Resources at Kriti Docushop: July 2009

Dear friends
The month began with us welcoming the rains, hoping there won’t be drought, wishing there won’t be floods…wondering if climate change was about the environment or about politics, wondering where ordinary people figure in all this monsoon game….
July is almost over, much of this has become reality…and disaster management plans are once again being scripted instead of being implemented. Meanwhile prices of essential foods are sky rocketing, crores are being spent to dress the capital city for the commonwealth games, even more to mine the country of its natural resources by the likes of Vedanta, and the 100 days clock is ticking away for all those who deal with the government.
5th July was Koel Karo day, marking the against damned displacement in Jharkhand
Recession seems to have become a forgotten word as the PM works towards an Indo-Pak agreement amidst the remembrance of Kargil by the media, GM foods are getting ready to enter our markets while many wage the battle for rights over land and people-centered agriculture, the streets are empty of vendors and the homeless displaced into dark alleys and drainage pipes and the malls full of shoppers for all things bold and beautiful!

11th July was Population day, and passed off silently amidst the euphoria of Article 377, with members of Parliament raising their eyebrows over homosexuality and more, justice for a professor’s murder is elusive still and Reliance’s BIG Synergy TV show ‘Sach ka Samana’ came to the floor of the Parliament on grounds of immorality or rather the fear that many hidden truths may unfold on some?
Our docushop of books and films is alive with some interesting and insightful content so read on and take your pick. We would be happy to respond to your request to access these resources as also a larger collection on development, environment, human rights, communalism, health, education, labour et al.
In the spirit of sharing
Kriti team


By Popular Education and Action Centre (PEACE)/2004
India is primarily an agrarian country. Land is the basis of livelihood for more than 60% of its people. But more landowners possess less than 2 acres of land- an enduring feature of our agrarian structure that is highly oppressive towards most tillers and inevitably impedes agrarian production, causing stagnation and crisis. Very few among those who work on the fields have control over the land they till, the basis of their life and livelihood. This calls for major economic and personal crisis among the farmers and so it has led to intolerance and mass struggles by the most oppressed in the rural society. The book profiles various struggles by different groups in India like land struggles, worker’s struggles, forest struggles, struggle for water and struggle against displacement(including the Koel Karo dam struggle).

By Dana Clark and Shivani Bhardwaj/Housing and Land Rights Network Habitat International Coalition/ 2003
More than 1 billion people are ill-housed or have no shelter, tens of millions of are evicted or forced from their homes and land due to war, discrimination, development projects, social service reductions, economic liberalization and privatization policies. They all need our solidarity.

By Malavika Vartak/Delhi Forum/2008
Displacement is increasingly being seen as obvious and even acceptable fallout of the current paradigm of ‘development’ and ‘nation-building’. There is an urgent need for civil society groups and movements to strategize to build an effective counter to this paradigm, in order to protect the rights of the most vulnerable and marginalized communities. This book examines situations where displacement and inadequate rehabilitation occurs due to conflict and counter insurgency strategies of the state. The case studies clearly brings out the plight of the people caught in such circumstances and the need for accountability mechanisms and instruments to prevent the loss, hardship and indignity that people are made to suffer in such contexts.

By Ritwick Dutta/ HESCO/2006
The Citizen’s Guide is the first in the “Environmental Democracy Series”: a series of publication planned on critical environmental issues. This is being jointly researched by the Environmental Democracy Programme of HESCO and Lawyers’ Initiative for Forest and Environment (LIFE). The aim of this series is to provide information which equips communities, citizens and NGO’s among others in securing justice on environmental issues. Prepared by lawyers and activists, the aim of the CITIZEN’S GUIDE is to simplify complex laws in a manner in which the target group is able to make the most use of it and access institutions of justice.

By Ashish Kothari and Rahul N. Ram/Kalpvriksha/1994
The Sardar Sarovar Project (SSP), the largest and the most expensive river valley project ever initiated in India, is often described by its proponents as Gujarat’s lifeline. However, its critics feel that it may be one of India’s largest planned ecological disasters. In this book, environmental aspects of SSP are discussed here in terms accessible to the lay reader, the need for an Environmental Impact Assessment of the project and the lack thereof; the way in which conditional environmental clearance has effectively elapsed; the possible environmental impacts of SSP; and whether SSP can be justified at all.

By R D Munda and S Bosu Mullick/ International Work Group for Indigenous Affairs/ 2003
The volume contains the most significant articles and documents of the Jharkhand Movement, the oldest autonomy movements in India, which as recently resulted in the formation of a separate state by that name. The basic line inquiry concerning the issue (dispossession from life supporting resources of land, forest, water and identity) and the remedy (provision of autonomy), has been discussed from different angles by leading social scientists and activists. In the process can be seen emerging a development critique with an alternative provided by tribal/indigenous perspective aimed a reconstructing a society based equality; economy based on cooperation, caring – sharing, conservation, subsistence and decentralization; a policy based on conscience democracy and art based on collective participation and enjoyment. Analogous to the complexities of the Jharkhand cultural areas and the varying ideological background of the authors concerned he insights projected are constructive.

By Permanent Peoples’ Tribunal (PPT)/1996
The Charter on Industrial Hazards and Human Rights was drafted in the spirit of learning from the past so that a more humane future may be possible. It is not an official document, but a people’s statement. Unlike lost human rights documents, its content was not determined by diplomatic compromise. Rather, its substance, and hence its authority, derive directly from the collective experience of those who have been forced to live with the consequences of industrial hazards.

By Daine Smith/Jagori/2004
It is time to dramatically improve healthcare for women in India, as well as other countries. This book is a collective of what we need to know to provide care to women in childbirth. Empowerment and knowledge have improved our standards in health and taken us beyond the limitation of treating birth as only a physical event. “Birthing with Dignity” is a guide for training community level midwives and health workers.

By Jagori
In a recent survey carried out by Jagori, over 80 percent of 500 women surveyed reported having faced harassment in buses and other public transport and 62 percent had faced harassment on the roadside. The survey covered women across various classes, occupations and places of residence. The book maps out safety of women in different areas of Delhi by using techniques like surveys, maps, and campaigns.


By Shri Prakash/40 mins/Santhali with English subtitles/1995
A film that documents the struggle against the Koel Karo dam in Jharkhand and marks the first such movement against dams and the displacement caused by them in the country.

By Subrat Kumar Sahu/71 mins/English
In order to understand how modern tools of development clinically destroy self-reliant communities and yet succeed in influencing the middle class and the media to celebrate the outcome as ‘progress’, come to Kalahandi (in the state of Orissa in India)! Kalahandi’s intriguing romance with modernity and poverty was in fact set by the British, more than a hundred years ago, in 1896, with the Bokaro–Madras railway lines. Within two years of this impeccable symbol of development hugging Kalahandi, for the first time in human memory, the district was gripped by famine in 1898. How? Despite Kalahandi being historically a food-surplus district till today, even in government records, and despite a number of mega projects forced on the people in the name of ‘development’, the district continues to be the ultimate face of poverty and starvation for the world media.

By Megnath & Biju Toppo/55 mins/English/2001
The film captures the voices of project affected people in Kashipur (Orissa), Koel-karo (Jharkhand), Mehendikheda (Dewas, Madhya Pradesh), Umbergaon (Gujarat) and Nagarnar (Bastar, Chattisgarh).
By Simantini Dhuru and Anand Patwardhan/60 mins/Hindi with English subtitles/1995
Development for whom, sacrifice by whom? How much benefit and at what cost? For the last decade the Narmada Bachao Andolan (Save Narmada Movement) has asked basic questions of a government determined to build the Sardar Sarovar Dam in Northern India.

By Sanjay Kak/85 mins/English/2002
For more than 15 years people of Narmada Valley have resisted a series of massive dams on their river, and in their struggle have exposed the deceptive heart of India's development politics.

By Rashid Ali/43 mins/ Oriya, Hindi, Urdu with English subtitles
This film journeys through the history of TATAs negotiating with colonial or postcolonial state with a scriptural or evicted justification drawn from the ancient regimes of Kautiliya and Ashoka (invasion of Kalinga). The film takes a tour to the 'Socialist' regime of Jawaharlal Nehru, the first Prime Minister as to how he tried to dam the disjuncture of history through his scientific temperament where humanity was either submerged by Hirakud Reservoir or had disappeared in the vast reservoir of displacement. And then came the era of liberalization where Kashipur wrestled with Utkal Alumina under the 'eternal vigilance' of the state and paid the price of neo-liberalism.

By Shri Prakash/55 mins/Hindi/1999
Tragedy playing havoc with the lives of tribals of Jadugoda, as a result of uranium mining which leads to excessive radiation causing slow death.

KIS KI RAKSHA (In who’s Defence?)
By Shri Prakash/52 mins/Hindi with English subtitles/1994
The film captures the spirit and determination shown by tribals, drawn from 245 villages in Jharkhand, in opposing the government's plans to extend an army firing range in the forest area of Netrahat that they have occupied for centuries. The people's movement forced the army to abandon its plans.

By Biju Toppo and Meghnath/24 mins/English/2004
For the last 13 years, tens of thousands of indigenous and low-caste peoples from the Kashipur region of Orissa in east India have been fighting to prevent another massive industrial disaster. A consortium of multinational corporations, including Alcan Inc. of Montreal, are proposing to build a massive bauxite mine and alumina refinery. This project would displace between 20 000 and 40 000 people from their homes, destroying their economy and livelihoods, contaminating their food and water source, and denying their rights to self-determination and sustainment of their culture.

By Sunil Minj / Philip Kujur / Biju Toppo/58 mins/local language and Hindi
This is a film about the displacement of people by the construction of Bhakra Nangal and Tehri dams. The development policies of Independent India had displaced about 4 crore people, and 75% of these are adivasis. Even 40 years later, these people had not been rehabilitated. The film also sends out a warning, as it talks of the present protests against dams like Narmada, Tehri and Koel-karo.

By Amar Kanwar / 28 mins/ English/2001
Baphlimali is a film about the resistance movement of the Kashipur tribals in South Orissa, against bauxite mining and aluminum companies. It is a film about globalization and tribal consciousness, a brief glimpse into an 8 year long struggle that is pushing out powerful Indian and international companies from the tribal lands in the Eastern Ghats in Orissa, India.

By KP Sasi/ 38 mins/ English/2002
A documentary film on the social and environmental impact of bauxite mining in Kashipur, Orissa and the subsequent struggle of adivasis in the region.

By Sanjay Muttoo/25 mins/ Local language with English subtitles/2001
A documentary critically looking at the population policy of the country.

By Nishit Saran/41 mins/English/1999
While travelling across the united sates with his family visiting from India, Nishit struggles to come out to them as a gay man. Adding to this stress are the impending results of an HIV test, made all the more complicated by an unsafe encounter he has had with an HIV-positive man. Nishit explores the unusual dynamics of secrecy and revelation, love and acceptance that mark this very close family. Every achingly personal moment- including coming out to his mother and getting his test results- is caught on tape. What results is a work that pushes personal documentary to its limits, where the very life of a filmmaker is at stake in the outcome of the film.

By Sridhar Rangayan/40 mins/English/2006
A unique film coming from India where homosexuality is a taboo, Gulabi Aaina (The Pink Mirror), is a colourful, funny look into the Indian homosexuality closet.

For more titles of books, films and socially relevant music as per your interest do write to us!
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This mailer has been put together with work by Namrata Ahuja during her summer volunteering at the Kriti team.