People campaign started in North Maharastra for secularism and democratic rights
After Dhule riots and its expansion in rural areas, Lok Sangharsh Morcha has decided to launch a "people's campaign for secularism and democratic rights". The first phase of campaign would be carried out in three districts of north Maharastra (Dhule, Nandurbar and Jalgaon), which is now targeted by communal forces. These districts of North Maharastra are strategic for Hindutva forces while it is situated at the border of BJP ruled Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh and having dense tribal population. This area was never been riot- prone area because of its glorious tradition of tribal movements led by socialist, gandhian and Marxist forces. But in the recent days due to the lack of social awareness and because of political opportunism of so-called secular parties, RSS, VHP, Bajarang Dal, Shiv Sena and other Hindutvavadi forces have taken the leap to penetrate communal voices in these areas to some extent. Now, they are trying to intensify and speed up its pace of Dhule riots in both rural and urban areas. They are disseminating provoking literatures and leaflets and creating hatred against minorities in tribal areas with the intension of communalizing them. LSM has decided to mobilize Collage students, tribal, workers and peasants, intellectuals, social workers and other like-minded forces as a significant part of the campaign. Logical debates on historical disputes, composite & indigenous culture of our country, concept of pluralism, meaning of secularism, human rights & values, democratic aspirations of people and equality before law etc. topics would be organized by campaign. Link between campaign and mass struggles demanding for basic amenities to the people would be also established. Fake rumors & myths spreading by communal forces would be countered by our campaign. Increasing terrorism as a threat before nation would be also taken in account by the campign.
With the long- standing history of tribal movement in north Maharastra and nearby districts of South Gujarat, Lok Sangharsh Morcha will make a difference in the campaign for combating communal forces, bringing back the situation normal and preventing the replication of riots in future. A people's movement, having the mass-base in rural areas and organic links in urban areas with the strong commitment of secularism and democratic values can certainly play the effective role in this regard as protecting the unity of people and taking forward the struggle against communal and divisive forces.
Dhule district committee of Lok Sangharsh Morcha constituted
In a meeting of several prominent persons participated from Dhule city and rural areas, district committee of LSM was formed on 16th of November at Barve school hall. Meeting was attended by 150 people. Advocate Shajida Shekh was elected as a convener of 15 member district committee of LSM in Dhule. Meeting has decided to start campaigning for restoring peace and harmony of Dhule as well as struggle for job oriented development, equity in education, health facilities and for democratic rights. It was also resolved that the link would be made between rural tribal movement and the urban movements countering the communal forces.
27 & 28th December; regional workshop and mass meeting for integration, harmony and secularism in Dhule
Powerful mobilization for 27 & 28th December,2008, regional workshop and mass meeting for integration, harmony and secularism was also planned in the meeting. Dr Asgar Ali Engineer, Ram Puniyani, (Chairman & gen. Secretary, All India Secular Forum), V.N. Rai (Vice Chancellor, Mahatma Gandhi University Wardha ), film star Amol Palekar are the main invitees for the meeting.
Ambarish Rai/ Pratibha Shinde
Lok Sangharsh Morcha
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