On March 22nd a scene reminiscent of an inferno was created by the youth of Punjab in the conference staged by the Bharatiya Kisan Union(Ugrahan) and the Punjab Khet Mazdoor Union. at the grain market in Sunam ,resurrecting the spirit of Bhagat Singh and his comrades. It was of great significance that it was staged in the hometown of martyr Udham Singh,whose name will forever glimmer in the annals of anti-colonial history. The spirit of liberation simmered at a boiling pint as though a red spark had tuned into a prairie fire. I was honoured to participate in this event which was arguably the biggest ever gathering of youth in the history of the revolutionary movement in Punjab. On the call of B.K.U.( Ugrahan) and 0unjab Khet Mazdoor Union, a gigantic gathering of youth along with tens of thousands girls paid tributes to the martyrs of 23rd March, Shaheed Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev and pledged to fight against the imperialist attack of farmer laws, holding the front-lines. Truly a landmark event in history of youth revolutionary movement in India
Such an event had great significance when our nation is literally entrapped to the very core by the dictates of neo-colonialism which has tightened its noose at an absolute crescendo on all democratic struggles. The agricultural bills passed by the Bharatiya Janata Party have enslaved the peasantry and given corporates a monopoly as never before in India’s history. With Hindutva fascism at a helm there is a powerful tendency amongst liberal intellectuals to uphold Gandhi and Nehru as genuine anti-colonial fighters ,distorting their betrayal of genuine liberation .Even if different in form in essence the broad masses of India are morally as enslaved as in the Colonial times, with imperialism and capitalism penetrating in different forms. We have to understand how the economic misery prevailing has its root s in 1947 itself when no moral victory was won against imperialism and how the agenda of liberalisation from 1991 sponsored by globalisation patronised economic exploitation ,tightening the noose on the power of the working class as never before.
The participants thronged into the venue in the manner of a great army. Around 50-60000 people participated. It demonstrated the great potential the youth of Punjab had in resurrecting the glory of anti-colonial days and extinguish the masses from the grip of neo-fascist slavery. The conference made a huge contribution in elevating the anti-imperialist political consciousness of the youth and polarizing the major issues. The event illustrated how deep was the penetration of the revolutionary democratic and secular consciousness amongst the youth in Punjab and the great role played by forces like the BKU(Ugrahan) and the Punjab Khet Mazdoor Union. It demonstrated the great potential the youth of Punjab had in ressurecting the glory of anti-colonial days and extinguish the masses from the grip of neo-fascist slavery. It was ample evidence that in the democratic front no other organisations in Punjab had escalated the democratic political consciousness f youth at such a sustained level. The most progressive aspect of the event was the base created to build a genuine anti-imperialist movement and organisations of the students and youth,ressurecting the days of the movement of Punjab Students Union and Naujwan Bharat Sabha in the 1970.s or of the movement of the 1920’s.BKU (Ugrahan ) secretary It succeeded in bridging the gap between the youth and thu s making them an integral part of the revolutionary contingent. A striking example for the democratic movement in India to emulate as a whole in today’s context. The organisers did what the very doctor ordered in the present context. It was not just the quantitative participation but the qualitative impact.Afterall mere numbers don’t always reveal the true story. Such a democratic crystallization amongst youth is very rare since 1947.It is a tribute to the meticulous painstaking ground level work of the activists of the mass organisations. I complement the conference for projecting the anti-imperialist agenda of the martyrs in a most balanced way and in tune with proceedings in Indi a today. It was ample evidence that in the democratic front no other organisations in Punjab had escalated the democratic political consciousness of youth at such a sustained level.
The speakers were bang on in hitting the most anti-people aspects of the current BJP regime and relating it with the anti-imperialist struggle as a whole. In no uncertain terms they condemned how the rulers since 1947 made India subservient to imperialism with the loot or exploitation of people continuing n the same scale. They summarised how leaders like Nehru and Gandhi betrayed the legacy of Bhagat Singh and his comrades and how today imperialist plunder had reached proportions as never before, with the Modi regime literally mortgaging the nation.. It demonstrated the great potential the youth of Punjab had in ressurecting the glory of anti-colonial days and extinguish the masses from the grip of neo-fascist slavery. The most burning issues like unemployment, price rise corruption, lack of proper housing ,transport or hospitals plunder of MNC’ setc were related to the economic agenda of the Modi led BJP . I was particularly touched by the speech of Hushiyar Salemgarh of Punjab Students Union (Shaheed Randhawa) who raised his powerful voice against the manner in which the economic loot of the Indian people was perpetrated and the role the students and youth had to confront it at the very core, He summarised how privatisation patronised illiteracy and unemployment and educational institutions fleecing students. Harinder Bindu’s speech also hit the core of the soul where she highlighted how women played an equal role with men in the revolutionary movement.BKU (Ugrahan ) secretary It succeeded in bridging the gap between the youth and thus making them an integral part of the revolutionary contingent. Sukhdev Khokri’ss speech had significance in highlighting the damage cause by the advocates of Khalistani ideology and how every nail in the coffin must be banged to destroy it,.PMKU leader Kala voiced the aspect of opression of the dalit caste which has great importance in context of India as a whole.
One of the most captivating sessions was when a woman comrade for around 20 minutes read a loud a set of resolutions pledged by the conference which were raised as slogans by the audience.
A most intense preparation programme proceeded the conference like an army laying a platform for launching an offensive.
Arguably there was a weakness of insufficient mobilizations of the dalit agricultural labour or the Punjab Khet Mazdoor Union cadre, who play an integral part of the democratic Movement. The aspect of Hindutva fascism was also not touched upon in the depth it should have done nor caste opression. I strongly feel more emphasis should have been given on the dangers of Hindu fascism pervading the country and the monopoly of upper caste forces. Another factor that could have been touched upon was how neo-colonialism devised new methods of penetrating the Indian fabric and how in the mechanisation or computer age new forms of struggle methods have to be formulated to combat it.In my view the international scene also could have been highlighted in context of the turmoil of the youth. Also very sparse participation by the industrial worker youth. The fact that the Naujwan Bharat Sabha with the Punjab Studenst Union(Shaheed Randhawa) could not stage this event also reflect the weakness of mass political movement in the students and youth. I also asked myself why slogans were raised only from the banner of BKU(Ugrahan) and not the Punjab Khet Mazdoor Union.
REPORT OF SUNAM CONFERENCE (report from Sukhdev Singh Khokri nad Laxman Singh Sewewala)
The proceedings of the conference started after all the youth taking pledge, standing before the portraits of the martyrs. Joining their voice with the voice of youth leader Gurpreet Kaur Brass, who read the oath, they said that, “We declare that the Basanti convoys of youth will stay persistent in the struggles of farmers and toiling people against the attack of Corporates and its allies. We will uphold the anti-imperialist and anti-fundamentalist traditions of our martyrs, we will stay like a wall against every deception.” I was deeply touched in the very core of my soul by the intensity of expression of the cultural performers whether singing or narrating poetry. It gave a sensation of the martyr’s messages shimmering in our very hearts
Youth leader Jagtar Singh Kalajhad said in his address that the sacrifice, programme and path of Shaheed Bhagat Singh and his comrades is a source of inspiration for the youth till today. He said even after the 74 years of transfer of power, the people of our country are suffering from the blind-exploitation of imperialism and its local allies like feudal lords and capitalists. Modi government brought the farmer laws to enhance this exploitation which will push the youth in more deep crisis, who already facing adversities of unemployment and humiliation. These laws are aimed to snatch the lands of the farmers which will further increase the farmer suicides. He said the youth of Punjab understands this imperialist attack and fighting against these laws standing in the front-lines. He said the farmers and youth have failed the moves of Modi government to sabotage this struggle by using the incidents of 26th of January, which is day by day spreading to the foreign lands.
Farm-labourer leader Kala Singh Khunan Khurd said, the attack of farmer laws, by strengthening control of corporate houses on the food system of the country, will become a tool to push the labourers in the jaws of hunger, who are already facing dearth of food and grains. He said this attack will surrender the Panchyati and Saamlat lands before the corporates on which the labourers and dalits have legal right. He said to fight against this attack there is a dire need to built the unity of farmers and labourers by surpassing the castist and religious boundaries.
Youth leader Ajaypal Singh Ghudda, announced to besiege the Dry-port of Adani, situated at Kila Raipur, from 27th to 31st of March. He also told that a huge convoy of youth will move towards Delhi on 22nd march to celebrate the martyrdom day of the martyrs of 23rd march. He said in the villages the girls will pay tributes to the martyrs on 23rd march, and the tributes will also be paid on the continuous Morchas. He also appealed to make the 26th march Bandh successful and announced to hold Flag marches on 24th and 25th of march.
Sukhjit Singh Kothaguru, Ashwani Ghudda of Naujwan Bharat Sabha and Husyiar Singh Salemgarh from P.S.U. ( Shaheed Randhawa) said in their address that under which policies the government attacked the agriculture sector, under the same policies the steps to privatise the education have being taken by the government.
B.K.U.( Ugrahan) State general secretary Sukhdev Singh Kokri kalan, expressing his satisfaction of youth’s participation in today’s’ gathering said, there is no contradiction between youth and farmer leaders in the ongoing farmer struggle, and the youth are an important faction of this struggle. He said some forces are falsely trying to label the farmer struggle as a religious struggle confined only to one religion. He said todays’ conference is a practical reply to this illusionary propaganda. State leader of Women-wing Harinder Bindu said, Shaheed Bhagat Singh and his comrades dreamed about a society free of exploitation, oppression and discrimination. She said in the ongoing struggle the women stood shoulder by shoulder with the men and proved that they are not less than anyone.
On this occasion, President of Punjab Loksabhyachark Mnach Amolak Singh, Punjabi artist Pammi Bai, playwright Doctor Sahib Singh, story writer Atarjit Singh, Gursharan Singh Salam convoy’s convener Jaspal Jassi, rational leader Rajinder Bhadaur, artist Ranjit Matt Sheron Wala, leader of contract employee Sangharsh Morcha Jagrup Singh, leader of Molder and Steel Workers Union Harjinder Singh and leader of Bathinda Thermal Workers Gurwinder Pannu and leader of Medical Practitioners Association Dr. Manjinder Singh Siran were also present.
RESOLUTIONS PLEDGED IN CONFERENCE
We are the brave Sangat of Punjab youth who stand on the land of Sunam, knowing our martyrs. Against black agricultural laws, the peak of the farmer’s struggle for pride, has made our body and mind shake. The light of this ghol has deepened the relationship of our minds with the concern of our martyrs. Foreign and indigenous corporate echoes, have made our beloved country land unlimited. The painful words of our Gadri martyrs have been decorated: ′′ Hira Hind, Diamond ashes have been rolled This pain has gone deep, in our chests.
We have not forgotten, that for the liberation of our diamond like India, the martyrs of March 23 raised the slogan ′′ down to imperialism The shackles of the farmer’s struggle have made the meaning of this slogan more clear. This slogan echoes on our lips, just got louder. We pledge, that our stumbled fists, will keep waving at the echo of this slogan, until the imperial jokes are wiped out of our homeland.
We are proud that the light of the farmer’s struggle is participating in fulfilling the openness of the minds of the youth. The longing for struggle to take my own destiny is going to be in my own hands. This is becoming the answer to cravings, drugs and immigration abroad. We are proud that today, we are on our way to challenge the leprosy of drugs being imposed on us by profiteers. We are a living piece of our farmers and people’s struggle, against black agriculture laws. We know that, this struggle is also a struggle to protect the employment of youth, along with the protection of land and food. By taking inspiration from our martyrs, we will raise the echo of this struggle by shaking our lives.
We are aware that the BJP government is running on British empire policy to deal with the farmer s’ struggle. Along with the force, she is using the handcuffs of the tricks. Using the weapon of ′′ divide and rule Communal community is taking shelter of pride. It wants to destroy and crush the joint struggle of farmers, and people of the country, by putting gates of religions, sects, castes and areas. We will fail this policy of ′′ divide and rule ′′ by taking inspiration from Shaheed Bhagat Singh, Shaheed Kartar Singh Sarabha and Shaheed Udham Singh. We will expose the conspiracy to stick the label of religion struggle on this struggle, of joint farmer interests and public interests. We will follow the advice of the martyrs and Gadri martyrs of March 23, to run the struggles of public interests, on secularism. We will not allow any politics, to use the shoulders of youth, trying to kidnap, demolish or fight the farmer’s struggle.
We declare a clear condemnation, by a handful of people, on January, over the action taken at Red Fort, by the fistful, tight-eyes and people-enemy politics. We know that, this action was taken with the purpose of encouraging and getting suffered by the BJP government, to remove and drown the struggle.
Once badly, even after failing, these regretless Ansar Hawks did not come. Even now, by misleading the youth, on the farmer s’ struggle, they are trying to impose their political agenda. For this reason, special efforts are being made to misuse the religious emotions of the people who have faith in Sikh religion.
The youth of Shaheed Bhagat Singh, Sarabha and Udham Singh, cannot quietly see this attempt to play with the religious emotions of the people. We warn our simple-hearted people, who believe in Sikhism, that these people, who sacrificed their lives against empires, are not the heirs of Nankana Sahib, who sacrifice their lives for the rightful religious freedom of the Gurdwaras. We want to tell that, these Ansar occupied the Gurudwaras on the city of English empires, the chakra of empires, the heirs of Mahatshahi. They are the heirs of Mahantashahi who invited General Dyer to Darbar Sahib and gave support. Those who issued orders against Gadri warriors, are the heirs of the infamous English devotees.
We declare that, the Basanti convoy of youth, against imperial corporatism and its indigenous astrologers, will remain in the queue of the struggle for the rights of their farmers and the people. We will keep the torch of struggle shining, by giving every sacrifice. We will uphold the imperialism and anti-communal traditions of our martyrs and with inspiration from the martyrs, we will stand as a wall against every wandering.
Down with imperialism!
Death to Firkaprasti!
Down with black agriculture law!
DELHI RALLY IN TIKRI BORDER (Report from Sukhdev Singh Khokri)
On March 23rd the contingent in Suman marched to Tikri Border in Delhi illuminating the spark lit in Sunam ,2 days before. It organized one of the most impactful protests ever commemorating Shaheed Bhagat Singh and his comrades in the history of the country. The spark of liberation bellowed again at a crescendo, ressurecting the torch of Bhagat Sigh and his comrades. Never in the history of post-colonial India was Bhagat Singh commemorated with India in the mist or hot by the most severe economic turmoil.
Modi government to turn the face of imperial solution called for snatching land, employment and food through black agriculture laws, to rise above castes, religions and communalism and further the construction work of a huge and seized farmer movement Forwarding it is the true tribute to the martyrs of 23 March. Expressing these ideas today on the invitation of United Kisan Morcha, Sukhdev, State General Secretary of Bharatiya Kisan Union (Ekta Ugraha) addressing a huge gathering of youths and farmers to pay tribute to Shaheed Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev at Tikri border. Done by Singh Kokri Kalan. They announced that the march will continue until the return of these black laws, taking inspiration from their national martyrs. He said that their organization will continue their struggle for fulfilling the dream of creating a society free of loot and oppression of farmers and laborers. Mr. Kokri Kalan said that to cover the speed of the current farmer s’ struggle, the Modi government along with communal forces have stamped a particular communal struggle on this ghol, the target of communal distribution among farmers and police torture to farmers including farmer leaders. The heirs of the martyrs and the farmers and the laborers have once failed in the making of the wrong minds. Union State Vice President Jaswinder Singh Longowal, during his address, said that the Modi government is following the ‘tear and rule’ policy, which our martyrs sacrificed their lives for liberation. Expressing satisfaction on the vast participation of youth in today’s tribute ceremony, the Modi government is implementing anti-national policies of privatization, liberalization and reforming watches by institutions and imperial countries. He said that during the current struggle farmers, women and youth have suffered many miseries and carried on the legacy of the martyrs by setting up new records of Sirri Ghol.
Youth Bharat Sabha leader Ashwani Ghuda and PSU leader Hoshiar Singh Salemgarh said that all governments, including Modi government, have so far, are expressing the anger of unemployment and illiteracy as a result of the implementation of pro-empire policies. This outrage will increase even more with the implementation of black agricultural laws. They alleged that the Modi government is betraying the people of the country by forcibly handing over construction institutions to indigenous foreign corporate households in the name of patriotism. In reverse, false cases of traitor are being filed against brave farmers and farmer leaders.
Punjab Khet Labor Union State General Secretary Lachman Singh Sevewala said that even after 74 years of transfer of power, the country is suffering from problems like poverty, inflation, unemployment, debt and suicide instead of progress. He said that the reason for these problems is the robbery of the empire and the pressure of the country to remain as it is. He said that the agriculture laws brought by the Modi government to speed up the loot will push farmers as well as farm laborers, urban poor, landlords and other consumers into the jaws of unemployment, inflation and hunger. They took inspiration from the martyrs and stressed the need to build a joint movement of labour farmers, urban poor and consumers by breaking the caste communal division.
On this occasion, women farmer leader Paramjit Kaur Pitho said that to advance the thinking of martyrs, women need to be more involved in the pages of the farmer movement by getting rid of the feudal mentality. He said that even before the current struggle, farmer women have proved once again that women are the brave squad of the farmer movement.
On this occasion, Hoshiar Singh, the leader of the Farmer Sangharsh Committee Tarn Taran, other than the young farmer leader Jagtar Singh Kalajhar, addressed. At the moment
Renowned poet and scientist Gohar Raza has sharpened sarcasm on Prime Minister Narendra Modi through his poem ′′ wearing new dresses, you will hide all the blood stains Ughi social activist Medha Patekar and Rangkarmi Shabnam Hashmi, including the state leader of BKU (Ekta Ugraha) Janak Singh Bhutal,, Amrik Singh Gandhuan, Jaswant Singh Sadarpur, Basant Singh Kothaguru, Gurbhagat Singh Bhalaiana, Amarjit Singh Saidoke etc. to the martyrs A tribute was paid.
Harsh Thakor is a political commentator or freelance Journalist who has toured India ,particularly Punjab and written articles on democratic blogs like ‘Ottos War Room’ and ‘Democracy and Class Struggle.’ and ‘Frontier weekly’ on a range of topics. Emailemail@example.com