Madikeri, Coorg, Karnataka: The India Greens Party has launched its Karnataka State unit officially by electing the 17-member state executive committee, including the president, general secretary, and treasurer on 22 December 2019, on the day of the state’s convention. Out of these 17 office bearers, seven are women.
The party in its two-day highly successful state convention on 21-22 December 2019 at Kushalnagar, in which more than 70 people from several parts of Karnataka took part, elected the office-bearers.
President: Mr. Sathish Samuel
Vice-Presidents: Ms. Jaji Karumbaiaha and Mr. Jayaram HR
General Secretary: Ms. Asha KJ
Treasurer: Ms. Manjula Ramaswamy
Secretaries: Mr. Baburaj Pallad, Ms. Mamatha HP and Ms. Archana
Executive Members: Mr. Veerasingh David, Mr. Benjamin Reuben, Ms. Shobalakshmi, Ms. Gange, Mr. Venkataswami, Mr. Mari, Mr. Ramesh, Mr. Lingappa and Mr. Mithun.
The two-day convention on its inaugural day held discussions on topics like world view of green politics, democracy and green politics in India and diversity and gender equity. Besides, KP Sasi’s film “Ilayum Mullum” on the social and psychological violence on women in Kerala was screened in the evening.
On the second day, welcoming the delegates in the plenary, the national vice-president VSR David said that the Karnataka state was proud to organize the IGP’s first state convention. He said the citizens who were concerned about the health of the Earth had started thinking of green politics. Mr. David added that so many people in the southern part of the country were willing to join the India Greens Party.
Inaugurating the convention the national president Suresh Nautiyal elaborated on the six green principles of the IGP. He said all the green parties in the world subscribed to the core values of the Global Greens Charter that included ecological wisdom, sustainability, social justice, participatory democracy, non-violence and respect for diversity. He gave an overview of the global green parties and told why the green party was needed in India. He added that a diverse country like India with so many pollutions urgently needed a green party. “That is why we have created a pan-India green party,” he said. Mr. Nautiyal said the IGP was going to be the most sought after and the largest party in the near future as everybody wanted a solution to the ecological issues including global warming and climate crisis. Mr. Nautiyal said life was threatened on the Earth and only humans can save it.
Party’s secretary-general Raza Haider said that the IGP was assertively pursuing the six core principles of the Global Greens Charter and also taking up campaigns like the Hawa Par Haq (Right to Breathe Clean Air) to the next level. He said the party condemned the CAA and the NRC. Mr. Haider expressed the party’s solidarity with the CAA and NRC protesters and said it would take up more and more programs that included all diverse communities.
Party’s senior leader Anita Nautiyal said the IGP was consistently pursuing to recruit more and more women in the organisation. There were programmes to train the women to be leaders of the party and run in the elections. She said the party was planning to start the She Will Run campaign in the state of Chhattisgarh. Under this programme, women will be encouraged to take up leadership roles and contest the Assembly election in 2023. Ms Nautiyal said this will be replicated in other states of the country including Karnataka. She also briefed about the IGP’s association with the women’s network at the Asia-Pacific and global levels.
Accepting the state presidentship of the IGP, the newly elected state president Sathish Samuel said that every state in the country was looking for a green party and it was good that the party was doing so much to spread its wings throughout the country. Taking the new state executive’s meeting after the two-day conclusion, Mr Samuel said that the state executive needed to meet quite often to take up and push the party’s political agenda. He called upon all the state executive members and the office bearers to proactively pursue the membership drive. He said that the principles of IGP were relevant for all citizens and added that the party stood for the development of the people. He added that the IGP was a party with special space for women and that it was just an indication of the change.
Newly elected general secretary Ms Asha KJ said that she would do her best to deliver and make the party vibrant in the state.
On a concluding day, a local Adivasi group, Ammale Sanskritika Thanda, performed dances with the forest and Adivasi songs.
Several resolutions were passed by the two-day convention. They include –
Political Resolution: The IGP-Karnataka State Convention opposes the provisions of the CAA (Citizens Amendment Act) and NRC (National Register of Citizens) and condemns the police atrocities on the students and conscientious citizens throughout the country.
Section-144 of IPC: The IGP-Karnataka expresses its anguish over recent imposition of Section-144 throughout the Karnataka state despite the fact that there was no need to do it throughout the state.
Deaths during CAA Protest: The IGP-Karnataka condemns the police action against the CAA protesters as it killed several peacefully agitating people in Karnataka and other parts of the country.
River Cauvery Pollution: The IGP-Karnataka expresses its regrets that the irresponsible behaviour of the subsequent governments in the state has threatened the very existence of the River Cauvery with all kinds of pollution. We demand from the government to clean the river and take urgent steps to stop further pollution in the river.
Use of Chemicals and Pesticides in Agriculture: The IGP-Karnataka demands from the government to stop the use of chemicals, chemical-based fertilisers and chemical pesticides in agriculture throughout the state.
Rights of the Adivasis: The IGP-Karnataka demands from the state government to implement in letter and spirit the rights of the Adivasis over land, forest, and water. The state unit of the party demands that the funds under the Compensatory Afforestation Fund Act, 2018 should be utilized only through the Gram Sabhas so that planting of the local varieties and species is ensured contributing to biodiversity and so that the villagers can undertake programs according to their requirements and the requirements of the wildlife.
Land Conversion: The IGP-Karnataka demands from the government to raise the limit of land conversion to 50 cents from the present 20 cents so that people are in a position to build houses as well as cowsheds, etc.
Stone Quarrying and Sand Mining Activities in Coorg:
The IGP-Karnataka wants the state government to take cognizance of the unprecedented sand mining and stone quarrying activities, most of which are illegal under the political patronage, and take appropriate administrative and legal action against those responsible for them. Also, the government should take action against those responsible for the transportation of the mined and quarried natural resources without taking care of the roads.
Western Ghats: The IGP-Karnataka is at pain to know that the Western Ghats Region is being converted into a hotspot of ecological crisis. The party is against the implementation of the Kasturirangan Report and demands from the government to withdraw it. Instead, the government should implement the Madhav Gadgil Report which is inclusive and takes care of the community rights.