Anarcho-environmentalism allegorised

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.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Lies, Lies and Damn Lies!

Today I received two pieces of news. The first was that the forest department in Satna district had issued notices to about sixty villages in a reserved forest area that their area was going to be converted into a sanctuary. These notices had been given to the Sarpanches of the panchayats and not pasted on public places and advertised with drum beats as is mandated for tribal areas. So the people did not come to know and the sixty day period for filing objections to this proposal of the forest department under the Wild Life Act 1972 expired. The forest department then declared to the press that since no objections had been filed the sanctuary process would begin. That is when the people of the area came to know of this and immediately they began raising a hue and cry as this would severely restrict their access to the forests in which they lived and might even lead to displacement later.
The other news is about the Supreme Court having demanded to know from the Government of Madhya Pradesh the details of the land it had identified for rehabilitating the oustees of the Omkareshwar dam. As mentioned in an earlier post the Narmada Bachao Andolan had won a reprieve from the High Court of Madhya Pradesh that the dam gates could not be closed until all the oustees had been properly rehabilitated with land. The Madhya Pradesh Government and the National Hydro-electric Development Corporation had gone to the Supreme Court in appeal against this order. When the honourable judges of the Supreme Court asked the Madhya Pradesh Government why it had not provided land for rehabilitation to the oustees when it had categorically stated it would do so when getting the clearances for building the dam, the GOMP replied that they had identified 5000 hectares of land and were ready to distribute this to the oustees. The Supreme Court then ordered it to furnish the details of this land by April 15th.
Now this is clearly a lie of the government because it has not identified any land and had in fact argued in the High Court earlier that it was impossible to get land in Madhya Pradesh. If it does have the land then why does it not distribute it among the oustees instead of going to the Supreme Court. Why does a government elected by the people engage in such mendacity with its own citizens. In Satna it clandestinely tries to bypass the legal process by keeping the notices for starting a sanctuary secret and in Omkareshwar it deliberately lies before the Supreme Court. A government of congenital liers can hardly be a benevolent one. Not surprisingly there is discontent everywhere.


anish said...

Really shameless how they are so carefree while destroying the livelihood of the powerless. Isn't there any law for perjury - how long will these lies go unpunished..

Rahul Banerjee said...

one should thank the supreme and high courts for at least pulling up the government for its denial of rights to the deprived sections. to get them to penalise it for its lies is to expect too much!