In this series one article per day will be published on its website and will be dedicated to one year fast of Irom.
This will conclude on 5th November, the day when Irom Sharmila will be unfortunately completing her 12 years of stuggle.
Here's the eigth article:
Irom: An inspiration for studentsBy Zaheeb Ajmal
This article is dedicated to Irom by a group of students from Patna.
We decided to campaign in and around Patna and let people know about the North east and its problems. We slowly and steadily came to know about the hardcore realities. The draconian law has been imposed in the northeast since 1958, but it is shameful that very few among us knew about her. The media which is termed as the “fourth pillar of the democracy” has been partial in the case of Manipur. We had rarely seen any news channel reporting or any print media reporting about the protest going on in Manipur every day. We were stopped and questioned by senior countrymen, why are we bothering about Manipur? Are we from Manipur? We were advised to worry about our city and state problems. Some were worried and lost their enthusiasm but it was Irom’s struggle that refilled the enthusiasm. They came back with more passion and dedication. These kids are from those groups who generally “don’t care” about the society and its worries. They proved us wrong and work day and night for the campaign because they think that the fight we have joined has to be fought till end and they think that AFSPA should be diluted.
After watching the play, Le Mashale, these students formed a group, named “Le Mashale” and organized an event on 1st July 2011 to aware the people of their city about the atrocities faced by people of Manipur. The number of people who attended it was unbelievable. It drew attention of media, activists of Patna. When asked about how they managed it, they said it is Irom struggle which gave us inspiration. They added, Why has society became so insensitive, where you care about a person who in 12 day fast but not even pay any heed to a person who is on 12 year hunger strike. Why we discriminate our brothers and sister from Northeast .They also said that everyone should about her struggle and the government should listen to her. These students also joined the “SAVE SHARMILA SOLIDARITY CAMPAIGN”, which they coordinated in Bihar. At the last, Irom’s struggle has ignited a passion in our soul, we salute the lady and we are in support for her till the battle against AFSPA is won.
This article has been written by Zaheeb Ajmal on behalf of the students. He is the patna co-ordinator of Save Sharmila Solidarity Campaign. He is also a member of Samar and of the students’ group for Irom, Le Mashale. He can be mailed at firstname.lastname@example.org
Also published at http://www.countercurrents.org/ajmal011112.htm