AIKS Units to Mobilise Relief
THROUGH a statement issued from New Delhi on June 26, the All India Kisan Sabha has expressed its condolences to the families of the victims of unprecedented national calamity in Uttarakhand. The tragedy is of a hitherto unheard of scale, and the destruction of homes and livelihoods is massive. As the tragedy unfolds, it is bringing forward the fact that the actual number of dead could be much higher. Parts of Himachal Pradesh have also been affected. The AIKS has conveyed its solidarity with the millions of the affected people. One must note that many activists of the Kisan Sabha and the democratic movement are among the dead and injured. The AIKS has paid tribute to them and sent condolences to their families. The Uttarakhand state unit of the Kisan Sabha was in the forefront of struggle against the indiscriminate tunnelling for hydroelectric projects and had since long been pointing out the possible adverse impact of such projects. Today, after a national tragedy, it is generally being acknowledged that the indiscriminate blasting, tunnelling, and the silt and debris that remained piled up for months without being cleared had added to the intensity of the crisis. The organisation has therefore demanded that at least now a proper assessment of the damage caused to the fragile ecosystems by such indiscriminate tunnelling needs to be done. Unfortunately, reports suggest that the relief and rescue operations have not really touched the local people who have been most affected by the tragedy. There is also no clear assessment of the loss of lives, destruction of property and loss of livelihoods in the state. The Kisan Sabha has demanded that efforts must be made on a war footing to reach relief and rescue operations to the affected people. The AIKS has called upon all its units to contribute to the national efforts to provide relief and solidarity to the people of Uttarakhand and other affected people.