We enclose with this letter, the schedule of Aruna Roy and Shanker Singh founder members of the Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sangathan (MKSS) and the National Campaign for the Peoples Right to Information (NCPRI) who will address the annual conference and a series of lectures organized by the Association of India's Development in the United States from 24th May to 11th June 2002.
Aruna Roy and Shankar Singh have been invited to talk about the experiences and lessons drawn from the Right to Information movement in India in making democracy meaningful to ordinary people- in particular the poor and marginalized. This movement has been part of a larger resurgence of grass root democratic action that provides great potential for hope and change. However the increasing strength of fundamentalist movements seen in its naked form in the spate of communal killings and polarised atmosphere in Gujarat threaten the foundations of democracy and the Indian Constitution. Aruna and Shankar have recently spent a week touring affected areas in Gujarat, and feel the need for all those involved with India to address the immediate tragedy and it's long-term implications.
It is also clear that there is a need for the so-called ' silent majority' to make informed choices, and get involved personally and collectively. The AID conference organisers have urged us to independently contact as many people\groups as we can so that there might be wider participation in these meetings. We write to you to ask for your help and involvement in:
Passing the word around about the scheduled meetings so that interested people in the area attend.
Contacting the local organizers and co-ordinate with them in case it is felt there is a need for additional meetings\programmes
Contacting us or the AID conference co-ordinator Nishant Jain at firstname.lastname@example.org in case there are any suggestions or queries. [...]
The aid conference website
or http://www.aidindia.org has more information
about both of them and their work.
With many thanks,
MKSS and other friends