30 July, 2021

Politics Bachao

Autograph nahin, andolan. The Narmada activist's PPF is a new cause, of alternative, innovative and transformational politics.

Atul Loke
Politics Bachao
The willing suspension of cynicism is a must on this journey. Because there is just no room for disbelief, or doubt, in the causist-crammed, pamphlet-packed Tempo Trax that is taking activist Medha Patkar to Aurangabad. Burning convictions inside the jeep disregard the sweltering heat outside, and a novel political movement is on its way.

The campaigners talk animatedly of getting to a destination far beyond Aurangabad. They won't stop, they promise, till they have changed the "communal, corrupt and corporatised" electoral politics of the day. And their vehicle to this end will be the People's Political Front (PPF)—a party formed recently by activists like Medha Patkar of the Narmada Bachao Andolan, Aruna Roy of the Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sangathana and veteran Gandhian Siddharaj Dhadha, all of whom have been involved in people's struggles for years.

"Electoral politics can't be treated as untouchable any more. Our activism now has to do more than just try to influence politics, it has to intervene," says Medha, then preempts the next query, "Sure, politics today is...

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