[Reader-list] Anti-Posco Solidarity Appeal

Anivar Aravind anivar.aravind at gmail.com
Sat Sep 5 21:14:07 IST 2009



For more than four years the POSCO Pratirodh Sangram Samity (PPSS) has been
bravely resisting attempts to displace over 30,000 people in Jagatsinghpur
District of Orissa by POSCO, a South Korean company, which wants to set up a
steel company and a port on their lands.

The US12 billion-dollar project, being aggressively promoted by both Orissa
and Indian governments, threatens the livelihood of thousands of
agriculturists, workers and small businesses in the area besides devastating
the local environment and ecology.

In the course of their peaceful and democratic non-violent struggle to
prevent their lands from being forcibly acquired by POSCO, the members of
PPSS have been brutally attacked by paid goons of the company and subjected
to grueling economic blockades by the local administration. Several of their
leaders, including Abhay Sahu, veteran CPI leader in the area, have been put
behind bars and false charges foisted on over 150 activists, both men and

*Need For Doctors and Medicines: *

As a result of all this there is now a grave medical emergency developing in
the Erasama and Kujanga blocks of Jagatsinghpur district, the sites of the
proposed land acquisition for the POSCO steel plant. There are dozens of
activists who have fractured limbs due to violence by the company’s hired
musclemen, some of which include injuries from bomb attacks. They need
orthopedic help and in some cases possibly even surgical intervention.

Some women in the area are in late stages of pregnancy but unable to leave
the area to get the medical care they need because of the fear of harassment
and even arrest by the local police. Many other women have developed a range
of gynecological problems that need urgent medical attention.

There is severe malnutrition among children owing to the lack of income over
the past few years as many local people have not been able to pursue their
normal livelihoods because of the turmoil in the area. The general
population of the affected villages also need help in combating malaria
which is endemic to the area. There are also patients suffering from
paralysis who need medical care. All these patients cannot go out and
receive treatment  because of the threat of arrests.

Therefore, we appeal to you to help in mobilizing support for a medical camp
which can be organized by the anti-Posco movement. Please contact:

Prashant Kumar Paikray:            (0)9437571547;

Satya Sivaraman:                        (0)9818514952; or

K.P. Sasi:                                    (0)9945282056.

*Protest on September 10: *

A huge gathering of the people affected by POSCO will take place on
September 10 at Balitutha, the entrance point of the proposed POSCO complex
area. Many leaders of different anti-displacement struggles will address the
gathering. The anti-Posco movement appeals to all people’s movements against
displacement, movements against SEC, mass organization leaders and
like-minded activists to participate and express solidarity.

*Need for Contributions:*

There is an urgent need for contributions for the protest on September 10,
medical care, legal defence and other expenses of the movement. We appeal to
you to communicate to your friends and mobilize maximum support and inform
Prashant Kumar Paikray, the spokesperson of the movement (09437571547) at
the earliest.

*Send Letters of Protest:*

The PPSS  appeals to people all over India and around the world to show
solidarity with the struggle  by sending letters of protest to the Chief
Minister of Orissa (cmorissa at ori.nic.in and cmo at ori.nic.in) and the Prime
Minister of India (*Fax*: 91-11-23019545 / 91-11-23016857).

Copies of protest letters can be sent to antiposcosolidarity at gmail.com.

*For Anti Posco Struggle Solidarity (antiposcosolidary at gmail.com):*

Prashant Paikray, POSCO Pratirodh Sangram Samithy (PPSS)

K.P.Sasi, Visual Search, Bangalore

Satya Sivaraman, www.binayaksen.net, New Delhi

Magline Peter, Theeradesa Mahilavedi, Kerala

Dhirendra Panda, Common Concern, Orissa

Jagadish, New Socialist Alternative, Bangalore

Rajaji Mathew, CPI MLA, Chairperson, Kerala Legislative Assembly on

Anivar Aravind, Moving Republic, Bangalore

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