peoples march

from the people against injustice in the society

Archive for January 25th, 2010

Itching Towards Death

Posted by ajadhind on January 25, 2010

Endosulfan may be banned in more than 60 countries, but India is the world’s largest producer of the deadly pesticide, says BHAVDEEP KANG
Invisible killer Birth defects, skin diseases and motor ailments are linked to the use of endosulfan

THE KARNATAKA government acknowledged the link between the spraying of endosulfan in South Canara district and the incidence of congenital birth defects, skin diseases and motor ailments, saying victims would be given financial aid. The government was spurred into action when MLA and former minister Shobha Karandlaje presented disturbing statistics and pictures of deformed children in the Assembly.

Karandlaje’s report came in the wake of a declaration by Minister of Agriculture Sharad Pawar last month that the pesticide — a potent neurotoxin which can disrupt the human endocrine system — will not be banned in India. He was responding to a global campaign against endosulfan and increasing pressure from the EU to stop its use on cotton crops.

A couple of months ago in the UK, a “pants down” protest was staged by celebrities against endosulfan use on cotton crops after pesticide residues were allegedly detected in underwear. It was claimed that the underwear was itchy as pesticide residues lingered even after the raw cotton had been turned to cloth.

South Canara adjoins Kerala’s Kasargod, where aerial spraying of endosulfan on cashew plantations in the 1990s severely affected locals. Pictures of physically and mentally handicapped children shocked the world, compelling the Kerala government to ban endosulfan in 2001.

The pesticide is also used on cotton in Punjab’s Malwa region, known as the state’s “cancer belt”. Endosulfan was detected in measurable quantities in the blood of farmers from this region.

Karandlaje says its effects continue to be felt in the South Canara region many years after spraying was stopped. She has demanded that Karnataka, too, ban the pesticide. “In one village alone, I found 137 cases of severely affected children. Endosulfan persists in the environment for many years”.

The link between the health of farmers and the use of pesticides is well established worldwide. A study by Chandigarh’s Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research linked the incidence of cancer in the Malwa region to pesticide use. Most of the victims go to Bikaner’s cancer hospital for low-cost treatment. So high is the incidence of cancer in the region that the Bhatinda- Bikaner train has been dubbed the “cancer express”.

In Bikaner, an industry has grown around the cancer patients coming in from Punjab. There are thousands of laboratories promising “sameday” test results. “It is a racket. Imagine the authenticity of some of those tests, especially those for which results cannot be obtained in a day. We need to do an extensive study on the patients coming from Punjab,” says a senior oncologist of the Bikaner Medical College. Although it has not been proven that endosulfan directly causes cancer, it has been linked to a host of other ailments, particularly those of the nervous system, which afflict agricultural workers in Malwa.
The pesticide lobby maintains that withdrawing endosulfan will negatively impact agriculture

ENDOSULFAN HAS been banned in more than 60 countries. In 2007, the prime manufacturer, Bayer, withdrew it from the US market but continued to sell it abroad.

India is the world’s largest producer of endosulfan. The pesticide lobby maintains that withdrawing it will negatively impact Indian agriculture, apparently by destroying bee colonies! The argument goes like this: endosulfan is less toxic to bees than other pesticides. If it is banned, farmers may opt for pesticides lethal to bees, thereby destroying colonies and preventing pollination, which would “harm our country’s natural wealth of flora and fauna”. It has also accused the EU of using NGOs to unfairly target endosulfan.

The Ministry of Agriculture has sided with the pesticide lobby, even blocking the addition of endosulfan to the Rotterdam Convention on hazardous chemicals. Itchy britches notwithstanding.

Posted in IN NEWS, KARNATAKA, KERALA | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Haiti’s Story must be told

Posted by ajadhind on January 25, 2010

Haiti was the scene of the only successful slave revolution in history when the heroic descendants of African slaves drove out the strongest army in the world at that time, the French.

The French government forced Haiti to pay reparations of millions of dollars for daring to rebel.


Tthe U.S., also at that time feared the influence of Haiti on the slaves in the USA, and with France embarked on a policy of isolating and impoverishing Haiti.

This established, Haiti’s destructive patterns of political violence and economic chaos continuing from then up to the present time.

Between 1915 and 1934 U.S. marines occupied Haiti, suppressing a liberation struggle and implanting puppets. The U.S. backed the infamously cruel tyrant Papa Doc Duvalier, and then his son Baby Doc in the middle of the century..

The US and French governments conspired to overthrow the popular president Jean-Bertrand Aristide in the 1990’s and then again just a few years ago in 2004.

In Haiti’s hour of need the past must be remembered and the people of Haiti freed from the destructive power of Imperialism in the 21st Century.

Statement of the George Jackson Socialist League and Democracy and Class Struggle

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The revolutionary movement led by the CPP-MLM will continue fighting till victory

Posted by ajadhind on January 25, 2010

“Failure is what the Oplan Bantay Laya 2 achieved thru the implementation of the 61st IB PA in southern Negros,” a statement from the Ka Roger Mahinay Command (RMC) said.

“The repeated statement of victory against the revolutionary movement by the military especially from the notorious 61st IB is an old broken record that even their shadows laugh over their wildest dreams thru recycled surender, intrigues, psywar activities and lies,” the RMC added in the statement.

According to the RMC they have preserve their forces and have initiated an ambush on fascist troops of the 61st IB PA in Sitio Indangawan, Brgy Manlocahoc, Sipalay City last December 9, 2009. The said ambush resulted in the deaths of three elements of the military in the first volume of fire by the Red fighters and the wounding of another who later died in the hospital. The bodies of the dead soldiers were hidden from public view by concealing it under the seats at the back of the Rio-truck used by the military in responding to the ambush in the area. These were brought to the Barasbarasan HQ, Brgy Manlocahoc, Sipalay City while a civilian woman was wounded by rock splinters far from the ambush site.

The RMC also pointed out primary gains like raising the levels of its mass organizations, increase membership of revolutionary mass organizations of peasants, women, youth and cultural activists, boosting prices of peasants products, wage increase for the farm workers, defending the peasants against landgrabbing and opposition against destructive foreign owned mining companies and also promoting anti-fascist mass movements in the area. They also serve punishments handed down by the revolutionary peoples’ court against criminal and bad elements in the area.

“Despite military operations, the RMC was able to accomplish the holding of the 41st anniversary of the Communist Party of the Philippines- Marxism-Leninism- Maoism (MLM) ceremonies inside a guerrila camp attended by more than 200 guests from the cities and the interior areas,” added the RMC.

“This 2010, the RMC will do it’s best in contributing to the national call of elevating the armed struggle to the strategisc stalemate in five years and victory in the next ten years,” concluded the RMC statement.

Reference :
Ka Roger Mahinay Command statement
Southwest Guerilla Front
Negros Island

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Maoist information bulletin – 09

Posted by ajadhind on January 25, 2010

maoist information bulletin

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The Youngest Maoist, two years old Madvi Mukesh nabbed!

Posted by ajadhind on January 25, 2010

Breaking news! Youngest Maoist nabbed!
Check out the murderous rage on his face!
Check out the hand that has bludgeoned many heads!
Check out the strained forehead that explain his years committed to bloodshed!
© Javed Iqbal
When Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh referred to Maoists as being the “single largest threat to the nation”, did he mean this child, whose fingers were brutally chopped off while his family was massacred?
Now, even before this ‘Maoist’ could be sent in for a narco-analysis, let’s understand where he comes from.
Name: Madvi Mukesh
Age: Two years old
Tribe: Muria
Residence: Gompad village, police station Konta, district Dantewada (on the Chhattisgarh-Andhra Pradesh border)
Family: Maternal grandfather Madvi Barjar (50) – dead; grandmother Madvi Subhi (45) – dead; mother Kartam Kunni (20) – dead; maternal aunt Madi Mooti (8) – dead; father (21).
Mukesh was with his family on the morning of October 1, 2009, when something unusual happened. Several men wearing military fatigues – SPOs (special police officers), police and other security forces – pointed their guns at these ‘Maoists’ and shot at them. Mukesh’s neigbours were killed – Muchaki Handa, Markam Deva, Tomra Mutta, newly-married couple Soyma Subba and Soyam Jogi.

Mukesh’s family was wiped out. He was found to be crying near a pool of blood, oozing from the chopped body of his aunt. His wails were uncontrollable – did he understand the meaning of the loss of his family, or was it because his three fingers were chopped during the carnage?
His ‘Maoist’ father wasn’t at home at that time. He was saved.
Houses were burnt down. Paddy, pulses, brass pots, poultry and cash were taken away. In all, the villagers found that 10 of their people were dead. Some youths were missing. Mukesh Madvi, the ‘Maoist’, disappeared into the jungles with his father.
About 200 kms north of Gompad, news about an encounter was being circulated in the press. Operation Green Hunt had officially begun on October 1, 2009, and it was declared that some Maoists were killed near the Andhra border. When questions were raised by some sceptical journalists about the bodies of the Maoists, they were told that the villagers had disposed them off.
On January 3, 2010, when I met Amresh Mishra, Superintendent of Police (SP) of Dantewada, and had asked him about the Gompad massacre, he clarified that it wasn’t a massacre. “There was only a firing from both the sides. There was no casualty; only some explosives were found.”
January 7, 2010, would have been the day when, like Mukesh, many other ‘Maoists’ would have come to Dantewada for a Jan Sunwai (public hearing), so that they could put forth their case. Home Minister P Chidambaram had promised Himanshu Kumar of Vanvasi Chetna Ashram, who had planned the Jan Sunwai, that he would be present to hear the unending woes of the people. However, the Governor of Chhattisgarh ESL Narasimhan prevented the Home Minister from making that visit. The Jan Sunwai was bound to have opened a can of worms before the national media, if the Home Minister had attended the meeting.
Mukesh did arrive for the Jan Sunwai along with his father, and several other optimists, on January 5. They were about 25 of them. No sooner did they arrive at Vanvasi Chetna Ashram, they were surrounded by SPOs. About 30 minutes later, they were all packed into three Boleros which bore no number plates.
It has been 10 days since those ‘Maoists’ were taken to an undisclosed location and there has been no news about them.

© Javed Iqbal
So that is the government’s definition of a ‘Maoist’, whom I encountered personally – the tribal carrying logs of firewood who starts walking through jungles since 3 am, and reaches the nearest town by 7 am, to sell the firewood for Rs 60. The tribal who walks about 50 kms to reach the police station, to complain that the forces stationed in his village killed the only hen that he had, is a Maoist for the government. The two-year-old Suresh is a Maoist for the government.

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Veteran questions Maoist fight

Posted by ajadhind on January 25, 2010

October 4, 2009

Kumawat, the former BSF chief
New Delhi, Oct. 3: One of India’s topmost anti-Naxalite strategists has questioned the Centre’s new “crackdown-first development-later” credo and warned that any use of air power against Maoists could saddle the nation with “Afghanistan and Iraq-like” security liabilities.
“Development must go hand in hand with the fight against Naxalites; deprived people in the heartland cannot be expected to wait on their misery until the government is done with its long-haul campaigns,” Mahendra Kumawat, who retired as director-general of the BSF last month, told The Telegraph today.
“The government is going to lose more hearts and minds to the Maoists if it forges ahead with a strike policy that brings nothing but bloodshed and disruption to people in the affected zones. That is going to multiply our problems, not solve them. I wish the government all the best, but it isn’t going to work.”
The scorch-then-salve policy, advocated for long by hardline think-tanks, has found favour with home minister P. Chidambaram, but it has also alarmed sceptics within the security establishment who believe strictly police solutions are a “counter-productive half measure”. Recently unshackled by retirement, Kumawat may be articulating their concerns.
Kumawat speaks from a decade’s “on ground” experience of dealing with Naxalites in the Andhra-Orissa-Chhattisgarh triangle. Before assuming command of the BSF, he was also chairman of the national anti-Naxalite task force in the Union home ministry during Shivraj Patil’s tenure as internal security boss.
Kumawat wouldn’t take names, but he made it apparent that his experience as head of the national co-ordination desk in North Block did not inspire too much optimism over the anti-Naxalite offensive in the works under Chidambaram.
“We may think nationally but we do not act nationally,” he said. “There is little or no co-ordination between states which are actually as big as countries. West Bengal, for instance, would not share information with Jharkhand. There are debilitating turf battles between various agencies, intelligence is routinely held back or delayed, and most of the intelligence and documentation we have is poor in any case. All that needs to change if the government is to have half a chance of success.”
The retired top cop was critical of the manner in which governments approached the “very alarming” Naxalite challenge, saying: “We don’t prepare well enough. Information is critical and it is not available in the market, it has to be gathered and analysed all the time and over a long period of time. How many of our states have done that? Probably Andhra Pradesh, and they have had some success to show for homework done. But the same cannot be said for the rest. We are ill-prepared.”
Asked whether there was virtue to Chidambaram’s argument that Naxalite-dominated areas first needed to be “cleansed” of their “disruptive dominance” before development initiatives can be effectively mounted, Kumawat said: “Well, the home minister has himself said this will be a long battle, how long are people to wait for the welfare state to come to them? The challenge and the ingenuity of governance lies is doing both at the same time, the security component will have to be built in to development projects, as has been successfully done in parts of the Northeast. It may be tough to do, but that is what governments are about.”
Cautioning against using too hard a hand, Kumawat said: “We are hearing things about the use of the Indian Air Force, but the government should be extremely careful it is only logistical use, nothing else. And even so, the Naxalites are very capable of trapping the air force in ugly situations where they will have no option but to retaliate. Once that begins to happen, there will be the huge risk of collateral damage to populations and further alienation. The Naxalites are clever tacticians, they will engage and scoot, innocent people will get killed, you will have mess on your hands. Look at what the drone attacks are doing in Afghanistan and Iraq.”
He sounded utterly unsurprised by indications emerging from Naxalite circles that they plan a bloody cat-and-mouse with security forces in the weeks and months to come.
“If they are talking of encircling the government rather than getting encircled, it is nothing to scoff at or be smug about. That is classical Maoist tactic — you go looking for them in their strongholds and you find they have melted away, their mobility is an advantage they employ to the hilt,” Kumawat said, adding that this Naxalite tactic, too, bedevils government plans.
“They will melt away, or just merge with populations. An operation, even if it is based on good and specific tip-offs, can end up hurting innocent people and creating greater disaffection against the state.” TT

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Sri Lanka: UN Official Calls for Investigation of Executions of Tamil Rebels

Posted by ajadhind on January 25, 2010

Posted by Ka Frank on January 17, 2010
This article was published in Al Jazeera on January 8, 2010.
UN official urges Sri Lanka inquiry
A UN human rights official has urged Colombo allow an impartial investigation after he concluded that video footage allegedly showing Sri Lankan troops executing Tamil Tiger fighters last year is authentic.

 Philip Alston, the UN special rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, told Al Jazeera that Sri Lankan arguments used to dismiss the video, aired on Britain’s Channel 4 in August 2009, were flawed.
“Sri Lanka has consistently denied the authenticity of the footage, but two of their investigators were members of the Sri Lankan military,” Alston said on Thursday. ”That is why I decided to commission an independent report by experts with no connection to the conflict.”
The mobile phone footage was shot during the final stages of the Sri Lankan army’s conflict against the separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).
Independent inquiry
Alston said three US-based independent experts commissioned by him to conduct an impartial evaluation, established the authenticity of the video after four Sri Lankan specialists had concluded that it was a fake. He named the three as Daniel Spitz, a prominent forensic pathologist; Peter Diaczuk, a firearm evidence expert; and Jeff Spivack, a forensic video analyst.
“The independent experts’ analyses also systematically rebutted most of the arguments relied upon by Sri Lanka’s experts in support of their contention that the video was faked,” Alston said. ”In light of these conclusions, I call for an independent inquiry to be established to carry out an impartial investigation into war crimes and other violations of international humanitarian and human rights law allegedly committed in Sri Lanka.”
Colombo should ask the UN to set up an independent commission of inquiry, he said.

Martin Nesirky, a UN spokesman, backed the call for an inquiry, saying that Alston’s conclusions show “the need for a credible, independent and impartial investigation into allegations of violations of human rights and international law by all sides in the conflict in Sri Lanka”.
Disturbing pictures
The footage shows a man dressed in army uniform shooting a naked, bound and blindfolded man in the back of the head, while eight other bodies can be seen nearby in a muddy field.
Alston said Spitz found the footage appeared authentic ”especially with respect to the two individuals who are shown being shot in the head at close range”. And he said that Spivack’s forensic video analysis “found no evidence of breaks in continuity in the video, no additional video layers and no evidence of image manipulation.”
“While there are some unexplained elements in the video, there are strong indications of its authenticity,” Alston said. ”In addition, most of the arguments relied upon by the government of Sri Lanka to impugn the video have been shown to be flawed.”
The Sri Lankan military has said the video was faked in order to discredit the security forces. Sri Lankan authorities have resisted international calls for a war crimes investigation after the UN alleged that more than 7,000 civilians had been killed during the first four months of 2009 alone.
The Tamil separatists were finally defeated in May after nearly four decades of ethnic bloodshed that left between 80,000 and 100,000 people dead. The government victory ended the LTTE’s four-decade struggle for an independent Tamil homeland in the island’s northeast, one of Asia’s longest-running ethnic conflicts.

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