October 18th 2010: MEETING AT YUSUF MEHERALLY CENTRE, TARA, PANVEL
It was a slightly slow day for us and everyone breathed a sigh of relief. The earlier night, we drove down from a festive Mumbai down to the Yusuf Meherally Centre campus in Tara and had an early night after a long time (mind you, an early night was 11 pm!).
However, the day itself began quite early for several of us. We decided to clean up the bus where materials (booklets, banners, leaflets, posters etc., from various hosts) were building up. We had reached a stage when bumpy rides were resulting in things falling on people from overhead stowage compartments. Thank god that these were things like small, soft sleeping bags!
So, we began at 5.30 am to clean up the bus. It took us longer than we thought, as we waded through material, started putting them in various cartons and stacking them up on the last row of seats. Steady work uptil 8.30 am saw a cleaner and tidier bus both inside and in the boot.
We then rushed and took quick showers, trying to get ready for the day. However, one shramdaan followed another. We were happy to take part in the cleaning up of the area where a Bapu Kutir is going to come up in the campus.
From eleven in the morning, a farmers’ meeting began. Speaker after speaker stressed the increasing control of corporations over our agriculture.
At the end of the meeting, we invited the participants whether there are any resolutions or decisions that they would like to take, based on the discussions that the Kisan Swaraj Yatra put in front of them this morning.
These were some of things that the assembled participants resolved to take up, where each announcement was met with loud applause:
- I will make myself “laalach-mukt” (‘greed-free’) and I would urge others to do so too – that seems to be a big problem of our times
- We will take the message from here, especially with regard to ecological farming and our demands to all villages we work in and try to get those villages in turn to resolve to become self-reliant in farming
- We will promote ecological farming in our work
- I will take up seed conservation work for my entire village from now on
- Yusuf Meherally Centre will bring out a special edition on the Yatra messages and issues, to time it for December 11th ending of the Yatra in Rajghat, of their regular newsletter
- A team from here will be represented in Rajghat in Delhi for the December 11th event
After having a quick lunch and after obtaining the blessings of Dr G G Parekh, himself a Gandhian and freedom fighter, we set off for the long trip to Goa where we will be spending 19th and 20th of October.