The name Anaarkali in the present context has many meanings - Anaar symbolises the anarchism of the Bhils and kali which means flower bud in Hindi stands for their traditional environmentalism. Anaar in Hindi can also mean the fruit pomegranate which is said to be a panacea for many ills as in the Hindi idiom - "Ek anar sou bimar - One pomegranate for a hundred ill people"! - which describes a situation in which there is only one remedy available for giving to a hundred ill people and so the problem is who to give it to. Thus this name indicates that anarcho-environmentalism is the only cure for the many diseases of modern development! Similarly kali can also imply a budding anarcho-environmentalist movement. Finally according to a legend that is considered to be apocryphal by historians Anarkali was the lover of Prince Salim who was later to become the Mughal emperor Jehangir. Emperor Akbar did not approve of this romance of his son and ordered Anarkali to be bricked in alive into a wall in Lahore in Pakistan but she escaped. Allegorically this means that anarcho-environmentalists can succeed in bringing about the escape of humankind from the self-destructive love of modern development that it is enamoured of at the moment and they will do this by simultaneously supporting women's struggles for their rights.
Sunday, December 30, 2007
Dreams Die Hard
The people fought the false case inflicted on them in the lower court as few cases have been and have recently won it and been able to prove that not only were they not waging a war against the state but also that it was the state that had illegally killed four of their brethren. The state is now going to appeal in the High Court against this victory of the adivasis and so the battle will go on.
The new year that is about to come thus brings with it the heartening prospect that the adivasis even if they are down are not out. The dreams of these adivasis may not be easily fulfilled but they will nevertheless die hard.