Massive Protest In Amritsar During G20 Education Meet


  • March 16, 2023
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As the second round of meeting of G20 Education Working Group (EdWG), organised by Union Ministry of Education, is being held in Amritsar in Punjab, the state’s farmers’ unions on Wednesday staged massive protests to oppose the event despite the Punjab government’s threat that no protests will be allowed during the global event.

 

The farmers’ unions claimed that the G20, the World Bank and IMF were “promoting imperialism” and several organisations, including BKU (Ekta Ugrahan), Punjab Khet Mazdoor Union, Punjab Students Union, Naujawan Bharat Sabha staged protests in Amritsar on Wednesday. Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee (KMSC) organised protests at 105 places in 16 districts of Punjab on Tuesday. They burnt effigies of the Union government at many places.

 

On Wednesday, Bharatiya Kisan Union (Ekta Ugrahan), held a massive protest in Daburji area near Amritsar, 12 kilometres from the G20 Summit meeting venue. Thousands of farmers, farm labourers, hundreds of women, youth, and students thronged Amritsar to register their protest and held demonstrations against the G-20 meeting. The placards and banners carried by the protesters read “Come out of WTO. Repeal the treaties with imperialists”, “Inqlab Zindabad, Samarajawad Murdabad” and “Stop offering the country resources to corporates”.  They argued that agriculture, industry, education, health, electricity, water etc. of the country and of Punjab, must be free of the exploitative aims of the imperialists and demanded scrapping of all the anti-people agreements signed by the union government with the imperialist organisations like the World Trade Organisation (WTO). Sukhdev Singh Kokrikalan, general secretary of BKU (Ekta Ugrahan), talking to the media said, “All these G20 countries have in the past framed policies that have supported the corporates at the cost of the agriculture sector. So they are not welcome here.”

 

 

Beside, the Education Working Group (EdWG) meet from March 15-17, which will see participation from G20 member countries, guest countries, and organisations such as UNESCO and UNICEF, Amritsar will also host the L20 meeting on labour scheduled for March 19-20. The state chief minister, Bhagwant Maan, while addressing a gathering during the meeting of the G20 Education Working Group, had said that the event will not only uplift the standard of education but also benefit the state’s youth immensely. He also thanked the Centre for choosing Amritsar to host the global event. The Punjab police has stated that strict security measures are in place and that no protests will be allowed at G20 Summit venues.

 

While addressing the protest gathering, State President Jogindar Singh and General Secretary Sukhdev Singh Kokri Kalan of BKU (Ekta Ugrahan) said that by inviting imperialist forces to the state, Bhagwant Maan Government is doing a treacherous act with the martyrs of National Freedom Movement. They termed G-20 as the platform for mortgaging the country in the hands of Imperialists and further said that this conference is being held to chalk out plans for plundering Punjab. They said that during this meet schemes will be framed for further accentuation of exploitation by the Imperialist countries by throwing open education sector fully to the Imperialists and for planning amendments in labour laws so as to further drench the blood of the toiling masses by stark exploitation. They termed the claims of the government of development of Punjab with foreign investment, as false and misleading.

 

They said that the black agriculture laws were brought by the central government at the directions of Imperialist Organisations through such platforms. The policies of dismantling government agri-markets, privatisation of State Electricity Boards, import of foreign wheat, opening of private universities and ruining the government education system, bringing new education policy, making possible Imperialist control over water are planned in such  summit meetings and are imposed on people thereafter.

 

Woman farmer leader Harrinder Kaur Bindu while stating the role of valiant women like Gulab kaur and Rani Jhansi In the struggle against the clutches of British Imperialism, their anti-Imperialist fighting spirit, also adored the role of women in Kisan mazdoor struggles. She declared that in the struggles against Imperialist policies and decisions, Punjabi women shall contribute their might with full determination.

 

Punjab Khet Mazdoor Union (PKMU) general secretary, Lachhman Singh Sewewala, Hushiar Singh Salemgarh, leader of PSU Shaheed Randhawa and Ashwni Ghudha, leader of Naujawan Bharat Sabha also joined the protest to extend support and addressed the protesters. They demanded that India should come out of all the Imperialist dominated organisations including WTO, scrap all agreements signed with the Imperialists, keep Imperialist companies and India corporate out of the education system, health, agriculture and Industry. They said the problems like unemployment, starvation, debt induced suicides and problems of pollution being faced by labour, farmers, youth and the common man of the country including Punjab are the result of the pro-Imperialist policies imposed on the country, and for further tightening the noose of the same, G-20 meeting is being held.

 

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