•  Place: Bangalore | Agency: DNA

    Urban youngsters are getting acquainted with people’s mutinies across India.

    Youngsters in rap attention at one of the earlier interactive sessions organised in the city.

    Youngsters in rap attention at one of the earlier interactive sessions organised in the city.

    Here is news for all those who thought urban youth today care two hoots for people’s protests simmering in the Indian hinterland. Revolution is far from dead in our city colleges, proof of which is Kranti, a campaign “to raise solidarity for the brave political dissidents of India”, kickstarted by two students of the National Law School of India University (NLSIU).

    The initiative has now spread to colleges in Pune, Mumbai, Kolkata, Mysore, Delhi and Hyderabad.

    “There are so many ongoing people’s movements, women, tribals, and dalits fighting for their dignity and rights, which most of us in the cities do not understand. The mainstream media overlooks this and so youngsters here do not get to hear about it,” said Sahana Manjesh, who conceptualized the campaign along with Prem Ayyathurai.

    It was their internship experiences with activists in the conflict areas of Chattisgarh and at the offices of the Kabir Kala Manch in Maharashtra that urged Team Kranti to start this campaign. They define Kranti as a “festival to discover, celebrate and spread the culture of dissent in India”.

    Initially, the idea was to organise a political conference that would bring activists, NGOs and intellectuals working with people’s movements to college campuses. While planning it, in the course of about six months, they felt instead of just a conference, a students’ movement to “resurrect the culture of protest” was more apt.

    The campaign kicked off in Bangalore on July 19 with a screening followed by discussion of Sanjay Kak’s film Red Ant Dream. In September, they plan to hold an event called the Songs of Protest bringing together artists of Kabir Kala Manch, Delhi Sultanate, Sambhaji Bhagat and others. Anand Patwardhan will screen excerpts from his films and discuss the evolution of the people’s struggles that he captured over his career as a filmmaker. Finally, on September 15, there will be the Kranti Conference.

    “We have invited speakers including Prafulla Samantara, Anand Teltumbde, Jean Dreze, Prof. Haragopal and Paranjoy Guha Thakurta to speak directly to the students of India about what they perceive to be the state of affairs. This conference will be streamed and uploaded online, as will be most of the other events,” Team Kranti says.




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