A struggle for lie and livelihood against destruction
Azad Maidan, Mumbai, March 8th: The Mumbai – Delhi Sangarsh Yatra against the mammoth Delhi – Mumbai Industrial Corridor (DMIC) was flagged off on the occasion of international women’s day from the iconic Azad Maidan in Mumbai by women activists from Lavasa, Marathwada, Narmada, Kanjhawala, Delhi, Aurangabad, Pune, Golibar and many bastis of Mumbai in the presence of noted Marathi writer Hirabai Daya Pawar. Women gift life but are repaid with violence and destruction. Even though the state, political classes and capitalistic forces have joined hands to wreck havoc on us, women will fiercely challenge them in bastis, river valleys, villages, everywhere! This was witnessed today as more than 1000 women from different bastis came together to pledge to carry forward the struggle. Yesterday they bravely stood against bulldozers and the police who with the support of goons of the Shivalik builders, broke down their homes. Yesterday also saw the Maharashtra government showing it true face, beating up women on the eve of women’s day arresting Neha, Johara, Prerna Gaekwad along with Medha Patkar for resisting the demolition at Golibar and Andheri. Dr. Sunilam of Kisan Sangharsh Samiti, Madhya Pradesh condemned the violence against women and said that women in Chindwara, Madhya Pradesh are facing goons of Adani group.
Our struggle is the same everywhere. Today Capitalist forces want to take away even whatever is left with the poorest of the poor. A small piece of land on which our houses stand whether in cities or farms, is gold. They want it all and that is what is at stake in the DMIC, a 1483 kms highway with an influence area equal to 14% of total land in India and affecting 17% of the population. 70% of the project influence area is agricultural land therefore seriously impacting the food security of the country.
Women from every field – academics, literature, media, development etc. were present for the event. Women representatives from various movements, places and organisations like India Against Corruption, the Yusuf Mehrally Centre etc. were also active participants of the events passionately expressing their concerns, complaints and opinions. The children from the Balanandwan Alisarg Kendra, Dahanu road closed the event with a play on evils done against women.
The Mumbai – Delhi Sangharsh Yatra is joined by activists from ten states of the country and will pass through Maharashtra, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh . They will finally reach Delhi on 18th March for the Kisan – Mazdoor Mahapanchayat. The Yatra is an organised effort to bring together various struggles going across the corridor as it violates all rights of democratically elected Gram Sabhasa and Panchayats and threatens fundamental rights and environmental balance.
Medha Patkar, Dr. Sunilam, Suniti SR, Gyaneshwar Shedge, Lingraj Azad, Rajsingh, Vedvati, Kamla Yadav, Prema bhai, Atik Ahmed, Suhas kolhekar, Suniti S.R>, Sumit Wajale, Prerna Gaekwad, Jameelbhai, Prasad Bagwe, Seela M., Madhuresh and many others will travel from Mumbai to Delhi.
The schedule or the Yatra is as follows:-
8th March – Mumbai
9th March – Raigad/Karla (Pune)
10th March – Dhule/Nandurbar
11th March – Aurangabad/Sinnar
12th March – Umargam(Nargol)
13th March – Surat
14th March – Ahmadebad/Mehsana
15th March – Ujjain
16th March – Udaipur/ Pithampur Industrial area Village Kali Billod
17th March – Jaipur/Rewari
18th March – “Kisan-Khetmazdoor Mahapanchayat” @Jantar Mantar
19th March – Convention on “Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor: Myths and Facts” @ Indian Social Institute, Lodhi Road, New Delhi