Below is the appeal issued by many academics, artists and concerned citizens on April 5. NEVER before in post-independence India have political forces, which are a front for an organisation committed to creating a Hindu Rashtra, made as strong a bid for power as in the coming elections. These forces are led by a person who presided over a pogrom against Muslims in Gujarat in 2002 and has never expressed any contrition over his role in that ghastly incident. And they enjoy the backing of the most powerful corporate houses in the country. The prospect of this alliance of corporate capital and communal forces coming to power constitutes a palpable threat to the future of our secular democracy. We urge all responsible individuals and political formations to ponder over the situation and urgently take whatever steps are necessary for defending our secular democracy. We appeal to the electorate to foil this corporate-communal alliance’s bid for power by voting against the BJP-led NDA. The signatories to the appeal are: Rooprekha Verma, Sashi Kumar, Vivan Sundaram, Achin Vanaik, Jayati Ghosh, Prabhat Patnaik, Kumar Shahani, Nirmalangshu Mukherjee, Abhilasha Kumari, Githa Hariharan, Ajeet Caur, Anand Sahay, Doodh Nath Singh, Arpana Caur, Amit Sen Gupta, Maya Rao, Amiya Kumar Bagchi, Akeel Bilgrami, Irfan Habib, M.K. Raina, Amit Upadhyay, Ram Rahman, Saeed Mirza, C.P. Chandrasekhar, Shakti Kak, Anil Sadgopal, Janaki Nair, Suvira Jaiswal, S. Kalidas, M.M.P. Singh, Vishwamohan Jha, Neeladri Bhattacharya, Madangopal Singh, Aban Raza, Abdul Maboob, Lima Kanungo, Ali N. Rizavi, Amar Farooqui, Amar Kanwar, Amarjit Chandan, Jehangir Jani, Aijaz Ahmad, Angelie Multani, Aniket Alam, Anil Bhatti, Anita Cherian, Apoorva Gautam, Archana Prasad, Arjun Dev, Arunkumar H.G, Asad Zaidi, Ashish Dasgupta, Ashish Ghosh, Ashley Tellis, Ataullah, Atlury Murali, Atul Bhardwaj, Ayesha Kidwai, Anuradha Kapur, B.P. Sahu, Badri Raina, Banwari Taneja, Biswamoy Pati, D.N. Jha, Deepak K. Singh, G. Arunima, Praveen Jha, Geeta Kapur, Girish Mishra, Girish Shrivastav, Gitanjali Shree, Gunjan Doogar, Harbans Mukhia, Harun Riaz, Imrana Qadeer, Indira Arjun Dev, Indira Unninayar, Ishrat Alam, Indira Chandrasekhar, Iqtidar Alam Khan, Jasodhara Bagchi, Jauhar Kanungo, Javed Malick, Jawaharlal Pande, Jawarimal Parakh, Joe Athialy, K.M. Shrimali, Kanti Mohan Soz, Kesavan Veluthat, Keval Arora, Lata Singh, Madhu Prasad, Madhu Trivedi, Madhusree Dutta, Manas Ray, Mandira Sen, Malini Bhattacharya, Manjari Katju, Anand Bala, Mazher Hussain, N.K. Sharma, Mihir Bhattacharya, Mohan Rao, Mohd Arif, Moloyashree Hashmi, Mushirul Hasan, Nalini Taneja, Navjot Altaf, Neena Rao, Neera Chandhoke, Wasi Haider, Neeraj Malick, Nilima Sheikh, Oishik Sirkar, Pamela Philipose, Parthiv Shah, Prabhat Shukla, Pushpamala N, R. Ramachandran, R.C. Thakran, Rahul Verma, Rajinder Arora, Rajiv Gupta, Rajni Arora, Rakhshanda Jalil, Ramesh Rawat, Rashmi Sawhney, Rebecca Kurian, Reena Ginwala, Rekha Awasthi, Ritu Jerath, S. Anand, Shabnam Hashmi, S.Z.H. Jafri, Saba Hasan, Selvyn Jussy, Seshnarayan Singh, Shamshad, Sherna Dastur, Shibanj Kinkar Chaube, Shikha Sen, Shilpaa Anand, Shireen Moosvi, Shivaji Panikkar, Sibaji Bandyopadhyay, Smita Gupta, Sohail Hashmi, Srinivasan Ramani, Sruti Bala, Sudhanva Deshpande, Sudhir Chandra, Sudhir Gandotra, Sukumar Muralidharan, Sumitra Purkayastha, Sunil, Suresh Jayaram, Ujjawal Gupta, Zoya Hasan, Utsa Patnaik, V. Ramakrishna, Venkatesh Athreya, Vidya Das Arora, Vivek Monteiro, Xavier Dias, Yogesh Snehi, Veenapani Chawla, Rani Ray, Ramnik Mohan, Mallika Taneja, Debjani Sengupta, Radhika Prasad, Manish Kansara, Sumant Sengupta, Meghna Joshi, Mukul Priyadarshini, Shanta Gokhale, Ira Anjali, Urmimala Sarkar, Kajri Jain, Anomita Sen, Neha Chaturvedi, K.P. Jayashankar, Jaideep Chatterjee, Annie Koshi, Mahavir Sharma, Dvijendra Nath Kalia, Lakshmi Krishnamurty, Rimli Bhattacharya, Gargi Chakravartty, Saskia Sassen, Chitra Joshi, Supriya Verma, Kamala Menon, Yousuf Saeed, Sheba Chhachhi, Malathi A, Soumya Dutta, Sumangala Damodaran, Saumyajit Bhattacharya, Jaishankar Monteiro, Rabin Chakraborty, Shubhradeep Chakravorty, Madhu Sahni, Shashi Bhushan Upadhyay, Kumkum Roy, Abdullah A. Rahman, Mukul Mangalik, Shubhra Chakrabarti, Kunal Chakrabarti.