Presidential Address – E.M Abdurahiman,Chairman,Popular Front
Bismillahi Rahmani Raheem
In the name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful.
Respected guests, the representatives who arrived from various parts of the country, dear brothers and sisters, and colleagues!
Assalamu Alaikum Wa Rahmathullahi Wa Barakkattuhu.
May the Blessings and Generosity of Almighty Allah be always showered upon us. I am inviting you all to this final session of the great National Political Conference, organized by Popular Front of India, which is reverberated by utmost enthusiasm and hope. You have responded to the call of the Popular Front and made another human ocean, at this beach of Malabar which has the grand legacy of defense and sacrifice to attain freedom from the yoke of Western hegemony and imperialism.
It was exactly on May 20, 1498 the colonial pirate Vasco De Gama, who was destined to initiate great plunder and enforce foreign rule over third world nations, anchored his ship on this very shore. Even when the then ruler of Malabar, named Samudiri (Zamorin), succumbing to the enticement and allurement of the colonial power, finally compromised with the forces of Gama, the great naval force leader, Kunjali Marakkar, fought heroically against the invading forces and attained martyrdom. And we have named that great leader, Kunjali Marakkar for the Conference venue in order to pay homage to that brilliant warrior.
The entrance of Islam with its pure doctrines of monotheism, unity of mankind and commitment to justice, into this caste–ridden country was initiated through the beaches of Kerala. Let us remember for a moment those brave fighters and hundreds of martyrs of Malabar rebellion who fought against the British for over a century and brightened the pages of history with their sacrifices. Let us also pray that those living memories of freedom fighters and valiant martyrs of history and contemporary period may throw light into our path, at a time when the enemies of humanity are trying to darken it with nasty designs.
We have to remember that the untouchability and caste discrimination, which were widely prevalent, for the eradication of which our forefathers have vehemently fought, are still persisting in various forms, albeit in a camouflaged manner. We are a caravan determined to bestow equal rights to all Indians, irrespective of caste, creed, and religion, and rebuild the nation on the sound foundations of justice. Naya Caravan… Naya Hindustan…
We had dedicated this movement Popular Front of India exactly two years back to the people, at the Shaheed Tipu Sultan Nagar, Banglore, in the Empower India Conference on 13, 14 and 15 February 2007. Popular Front came into being as the common platform of the National Development Front (N.D.F) of Kerala, Manitha Neethi Passarai (M.N.P) of Tamil Nadu, and Karnataka Forum for Dignity (K.F.D) of Karnataka.
We were dedicating ourselves for the cause of total empowerment of the people of the nation. The Adivasis, who are the sons of the forest, the Dalits, who are the children of our land, and the minorities including Muslims, who are the descendants of those who emancipated the society from its dark past, have volunteered to declare their affinity to the objectives of Popular Front. They also shared our slogans of freedom, justice and security.
We achieved two things during the past two years. Firstly, there disappeared the barriers between various state organisations and psyche of togetherness and unity arose among them. Secondly, the message and methodology of the movement got attracted even in the Northern, Western and Eastern parts of India. It was quite natural, and I may say quite inevitable, to amalgamate in to a single organisation. It was just a month ago, on 8, 9 and 10 January of 2009, that the important decision to merge N.D.F, M.N.P and K.D.F was taken in our National General Assembly. While the campaign and attendance of Empower India Conference were limited to southern states of India, this National Political Conference Campaign gained a wider space. Some provincial movements and organizations of remote states came forward to take the responsibility of spreading the conference message. I still remember with gratitude that delegates of 13 other states in addition to Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka are attending this conference. When this National Political Conference ends, the erstwhile movements with the names of N.D.F, M.N.P, and K.F.D will become part of history. In fact, we are taking part in the creation of a new history. In this occasion, we remember with immense reverence and gratitude, those brave martyrs of this movement, who will never die, who have preceded us in fulfilling their oath and returned to Allah, the Most Merciful. Let their pious martyrdom ever awaken our sprit as a beacon.
When the communal fascists along with the wheels of their chariots and the sharp edges of trishuls continued the massacre of innocent people, our movement emerged as a creative intervention which is now at the juncture of a new phase.
It is also historic that the caravan originated and sprouted from this part of Kerala, Calicut has completed a circle and returned to a Grant Public Meeting at the same place. We are about to hear a thrilling declaration. Along with N.D.F of Kerala, M.N.P. of Tamil Nadu, K.F.D of Karnataka, five other organizations are also joining with Popular Front: Citizen’s Forum of Goa, Community Social and Educational Society of Rajasthan, Nagarik Adhikar Suraksha Samithi of West Bengal, Lilong Social Forum of Manipur. Their representatives, who are determined to become a part of this neo-social movement, are present here. O… Urdu, Hindu, Telugu, Bengali, and Manipuri speaking brothers! This great ocean of people salutes you. Dear brothers! This historic moment doesn’t give us an opportunity for leisure, but a strict warning against any laziness. In fact, it is a call to re-dedicate ourselves for greater self–sacrifices and endeavors.
The message of the conference namely ‘Power to People’ is self revealing. We have to realize that this message has evoked mixed responses. Some were suspicious while others apprehensive. Indeed, our activists were able to read the mind of the multitude of people through the conference campaigns which touched important centres of the country, and most nukes and corners of the southern states. The general public has no qualms, anxieties or doubts. The people have gained realization, they became politically conscious.
The people, who were always victims of the political exploitation by various parties and were cheated by them continuously now proclaims with one voice: ‘Our destiny will be carved by ourselves. We should not allow any political party, by spreading the fear about BJP, to earn our votes and to continue their deceits, whether in the guise of secularism or in the name of security of minorities.
We are striving for the realization of the true democratic values. We observe that despite having a very strong constitution, and recurring elections, the poor are still poor. The political power is far away from the people. In spite of our claim as a nuclear force, the nation is still leading in poverty and illiteracy. The development, occurring in this country, is that of tycoons, both ‘foreign’ and ‘national’. The real beneficiaries are the politicians, the bureaucrats, and the ruling upper castes. The great masses of people, who are the majority, namely the Adivasis, the village dwellers, the Dalits, the Muslims, the farmers and laborers are all, severely victimized. The political power is denied to them. Their representation in the three arms of government, legislature, executive and judiciary, are marginal. Dalits and Muslims are at the forefront of the victimization by various governmental discriminations and political exploitations.
The caste-ridden communal fascists and the upper castes of the ‘Bunch of Thoughts’ stream are aware that it is difficult to ethnically cleanse the Dalits and Muslims. Therefore, the strategy is to maintain them as slaves by evoking fear psychosis among them. The Hindutva fascists are trying to cause an in–fight among Dalits, Backwards and Muslims and thus fabricate a rift within the oppressed society. Unfortunately our ruling system and the political parties are striving to fulfill this fascist agenda. The Dalit colonies and Muslim villages in North India are bereft of water and light, the basic facility for roads and housing. The Congress ruling states are at par with the BJP ruling states in this regard. There is not any good news coming out of West Bengal where there has been a continued political control of CPM for over 30 years.
The number of Muslims in the Police, the Intelligence and other Investigating agencies is very marginal. By taking part in the anti-Muslim riots, by spreading the fear of so-called ‘Muslim terrorism’, by incarcerating educated Muslim youth, by killing them in pseudo-encounters, the police acts as tools in the hands of Hindutva fascist forces. They are nullifying and negating their own integrity by such criminal actions.
The real ingredients for the formation of a civil society are proper representation of various classes of people, equality before law, equal sharing of the resources and the fruits of development. These are not gifts or beneficences of somebody; neither have we hoped to obtain them without any effort. These are basic rights to be achieved by continuous fights of the down-trodden, with the firm realization that they are being unduly captured from them.
By organizing such an ocean of masses, we are posting a milestone in the onward struggle for the legitimate rights of Muslims and other oppressed masses. This is the beginning of history moving in a new direction. There are various vested interest groups which want to create suspicion and mistrust about us. The questions about the possibility of Popular Front to become a political party or forming a new political party of its own are being raised. All such questions will be cleared, all such apprehensions will end.
The truth is obvious. There come new responsibilities on the shoulders of Popular Front. The idea that all the marginalized groups including Muslims have to self determine their political destiny has gained momentum far and wide. They are no longer ready to play as pawns of the chess board set by various political parties. The time is ripe for the emergence of a national political party which caters the inner sprits of the oppressed. The historic mission of a neo-social movement is to be with the time and poise as a guide post in the fore front of the society. We want to declare with firm faith in the Almighty and trust in people that the Popular Front will take the lead of the historic responsibility of leading the oppressed masses to political power, thereby putting an end to disgustingly repetitive negative politics.
History is not intended for sleep, it has to get repeated. My dear brothers and colleagues! Let us wreck and destroy the fake trade ships of Gamas! Let us advance in the warships of Kunjalis. Let us win our goal, shoulder to shoulder and hand in hand: Naya Caravan…Naya Hindustan… Once again, welcome and salutes.