March 07, 2017

India: Chalo Nagpur! ​Women’s call for action against Manuvad and Hindutva -Text of Press Release

Shabnam Hashmi's Post on Facebook

CHALO NAGPUR! ​Women’s call for action against Manuvad and Hindutva
Venue: Place: Indora Maidan​, Indora Chowk, Kamptee Road, Nagpur
Time: 11:30AM – 4PM
It isn’t everyday that Dalit, muslim, adivasi, bahujan, minority, disabled, queer women, transgender people, sex workers, nomadic tribeswomen, students and many others discriminated against on the basis of caste, class, religion, community, sexuality, gender, disability, occupation or age come together to raise their voices against the forces of communal, brahmanical, feudal, casteist, capitalist patriarchy. It isn’t everyday that such a wide spectrum gathers to celebrate the life and legacy of Krantijyoti Savitri Bai Phule. Because it isn’t everyday we Chalo Nagpur!
On 10 March 2017, about 5000 women from Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka, Kerala and Bihar will gather in Nagpur to mark the 120th remembrance day of Savitri Bai Phule, in a massive show of solidarity against the forces of hatred, injustice and dominance. With songs, dance, art, poetry and theatre we confront the inequality, intolerance and the efforts to silence us that are growing all around – in villages and urban centres, on university campuses and at workspaces, in homes and on the streets – we will rise to assert our voice, our rights, and the protections guaranteed to us by the Constitution. Together, we will reiterate that in a secular, democratic state, no one has the right to discriminate, humiliate, violate, oppress, or commit atrocities against any person or community based on their identity.
We condemn countless cases of heinous gendered and sexual crimes by dominant castes and the state upon Dalit girls and women like Surekha Bhotmange of Khairlanji, Delta Meghwal of Rajasthan, the girls of Bhawana, Jisha from Kerala; adivasi women like Soni Sori of Bastar, 12 adolescent adivasi girl of Buldhana, the women of Bijapur; muslim women of Mewat and Muzaffarnagar, among so many others who have borne the brunt of aggressive Hindutva politics. We demand accountability and justice for all these women and the thousands more who suffer each year, and an immediate end to the impunity offered to perpetrators of such crimes by the state. We call for an end to such inequalities, violence, oppression and atrocities!
As leaders and activists of the women’s movement we come together on this new journey of struggle across our varied identities today. Inspired by the historic work and life of Krantijyoti Savitribai Phule, India’s first woman teacher, poet, writer and leading champion of women’s rights, who sounded a clarion call against Brahmanical casteist patriarchy in the 19th century by educating shudras and women, and exposing the hollowness of the Manusmriti, religious texts and Brahmanical social practices. After all, it was Savitribai who boycotted traditional restrictions imposed on women, and set us on our path to freedom. A path we walk together today to raise our voices for justice, friendship, peace, freedom, equality and dignity.
So CHALO NAGPUR! The centre of Krantijyoti Savitribai Phule’s historic work. The birthplace of the reform movement of the Satyashodak Samaj. The city where Dr BR Ambedkar mobilized the largest ever conference of women under the banner of the Scheduled Caste Federation – 30,000 women who came together to challenge patriarchy in radical ways that continue to inspire our feminisms and activism today!
CHALO NAGPUR! 10 March 2017 will be a historic day when over 5000 women will gather and express themselves through speech and poetry, performances and art, songs and dance.
Chalo Nagpur is conceived, organized and funded by hundreds of individual women.
Rainbow Salutes! Jai Savitri! Jai Fatima! Jai Bhim! Jai Birsa!
A press conference was held on the 7th of March at IWPC in Delhi addressed by Shabnam Hashmi, Vani Subramanyam, Anita Ghai and Jaya Sharma. Shabnam Hashmi threw light on why ‘Chalo Nagpur’ is an event that needs to be highlighted today with fascist forces more active than ever. Vani Subramanyam, while giving a background on the importance of women from all over the country coming together as one voice for the event also explained that this was important as women who may have differences in opinion etc have shared experiences of discrimination, subjugation and marginalization. And that despite belonging to different categories of religions, caste, disability, sexuality etc, women in India today, in one voice, are standing up against patriarchy, fascism and Manuvad. Anita Ghai talked about her experiences of disability and the state and emphasized on how those with a disability need not be classified as ‘Divyaang’, as disability is normal and not divine, however what is required is efforts towards integration.
While answering questions from the journalists the four discussed the importance of Nagpur as an event venue and said that Savitribai Phule, along with being a Dalit Icon, means a lot more to the women’s movement. It was also clarified that event has not been funded by any organization. All the women part of the ‘Chalo Nagpur’ campaign have raised their own funds individually.
Jaya Sharma read out the following statements. These statements from us as Dalit women, Muslim women, sex workers, trans persons, queer women, young women students etc were shared at the Delhi press conference.
जाती व्यवस्था और पितरसत्ताकी वजह से दलित महिलाओं को दोहरी तिहरी मार झेलनी पड़ रही है। इसीलिए दलित महिलाए सामाजिक, आर्थिक अवं राजनीतिक स्तर पर अन्य महिलाओं के मुक़ाबले पीछे है और उनकी स्थिति में सुधार न आने की वजह है भारतीय समाज की मनुवादी अवम ब्रह्मणवादी मानसिकता जो दलित महिला के विकास में अड़चन पैदा कर रही है और उन्हें अपने संवेधनिक अधिकारोकी प्राप्ति करने से भी वंचित रख रही है।
For Tara, Rohith, Najeeb, Delta, Jisha, Dika and so many others- The social, political, economic and cultural is no longer the sole domain of the savarna patriarch. We shall decimate brahmanical privilege and the centuries of oppression that it has generated. Our universities will not be turned into extensions of warped senses of savarna entitlement. Nor is it the playground for saffron, patriarchal hooliganism and violence. We will not let you carve your toxic discourse on "nationalism" onto our bodies.
मनुवादी ब्राम्हणी जाति व्यवस्था और हिंदुत्व जैसी द्वेषपूर्ण राजनीति दोनों के लिए एक बहुत जरूरी हथियार है औरतों की यौनिकता पर कंट्रोल. अपनी यौनिक चाहत को पहचान कर उस को बरकरार रख कर जीने वाली हर औरत इन सत्ताओं को चुनौती है. इसी लिए समलैंगिक औरतें और ट्रांस लोग, जो समाज के जेन्डर और यौनिक चाहत के नियमों के बाहर अपनी जिंदगी जीने के लिए जद्दोजहद करते हैं, हिंदुत्व और मनुवाद के खिलाफ़ इस लड़ाई का हिस्सा हैं हिंदुत्व द्वेष, शोषण, हिंसा, अत्याचार, और आक्रामक मर्दानगी का तमाशा है हमारा संघर्ष प्यार, आज़ादी, समानता, विविधता, और न्याय का जश्न है.
Sex workers protest against a society that deems us immoral and illegal because we do not accept its mores, rules and governance. Sex Workers demand - Azadi from stigma, Azadi from discrimination, Azadi from the violence of a judgemental attitude, Azadi from criminalisation, Azadi from moral policing, Azadi from Gundas emboldened by Hindutva forces practicing manuwad. Azadi from the multiplicity of injustice meted out to sex workers by patriarchial morality seeped in fundamentalism.
Gujrat, muzaffernagar aur na jane kitne mussalmano ko hindutvad ki fascist hatyaaron ne tabah kiya.Aurton aur bacchiyon ko hinsatmak mardangi ka shikar banaya jaata hain. gair barberi ka sulokh aur haqoon se door rakha hain, Ek tarf mussalmano ki hifazat khatre mein aur dosri oar pitrusatta and brahamavad k nishane par aurton ki pehchan.
For more information: chalonagpur2017@gmail.com
On behalf of organizers
Abhinaya Kamble, Ajita Rao, Anita Ghai, Bittu Karthik Kondaiah, Chaya Khobragade, Durga Jha, Elina Horo, Hasina Khan, Jaya Sharma, Kiran Deshmukh, Lata Pratibha Madhukar, Madhavi Kuckreja, Manisha Bangar, Manjula Pradeep, Meena Seshu, Monisha Behal, Nisha Shinde, Nivedita Menon, Pradnya Bagade, Rajni Tilak, Rituparna Borah, Sangeeta Manoji, Sanghapali Aruna, Saroj Sagale, Shabnam Hashmi, Shabina Mumtaz, Shambhawi Vikram, Shymal Garud, ​Sheba George, Sujata Surepally, Syeda Hameed​, Vasvi Kiro, Vimal Thorat