Patkar’s speech at meet termed ‘historic’
29: NOTED environmentalist Medha Patkar addressing the
closed-door delegate session of the 18th congress of the CPI
here on Wednesday will go down as a first in the history of
the communist movement.
Patkar, who was greeted with
applause from the delegates, spoke about the need for greater
cooperation between independent people’s movements and like-minded
political parties to take up the cause of marginalised sections.
The unity of such democratic, secular and right thinking forces
had become all the more essential in the backdrop of the increasing
threat of communal and fascist forces, she said.
Her speech at the congress
gathers significance as the Left-led trade unions have all
along been opposing environmentalists like Medha Patkar. Their
main argument is that by blocking mega projects, the NGOs
were depriving lakhs of people of employment .
In Kerala, environmentalists
including poet Sugathakumari have been often criticised by
the Left parties and their trade union wings for their stand
on mega power projects and adivasi land issue. Medha, in fact,
referred to the recent agitation launched by C K Janu seeking
the support of the CPI for similar struggles.
While recalling her association
with the late Indrajit Gupta and Geeta Mukherjee, she said
that the two leaders had supported the NBA cause both within
and outside Parliament.Meanwhile, Patkar’s speech has been
widely welcomed by the delegates.
A number of delegates who spoke
on the draft political resolution termed it as a ‘historic’
beginning and suggested that the party should develop closer
ties with independent peoples movement.
Apart from political and electoral
alliances, the party should work for united struggles with
such organisations, they pointed out.