NBA Press Release
  27 August 2001
Save The Narmada, Save Humanity!

President's Office responds Positively to Jeevan Yatra
Delhi Colleges Rise and Noted Artists Perform in Support of Narmada Struggle

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62, Mahatma Gandhi Road,
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Tel: 07290-22464

His Excellency the President of India, Mr. K R Narayanan has assured the children of Narmada that their trip to Delhi and the purpose behind the Jeevan Yatra will not go in vein. In a message sent to the organisers of the Yatra in Delhi, the Rashtrapati Bhawan has conveyed Mr. Narayanan's personal appreciation about the Yatra and also his sincere apologies to the children for not being able to meet them personally. He will look into the issues raised the memorandum they have given, he assured.

One may remember that President had deputed a senior officer of Rashtrapati Bhawan, Mr.Sharif to meet the 12-member delegation, as he was indisposed, on August 23rd. Mr.Sharif had given a patient hearing to the delegation and promised that the Hon'ble President's office will get back them before they leave Delhi. NBA look forward for the timely action from the President to save the lives of thousands of tribals and peasants of Narmada Valley.

Yatra in Delhi Colleges

Children from Narmada Jeevanshala (Schools of Life) held public meetings with Delhi students, coming from Ramjas college, St.Stephen's college, IP college and Miranda College, among others. The students expressed solidarity with the struggle in Narmada Valley, especially to the ongoing Satyagraha in the Narmada Valley. Jeevanshala students in turn expressed their gratitude for taking up their cause in Delhi and for their visits to the remote tribal areas of the Valley. The interaction between the, otherwise diametrically juxtaposed, (tribal and metropolis) group of students proved to be a success in understanding the struggle for lives and livelihood.

While noted litterateur, Arundhati Roy inspired the gathering with her lively talk, distinguished dancer Arjun Raina had performed, in support of the Yatra. KMC Theatre group, known for innovative dramas, played "The Players".

The Jeevan Yatra

Started on 16th August from Kasarawad near Baba Amte's residence, the Yatra went through various cities and towns like Indore, Bhopal, Shivpuri, Gwalior, etc conducting programs like rallies, street plays, dances, songs, speeches, etc appealing the people for support and creating awareness at all these places and got a huge welcome at Delhi on 21st evening near India Gate. The Yatra was in Delhi till 25th evening, engaged in different programs. After Delhi, the Jeevan Yatra left for Rajasthan, where they will visit Jaipur, Deoli, Udaipur and meet various project affected people and children including those displaced by Bisalpur dam.

Jeevan Shalas (today 11 of them in 3 states) were born from peoples' struggle against the dam, forced displacement and exclusion of affected communities from the decision making process that affects their lives. The challenge has been to provide education that is rooted in tribal culture and knowledge base, while exploring the horizon of the new and the unknown.

Shobha Wagh
Batesing Pavra
(For Narmada Jeevanshala)