‘Hum Agar Uthe Nahin Toh’: Campaign in Punjab to mark third anniversary of Gauri Lankesh murder

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By: Express News Service | Ludhiana | Published: September 4, 2020 1:20:41 am

A poster of the campaign

More than 35 groups from Punjab and Chandigarh, working on women’s rights, human rights, LGBT issues, and queer collectives among others on Thursday announced the launch of campaign — ‘Hum Agar Uthe Nahin Toh (If We Do Not Rise)’, which aims to raise voice “against the attack on the Constitutional Rights of people of India” and launch a “Day of Resistance” on September 5.

The Punjab campaign — ‘Jekar Assi Uthe Nahin Tan’ — is in support of the national campaign which is being organized by more than 500 organizations. On September 5, the third anniversary of the killing of journalist Gauri Lankesh, the organizations will participate in online as well offline activities locally to show their support for the campaign.

Kamayani, coordinator for Punjab campaign said, “More than 35 organizations from Punjab and Chandigarh have come together to launch a ‘Day of Resistance’ on September 5, which is the third assassination anniversary of Gauri Lankesh, who was an extraordinary journalist and activist who fearlessly fought against what she considered to be the growing fascism in politics and public life that was destroying the very spirit and soul of this nation. She paid for her right to dissent and her right to be human and humane, with her life. Inspired by her courage of conviction and fearless spirit, this campaign is aimed at uniting voices against targeted attacks on the constitutional rights of the people of India.”

The local and online actions planned in Punjab and Chandigarh include the release of a state charter of demands that will be sent to the CM focusing on issues that could be addressed by the government, an online Punjabi cultural festival, sharing videos of women from different sectors sharing their stories of struggle, and FB live sessions.

“India is currently facing an onslaught on its constitutional principles on all fronts as never before. Economic policy increasingly favours private capital on the one hand while ignoring the unorganised sector, which forms the majority of our economy. Labour rights and welfare have been abandoned in favour of ease of business for corporations. Environmental laws are seeing changes which favour large development projects sacrificing sustainability. Increasing social and cultural polarisation and the targeted lynchings of people who have been constantly at the receiving end of hate and offensive speech has pushed them to live in a constant state of fear. The growth of fascist forces and the resulting rise of violence in society have deeply impacted the lives of women and the members of transgender and queer communities. The campaign is being done to strengthen those voices of dissent and resistance,” said Kamayani.

Some of the organizations that are participating form Punjab and Chandigarh include AIDWA Punjab, Abhiaan education trust Sangrur, All India Womens Conference Amritsar, Ambedkar students Association, All India Students Federation – Punjab, Buniyad ek Zariya, Nari Manch Punjab, Punjab Stri Sabha, Wajood, Sanjhi Sikhya (Fatehgarh Sahib), Kheti Virasat Mission, Punjab, Stri Jagriti Manch, Karam Foundation for Social Justice (Moga), Zameen Praapti Sangharsh Committee (ZPSC) among others.

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