Arundhati Roy to attend convention in Chengara

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Kochi, Apr 26: Novelist Arundhati Roy, Supreme Court Advocate Prashant Bhushan and women's rights activist Ajitha will be among the prominent personalities participating in a national convention here on May 3 in support of the Chengara agitation of landless Dalits and tribals.

Addressing a press conference here yesterday, Dalit leaders K K Kochu, K Shriraman, K Ambujakshan and M D Thomas said the national convention would express solidarity with the Chengara agitators' demand that they be given land from the Harrisons Malyalam estate in Pathanamthitta district.

They said nearly 7,000 families, consisting of over 21,000 people, have been living in inhuman conditions in Chengara for the last nine months, demanding land for landless Dalits and tribals.

Another conference of Dalit and Dalit Christian organisations would be held here tomorrow, in support of the Chengara agitation, they said.

Accusing the LDF Government of neglecting agricultural labourers, the leaders said while all help was being extended to the farmers in Kuttanad, whose crops were damaged in the recent summer rains, the government had turned a blind eye to the plight of landless labourers.


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