Posts Tagged ‘Pulwama’


Farmers Protest: Pulwama Martyrs

   Posted by: aman    in Punjab

Day 78

Toll 227

Missing 123 (official, estimates 300+)

Jailed 131 (including veterans, not reconciled with above 123. Some out on bail.)


Pulwama Martyrs

A few days back we pointed at structural violence. Last few days, show us exactly how such violence is enacted from the Parliament – through apathy and banality. When some speeches like that of Jha, Abdulla, Moitra, et al went viral, we need to ask ourselves why we liked them. Is it because those thoughts are in our minds as well and we were happy to see these leaders voice them? That is quite understandable. But the question still is: have those speeches undone the horrors mentioned? Basically, is language all or should it not change

The PM’s response settled it all when he said the Laws will not be forced down on farmers but will open an option for them – they can choose to take it or reject the changes envisaged. He claimed, the Laws will help a lot of farmers, they could not help some too, but they are the need of the hour and must be implemented.

The speech showed that not only does authority understand structural violence, it is also deliberately inflicting such violence on the masses. The PM said, those who do not benefit from the laws are free to discuss their difficulties with the government. Well, those who will not benefit are standing at Delhi’s door for last two and a half months. They are repeatedly thwarted. 11 rounds of talks – of which first three rounds were clause by clause discussion – have failed. When the farmers bring up issues, their concerns are denied mostly on two basis:

- Laws do not say the 7,000 odd government APMCs (Mandis) will be closed down. Yes, Laws do not say that, but when 40,000 private Mandis come up through tax holidays, they will invert the system. Just like it happened in the Health and Education sector. This is structural violence.

- Minimum Support Price will stay. Then why not give it in writing, make it a Law? Because when government says MSP will stay, it means for 6% farmers on 2-3 crops. When system is collapsing, initially private players will pay more, MSP too will collapse. The demand is: MSP stays not for 6% farmers but all farmers, all over the nation, on 23 crops. Unless the government agrees to this demand, it continues to perpetuate structural violence.

This is the myth of the Free Market. The fact is these Laws are meant to benefit two major players: one for storage, another for retail of farm produce. This will not create a free market but a duopoly – rule of two big business houses.

The question really is to the Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh. Soon RSS is completing a century. In this century it has held an alternative model of India. Its model of India started with apologies to the British, then ban by the Indian government, then hijacking the Emergency struggle, and finally executing electoral victories. Their so called crowning glory was last seven years. We all know the duo who rule India are a populist dictator face of the RSS. Yet, now they have moved away from the RSS agenda to benefit their sponsors – the big businesses. Is this what RSS envisaged? A crony capitalist takeover of India? RSS being used to further the sell out of India?

Finally, in all this is our urban middle class. A few weeks back when experiencing the Delhi cold, the wash away and resurrection of Ghazipur in early January brutal winter rains, I simply posted: where are the candle marchers? For a simple question I was trolled in liberal circles. I know right wingers troll me, but even liberals?

Okay, dear middle class, here is your opportunity. Samyukt Kissan Morcha and AIKSCC have given a call for a candle light march on February 14 for the Pulwama martyrs. Yes, the same martyrs whose death stunned us because there should have been much greater security. How did 80 kg RDX that caused the blast reach the sepoy convoy is still an open question. Later, we learnt Arnab Goswami gloated on the deaths because he sensed the gruesome tragedy leading to a Hindutva win in 2019 general elections.

It is time to mourn those jawans. Would middle class come out? Will we help change reality or just appreciate these brilliant speeches in Parliament that finally amount to nothing?

Your call.