Sunday, December 8, 2013

On the Occasion of Multai Shaheed Kisan Smriti Divas 12 Jan. 2014 Lokavidya Jan Andolan Conference 10-12 Jan. 2014 in Multai, (Betul, M.P.)

This is the invitation cum announcement of the Lokavidya Jan Andolan (LJA) Conference scheduled between 10-12 January 2014 in Multai in the district of Betul in Madhya Pradesh. The plan is to discuss the organizational question and the significance of LJA for the politics of change. We may do this by focusing the discussion on the question of coordination between peasant and adivasi struggles all over the country and their relationship with the struggles of small retailers, women and the artisans and service providers, generally those said to belong to the unorganized sector. 

Dr. Sunilam, the leader of Kisan Sangharsh Samiti there has invited us to hold this conference in Multai on the occasion of the Martyr's Day, 12th January, on which in 1998 a farmers' gathering demanding relief and compensation for crop failure continuously for three years, was fired upon by police killing 24 farmers and injuring 150. Further, a large number of farmers and their leaders have been booked in a variety of cases. This unparalleled event has resulted in farmers and social activists collecting in Multai every year on 12th January to pay homage to martyrs and to deliberate over the future of people's movements. Dr. Sunilam, Prahlad and Sheshrao have been sentenced for life-imprisonment in October 2012 and are presently on bail.

We have been reporting LJA activities on this blog. This knowledge movement of the people has come up with new ideas and practices to develop a lokavidya focused dialogue in the world of knowledge which may have serious bearing on a new political imagination. Organizational and constructive initiatives have been taken in the names of lokavidya samvad, lokavidya samanvay samooh, lokavidya mel-milap, lokavidya ashram, lokavidya panchayat, lokavidya prapancham, lokavidya sadhikar sanghatna, lokavidya bhaichara vidyalaya, lokavidya satsang and lokavidya tana-bana. 

Since the founding conference of LJA in Varanasi in November 2011, regional conferences have been held in Darbhanga, Vijaywada, Singrauli and Indore. Two large gatherings of LJA activists have taken place, one in Sewagram in March 2012 and another in Mumbai in February 2013. This time the attempt is to mobilize LJA activists and others associated with the struggles of farmers, adivasis and generally the unorganized sector from Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh. There will also be participation from other places. 


10 Jan. 2014
Lokavidya Satsang in the afternoon and a meeting in the evening to plan the next two days. It will also deliberate on the Multai Delaration. 

11 Jan. 2014 :              
10.00 am to 3.00 pm 
  1. Inauguration : Farmers' Struggles and the Imagination of a New World
  2. Knowledge ( Lokavidya ) Perspectives on People's Struggles : Coordination among struggles at various places
  3. The philosophy of lokavidya and the politics of change
  4. Multai Declaration : Open discussion and consensus
3.30 pm onwards
  1. South Asia Social Forum (SASF) Preparatory Meeting. The SASF is planned between 1-5 March 2014 in Lucknow. 
12 Jan. 2014
Rally to pay homage to the peasant-martyrs of Multai. Reading out the Multai Declaration.

This blog shall keep debating the program and the ideas towards the preparation of this conference. This is to invite you to write, please do. 

Dr. Sunilam and several of his co-workers have extended a general invitation on behalf of Kisan Sangharsh Samiti (KSS) for participation in this program. The Hindi post done yesterday gives their letter of invitation. KSS shall take care of the lodging and boarding of the participants. Participants may kindly arrange for their own travel. Betul and Multai are on Itarsi-Nagpur train route. Multai is about 60 km from Betul and about 125 km from Nagpur.  
Please inform one of the following persons about your arrival and departure schedule.  
Dr. Sunilam - 09425109770    Jagdeesh Dodke  - 09179124860

Although KSS takes the responsibility of local hospitality, it is anyway done based on voluntary contributions only. So, we make an appeal to all those participants who can make a contribution to please come prepared to contribute. 

[ This is a free rendering into English of the Hindi post done on this blog yesterday.]

Vidya Ashram

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