Today June 12 is the 31st anniversary of the martyrdom of Comrade Laxman Bagul. This Adivasi comrade was killed in police firing on June 12, 1987 at Vanganbari village near Umbarthan in the Surgana tehsil of Nashik district, during the All India Kisan Sabha (AIKS)-led struggle for forest land rights.


Today under AIKS leadership, thousands of Adivasi peasants have gheraoed the Surgana tehsil office, expressing anger and demanding immediate implementation of the demands about Forest Rights Act, river linking scheme, ration, pension, loan waiver and remunerative prices that were conceded by the BJP state government on March 12 as a result of the Kisan Long March three months ago.

As a result of the big impact of the Kisan Long March, hundreds of activists of the BJP and the Shiv Sena in Surgana tehsil publicly declared that they had left their parties due to disillusionment and were joining the agitation. They were welcomed amidst thunderous slogans of the victory of the Red Flag.

Sonali Bagul of the CPI(M), who was last week elected as the President of the Surgana Municipal Council, was felicitated on her election. It is the first time that the CPI(M) has won this position.

The gherao is being led by Dr Ashok Dhawale, J P Gavit, MLA, Kisan Gujar, Sunil Malusare, Savliram Pawar, Subhash Choudhary, Indrajit Gavit, Hemant Patil, Suvarna Gangode, Bhika Rathod, Uttam Kadu, Ramji Gavit, Dharma Shinde and others.


In today’s agitation, thousands of copies of the Kisan Long March Special Issue of the AIKS state journal ‘ Kisan Sangharsh’ and the Karl Marx Bicentenary-cum-Hyderabad Party Congress Special Issue of the CPI(M) state weekly ‘Jeewan Marg’ are being sold among the people.

The thousands of peasants gathered here have resolved to continue the gherao until the Tehsildar concretely agrees to the implementation of the demands.

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