By Kedar Mishra
Lecturing is easy but working in the field is tough. People staying in urban center must stop lecturing poorest of the poor of this country on how and which way they should protest, said Arundhati Roy, famous author and activist.
Speaking to a gathering in Bhubaneswar, Ray categorically said that debate and discourse on violent or non violent medium of protest is futile. Only the people who are marginalized in the remotest forest of this country know which medium is best suited to ventilate their feelings of protest.
Speaking to a mixed gathering of activists, writers and artistes organized by Odia literary magazine “Nisan” Arundhati lauded the tribal of Niyamgiri for their heroic stand to protect Niyamgiri hill from the clutch of highly influential Vedanta Alumina. Arundhati said that the tribal has shown us the best art of protest by taking toughest stand against a multi national company.
Nisan, a quarterly literary journal in Odia has been undemocratically targeted and harassed by state police branding the magazine as pro Maoists. Nisan editor Lelin Kumar narrates his ordeals he faced to print his magazine and informed that no press in Odisha dares to print “Nisan”.
Talking on the Art of protest Filmmaker Sanjay Kak said that hurdles by state or power center strengthen the will power of protestors. Lada Sikoka, leader of Niyamgiri movement bluntly spoke that they are ready to shed their blood and life, but won’t allow Niyamgiri to die. An emotional Sikoka asked the urban audience if they can not demolish their man made temple in Puri, how can they allow a company to devastate a natural temple, the holy abode of Niyam raja.
Veteran Odia fiction writer Bibhuti Patnaik and poet Ashutosh Parida also addressed to the gathering. Nisan literary awards has been conferred upon fiction writer Basanti Mohanty and poet Pabitra Mohan Dash. Poet Akhil Nayak presided over the meeting.