A file picture of JVM supremo Babulal Marandi and party leaders during a rally in Ranchi
Ranchi, July 17: The JVM today resolved to launch a statewide campaign and stage demonstrations in New Delhi to trigger “mass consciousness” against displacement of lakhs due to mining, industries and irrigation projects, broadening the party’s stand on Nagri to a more holistic view against forced eviction.
Party workers led by JVM president Babulal Marandi will organise 50 public meetings across Jharkhand between August 2 and 14. They will gherao the state secretariat on September 3 and then “march” to New Delhi.
These decisions were taken at the meeting of members and office bearers that Marandi presided over.
“Over 25 lakh families in Jharkhand have so far been displaced by mining operations, industrial units and irrigation projects in particular. The demolition axe hangs on several thousand families. People displaced during recent anti-encroachment drives are doomed to fend for themselves. We won’t stay mute spectators,” said JVM principal general secretary Pradeep Yadav.
Recently, Marandi had gone on daylong fast before Mahatma Gandhi’s statue at Morabadi grounds to protest against alleged police excesses in Nagri, where the state and the residents are at loggerheads over three proposed national institute campuses on farmland. A few months ago, he went on weeklong fast at the same venue to protest against rampant displacement caused by the anti-encroachment drive.
As JMM chief Shibu Soren stepped in to champion the cause of Nagri residents, rival JVM has been forced to change tack and take a broad-based view of displacement.
The JVM also lost no chance to belittle JMM for jumping on the Nagri bandwagon.
“The JMM supremo (Soren) is shedding crocodile tears. He is supporting the Arjun Munda government and is also ready to lead protests against the state’s land acquisition. Being the coordination committee chairman, he could easily have forced the state government to bend,” Yadav said.
The JVM also resolved to complete party worker conferences in all 81 Vidhan Sabha constituencies by November 15. The party intends to contest all Vidhan Sabha and Lok Sabha seats in the state.
“In fact, we have already held such conferences in 16 assembly constituencies. The Manmohan Singh government at the Centre and the Munda government in Jharkhand are both not going to last for long. Our preparations for the next elections are on in full swing,” Yadav added.
Over half a dozen MLAs and Jamshedpur MP Ajoy Kumar were not present at the meeting.