Janhastakshep : A campaign against Fascist Designs
Public Meeting on Human Rights Day, 10th December, 2014 at 5.30 p.m. at
Gandhi Peace Foundation, Deen Dayal Upadhyay Marg, Near ITO, New Delhi
Subject: Challenges before the Human Rights Movement
We are passing through a critical phase of history in terms of erosion of democratic values and shrinking democratic space. In the recently concluded Lok Sabha Election BJP, the political wing of RSS secured a clear majority with support of corporate media and big capital. The Central Govt. has made many announcements in favour of corporates and advancing economic reforms in support of MNCs. Government is trying to amend Land Ceiling Acts, Labour laws, Land Acquisition Acts to facilitate loot and plunder of natural resources and unhindered exploitation of workers by the global capital. On many issues they get support from various ruling class parties but when government is not in a position to amend the laws of the land due to lack of majority in Rajya Sabha, they are changing the rules to make various provisions of law ineffective specially those which are in favour of poor workers, farmers, tribals or marginalized section of the society and in favour of big corporate. We are sure that people will offer resistance as they are doing for last many years to such policies and Govt. will deal with such protests with iron hand.
The present Govt. is trying to communalize all aspects of life as many Hindu organizations are propagating against cow slaughter, coined a term love jihad and indulging in moral policing. The present Govt. is splanting their nominees in various institutions and redrawing education syllabi. They are trying to impart communally distorted version of history. Like previous Govt. , the present regime is also targeting educated muslim youth branding them as terrorist and putting them behind the bar without evidence. Unfortunately, top echelons of bureaucracy, armed forces, police and political power have chauvinist communal mind set which is posing a greater danger to the composite culture of India. The intent of the government is to keep people divided on caste and communal lines so that a joint struggle of these sections against the new liberal policies can be prevented. We apprehend that they will continue to target religious minority, the glimpse of which we have already seen in what has happened in Muzaffarnagar, Saharanpur, Shamli and other places in Western U.P. in the recent past and communal polarization occurring in city of Delhi.
Central Govt. is focusing on suppressing people struggle specially those which are against displacement. They have deployed more central force in the state of Chattisgarh and Jharkhand to counter resistance offered by the people against displacement due to clearance given to mining projects of big corporate and MLCs. Resistance is being met by severe repression including fake cases against the activists of the movements and their arbitrary arrest. Latest case being the arrest of the one of the leaders of the peaceful anti-displacement movement of the Adivasis of Niyamgiri against the land grab for mining by Vedanta. Supporters of the anti-displacement movements are subjected to various forms of harassment including arrest under the Draconian laws like UAPA. Glaring examples are the arrests of journalist Prashant Rahi, human rights activist, Prof. GN Saibaba, cultural activist, Hem Mishra. Thus the displacement, in the name of development that renders millions homeless and bereft of the source of livelihood without appropriate rehabilitation and poses the threat to the food security, is one of the major concerns for human rights groups.
Yet another alarming issue of human rights is, women’s right as human, seriously threatened by the jugglery of love jihad and moral policing by the obscurantist RSS outfits as self claimed custodians of “Indian Culture”. Another menace to women’s right as human that at times, culminates into heinous crimes like the honor killings under the dictates of regressive institutions like Khap Panchayat or old feudal patriarchal order of Indian society which keeps women enchained to keep caste and faith line pure.
Another danger to the civil and human rights of ordinary people and intellectuals is spreading fascist trend of intolerance of dissenting opinions that has further aggravated after the acquisition of the power at center by the Hindutva forces. There is continued presence of Army and para-military forces armed with draconian black laws like AFSPA, UAPA and others in North Eastern states, Chhatisgarh, J&K, Jharkhand and other states to suppress people resistance against oppressive economic policies and nationality struggles. Democratic rights of the people of these states are trampled under the foot.
On this international day, Janahastakshep seeks a wider debate on the pressing issues of threats to human rights among the democratic forces in general and human rights organizations in particular, to be able to objectively comprehend the gravity of the situation and to chalk out strategies to fight out.
Please join us in the deliberations.