by Arjun Walia, Collective Evolution:
- The Facts:Certain states surrounding New Delhi, India, have had their internet cut off. An attempt by the government, according to many, to try and discourage and shut-down protests that are currently happening regarding the corporate takeover of food.
- Reflect On:Did you know that India has experienced a wealth of problems for decades as a result of new rules and regulations imposed on farmers by major financial institutions and corporations like Monsanto?
What Happened: Citizens in various parts of India, particularly in New Delhi, are protesting against new agricultural laws that were passed in November. The new legislature leaves farmers open to exploitation from large corporations while simultaneously threatens to destroy their livelihoods.
TRUTH LIVES on at https://sgtreport.tv/
Right now, a lot of headlines are being put out there citing “violent” clashes between protestors and authorities. Social media today, although at times heavily censored, is telling a different story. It’s not hard to find people in India who have been covering this story from the beginning claiming that these have been peaceful protests, and that the police, and possibly those hired by the government dressed up as police and protestors, are initiating violence. I personally would not at all be surprised if this was the case, it’s a great tactic to justify the shutting down of protests and use of force to do so. It seems to be the only way to shut down a peaceful protest, and so many social media presences in India are emphasizing this. Extreme violence is being sued against peaceful protests.
Dr. Prabhjot Singh uses the “Black Cats” as an example. According to one of his recent Instagram posts, “The Indian government faced strong opposition from Sikhs in the time period between the mid 1970’s to mid-1990’s. To counter this, they set up a covert operation nicknamed “Black Cats.” The Indian government would hire individuals, and wait until they could grow beards. Then they would tie turbans and the government would send them to kill groups of Hindus in buses or villages in Punjab. During these events, the Black Cats would use names of people that the Indian government wanted to eliminate. The indian media would then publicize killings of Hindus to divide religious unity, and plaint prominent Sikh figures as a terrorists..”
Here is another account I’ve been following to try and get some accurate information, or an alternative viewpoint from mainstream media.
Things are a mess, right now, at least nine senior Indian journalists are facing criminal charges for reporting allegations that Delhi police fatally shot a farmer in the head during protests last week, despite the authorities claiming no shots were fired.
Internet access in several districts near New Delhi has been cut. This began a few days ago and is/was apparently only supposed to last for 48 hours, but there are still reports of blackouts.
According to Paramjeet Singh Katyal, a spokesperson for Samyukta Kisan Morcha, an umbrella body representing protesting farmers, said the internet was still not working as of Monday.
Darshan Pal, a leader from Samyukta Kisan Morcha, condemned the internet shutdowns, calling the moves “undemocratic.” “The government does not want the real facts to reach protesting farmers, nor their peaceful conduct to reach the world,” Pal said in a statement Sunday. “It wants to spread its false spin around farmers. It is also fearful of the coordinated work of the farmers’ unions across different protest sites and is trying to cut off communication means between them.” Nevertheless, farmers are still joining the protests, Samyukta Kisan Morcha’s Katyal said Monday. “Typically these village groups work against each other but this time they have all united for the collective fight,” Katyal said.
Farming in India is a much bigger story than what’s happening now. Although these protests and the awareness surrounding the corporate takeover of food at the expense of farmers is great, it has very deep roots. What’s great about what’s happening now is that more people are starting to become aware of the control and influence that major corporations have over government policy. Hopefully more people become aware of what is happening and has been happening with global food production for quite some time as a result of what’s happening in India right now.