World Popular Resistance Clippings 12/6/2013

Baidya union attacks edu fair venue

KATHMANDU, JUN 12 – Cadres of All Nepal National Independent Student Union-Revolutionary on Tuesday vandalised the Hotel Everest-based venue of the 7th Global Career Boutique. A group of ANNISU-R activists, affiliated with the Mohan Baidya-led CPN-Maoist, entered the hotel premises at 8pm and resorted to vandalism, said Neeta Yogi, coordinator of Global Education Counselling Centre, which has been managing the event. She said that one of the leaders of the union had been making frequent calls asking them not to organise any kind of education fair attracting foreign academic institutions.

“We never thought that they would attack our stalls,” she said. “We condemn the act.” Yogi said the government agencies have granted them permission to organise the fair. When asked to comment on the attack, ANNISU-R Chairman Sarad Rasiali said his union had requested the organiser to stop publicising foreign academic institutions. “However, I have no information about the attack,” he said. The two-day Indian Education fair is kicking off on Thursday despite the attack.

CPN-Maoist urges all to stop poll preparations

KATHMANDU, June 11: Mohan Baidya´s CPN-Maoist has urged all forces in the country to take steps to stop the government´s preparations for new elections. The meeting of the party´s politburo on Tuesday held at party head office in Buddha Nagar also warned that the country will face a “new conflict” if the four major political forces and the government did not address the concerns of the agitating groups including the CPN-Maoist-led 33-party alliance. “We ask all the forces to take serious initiatives for dialogue to stop election preparations.

The policy of negation of consensus-based politics adopted by the four major parties will bring serious crisis in the country and the sole responsibility for such a situation should be borne by the four major parties and the current government,” reads the press statement issued jointly by party chairman Mohan Baidya and general secretary Ram Bahadur Thapa. The party has also demanded that the election ordinance forwarded to the president without their consensus should be stopped. It also protested against the ongoing citizenship distribution in the Tarai and said the campaign is aimed at granting citizenship to non-Nepalis.

The CPN-Maoist led 33-party alliance has been organizing protest against the government and the “syndicate of the four major parties” demanding scrapping of the 11-point deal and 25-point agreement on resolving constitutional difficulties and distributing citizenship in the Tarai. Similarly, the party has also objected to the government´s revival of conflict-era court cases. The party has said that such cases have been revived in Jajarkot, Kanchanpur, Siraha, Kapilbastu, Dailekh and Rolpa districts. It said its cadres have been “terrorized” as the govenrment has issued arrest warrants over conflict era cases.

“We strongly object to this state-sponsored terror,” reads the statement arguing that the government´s such activities are against the comprehensive peace accord and also in serious violation of the Interim Constitution. “All conflict era cases should be scrapped. If this does not happen, then one of the two parties to the Comprehensive Peace Accord will not be bound to respect the accord,” reads the statement.

Hundreds of strikers fired from Cambodia Nike factory

PHNOM PENH: Hundreds of workers have been fired from a Cambodian factory making sportswear for US giant Nike following a series of protests over pay, unionists said on Tuesday, denouncing the move as “unacceptable” and illegal. “They have been forced to resign from their jobs without any compensation. This act is illegal,” said Mann Seng Hak, a leader of the Free Trade Union. He said nearly 300 workers had been sacked. “This is a kind of punishment to threaten workers not to hold more protests or strikes. It’s unacceptable,” he told AFP, adding that his group would complain to the government.

Farmers in hiding near Inle Lake as officials crack down on ‘plough protests’

Locals near southern Shan state’s Inle Lake have gone into hiding after officials issued warrants for their arrests following a demonstration where the farmers ploughed land that had been confiscated by a controversial hotel zone project. Authorities in Nyaung Shwe issued the arrest warrants last week after the seven locals tilled the confiscated land east of the lake.

According to a resident from Ingyingon village, he and three other protestors went into hiding after police showed up in their villages to round them up in the early hours of Sunday morning. “Now I am hiding in the woods – [authorities] have been making serious threats to arrest me – I don’t know what kind of charges they want to arrest me for,” said the villager on the condition of anonymity. “We’ve lost our land, our livelihood and we’re pressed with charges and now on top of that, I’ve become a fugitive.”

The four villagers, along with three other individuals, had already been hit with lawsuits last month for disobeying orders promulgated by public servants and using criminal force to prevent public servants from discharging their duty. Earlier this year, the companies investing in the hotel project offered locals about 500m kyat in compensation for the crops grown on the more than 600 acres that had been confiscated.

However, several villagers refused to accept the offer because it allegedly only covered the value of the crops, not the property itself. The locals then proceeded to plough the land on 2 June in response to the offer. The locals were then hit with charges after they refused to accept compensation, which they saw as insufficient. According to local official Win Myint, the police were looking to arrest under 505(b) of the penal code for inciting unrest.



Power riots erupt in Punjab towns: Police storm houses to arrest protesters

FAISALABAD: A large number of people from villages around Khurrianwala town vented their anger against power outages on Tuesday and attacked a grid station and offices of the Faisalabad Electric Supply Company (Fesco). They blocked traffic on the Sheikhupura-Faisalabad road for about 10 hours and pelted police and vehicles with stones, causing injuries to four constables. Police chased the protesters, entered a number of houses by scaling the walls or breaking open the gates and thrashed anyone they found there.

Policemen are reported to have abused and dragged women when they objected to their conduct. A number of women and children who had not joined the protests were also mistreated. More than 10 people were arrested from the houses. The industrial city of Faisalabad saw a number of violent protests over outages during the PPP government.

At that time, Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif had backed their protests, but asked them not to damage public property. PML-N chief Nawaz Sharif had also supported the agitation by industrial workers. Protests were also reported on Tuesday from Dera Ghazi Khan, Sheikhupura and Bahawalpur, but they were largely peaceful. Hundreds of people started gathering in the morning and blocked the Khurrianwala Road. They raised slogans against Fesco and an independent power producer supplying electricity to their villages.

The protesters attacked the Fesco sub-divisional office in Bundala, ransacked the building and put it on fire. Police did not intervene because of having been outnumbered by the protesters. They also attacked a grid station near Ada Johal and tried to enter it, but were stopped by police. A mill where police had been deployed also came under attack. Two ambulances remained stuck in the traffic for some time but were later allowed by agitators to proceed. Police used batons and teargas to disperse the protesters but they refused to leave till restoration of power supply.

Police chased the protesters in streets and bazaar and also entered some houses to arrest them. The protesters also hurled stones at Faisalabad DCO Najam Shah and CPO Raja Riffat Mukhtar when they tried to negotiate with them. They said both the officers were unable to resolve the issue, adding that the district coordination officer had assured their delegation a couple of days ago that the problem would be solved, but nothing had been done so far.

Similar protests had been held on June 3 when demonstrators blocked the Khurrianwala Road for over five hours, damaged some vehicles and pelted police and some buildings with stones. They raised slogans against 10 hours of loadshedding schedule planned by Fesco. Police fired into the air to disperse the protesters and pursued them to the Ada Johal area. The road was later cleared. Our Sheikhupura correspondent adds: A large number of factory workers and residents of Ferozewattwan and adjoining localities gathered on the Faisalabad Road and blocked traffic for about three hours in protest against 20 hours of power outages. KASUR: A demonstration was held by people of Basti Kambovan against up to 20 hours of loadshedding.


Kabul University students continue protest for reforms

Protests of Kabul university students against racial discrimination continue for over two weeks now. They continue to hold gatherings inside the campus saying ” we will continue our protests if the government does not accept our demands. A number of students and professors chanted slogans against the minister of higher education. The protesters said they are worried about the academic environment of Afghanistan under his administration. Protesters also demanded their basic rights that is the reform and standardization of the educational system in the university as well as justice and fighting against discrimination.

In the mean time some other students said the protesters should follow their demands logically — without making any disturbance for others. Experts believe that the government should listen to the demands of the protesters and that all the students should get together and get the University out of this situation. Earlier protesters held an eight-day hunger strike in front of Afghanistan Parliament demanding reforms in the university. But they ended their move after government officials promised their demands would be met. And now the students say so far there has been no practical reaction from Afghan education authorities.




Twenty arrested in Sao Paulo bus price hike protest

Police in the Brazilian city of Sao Paulo have arrested 20 people after a protest against price rises on public transport turned violent. Demonstrators set fire to a bus and briefly blocked Sao Paulo’s main road, Avenida Paulista, on Tuesday night. More than 10,000 people marched through the city’s streets for six hours, according to the security forces, which used rubber bullets to disperse them.

They are demanding that a 6.7% price rise on public transport be revoked. On 2 June, prices for a single ticket were raised from 3 reals ($1.40, £0.90) to 3.20 reals ($1.50, £0.96). The authorities say that the rise is well below inflation, which since the last price rise in January 2011 has been at 15,5% according to official figures. Police said the protest had been peaceful until a small group tried to storm the Parque Dom Pedro II bus station.

The demonstration then split, with some protesters heading back to Avenida Paulista, breaking the windows of nine banks and numerous bus shelters on the way, police said. Two students were knocked down by a car but were not seriously hurt. It was the third such protest in less than a week. There have also been demonstrations against a public transport price rise in the city of Rio de Janeiro, where more than 30 people were arrested on Monday.

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