Asian Age Online
Welcome to your Blue Chip World of Content
SUNDAY
10 DECEMBER 2000

24 seven information

NEWS NOW
RSS CHIEF FORCED PM TO MAKE AYODHYA REMARK

VAJPAYEE SAID NOTHING WRONG: MUSLIM MINISTER

ADVANI HAD MISLED PARLIAMENT ON CBI LANKA VISIT: JAYA

PM UNREPENTANT, SAYS NO MINISTER NEEDS TO RESIGN

NO ROAD TO SIACHEN BEING BUILT
SPOTLIGHT
GOVERNOR OFFERS ULFA REBELS SAFE PASSAGE FOR BIHU
FREESPEAK
SWAMY: MYTH OF VAJPAYEE’S MODERATION IS SHATTERED
QUICKMIX

Narmada activists get President’s support


Mulayam, V.P. friends again


Ceasefire goodwill gesture saves day for 48 Pak fishermen

GOOD NEWS
around India

‘US, India estrangement should end’


Advocacy document on national youth policy released


HCL Infinet launches ready-to-use service

ASIDES

Fall in oil prices


Quake in Koyna


Mail strike still on


Israel arms bid


Indian arrested

 

NARMADA ACTIVISTS GET PRESIDENT’S SUPPORT
By Shubhabrata Bhattacharya

New Delhi
The cacophony on Ayodhya has drowned President K.R.Narayanan’s not too subtle support for the cause of Medha Patkar, Arundhati Roy and their associates in the Narmada Bachao Andolan.

The President’s speech, delivered on December 6, while presenting the Ambedkar award for social change to Baba Amte, in no uncertain words voiced support for those who are opposing the damming of rivers, especially in tribal areas.

The speech was delivered in Rashtrapati Bhavan, in the presence of the Prime Minister and other members of New Delhi’s official glitterati.

The following are snatches from the speech: “For Baba Amte, the environmental movement is not merely to save the trees, the mountains and rivers, but the human lives that these nurture — tribals and the poorest of poor of the land."

Baba Amte described the Narmada Bachao movement as a new battlefront for youth action terming it “an outburst of Gandhian courage and concern for antyodaya.”

"I recall that during our Independence struggle the late Shri V.K. Krishna Menon, directed his verbal missiles at British audiences, declaring that the British imperialists had gone around the world ‘damming rivers and damning peoples’. Let us, now that imperialism is gone, take every possible care to see that the impact of the dams we build is not ruinous to the lives of our tribal brothers and sisters inhabiting our forests and river valleys.”

Mr Narayanan quoted Dr B.R. Ambedkar and Mahatma Gandhi on the concept of social ownership of land and its use for the betterment of dalits and tribals.

Mr Narayanan said, “let us try to make our forests and river valleys, forests and valleys of joy, and not of human misery and deprivation.”

It may be recalled that following the Supreme Court verdict, which restarted the raising of the height of the Narmada dam, activists of the Narmada Bachao Andolan had appealed to the President of India and sought his intervention. T

he President cannot suo moto act on a matter, without the aid and advice of the Council of Ministers. Mr Narayanan’s speech at the Ambedkar function, therefore has come as music to the ears of the NBA and other environmentalists.


FrontPage | India | International | Business | Sports | Afghanistan | Bangladesh | Pakistan | Sri Lanka |
Ahmedabad | Bangalore | Bhubaneswar | Calcutta | Delhi | Mumbai | Opinion | Newsmakers | Age on Sunday |
Good Life | Astrology | Movies | Music | Health | Science | Literary