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.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Bestiality of Police

The police in Alirajpur town paraded a tribal youth publicly for two hours in the streets after tying his hands to his waist after having beaten him up in police custody. It is alleged that they did this on the orders of the local tribal Member of the Legislative Assembly in whose office the tribal youth used to work and which he had stopped doing and so earned the ire of the legislator according to a news report in Hindustan Times Indore today. This is a typical instance of the misuse of the police for political ends that has been the bane of Indian democracy. It is interesting to note that all the main characters in this story are tribals - the victim, the alleged conspirer who is the local MLA and the head of the police station. So while the system of police repression inherited from the British is in place it does not really matter if tribals or dalits get into it through reservation because ultimately these elites among the tribals and dalits will also imbibe the negative spirit of repression that is at the core of the system. What is needed is an overhaul of the system wherein arbitrary powers of detention are not given to the police. In the present instance the alert activists of the Khedut Mazdoor Chetna Sangath brought this macabre instance of police bestiality to the notice of the press and so it has got wider publicity. However, there are many instances of such brutality of the police at the behest of their political masters that are going on routinely throughout India which get suppressed. This is also the main reason why people's movements for justice and rights cannot sustain themselves in the long run and fall by the wayside due to police repression.

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