Tuesday, December 1, 2009
Invitation to All-India Convention Against War on People
As you read this invite, Indian state’s ongoing war on people that began on the 1st of November will already complete several weeks. The body-count of the adivasis –the prime victims of the Indian government’s ‘hunt’– also started to mount.
As per the sporadic news from the Ground Zero trickles in through the media, the casualty is escalating by each passing day, as grow the number of burnt villages, persons displaced, injured or arrested. We hear of battalions of CRPF, COBRA, C-60, Grey Hounds, ITBP, Anti-Naxal Task Force and a whole assortment of armed paramilitary and police forces stepping up their operation in Dandakaranya and adjoining regions, backed by air force helicopters and US intelligence satellites, commanded by army top brass.
As reports are pouring in already thousands of adivasis have been displaced from their homes as the ruthless state repressive machine has let loose a reign of terror in these areas. The renewed offensive by the joint forces in Lalgarh too has left hundreds of protesting adivasis homeless. There is every possibility that the number of dead and injured people, along with the displaced and destroyed villages will only mount in the coming weeks, if the Indian government does not call for an immediate halt to this all-encompassing military offensive. As has been the case with nationality movements in Kashmir and the North East, the Indian state’s endeavour to find a ‘military solution’ through war will only endanger the lives and livelihood of lakhs of citizens.
Indian government has been preparing for this massive military operation for months, lining up nearly one lakh troops and arming them with sophisticated weapons, mobilising the air force for aerial strikes and involving the Indian army not only for training and logistical purposes, but for operational command and even active combat if required.
There are also reports of US intelligence and security officials ‘advising’ the Indian government in conducting this war. As reported by the media, the entire forested regions of central and eastern India have been divided into seven Operating Areas, which the government wants to ‘clear’ within the next five years of all resistance, including that of the Maoists and other Naxalite organisations. An outlay of Rs.7300 crores has already been earmarked for this war.
None is in illusion as to the objectives of this war against the people. This war is being fought by the Indian government at the behest of the corporates and for their benefit, targeting the life and livelihood of the adivasis. The worldwide imperialist economy presently faces its most severe crisis after 1929. The military-industrial complex, which includes multinational and Indian big business interests, is looking for wars that have the potential to artificially generate the much-needed demand for their products in a crisis-ridden market.
Moreover, both domestic and foreign corporations desperately want to lay their hands on the minerals worth billions of dollars deposited in the vast forest regions of central and eastern India. Once accessed, this can guarantee the corporations super-profits for several decades. Hundreds of agreements and MoUs that allow free plunder of people’s resources have already been concluded by mining corporations with the central and state governments. The corporations easily cleared all the legal hurdles between themselves and the natural resources.
The only barrier that now stands between them and their prize is people’s resistance, whether unarmed or armed. From Nandigram to Niyamgiri, Lalgarh to Dandakaranya, Koraput to Kalinganagar, Dadri to Narayanpatna, people have refused to be mere victims of state-sponsored policies of Liberalisation-Privatisation-Globalisation (LPG) in the name of ‘development’. After trying all forceful measures from police repression to Salwa Judum which have failed to deter the people’s movements, the Indian government is now waging war not only against the Naxalite and Maoist movements which have been termed as the ‘biggest internal security threat’, but against all people’s movements that challenge its policies. By doing so, it not only is trying to bulldoze all kinds of dissenting voices and democratic rights, but is also aiming to exterminate the aspirations of the exploited and oppressed people for a better society, a life with dignity.
Forum Against War on People invites you to this All-India Convention which is an effort to examine the ongoing war on people in all its dimensions. More importantly, it seeks to become a strong voice of resistance against this war. We urge you to participate in the Convention and make it an occasion to collectively demand that the Indian government must immediately and unconditionally stop this war, waged in our name against our own people.
Convention Against War On People
Venue: Speaker’s Hall, Constitution Club, Rafi Marg, New Delhi
Date: 4 December 2009 (Friday) Time: 10 am—7 pm
Justice AS Bains
Vara Vara Rao (Revolutionary Poet)
PA Sebastian (CPDR, Maharashtra)
Prof. Jagmohan (AFDR, Punjab)
Arundhati Roy (Writer)
Prof. Jagmohan Singh (World Sikh News)
Bulu Bahan, (Chhattisgarh)
Prof. Amit Bhattacharyya
Ajit Bhuyan (Editor, Asomiya Pratidin)
Shashi Bhushan Pathak (PUCL Jharkhand)
Bernard D’Mello (Deputy Editor, EPW)
Lachit Bordoloi (MASS, Assam)
Dr. N Venuh (NPMHR)
Malem Ningthouja (CPDM, Manipur)
Prof. Seshaiah (APCLC)
Shamsher Singh Bisht (Uttarakhand Lok Vahini)
Lateef Mohd. Khan (Civil Liberties Monitoring Committee)
Kavita Krishnan (CPI-ML)
SAR Geelani (CRPP)
GN Saibaba (RDF)
Santosh Mahapatra (Orissa)
JNU Forum Against War on People
DU Campaign Against War on People
BD Sharma, Arundhati Roy, Tripta Wahi, Vijay Singh, Correspondence, Campaign Against War on People, Committee Against Violence On Women (CAVOW), Naga Students Union Delhi (NSUD), Navjawan Bharat Sabha (NBS), KRALOS, KLAS, Krantikari Yuva Sanghathan (KYS), PFD, PUCL, MKP, Campaign for Peace & Democracy Manipur (CPDM), DSU, CRPP, DGMF, People’s Front (PF), Mazdoor Ekta Manch (MEM), Left Democratic Teacher’s Front (LDTF), RDF, PDFI, CPI (ML) (New Democracy), CPI (ML) (Liberation), CPI (ML) (New Proletarian) and others