Thursday, April 06, 2006

Protesting on behalf of DIDs

That's displaced in development (or development-induced-displacement) according to this noteworthy post on Desicritics by Madhukar. My anger is not just about the fact that those being displaced have not received their due compensation -- this is land-grabbing by the State -- but also against the way in which the government used force in an attempt to break up a peaceful demonstration at Jantar Mantar. Just one more instance of police high handedness, you say? After all it's "jiski lathee uskee bhains". But does it mean one should not raise one's voice against it? If the government truly feared for Patkar's health, wasn't there a better time (instead of midnight) or a peaceful way of arresting her and other Narmada Bachao Andolan activists?
You may or may not agree with Medha Patkar's cause but as a commentator about this emotional piece on Patkar's protest says: "(she) deserves to be commended for following what her beliefs are. In today's world, few of us are unworldly, isn't it? We worship at the shrine of high-paying jobs, expensive acquisitions, 'practical decisions' in life like scorning an arts education in favor of science or MBA degrees. Medha Patkar is living her convictions. Which can't be easy on an empty stomach."
If you do care a bit about the cause of the DID though, I would urge you to follow Madhukar's advice in his piece linked above and at the very least sign this petition and write to the media condemning the police for their goondaism.