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Citizens Initiatives in wake of communal hatred.

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  • shaji john
    Dont remain Deaf & Dumb to Communal Politics !! Speak up and organise now to defend life and secular space from fascists!! ======== [South Asia Citizens
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 1, 2002
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      Dont remain Deaf & Dumb to 'Communal' Politics !!
      Speak up and organise now to defend life and secular space from fascists!!

      ========>[South Asia Citizens Wire]<============ -
      Berlin, 1939:

      First they came for the Jews,
      But I did not speak out,
      Because I was not a Jew.

      Then they came for the Communists,
      And I did not speak out,
      Because I was not a Communist.

      Then they came for the trade-unionists,
      And I did not speak out,
      Because I was not a trade-unionist.

      Then they came for the Catholics,
      And I did not speak out,
      Because I was not a Catholic.

      Then they came for me,
      And there was no one left to speak out for me.

      - Pastor Niemller (Anti-Nazi Resistance Movement)

      ------------------------------------------
      28 Feb 2002

      Dear friends,

      An appalling situation has been created which threatens to engulf the
      entire country in a wave of communal hatred. It seems that Godhra was
      just the beginning of the spiralling violence. Reports continue to
      come in of over 70 gruesome killings across Gujrat. This must stop.
      We cannot allow this to spread further.

      A meeting was held today in Delhi attended by around 20
      organisations. The following plan of action was decided:

      1. A press note (attached below) to be issued immediately condemning
      the Godhra incident and the VHP for creating the flashpoint.

      2. The launching of Satyagraha starting Fri. 1st March at 5:00 pm at
      Rajghat. This will be a candlelight peace vigil from 5-7 pm everyday
      until such time as normalcy returns. After the initial action at
      Rajghat the meetings will move to different localities around the
      city.

      3. Delegation to meet the President of India and Opposition parties
      within the next few days to present our view point forcefully.

      4. Retired Supreme Court judges to move a petition in the Supreme
      Court to push the Government to take strong action in Ayodhya.

      Friends based in Delhi please join the Satyagraha on Friday and the
      following days. We also encourage all of you, if possible, to set up
      aman & ekta committees in your neighbourhood or in the areas you work
      in as a preventative measure against communal riots.

      It would be good if people organised similar peace vigils across the
      country. If you do, please inform us as we will be keeping the media
      updated on peace actions across the country.

      warmest regards,

      sonia jabbar

      on behalf of:

      Akhil Bharat Rachnatmak Samaj, All India Democratic WomenÂ’s
      Assocaition, Arya Samaj, CPI(M), Coalition for Nuclear Disarmament &
      Peace, Delhi Forum, Indian Social Institute, Institute of Objective
      Studies, Jagori, JMS, Movement in India for Nuclear Disarmament,
      Muslim Women's Forum, National Minorities Council , NPMHR,
      Pakistan-India People's Forum for Peace & Democracy, Pravah, Sama,
      Sampradayakta Virodhi Andolan, Saheli, VMAP.

      --------------------------------------------

      Press Note (please feel free to use in part or whole. The newspapers
      ought to be flooded by Letters to the Editor from groups and
      individuals.)

      We unite to condemn the ghastly episode in Godhra, in which over
      fifty innocent people were killed. We also condemn the harassment
      meted out to Muslim men and the molestation of Muslim women prior to
      this event by those who appeared to be VHP karsevaks heading for
      Ayodhya (as reported in Jan Morcha, Feb.24). In the context of the
      communal tension created on account of the Ram mandir issue, these
      events demonstrate a grave crisis for the rule of law in this
      country. We hold that the threat to build the mandir in total
      defiance of the court orders belongs to the realm of terrorism, and
      needs to be handled as such.

      We call upon the NDA government to rein in the elements within the
      alliance who are holding the nation to ransom for petty political
      gains, to not remain mute witnesses to the repetition of the national
      perfidy perpetrated on 6 December,1992, and to deal with the
      situation with firmness, as befitting a civilised nation. We call
      upon the Opposition parties to fight the emerging communal holocaust
      with greater determination and unity than they did the menace of
      terrorism. And above all, we call upon the people of India to resist
      all divisive propaganda, maintain communal harmony, and unite in
      protecting the unity and integrity of our secular democracy.
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