Tenth International Conference on War Tax Resistance and Peace Tax Campaigns - Brussels, Belgium 2004

CONSCIENCE INDIA

(2002-2004)

4.4

It is difficult for me to write a formal report. The world is moving at supersonic speed. It has gone through a sea of change after the 11 September 2001. Nobody could believe that such a mighty Power as US, will be challenged by few persons and the whole world would come to a stay for a moment. What lesson should be drawn from this historic tragedy? The simple and straight answer will be that this world can not be sustained smoothly by the force of violence and bloodshed. We have to find better and sane ways to sustain it. It is not only the fault of few persons named as ‘terrorists’, we have to think about the sociopolitical systems that are currently ruling over us all over the world. Are the systems that we have devised to rule over us are sane, rational and humane? This question we have to think and contemplate honestly.

This is what the War Tax Resistance and Peace Tax Campaign Movement (WTR and PTC) is here for. It is 20 years young and has been progressing slowly but smoothly. It has moved in major part of the world, in more than twenty countries. Though, it is drop in the ocean but ocean is made from all the drops put together.

In India where Kashmir has been the key issue between the two countries (Indo-Pak) since independence (1947), world knows that it could not be resolved through five wars and enormous violence from both the sides. Many thousand innocent people have lost their lives and millions and millions of rupees have been spent on the wars by both the nations. There have been movements at people's level to press upon the political leadership of both the countries to find peaceful solution to this problem. It is a happy sign that political leadership of both the neighboring countries is returning back to peaceful means for the solution of this problem, though it is not as easy as it appears to be. The basic problem is again the current ‘sociopolitical’ systems.

Our main goal is to help ordinary masses to think and find sane systems. A better and positive alternative system that could help project human being in the center of all the socioeconomic goals. Instead of making human being an ingredient of the so called Development and Progress formula. Development and Progress are good but not at the cost of human being. I am not talking of human being in isolation; mother-nature is part and parcel of humanity. So both human being and mother-nature have to be protected if humanity wants survival.

 In India M.K. Gandhi and other social revolutionaries had visualized this goal and a small group of dedicated people have been working for Lok Swaraj (Power to the People). Today the political power is in the hands of few, locally as well as globally. It has to go the other way round. And this is what our work has been.  

In the last two years Lok Swaraj Manch has been busy organizing mass contact programs. There have been two All India Yatras (people to people contact campaign) in which groups of Sarvodaya (the Movement led by Sarva Seva Sangh) activists went from place to place explaining to the masses the need of fundamental change at the grass-roots level. More than 100 public meetings and rallies have been organized all over the country. These meetings and rallies were addressed by senior Sarvodaya Workers headed by Sh. Radhakrishan Bajaj, Prof. Thakur Das Bang and Bajranglal.

There are many young and devoted workers from all over the country who have been working at the grass roots level. These include Prince Abhishek, Akhilesh Aryaendu, Arpit Anam, Dr. Mrs. Geetanjali Mrs. Saneh Prveen, Kumar Prashant, Mrs. Dr. Upma Dewan, P.V. Rajgopal, Bharat Gandhi, Satyaprakash Bharat, Nishi Kant Sharma, Dr. Vinod Kumar Singh and many others. The People are slowly getting frustrated from the present political system and have been thinking of the better and positive alternatives.

This is the positive sign of the work that has been done silently. A small book Democracy on Dialysis: What Next? has been brought out last year by the Lok Swaraj Manch (a Platform for Power to the People) explains what has been going on in details.

Apparently, it may appear that this work is not directly related to the WTR-PTC Movement. But the root of the problem is hidden, and it is the symptoms that appear before us are in the shape of War and Violence. So we have to tackle the real problem of increasing social and economic violence at the local as well as global level. It is not very easy. We have to go a long way, but our goal is noble and the humanity as such is in dire need of it today. Let us go on working together. Victory is not far away.

Dr. Arya Bhushan Bhardwaj,

Gandhi-in-Action.

B-29, Mangal Pandey Marg, Bhajanpura, New Delhi-110053, INDIA

JAI JAGAT(Victory of  whole of humanity)