Dear Friends, It was a tremendous show of solidarity with so many of us coming together at the dharna on the 9th. The entire day was marked with songs of peace, harmony and sanity and ended with enchanting sufi music from Dhruv Sangari and a rousing street theatre performance by Jana Natya Manch.
Bina Srinivasan from Citizen´s Initiative, Ahmedabad who is coordinating relief efforts in various camps was with us that day. In her address, she underlined the fear in the minds of the people with regard to the impending rath yatra. She led a delegation from AEM to meet the Resident Commissioner of Gujarat and submitted a memorandum to him. The RC has assured that he would convey AEM's demands of ensuring the protection of life and property of people on the 12th, to the authorities concerned in Gujarat. If you all recall, many of us individually as well as organisationally have sent off faxes and e-mails to the prime minister demanding the same.
It must be added that elements of the right wing were on the prowl all throughout and tried to disrupt our peaceful gathering on several occasions with their characteristic roundabout, destructive arguments. Also it needs to be mentioned that the concerned authorities did not let us hold our meet at the preplanned venue despite police information and had violently pulled down our banners. We ended up having the dharna in front of the coffee home.
In conclusion, the dharna was a successful effort towards influencing public opinion, and mobilizing new voices. We hope to see all the new people who have pledged solidarity with AEM to join us at our weekly meetings.
Prayers for peace on the 12th for every citizen of Gujarat
Aman Ekta Manch
PS: This is a note to all the AEM volunteers who worked in the relief camps of Ahmedabad. Your roles have been highly appreciated and you are requested to be present for a meeting on the 14th, July, Sunday at the 2:00 pm at the Constitution Club. Bina Srinivasan would convene the meeting. Many of you have already been contacted over the telephone. This is also the venue for the daylong SAHMAT convention, the information of which has been circulated through the last action updates.