arundhati Roy, the celebrated novelist and international activist, is facing a police investigation that could lead to her being put on trial for sedition. This attack on her right to speak is the result of Roy’s determined support for the struggle for “azaadi,” or freedom, in Kashmir, a region partitioned between India and Pakistan and under military occupation in the area India controls. Roy has written about the Kashmiri struggle in her essay collection Field Notes on Democracy: Listening to Grasshoppers, among other books.

A court in India’s capital of Dehli ordered the investigation after a complaint was filed against Roy, a leader of the Kasmiri struggle, Syed Ali Shah Geelani and Delhi University professor S.A.R. Geelani, in particular for their part in a conference on the question of Kashmiri liberation where Roy spoke. Here, we publish a full transcription of the speech, which was punctuated by interruptions from Roy’s opponents, beginning with S.A.R. Geelani’s introduction of her.

S.A.R. Geelani: Now I request Arundhati Roy to come and speak.

Arundhati Roy: If anybody has any shoes to throw, please throw them now…

[Some people in the audience: “We’re cultured.”]

AR: Good, I’m glad. I’m glad to hear that. Though being cultured is not necessarily a good thing. But anyway…

[Interruption from some people in the audience.]

SG: Please, will you talk afterwards. Now prove that you are cultured.

AR: About a week or 10 days ago, I was in Ranchi, where there was a Peoples’ Tribunal against Operation Green Hunt–which is the Indian state’s war against the poorest people in this country. And at that tribunal, just as I was leaving, a TV journalist stuck a mic in my face and very aggressively said, “Madam, is Kashmir an integral part of India or not? Is Kashmir an integral part of India or not?” about five times. So I said, “Look, Kashmir has never been an integral part of India–however aggressively and however often you want to ask me that.” Even the Indian government has accepted, in the UN, that it’s not an integral part of India. So why are we trying to change that narrative now?

See, in 1947, we were told that India became a sovereign nation and a sovereign democracy, but if you look at what the Indian state did from midnight of 1947 onwards, that colonized country, that country that became a country because of the imagination of its colonizer–the British drew the map of India in 1899–that country became a colonizing power the moment it became independent, and the Indian state has militarily intervened in Manipur, in Nagaland, in Mizoram, in Kashmir, in Telangana, during the Naxalbari uprising, in Punjab, in Hyderabad, in Goa, in Junagarh.

So often, the Indian government, the Indian state, the Indian elite, they accuse the Naxalites of believing in protracted war, but actually, you see a state–the Indian state–that has waged protracted war against its own people, or what it calls its own people, relentlessly since 1947. And when you look at who are those people that it has waged war against–the Nagas, the Mizos, the Manipuris, people in Assam, Hyderabad, Kashmir, Punjab–it’s always a minority, the Muslims, the tribals, the Christians, the Dalits, the Adivasis. Endless war by an upper caste Hindu state–this is what is the modern history of our country.

Now, in 2007, at the time of the uprising in Kashmir against that whole acquisition of land for the Amarnath Yatra, I was in Srinagar, and I was walking down the road, and I met a young journalist, I think he was from Times of India, and he said to me–he couldn’t believe that he saw some Indian person, walking alone on the road–and he said, “Can I have a quote?” So I said, “Yes, do you have a pen? Because I don’t want to be misquoted.” And I said, “Write down–India needs azaadi from Kashmir just as much as Kashmir needs azaadi from India.” And when I said India, I did not mean the Indian state. I meant the Indian people because I think that the occupation of Kashmir–today, there are 700,000 security personnel manning that valley of 12 million people, it is the most militarized zone in the world–and for us, the people of India, to tolerate that occupation is like allowing a kind of moral corrosion to drip into our bloodstream.

So for me, it’s an intolerable situation to try and pretend that it isn’t happening. Even if the media blanks it out, all of us know–or maybe all of us don’t know, but any of us who’ve visited Kashmir know–that Kashmiris cannot inhale and exhale without their breath going through the barrel of an AK-47.

So, so many things have been done there. Every time there’s an election and people come out to vote, the Indian government goes and says, “Why do you want a referendum? There was a vote, and the people have voted for India.” Now, I actually think that we need to deepen our thinking a little bit because I, too, am very proud of this meeting today. I think it’s a historic meeting in some ways, it’s a historic meeting taking place in the capital of this very hollow superpower, a superpower where 830 million people live on less than 20 rupees a day.

Now, sometimes it’s very difficult to know from what place one stands on as formally a citizen of India, what can one say, what is one allowed to say, because when India was fighting for independence from British colonization–every argument that people now use to problematize the problems of azaadi in Kashmir were certainly used against Indians. Crudely put, “The natives are not ready for freedom, the natives are not ready for democracy.” But every kind of complication was also true–I mean the great debates between Ambedkar and Gandhi and Nehru, they were also real debates–and over these last 60 years, whatever the Indian state has done, people in this country have argued and debated and deepened the meaning of freedom.

We have also lost a lot of ground because we’ve come to a stage today where India–a country that once called itself non-aligned, that once held its head up in pride–has today totally lain down prostrate on the floor at the feet of the USA. So we are a slave nation today. Our economy is completely–however much the Sensex may be growing, the fact is the reason that the Indian police, the paramilitary and soon perhaps the army will be deployed in the whole of central India is because it’s an extractive colonial economy that’s being foisted on us.

But the reason that I said what we need to do is to deepen this conversation is because it’s also very easy for us to continue to pat ourselves on the backs as great fighters for resistance–for anything, whether it’s the Maoists in the forests or whether it’s the stone-pelters on the streets–but actually, we must understand that we are up against something very serious. And I’m afraid that the bows and arrows of the Adivasis and the stones in the hands of the young people are absolutely essential, but they are not the only thing that’s going to win us freedom, and for that, we need to be tactical. We need to question ourselves, we need to make alliances, serious alliances…

Because…I often say that in 1986 when capitalism won its jihad against soviet communism in the mountains of Afghanistan, the whole world changed, and India realigned itself in the unipolar world, and in that realignment, it did two things. It opened two locks. One was the lock of the Babri Masjid and one was the lock of the Indian markets, and it ushered in two kinds of totalitarianism–Hindu fascism, Hindutva fascism and economic totalitarianism. And both these manufactured their own kinds of terrorism–so you have Islamist “terrorists” and the Maoist “terrorists.”

And this process has made 80 percent of this country live on 20 rupees a day, but it has divided us all up, and we spend all our time fighting with each other, when in fact, there should be deep solidarity. There should be deep solidarity between the struggles in Manipur, the struggles in Nagaland, the struggle in Kashmir, the struggle in central India and in all the poor, squatters, the vendors , all the slum dwellers and so on.

But what is it that should link these struggles? It’s the idea of justice. Because there can be struggles which are not struggles for justice. There are peoples’ movements like the VHP is a peoples’ movement–but it’s a struggle for fascism, it’s a struggle for injustice. We don’t align ourselves with that. So every movement, every person on the street, every slogan is not a slogan for justice.

So when I was in Kashmir on the streets during the Amarnath Yatra time, and even today–I haven’t been to Kashmir recently–but I’ve seen and my heart is filled with appreciation for the struggle that people are waging, the fight that young people are fighting, and I don’t want them to be let down. I don’t want them to be let down even by their own leaders because I want to believe that this fight is a fight for justice. Not a fight in which you pick and choose your justices–“we want justice, but it’s okay if the other chap is squashed.” That’s not right.

So I remember when I wrote in 2007, I said the one thing that broke my heart on the streets of Srinagar was when I heard people say, “Nanga Bhooka Hindustan, jaan se pyaara Pakistan.” I said, “No. Because the Nanga Bhooka Hindustan is with you. And if you’re fighting for a just society, then you must align yourselves with the powerless.” The Indian people here today are people who have spent their lives opposing the Indian state.

I have, as many of you may know, been associated for a long time with the struggle in the Narmada valley against big dams, and I always say that I think so much about these two valleys–the Kashmir valley and the Narmada valley.

In the Narmada valley, they speak of repression, but perhaps the people don’t really know what repression is, because they’ve not experienced the kind of repression that there is in the Kashmir valley. But they have a very, very, very sophisticated understanding of the economic structures of the world of imperialism and of the earth, and what it does and how those big dams create an inequality that you cannot get away from. And in the Kashmir valley you have such a sophisticated understanding of repression–60 years of repression of secret operations, of spying, of intelligence operations, of death, of killing.

But have you insulated yourself from that other understanding, of what the world is today? What these economic structures are? What kind of Kashmir are you going to fight for? Because we are with you in that fight, we are with you. But we want–we hope that it will be a fight for justice. We know today that this word “secularism” that the Indian state flings at us is a hollow word because you can’t kill 68,000 Kashmiri Muslims and then call yourself a secular state. You cannot allow the massacre of Muslims in Gujarat and call yourself a secular state.

And yet, you can’t then turn around and say that “we are allowed to treat our minorities badly.” So what kind of justice are you fighting for? I hope that the young people will deepen their idea of azaadi. It is something that the state and your enemies that you’re fighting uses to divide you. That’s true.

[Some people in the audience: “Do you know what happened to the pundits?”]

AR: I know the story of the Kashmiri pundits. I also know that the story that these Panun Kashmir pundits put out is false. However, this does not mean that injustice was not done.

[People in audience: “Do you know how many Hindus were killed?”]

AR: I think–okay, let me continue

[Part of the crowd is arguing loudly]

SG: I request everyone to please sit.

AR: Alright, I want to say that I think this disturbance is based on a misunderstanding, because I was beginning to talk about justice, and Continue reading

December 9, 2010 Posted by | articles, Breaking with the old ideas, communalism, History, kashmir, movements | 1 Comment

Press Statement on the FIR against SAS Geelani, Arundhati Roy and Others

The Campaign Against War on People (CAWP) strongly condemns the registering of a FIR by the Delhi Police on 29 November 2010, under orders from a Metropolitan Magistrate, charging writer Arundhati Roy, Hurriyat leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani, poet Varavara Rao, Delhi University professor SAR Geelani and others with sedition and with delivering “anti-India” speeches.

The speeches in question were delivered at a convention on the Kashmir issue, where, expectedly and inevitably, the possibility and ramifications of ‘Azadi’ or freedom, were repeatedly raised and addressed. It is ridiculous to propose that the Kashmir issue must or even can be discussed without engaging with this very serious question. Yet, by attempting to label such discussion ‘seditious’, ‘anti-national’ and ‘inflammatory’, the Indian state, through its arms of the judiciary and the police, is proposing to take precisely this ridiculous stand. It is seeking to enforce silence on the question of ‘Azadi’ through such drastic measures, as if by doing so it can erase the possibility of ‘Azadi’. This version of the ostrich syndrome is both dangerous and ill-conceived.

It is deeply disturbing that, from a convention reportedly attended by hundreds of people, who all participated actively in the discussion on ‘Azadi’, a few individuals have been selectively targeted for penalisation. The cry for ‘Azadi’ is being raised by lakhs of people across the Kashmir valley: does this mean that the government proposes to charge them all with sedition, as a means to arrive at a resolution? Or are these individuals being chosen for punishment because they are also well-known critics of various other questionable policies and actions by the Indian state?

This step is yet another in a series of attempts at various levels to quell the voices of dissent and difference that are inevitable in any heterogeneously constituted society such as ours. The presence and audibility of such voices is fundamental to any true democratic polity. The fact that the case has also been registered under, among others, Section 13 of the draconian Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act is particularly troubling, and is an indication of the increasing intolerance of the state towards criticism. The sedition laws are an antiquated legacy of the British Raj, and ironically, were repealed decades ago in their country of origin. They are completely out of synch with the realities of today’s India, and evidently remain in place only as a tool to repress any questioning of the government.

We therefore demand the immediate quashing of the FIR against the said individuals, and call for the repeal of Section 124, dealing with sedition.

Campaign Against War on People

December 4, 2010 Posted by | History, kashmir, movements, statements | 1 Comment

Statement from the Concerned Citizens of India on Kashmir

(Individuals and Organizations, please endorse this statement by sending your information (including name, affiliation, location/country, and contact email) to: concernedcitizensnow@gmail.com –EDITOR)

We are deeply concerned at the recent media reports of possible cases of ‘sedition’ to be levelled against some of the speakers at the public convention on Kashmir held in New Delhi on 21 October 2010 titled “Azadi: The Only Way” organized by the Committee for the Release of Political Prisoners(CRPP) with sections of political forces fomenting jingoistic feelings. We are appalled to find how impatient sections of the Indian society have become, and how attempts are consistently being made to silence voices of dissent by the Indian government by branding such voice crying for justice as ‘seditious’—a term the new Indian state borrowed from the days of the British raj.

We strongly believe that freedom of speech and expression is an in-alienable  fundamental right guaranteed under the Indian constitution which can never be curbed in a country which boasts of ‘having the largest democracy in the world’.

We also strongly feel that the Kashmir issue is a political issue which has a history since the late 1940s and that history makes it amply clear that the future of the State of Jammu and Kashmir would have to be decided through a plebiscite under the supervision of the United Nations as testified also by the existence of a UN office at Srinagar since then.

We strongly demand that instead of trying to gag the voices of sanity and justice through violent means, the Government of India should come forthwith in addressing the most vital political issue—the issue of exercising the right of self-determination and openly invite the people of all parts of Jammu & Kashmir to come forward and decide their own future through plebiscite under United Nations supervision as accepted by the Nehru-led Indian government itself.

Dated, Kolkata, 27 October 2010.

1. Amit Bhattacharyya, Professor, Department of History, Jadavpur University.
2. Sujato Bhadro, Civil Rights activist.
3. Meher Engineer, Former Director, Bose Institute.
4. Sudeshna Engineer, Reader, Department of History, Jadavpur University.
5. Tilottama Mukherjee, Lecturer, Department of History, Jadavpur University.
6. Ranjan Chakrabarti, Professor of History, Jadavpur University.
7. Kalyan Roy, Professor, Department of Instrumentation, Jadavpur University.
8. Himadri Sankar Banerjee, Professor, Department of History, Jadavpur University.
9. Sanjeeb Acharyya, Reader, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Jadavpur University.
10. H.N.Toppo, Lecturere, Department of International Relations, Jadavpur University.
11. Rupkumar Marman, Reader, Department of History, Jadavpur University.
12. Aveek Mazumdar, Lecturer, Department of Comparative Literature, Jadavpur University.
13. Subha Chakrabarty, Professor, Department of Comparative Literature, Jadavpur University.
14. Debashish Goswami. Associate Professor, Indian Statistical Instutute, Kolkata.
15. Sanjeeb Mukherjee, Professor, Department of Film Studies, Jadavpur University.
16. Abhijit Roy, Reader, Department of Film Studies, Jadavpur Unuiversity.
17. Sanmitra Ghosh, Lecturer, Department of Economics, Jadavpur University.

October 27, 2010 Posted by | articles, kashmir, Media, movements, news, statements | Leave a comment

Vara Vara Rao on ‘sedition’

Sedition isn’t all Roy said

Varavara Rao
Having been one of the speakers at the seminar in New Delhi last week on “Is Azadi the only way for Kashmir?” I am not surprised by the hue and cry over Arundhati Roy’s observation that the people of Kashmir have a right to self-determination and even Azadi. I’m not surprised by the call to book her for sedition either.

She is not the first person who has said such a thing nor is she going to be the last. In fact, all those who participated in the meeting – Prof. Sujata Badro, Syed Ali Shah Geelani and myself – echoed a similar feeling.  The reason is simple: this is what the people of Kashmir want and there is no wishing that away.

Consciously or otherwise, quite a few aspects raised by Roy are not being discussed by the media and politicians. It is important to mention them.

While endorsing the right to self-determination, Roy also emphasised that freedom alone does not give everything: she wanted to know what kind of justice would be done to the people of Kashmir if and when they are given the freedom to rule themselves. She also referred to slogans she had heard during a visit to Kashmir: “Bhookha nanga Hindustan, nahi rahenge is desh mein” and took serious objection to such an attitude. Roy pointed out that support for the struggle of Kashmiris was coming exactly from the same classes – the poor and the oppressed in other parts of the country apart from a miniscule section of intellectuals.  It is the Indian establishment which is opposed to their fight.

I am also surprised at the changed stance of Geelani who, ten years ago, spoke of nothing short of Islam as bringing an end to the problems of Kashmir. But today he reminded us that Mahatma Gandhi wanted the people of Kashmir to decide where to live, how Jawaharlal Nehru favoured a plebiscite and how BJP prime minister Atal Behari Vajpayee made attempts to find a political solution by talking to Pakistan. What none of us should forget is that Hyderabad and Kashmir were among the three princely states that were not part of the Indian Union at the time of Independence. The people of Telangana, of which Hyderabad is a part, are now demanding a separate state within the country but the people of Kashmir, even to this day, str­ongly prefer freedom. Not recogni­sing the demand will not lead to any solution.

(Vara Vara Rao is a revolutionary writer who has faced several cases of sedition and conspiracy. He has been acquitted in most of them.)

October 27, 2010 Posted by | articles, History, kashmir, Media, movements, news, statements | Leave a comment

CRPP Statement on attempt to silence voices of dissent

COMMITTEE FOR THE RELEASE OF POLITICAL PRISONERS

185/3, FOURTH FLOOR, ZAKIR NAGAR, NEW DELHI-25

Date: 26/10/10

Condemn strongly fascist designs of the Indian government to silence voices of dissent!

Condemn strongly the move to put Arundhati Roy and Syed Ali Shah Geelani under charges of sedition!

Ever since the historic convention in Delhi titled “Azadi: The Only Way” organised by the CRPP, the media is abuzz with reports of possible cases of ‘sedition’ against some of the main speakers in the convention. The names that are being cited keeps changing with the imagination of the concerned media houses.

The hype has become so high that now rather than discussing the serious issues pertaining to the political aspirations of the people of Jammu & Kashmir that was deliberated by one and all in the convention the issue has got subverted into a conflated, convenient binary of that what is euphemistically called as ‘seditious’ or ‘non-seditious’.

The word ‘sedition’ itself is of colonial descent conveniently used by the British colonisers to prevail upon and browbeat the freedom loving people of the subcontinent into submission. Today the Indian government along with an obliging media and a jingoist communal Sangh Parivar led by BJP on tow is deploying the same words to force through a pigeon hole sense of national chauvinism in the name of the vast sections of the people of this subcontinent.

The act of the Government of India is best summed up by Arundhati herself in her eloquent statement: “In the papers some have accused me of giving ‘hate-speeches’, of wanting India to break up. On the contrary, what I say comes from love and pride. It comes from not wanting people to be killed, raped, imprisoned or have their finger-nails pulled out in order to force them to say they are Indians. It comes from wanting to live in a society that is striving to be a just one. Pity the nation that has to silence its writers for speaking their minds. Pity the nation that needs to jail those who ask for justice, while communal killers, mass murderers, corporate scamsters, looters, rapists, and those who prey on the poorest of the poor, roam free.”

We at the CRPP strongly condemn these deliberate designs of the Indian government to target writer activist Arundhati Roy and Chairperson, All Parties Hurriyat Conference, Mr. Syed Ali Shah Geelani for expressing their views which are grounded in the bedrock of history of the relentless struggle of the people of Jammu & Kashmir for their Right to Self-Determination that they have kept alive for decades through their sacrifices. We strongly demand that instead of trying to scuttle the voices of sanity the Government of India should come forthright in addressing the issues that everyone in Jammu & Kashmir is today fearlessly talking about.

In Solidarity,

Gurusharan Singh, President

Amit Bhattacharyya, Secretary General

SAR Geelani, Working President

Rona Wilson, Secretary, Public Relations

October 27, 2010 Posted by | articles, History, kashmir, Media, movements, news, statements | 2 Comments

कश्मीर से अरुंधती राय

अरुंधती राय

मैं यह कश्मीर से लिख रही हूं.सुबह अखबारों से पता चला कि हाल ही में मैंने कश्मीर मसले पर जो सार्वजनिक बैठकों में जो कुछ कहा उसके कारण देशद्रोह के आरोप में मुझे गिरफ्तार किया जा सकता है. मैंने वही कहा है जो लाखों लोग यहां हर दिन कहते हैं.

मैंने वही कहा है जो मैं और दूसरे बुद्धिजीवी कई सालों से कहते आ रहे हैं.कोई भी इंसान जो मेरे भाषण की लिखित कॉपी पढ़ने का कष्ट करेगा समझ जाएगा कि मेरी बातें मूल रूप से न्याय के पक्ष में एक गुहार है.मैंने कश्मीरियों के लिए न्याय के बारे में बात की है जो दुनिया के सबसे क्रूर सैन्य आधिपत्य में रहने के लिए मजबूर हैं. मैंने उन कश्मीरी पंडितो के लिए न्याय की बात की है जो अपनी जमीन से बेदखल किए जाने की त्रासदी भुगत रहे हैं.

मैंने उन दलित सिपाहियों के लिए न्याय बात की है जो कश्मीर में मारे गए हैं और कूढ़े के ढेर पर बनी जिनकी कब्रों को मैंने देखा है.मैंने भारत के उन गरीबों की बात की है जो इसकी कीमत चुका रहे हैं और अब एक पुलिस राज्य के आंतक तले जीवित रहने का अभ्यास कर रहे हैं.

कल मैं सोपियां गई थी.दक्षिण कश्मीर का सेव-नगर जो पिछले 46दिनों से आशिया और नीलोफर के साथ बलात्कार और हत्या के विरोध में बंद है.आशिया और सोफिया के शव उनके घर के नजदीक बहने वाले झरने में पाए गए थे और उनके हत्यारों को अभी तक सजा नहीं मिली है.मैं नीलोफर के पति और आशिया के भाई शकील से भी मिली.
हम दुख और गुस्से से भरे उन लोगों के बीचो बीच बैठे थे जो ये मानते है कि भारत से अब उन्हे इंसाफ की उम्मीद नहीं हैं.और अब ये मानते हैं कि आजादी अब आखिरी विकल्प है.मैं उन पत्थर फेंकने वाले लड़कों से भी मिली जिनकी आंख में गोली मारी गई थी.एक नवयुवक ने मुझे बताया कि कैसे उसके तीन दोस्तों को अनंतनाग जिले में गिरफ्तार कर लिया गया था और पत्थर फेंकने की सजा के रूप में उनके नाखून उखाड़ दिए गए थे.

अखबारों में कुछ लोगों ने मुझ पर नफरत फैलाने वाला भाषण देने और देश को विखंडित करने की इच्छा रखने का आरोप लगाया है.जबकि इसके उलट मैंने जो कुछ कहा है वो गर्व और प्रेम की निष्पत्ति है.यह उस इच्छा का नतीजा है जो लोगों की हत्या नहीं चाहती,लोगों का बलात्कार नहीं चाहती,नहीं चाहती कि किसी को जेल हो और किसी को भारतीय कहलवाने के लिए उनके नाखून उधेड़ दिए जाएं.

यह उस समाज में रहने की इच्छा के फलस्वरूप है जो केवल और केवल न्यायसंगत होने की जद्दोजहद मे है.धिक्कार है उस देश को अपने लेखकों को उनके विचार रखने पर चुप कराना चाहता है.धिक्कार है उस देश को उन लोगों को जेल में रखना चाहता है जो न्याय की मांग करते हैं.धिक्कार है उस देश को जहां सांप्रदायिक हत्यारे, लोगों की जान लेने वाले, कारपोरेट भ्रष्टाचारी, लुटेरे, बलात्कारी, गरीबों का शिकार करने वाले खुलेआम घूमते हैं.
अरूंधति रॉय
अक्टूबर 26, 2010

October 26, 2010 Posted by | articles, History, kashmir, Media, movements, news, statements | 3 Comments

Resolution passed in the Convention on Kashmir—Azadi: The Only Way

Kashmir today has turned a torturous prison for its people where the right to life is a mirage. Mourning is a luxury which common masses cannot afford. Everyone in the beautiful Valley is condemned, whose turn for being murdered could come anytime, anywhere. Ironically, the murderer is a claimant to democracy. And the murder is of democracy.

The killings of at least 110 civilians, most of them young teenage boys, from the start of early summer till now is testimony to this fact. Curfews were imposed, bullets were fired, tear smoke used to intimidate and suppress the people of Kashmir into submission by the Indian state. Every trick in the book was employed, perhaps surpassing even the Machiavellian imaginations. In face of brute force and scheming tactics of the state, the people of Kashmir have shown the highest levels of patience, perseverance & courage. A lively spirit and a determinate attitude which is exemplary for the Resistance struggles worldwide and brings to light the pinnacle of the strength of the human will.

While many people have shown concern and expressed their views about the recent turn of events in Kashmir it is imperative to contextualize the whole situation. We need to ask the question as to why people are getting killed in hundreds, injured in thousands, kept behind bars, tortured and maimed. It is important at this juncture to bring the attention towards the fact that the basic issue at hand regarding the Kashmir dispute is the Self-Determination of the people of Jammu Kashmir for which they have been steadfast and hence been the target of the repressive military machine of the Indian State. The people of Jammu Kashmir are clear about the fact that what they want is Azaadi which they have time and again defined in coherent terms of letting them decide their own future. They have made clear that for them Azadi is the only way.

The latest people’s resistance—which forms the part of recently launched ‘Quit Jammu Kashmir Movement’—needs to be viewed as a continuity of the Resistance movement (Tehreek) which the people of Kashmir have been sustaining for over six decades. And which for the past few years has been completely non-violent and peaceful. The only violent party being the Indian state.

The political dispute vis-a-vis Kashmir need not be confused with the superficial measures like the removal of AFSPA, human rights violations, other draconian acts, stopping of unlawful killings, torture, enforced disappearances etc. Though all these things do exist and need to be stopped at any cost, they manifest only symptoms of a broader and deeper malaise—a militarized governance used to maintain a military occupation of the region by the Indian state, through its armed forces, numbering at least 7,00,000. It is this occupation that has not only killed 110 this year, but also more than 70,000 people during last 20 years, disappeared 10,000, orphaned, tortured, injured, maimed tens of thousands more, and continues to illegally detain thousands of Kashmiris who are being denied even the rights of political prisoners in Kashmiri as well as Indian jails.

In order to address these issues several measures are required, which would move in the direction of the attainment of Azadi for the people of Jammu Kashmir. And we at this convention ’Azadi: The Only Way’ organized by the Committee for the Release of Political Prisoners (CRPP), on 21st of October 2010 at LTG Auditorium, New Delhi, propose the following:

We ask the Indian state to:

* Formally admit that Kashmir is an internationally recognized dispute.

* Immediately start steps towards complete demilitarization of the region.

* Immediately Release all the political prisoners languishing both in Kashmiri as well as Indian jails.

* Immediately revoke all the black laws like AFSPA, Disturbed Areas Act, Public Safety Act etc.

Also, we would ask all democratic people in the world at large to:

* Pressurize the Indian state to take immediate steps in this regard.

* Investigate into thousands of unnamed and mass graves found in Jammu Kashmir.

* Prosecute and bring to justice all those responsible for the murder of innocent Kashmiri civilians.

October 22, 2010 Posted by | articles, History, kashmir, Media, movements, news, statements | 1 Comment

CONVENTION ON KASHMIR

 

AZADI: THE ONLY WAY

CONVENTION ON KASHMIR

VENUE: LTG AUDITORIUM, COPERNICUS MARG, MANDI HOUSE, NEW DELHI

DATE: 21-10-2010, THURSDAY                    TIME: 2PM-8PM


Speakers:

  • Gurusharan Singh, noted dramatist & President CRPP
  • Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Tehreek-e-Hurriyat, Jammu & Kashmir
  • Vara Vara Rao, Revolutionary poet
  • Retd. Justice AS Bains
  • Arundhati Roy,  writer
  • Sheikh Showkat Hussain, Law Faculty, University of Kashmir
  • N  Venuh,  Naga People’s Movement for Human Rights (NPMHR)
  • Thiagu, writer and activist
  • Amit Bhattacharyya, Secretary General CRPP
  • Malem, Campaign for Peace and Democracy in Manipur (CPDM)
  • Najeeb Mubaraki, Economic Times
  • Sujato Bhadra, APDR
  • Shuddhabrata Sengupta, Sarai
  • Aparna, IFTU
  • Kanwarpal Singh
  • SAR Geelani
COMMITTEE FOR THE RELEASE OF POLITICAL PRISONERS [CRPP]
CONTACT: 9810081228, 9971187081

October 20, 2010 Posted by | kashmir, movements, statements | Leave a comment

कश्मीर के इतिहास पर प्रदर्शनी

— जनता पर युद्ध के खिलाफ अभियान

कश्मीर में भारतीय सैनिक बलों द्वारा नागरिकों की हत्याओं के खिलाफ शरू हुए विरोध प्रदर्शनों को अब तीन माह से अधिक समय हो गया है. प्रदर्शनों का यह मौजूदा सिलसिला जून ११ को शरू हुआ जब भारतीय सुरक्षा बलों द्वारा फेंके गए स्मोक बम से एक कश्मीरी किशोर की मौत हो गई. कश्मीर के लोगों ने  बहुत बड़ी संख्या में सड़कों पर उतर कर इस हत्या का विरोध किया. इस हत्या के लिए जिम्मेदार लोगों को सजा देने के बजाय प्रदर्शनकारी जनता पर गोलियां चलाई गईं, आंसू गैस के गोले छोड़े गए, कर्फ्यू लगा दिया गया और बड़ी मात्र में लोगों को गिरफ्तार किया गया. सरकार के अपने ही आंकड़ों के अनुसार जून 11 से अब तक 81 लोग मारे जा चुके हैं जिसमें बहुत सारे किशोर और एक आठ साल का बच्चा भी शामिल है. हालांकि भारतीय सुरक्षा बलों द्वारा चलाया  जा रहा यह अंतहीन दमन अभियान -जिसे कुख्यात ‘आर्म्ड फोर्सेस स्पेशल पावर्स एक्ट’ का कानूनी सरंक्षण हासिल है- कश्मीरियों को डराने में विफल रहा है. वस्तुतः, फौजी क्रूरता के हर एक कृत्य ने और भी अधिक लोगों को सड़कों में लाने का काम किया है. सैनिक बलों द्वारा लगभग रोज़  ही  आम नागरिकों की हत्या से भारतीय राज्य और कश्मीरी जनता के बीच चल रहे दशकों पुराने इस संघर्ष में रोज़ नई कड़ियाँ जुड़ रही हैं.

आज कश्मीर ने हमें भारतीय जनतंत्र के बारें में सोचने के लिए मजबूर कर दिया है. जनवाद के क्षरण की यह प्रक्रिया कश्मीर में ही नहीं रुक जाएगी; यह हम सब को लील जाएगी. इस महत्वपूर्ण समय में नागरिक समाज और ख़ास कर छात्रों के लिए यह जरुरी हो गया है कि हम कश्मीर और इस के भविष्य के सवाल पर बहस में हस्तक्षेप करें. हमें यह नहीं भूलना चाहिए कि कश्मीर के मौजूदा जनप्रदर्शन और उनका दमन कोई अलग थलग घटना नहीं है. इसका सत्तर वर्ष का लम्बा इतिहास है. इस ऐतिहासिक सन्दर्भ को समझे बिना आज कोई भी बहस सार्थक नहीं हो सकती. यह खास तौर पर इसलिए भी जरुरी हो जाता है क्योंकि भारतीय ‘मुख्यधारा’ का मीडिया हमेशा की तरह इस मुद्दे  को ऐतिहासिक पृष्ठभूमि  से काट कर पेश करने की पुरजोर कोशिश में लगा हुआ है.

कश्मीर पर एक सुविचारित बहस की शुरुआत करने के लिए हम आपको कश्मीर के इतिहास पर प्रदर्शनी में आमंत्रित करते हैं.

कश्मीर के बारे में कुछ तथ्य :

  1. कश्मीर घाटी में सात लाख भारतीय सैनिक तैनात हैं
  2. हर 14 कश्मीरी लोगों पर एक सैनिक, विश्व का सबसे अधिक सैन्यीकृत क्षेत्र
  3. इस संघर्ष में 80,000 कश्मीरी लोग मारे जा चुके हैं. केवल पिछले तीन महीनों में ही 81 लोग मारे जा चुके हैं
  4. अंतराष्ट्रीय जन सुनवाई ने 2700 ऐसी सामूहिक कब्रों का सच उजागर किया जिनमे फर्जी मुठभेड़ में मारे गए लोगों को दफनाया गया था.
  5. कश्मीर यूनिवर्सिटी स्टुडेंट्स एसोसिएसन को प्रतिबंधित कर दिया गया है. हालिया हत्याओं के खिलाफ प्रदर्शन करने वाले  15 छात्रों को UAPA  के तहत गिरफ्तार किया गया है.
कश्मीर के सात दशक, 1940-2010

स्थान: दिल्ली स्कूल ऑफ़ इकोनोमिक्स, दिल्ली विश्वविद्यालय

दिनांक: 21 सितंबर 2010

समय: 11 बजे से 3 बजे तक

September 19, 2010 Posted by | articles, History, kashmir | 2 Comments