Saturday, April 17, 2021

Indian climate activist Dishani Ravi speaks for the first time since her arrest

Ravi, who was in his early 20s, was Arrested On allegations related to its role in disseminating a toolkit, which provides a list of ways that supporters can help Indian farmers protest against months of new laws that change how the country’s agricultural industry operates is.

Ravi has since been granted bail.

“In all the years, someone had asked me where I see myself in 5 years, I never answered ‘Jail’, but here I was,” she wrote, in a statement posted on Twitter. “Closed in my cell, I used to think that when thinking about the most basic elements of livelihood on this planet had become a crime, they were as much as me.”

Ravi’s arrest sparked outrage from high-profile figures, including writer Meena Harris, niece of US Vice President Kamala Harris, and several Indian politicians who accused the authorities of trying to scare a young woman and try to muzzle her .

The toolkit, which was unsigned and publicly available on an encrypted sharing site, instructed people to call government representatives, share solidarity hashtags on social media, participate in rallies and sign petitions. Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg tweeted a link on 4 February saying, “People of India on the ground.”

However, its release annoyed the Indian authorities. On the same day as Thunbarge’s tweet, the Delhi Police announced that they would investigate the creators of the toolkit and accuse them of treason, inciting or rioting, and criminal conspiracy, as it led followers to “economic, social, cultural and regional The war called for “India.”

The police in New Delhi argued the main purpose of the toolkit was “misinformation and rejection against a duly elected government”. Authorities accused Ravi, whose grandparents are farmers, of helping author the document, which was unsigned and publicly available on an encrypted shared site.

As Ravi’s case makes its way through India’s legal system, Farmers continue to oppose laws, Which many believe will cost them their livelihood.

Historically, Indian farmers have sold their goods at auction in the agricultural produce market committee of their state, where sellers were guaranteed to get at least the minimum price agreed to by the government. There were restrictions on who could buy, and prices were set for essential goods.

The new laws destroyed that system, instead allowing farmers to sell their goods to anyone at any cost.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who has long been a proponent of free market reforms, has argued that the new law will allow farmers to sell directly without buyers or a middle man in other states.

But many farmers say that the change will help big companies to reduce prices. While farmers may sell the crop at higher prices if there is a demand, there are many concerns that they may struggle to meet the minimum price over the years if there is too much supply.


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