Protest against ban of protest rally in Chandigarh on Kashmir

Harsh Thakor

In a most unceremonious manner on September 15th  the Congress regime  in Punjab prohibited the rally of the Solidarity Committee for National Struggle of Kashmiris, Punjab’  protesting repealing of Acts 370 and 35 A in Kashmir and supporting their self-determination. This totally removed it's veil of having any bourgeois democratic character and proved that it morally blessed the Hindutva fascist programme of the BJP in the centre.A huge police barricade was installed at the Venue in Dussera grounds in Mohali to suppress a probable 10000 persons being mobilised.

However, the masses of Punjab although blocked from entering the state did not take the ban lying down and heroically protested fighting till the last tooth. In 12 districts of Punjab they illuminated the spark of resistance against fascsim in Kashmir turning it into a prairie fire, reminding one of a great army rising like a phoenix from the ashes. Effigies were burnt in 10 districts in 16 different places after they were obstructed by heavy police forces on their way to submit a memorandum to the Governor of Punjab. The protests were a part of call given by on the call of ‘Solidarity Committee for National Struggle of Kashmiris, Punjab’. Qualitatively all over Punjab they created the turbulence of an Inferno and resisted the police blockade with the tenacity of a boulder. It was heartening to witness the great political consciousness in all sections be it the peasantry, workers, youth, women, govt employees or students and the meticuluos planning and organization in preparation. It is a tribute to the meticuluos or painstaking work at the grassroots to develop the revolutionary democratic movement and reflected perfect practice of masssline in uniting all sections of the people. Most impactful was the protest on the Bhatinda-Chandigarh highway and other regions of the Malwa region. In the students sphere the most notable defiance was shown by the Punjab Students Union(lalkar) which reached the venue by bus before being confronted by the police camps.Amongst the peasantry the most challenging resistance was given by the Bhartiya Kisan Unionj (Ugrahan)  who gathered many  scattered seed to unify. At all venues where a traffic jam was launched speakers addressed  the broad amasses explaining how the repression of Kashmir affected the very root of all grassroot issues faced by the oppressed masses.Nowhere in India in my view can one witness such organized resistance against neo-fascist tyranny as in Punjab here, striking the rulers at their hardest point. Tribute to the massline practice and speaks volumes of the general depth of the democratic movement in al the toiling sections of the masses. A black day in the history of India's so -called democracy but a red letter day or a new chapter written in  the glorious resistance of the Indian people against the iron feet of opression.

A press conference was held in Mohali press club adressed by revolutionary writer Yashpal,Human rights activist of Chattisgarh  Himanshu Kumar,Revolutionary cultural leader Amolak Singh and womens rights activist Gurtej Kaur. They all summed up the fascist nature of the repression in Kashmir on their right to self-determination and how it was part and parcel of the noe-fascist Hindutva ideology. Himanshu Kumar with great precison explained how the ascendancy of fascsim at its crescendo and how democrats would soon have to face the bullets or go to jail.Vividly he described how the Kashmiri people were stripped of all their rights.

 Manav, Namita, Ravinder, Amandeep and many other students were among the 30 protestors who were arrested from the Dushera Ground, Mohali. These 30 protestors, which included 10 girls, were later released fearing the public rage. Other group of labourers, youth, students who had reached the Mohali railway station despite the restrictions were also arrested but eventually released under public pressure. (Information from report of Kashmir struggle commitee)

Speaking at the gatherings in various places, the speakers strongly condemned the ban on the rally and march by the Captain Amrinder Singh’s Punjab government and said that these steps have proved that the Congress and BJP-RSS are morally  one and the same when it comes to oppression in Kashmir and the whole opposition by the Congress in centre is only in form but not in essence. Speakers called the ban on the rally by the Captain's government a violation of the people's democratic rights and an expression of neo-fascism strengthening its tentacles day by day. The speakers expressed the view that the people of the entire country, including Punjab, were compelled to dance to the tune or submit  to the dictates of the imperialists, corporate houses and the ultra-rich being of the state and that the policies of the rulers were forcing the working farmers of Punjab and the country to commit suicide and the people of Jammu and Kashmir are being slaughtered by army using gunpowder and pellet guns under these policies. The Kashmiri people are heroically confronting the rulers mobilizing despite the strict sanctions imposed by the BJP government and after August 5, the hundreds of demonstrations and the confirmations of 5 deaths by the army officials during the protests tear away the facade of peace that government is trying to knit. The speakers said that while Indian rulers have been forcibly occupying Kashmir for 72 years, there has been illegal occupation of a part of Kashmir by Pakistani rulers and there has been repression of Kashmir national struggle. The BJP and RSS central government, led by Narinder Modi is pushing its communal ideology by promoting blind nationalism in the name of patriotism, and dividing the country and the recent steps of the central government were aimed at suppressing the real struggle of the people of Jammu and Kashmir in addition to crushing it under the expansionist policies in South Asia. The plundering of natural resources through anti-people economic reforms will have grave consequences throughout country and not only in Kashmir. The speakers demanded that article 370 and 35A should be reinstated and that the atmosphere of terror be terminated and right to self-determination should be given to the people, the sanctions be revoked, withdrawal of AFSPA laws and army be recalled from the state. The speakers remarked that the armed forces have resulted in the death of 1 lakh Kashmiris in the last thirty years and rape and molestation of about eleven thousand women. The rise of the people for the right of self-determination could not be suppressed by any of the present tyrannical steps of the Modi-Shah duo. The speakers firmly voiced that besides the Modi government's silence on Kashmir issue, the steps taken by the Captain government to suppress the voice raised in Punjab in favor of the Kashmiri people will further aggravate the protests. (As reported by Jhanda Singh Jethuke, Lakhawinder Singh and Kanwaljeet Singh Pannu)

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Sep 18, 2019