[WSMDiscuss] Fwd: [Secular Perspective] Over 600 Theatre Artistes Appeal to Vote ‘Bigotry, Hatred, Apathy Out of Power’

Jai Sen jai.sen at cacim.net
Mon Apr 8 15:16:17 CEST 2019

Monday, April 8, 2019

India in movement…, Ideas in movement…

[In the context of the upcoming elections in India….

Over 600 Theatre Artistes Appeal to Vote ‘Bigotry, Hatred, Apathy Out of Power’

            Thanks Ram, for this post, and to all of those who took this initiative…

            In solidarity,



> Begin forwarded message:
> From: Dr Ram Puniyani <ram.puniyani at gmail.com>
> Subject: [Secular Perspective] Threatre artists appeal to vote against Hate
> Date: April 6, 2019 at 1:46:00 AM EDT
> To: Ram Puniyani <ram.puniyani at gmail.com>
> Reply-To: ram.puniyani at gmail.com

Over 600 Theatre Artistes Appeal to Vote ‘Bigotry, Hatred, Apathy Out of Power’

Terming the 2019 Lok Sabha elections as ‘most crucial’, theatre practitioners in 12 languages call for safeguarding the Constitution and India’s syncretic, secular ethos.

Newsclick Report

April 4, 2019

Over 600 theatre artistes and practitioners in 12 languages from across the country have issued a joint appeal to people to vote out divisive politics from power in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.

The joint statement, released by Artists <https://www.artistuniteindia.com/2019/04/joint-statement-by-theatre.html?m=1>  <https://artistsunite.home.blog/2018/12/07/home/>Unite <https://www.artistuniteindia.com/2019/04/joint-statement-by-theatre.html?m=1>, includes veterans such as Girish Karnad, Naseeruddin Shah, Amol Palekar, Usha Ganguli, Shanta Gokhale, Mahesh Elkunchwar, Mahesh Dattani, Arundhati Nag, Kirti Jain, Atamjit Singh, Astad Deboo, MK Raina, Moloyashree Hashmi among a host of theatre practitioners and writers in languages, such as English, Hindi, Tamil, Bengali, Marathi, Malayalam, Kannada, Assamese, Telugu, Panjabi, Konkani and Urdu.

The joint statement reads as follows:

“Since colonial times, Indian theatre makers have celebrated India's diversity through their work. We have done plays as part of the freedom struggle, we have taken on social ills through our art, we have stood for social equity and inclusion, we have struck a blow at patriarchy, brahmanism and caste oppression. Theatre makers in India have a long and proud tradition of standing against forces of religious sectarianism, chauvinism, narrowness and irrationality. We have spoken from the margins, we have spoken of the margins. With song and dance, with humour and pathos, with compelling human stories, we have, for over a hundred and fifty years, imagined a secular, democratic, inclusive and just India.

Today, that very idea of India is under threat. Today, song, dance, laughter is under threat. Today, our beloved Constitution is under threat. The institutions that have to nurture argument, debate and dissent have been suffocated. To question, to call out lies, to speak the truth, is branded ‘anti-national’. The seeds of hatred have entered our food, prayers and festivals.

The ways in which this hatred has seeped into our daily fabric are alarming and it has to STOP.

The coming elections are without doubt the most critical in the history of independent India. A democracy must empower its weakest, its most marginalised. A democracy cannot function without questioning, debate, and a vibrant opposition. All this is being concertedly eroded by the current government. The BJP, which came to power five years ago with the promise of development, has given free rein to Hindutva goons to indulge in the politics of hate and violence. The man who was portrayed as the saviour of the nation five years ago has destroyed the livelihoods of millions through his policies. He promised to bring back black money; instead, rogues have looted the country and run away. The wealth of the rich has grown astronomically, while the poor have become even poorer.

We, theatre practitioners of India, appeal to the people of India to help safeguard the Constitution and our syncretic, secular ethos. We appeal to our fellow citizens to vote for love and compassion, for equality and social justice, and to defeat the forces of darkness and barbarism.

Our appeal – vote bigotry, hatred, and apathy out of power. Vote against the BJP and its allies. Vote to empower the weakest, protect liberty, protect the environment, and foster scientific thinking. Vote for secular democratic, inclusive India. Vote for the freedom to dream. Vote wisely.”

Read more:
More than 200 Writers Appeal to Citizens <https://indianculturalforum.in/2019/04/01/more-than-200-writers-appeal-to-citizens/>
More than 150 Scientists Appeal to Citizens <https://indianculturalforum.in/2019/04/03/more-than-150-scientists-appeal-to-citizens/>
Over 100 Filmmakers Appeal to People to Oust BJP <https://indianculturalforum.in/2019/03/29/over-100-filmmakers-appeal-to-people-to-oust-bjp/>


Jai Sen

Independent researcher, editor

jai.sen at cacim.net <mailto:jai.sen at cacim.net>
Now based in New Delhi, India (+91-98189 11325) and in Ottawa, Canada, on unceded Anishinaabe territory (+1-613-282 2900) 

Current associations : www.cacim.net <http://www.cacim.net/> / http://www.openword.net.in

CURRENT / RECENT publications :

Jai Sen, ed, 2018a – The Movements of Movements, Part 2 : Rethinking Our Dance. Ebook and hard copy available at PM Press <http://www.pmpress.org/>
Jai Sen, ed, 2018b – The Movements of Movements, Part 1 : What Makes Us Move ?, Indian edition. New Delhi : AuthorsUpfront, in collaboration with OpenWord and PM Press.  Hard copy available at MOM1AmazonIN <https://www.amazon.in/dp/9387280101/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1522884070&sr=8-2&keywords=movements+of+movements+jai+sen>, MOM1Flipkart <https://www.flipkart.com/the-movements-of-movements/p/itmf3zg7h79ecpgj?pid=9789387280106&lid=LSTBOK9789387280106NBA1CH&marketplace=FLIPKART&srno=s_1_1&otracker=search&fm=SEARCH&iid=ff35b702-e6a8-4423-b014-16c84f6f0092.9789387280106.SEARCH&ppt=Search%20Page>, and MOM1AUpFront <http://www.authorsupfront.com/movements.htm>
Jai Sen, ed, 2017 – The Movements of Movements, Part 1 : What Makes Us Move ?.  New Delhi : OpenWord and Oakland, CA : PM Press.  Ebook and hard copy available at PM Press <http://www.pmpress.org/>
Jai Sen, ed, 2016a  – The Movements of Movements, Part 1 : What Makes Us Move ? and Jai Sen, ed, 2016b – The Movements of Movements, Part 2 : Rethinking Our Dance (both then forthcoming from New Delhi : OpenWord and Oakland, CA : PM Press), open access ADVANCE PREFINAL ONLINE MOVEMENT EDITIONS @ www.cacim.net <http://www.cacim.net/>
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