Last month, I attended the Marxist-Feminist Conference at the University of Lund, Sweden. It was an inspiring event, even if, as often in these settings, tensions between social movement-oriented participants and academic professionals could not be ignored.
An outstanding contribution came from Ranjana Padhi, a grassroots activist based in the Indian state of Odisha (Orissa) and author of the book Those Who Did Not Die: Impact of the Agrarian Crisis on Women in Punjab. Padhi talked about the central role of women in India’s social movements and the importance of resisting the persecution of political dissidents in the country. Conference participants signed a petition challenging the imprisonment of several oppositional figures and movement activists.
It is important, not least for anti-repression activists in the Global North, to follow these developments, including the persecution of real or alleged Maoists. This is far more than just an ethical matter. India is a key player in the global economy and a powerhouse in the Global South.
For more information, visit the website Free Them All.