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A call to all Hindraf supporters Let us push for changes we need along with BERSIH

ganesan-n-hindraf-1-255x300.jpgUndeniable historical truth is that when there is rot at the top of society, those who suffer most are the ones right at the bottom of society. Also other historical experience shows opportunities for some real change at the top occurs every so often in the history of every nation. The people who need change have to recognize this opportunity and come together in a broad fraternity for change and make the most out of such opportunities.

Being right at that bottom, the marginalized Indian poor today are hit extremely hard by the rot at the top - of the corrupt, oppressive and utterly self serving policies of the ruling elite. They are most in need of basic policy changes.

Recent Hindraf’s experience has shown that correction of these problems cannot occur without concomitant fundamental changes to the economic and political system of the country. Therefore a people’s movement such as the planned BERSIH rally, pushing for such change does have the potential for improving the lives of these people. – inspite of the risks of being made use of by other sections of the elite.

The country today is experiencing its worst political crisis, along with a serious erosion of the economic substratum. What is happening today however is only the outcome of past policies of the ruling elite. The entrenchment of insitutionalized racism, the increasing concentration of state power in the hands of a corrupt elite, the emasculation of the institutions of the state, steady erosion of the rule of law and corrupt misapplication of the national wealth.

Specifically affecting the marginalized sections of our society are progressive elimination of subsidies, introduction of the GST, stagnating wages, huge influx of foreign workers, rising prices, instituionalized racism and continuing statelessness. These policies need to be reversed if the marginalized sections of our society are to be permanently pulled out from this endemic socio-economic trap.

The ruling elite will in no way concede one inch to correct the oppression and malaise they have inflicted on society without any real and powerful backpressure. Therefore I call on all supporters of HINDRAF to participate in the rally fin ull measure and together with the other progressive forces for fundamental change push for that change. Together we can create that mechanism for the change.

We have to however keep clear in mind that after a rally of this nature the current political elite will not immediately be relieved of their power. What this rally provides, therefore is the possibility for new alliances to create the force capable of bringing about that ultimate outcome.

Much will depend upon how political forces in the country can regroup in meaningful new forms amidst shards of splintered projects, with myriad questions yet to be answered. This is an opportunity for the test out the possibility of alignment of progressive forces pushing for political change.

The initial changes that may result will very likely increase democratic space for organizations such as ours to continue to push for basic economic policy changes . There will also likely be some improvement to the rule of law, a matter so fundamental for the well being of any minority community in an ethnically structured society.

I therefore call on all HINDRAF supporters to come out in full force to facilitate this potential regrouping of the political forces within the country and push for the changes we all sorely need.

N Ganesan
National Adviser