Sunday, January 11, 2015

Farmers across Gujarat being Detained : Black Sunday for People';s Rights
Red carpet for National and International Corporate Honchos, iron fist at Farmers
January 11 : While the Government of Gujarat is splurging on the jamboree called Vibrant Gujarat it is a crime to raise the issue of farmers'; suicides and low cotton prices. A presentation of the issues was planned by the non-party platformSanyukta Khedut Sangharsh Samiti to be handed over to the Gujarat Government. Farmers have been preparing and heading for their action spot in Ahmedabad in thousands since morning. However, in a wanton display of its paranoia as well as dictatorial tendencies the Government first tried to scare away bus and other transporters and attempted to force them to cancel farmers'; bookings. Farmers demonstrated their resolve by finding other means to reach the appointed spot. Thousands of farmers are being detained in tens of places across Gujarat.
First, Mr Shivlal Vekaria (ex-MP) and Chandulal Shingala were detained in Rajkot and then has followed the detention of hundreds of farmers in various districts. In the dead of the night - around 12.30 am - Sagar Rabari and Lakhan Musafir were arrested on January 10th. Other prominent farmers being detained include Mansukhbhai (Rajkot), Pradyumansinh and Ramdevsinh Chudasma (Dholera), Mahendrasinh Karmariya, Nipul Patel, Yakub Gurji (Bharuch), Lalji Desai (Becharaji-Mandal). The Mansa MLA Mr. Amitbhai, Dehgam MLA Kaminiben and Jashubhai Rana of Gandhinagar have also been arrested. Persis Ginwala (JAAG), Krishnakant & Swati Desai (NAPM) have also been detained since morning.
The farmers'; demands were simple and basic :
1) Support Price for Cotton at 1200 / 20 kg, and Rs. 1000 / 20 kg for groundnut
2) No de-commanding of Narmada waters and diversion for industries
3) Repeal of draconian anti-farmer laws such as Special Investment Region (SIR) Act, and Irrigation Act
4) Immediate withdrawal of the Ordinance making the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition Act meaningless.
It has become the standard practice for the Government of Gujarat to clamp down on demands of the poor and toiling people of Gujarat rather than addressing. This Government believes in ruling via Ordinances on the one hand, and organising meaning public relations jamboorees - all at Tax Payers'; expense.
We condemn this wanton attack on the rights of the people and suppression of our democratic rights to assemble and protest. We will continue to protest this loot being promoted by the government in name of investors summit and development of Gujarat and Nation.
Anand Mazgaonkar, Rajni Dave

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