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Criminal intimidation: How pro-people agenda and campaign was trampled upon in Mumbai

By Harsh Thakor 

On the afternoon of 6th February, on a busy road in Shivajinagar, five workers of Revolutionary Workers' Party of India were brutally assaulted by goons of Samajwadi Party in broad daylight and a female worker abused and threatened with rape after having her clothes torn.
One day later, not only have the police failed to punish the culprits, they have in fact registered a counter-FIR on behalf of Samajwadi Party goons and have framed RWPI workers with rioting, unlawful assembly and criminal intimidation among a number of other charges. five member RWPI delegation, comprising of Dr. Pooja, an occupational therapist specializing in pediatrics; Baban, a full time political worker of RWPI; Avinash, a student of M.A. Philosophy from Mumbai University; Ashay, a teacher and a student of M.A. Political Science; and Shashank, a chemical engineer and teacher, accompanied by about two dozen local residents had called upon the Ward No. 134 corporator Shaera Azmi demanding justification for their inaction of overflowing sewers in Rafiq (Rafi) Nagar. The contaminated water from the sewers had started penetrating the homes of the residents, causing increased cases of Dengue, Malaria, Typhoid and cases of fever, chills, skin infections and various other illnesses. Having gathered in front of the corporator’s office, the people were forced to wait for hours. Various delaying tactics were employed. When the members of the RWPI delegation declared a final ultimatum, stating that failure to take immediate action on the issue would result in a complete election boycott of Samajwadi Party, Fahad Azmi and his goons plunged into action. Ashay, who was recording the confrontation, was first assaulted, hit on his face. Pooja's clothes were torn by Fahad Azmi, her arm twisted. She was repeatedly kicked, abused and threatened her with rape. Shashank was hit on the back of his head, Avinash hit with a belt and Baban with a bench. Ironically it is the RWPI workers who are being charged with "assault or criminal force with the intention outraging the modesty of a woman", "voluntarily causing hurt", "rioting", "unlawful assembly", "criminal intimidation to cause death or grievous hurt" and "insult intended to provoke breach of peace".
This whole affair illustrates the immense money power and clout exerted by Samajwadi Party. Corrupt and deprived political parties like the Samajwadi Party are and their ‘liberal’ projection in fact makes them even more pernicious. Pertinent that the true colours of even the Samjawadi party have been illustrated, which endorses the oppressive economic agenda of the ruling class parties.
A pro-people agenda and campaign has been trampled on, which is coherent with the oppressive social order as a whole. Exploiter classes and parties today are playing around and endangering the environment, making the common people hapless. The need of the hour is to tooth and nail the two-facedness of such parties and establish a genuine workers' alternative. All justice loving citizens must stand in solidarity with RWPI volunteers in their fight against the hooliganism, corruption and apathy of the Samajwadi Party. We If we fail to do so let the fascists and their allies will snatch away even the most basic right to pose questions to f our so-called “representatives”. Democrats must appreciate the relentless efforts of RWPI activists in digging at the very roots of the repressive aspects of our environment, which is at the mercy of the corporates.
Such condition of sanitation or proper civil infrastructure is part and parcel of the pro-corporate agenda of those who govern us.
Progressive people should commend the grass root work of the RWPI. who have inspired and knitted youth to raise the banner of resistance for proper sanitation or civil infrastructure, and offer them utmost solidarity.
The fact that the goons have been let off scot free exposes how is social order is partisan to the ruling and exploiter classes and mercilessly stamps on all democratic resistance. It illustrates that in essence the aspirations of parties like Samajwadi party preserve and patronise the aspirations of neo-fascism and are liberal parties only in form.
Harsh Thakor is freelance journalist from Mumbai who has covered mass movement all around India and been in touch with RWPI activists



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