Saturday, September 19, 2009

Read: [ReachIndia] Petition for Peace Process in Chhattisgarh


Come Together! Join Up! Seize theTime!

I appreciate this post and your sharing this with us. I myself am thousands of miles away, yet feel the pain in my heart and submerge my anger in order to channels into

compassionate action. Feel free to Join up and keep us informed!

Pictures do say so much more than only words can convey, plus, I appreciate the captions along with them. Remember to post the actual website address because once this is transferred to a response it deactivates the HTML Link! The devil in the details.

Education for Liberation! Venceremos Unidos!

Peter S. Lopez ~aka Peta

Sacramento, California, Aztlan

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Come Together! Join Up! Seize theTime!


From: Somnath Mukherji <>
Sent: Saturday, September 19, 2009 12:24:55 PM
Subject: [ReachIndia] Petition for Peace Process in Chhattisgarh

Association for India's Development
, in partnership with many other groups, is hosting events across the US and India to raise awareness about the crisis in Chhattisgarh

One of the central themes for these events is a traveling exhibition of Javed Iqbal's photos. Javed is a photo-journalist who has toured extensively in southern districts, and brought back powerful depictions of the conflict zone. He has played an important role in uncovering the truth behind some of the "encounters", for example those in Basaguda and Badepalli. To know more about Javed and his work, visit:

Here is the link to the photo album for the Chhattisgarh photo exhibit.

Some of the other events planned include panel discussions, movie/documentary screenings, petition signings, RTI drives, etc.
It will be good if we can get more people taking this up across India, and also the US.

Please consider signing the online petition to support the peace processes in Chhattisgarh:

Here is the text of the statement of the petition along with the list of the 54 organizations who endorsed it:

We, an international coalition of concerned individuals and over 54 Human Rights, Community, Student, Development and Peace & Justice organizations strongly support the right of displaced Adivasis (indigenous peoples) to return safely to their homes and lives in the state of Chhattisgarh, and are alarmed by the recent surge in violence in Bijapur and Dantewada districts of Chhattisgarh which is threatening to cause a major setback to the ongoing rehabilitation.
Since the promulgation of the Salwa Judum (a militia armed by the state of Chhattisgarh) in 2005, violence from both the Salwa Judum and Maoist Rebels has escalated, and hundreds of thousands of Adivasis have fled their homes in Dantewada and Bijapur districts out of fear for their lives. Over the last 12 months, we were encouraged to see that with the support of civil society groups such as Action AID, Vanvasi Chetna Ashram (VCA) and Agriculture and Social Development Society (ASDS), some families have gradually begun to return to their villages and are resuming agriculture and other forms of livelihood. However, recent threats, arson and murder in the vicinity of the rehabilitated villages has spurred further displacement, and deterred those who were planning to return to their homes. We sympathize sincerely with the families of the victims of such violence. 
Given the widespread displacement of Adivasis from their land as a result of this violence, we as informed citizens, pledge to support efforts that aim to rebuild confidence amongst Adivasis, and help them return to their lands and resume their lives with a sense of dignity. 

We appeal to the government of Chhattisgarh to facilitate the process of rehabilitation of displaced communities as per the Directives of the Supreme Court, as well as the recommendations of the National Human Rights Commission, by doing the following:
  • Make immediate arrangements for food, water, seeds, and implements to enable ploughing so that the villagers may sow in this critical period of the farming season
  • Provide rations and employment through NREGA (National Rural Empolyment Guarantee Act) which will make food and daily wages available to the villagers until their crops come to harvest Provide compensation with which to rebuild and sustain their livelihoods
  • We appeal to the government of Chhattisgarh to take firm steps to end the vicious cycle of violence in the region through de-militarization, clearing security forces off schools and hospitals, and withdrawal of the Salwa Judum. 
We also appeal to all parties - the Maoist Rebels, the Government and the Salwa Judum - to refrain from any activity that adversely affects the return and stay of the rehabilitated Adivasis in the villages of Chhattisgarh.
List of Endorsing Organizations

Alliance for a Secular and Democratic South Asia, MIT 
Alliance of South Asians Taking Action, San Francisco  
Amnesty International, USA
Asian Law Alliance 
Association for India's Development  
Association of South Asian Political Activists, Berkeley
Birmingham Anti-SEZ Campaign, UK 
Boston Coalition for Justice in Bhopal 
Boston Mobilization
Cambridge Free Binayak Sen Group
Campaign against Forced Displacement, UK  
Campaign to Stop Funding Hate
CMC Vellore Alumni Association-U.K. Branch
DEEP - Defenders of the Environment and Ecology of Panjab, UK 
Dharma Megha, East Lansing, Michigan 
Friends of South Asia
Gadar Heritage Foundation, Fremont
Hillingdon Asian Women's Communication Service, UK 
India Foundation, East Lansing, Michigan 
ICJB- International Coalition for Justice in Bhopal
Indian Muslim Council, USA  
Indian Progressive Study Group-L.A. 
India Relief and Education Fund, Fremont
Indian Workers Association (GB) 
International Accountability Project
International League of People's Struggles, UK
International Service Society, Okemos, Michigan 
International South Asia Forum: INSAF, NYC
Massachusetts Global Action
Matahari: Eye of the Day 
National Lawyers' Guild  
Our Developing World 
Peace and Human Rights Trust: UK 
Peninsula Peace & Justice Center 
Peoples Health Movement, USA 
San Jose Peace & Justice Center 
SANSAD (South Asian Network for Secularism and Democracy) Canada
SAPAC: South Asian Progressive Action Collective, Chicago
SACC- Scotland Against Criminalising Communities 
Seva International, Okemos, Michigan 
Sikh American Heritage Organization 
South Asian Alliance, UK 
South Asia Solidarity Group, UK
South Asia Solidarity Initiative 
SAPA, Harvard  (formerly SASS)
Students for Bhopal
The 1857 Committee, U.K.
Vaishnava Center for Enlightenment, Okemos, Michigan 
Vedanta Society of East Lansing, Michigan 
Western States Legal Foundation
WILPF-San Jose


~Somnath Mukherji

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