Vedanta protest, police and directors surprised.

Aug 12, 2010

Around 250 activists held a noisy and angry demo on Wednesday 28 July, outside the AGM of murderous U.K registered mining corporation Vendanta.

The protest, organised by ‘Foil Vendanta’ , was part of a global day of action in support of The Dongria Kondh activists in Odisha India to hold the multinational to account for the environmental destruction, murder and human rights violations it perpetrates in the region. Check GR’s recent report on this website.

Despite police efforts to keep the protest to the opposite side of the road a number of us stormed the building to block the entrance with a large banner proclaiming “Vedanta plc: Stop the killings! stop the destruction!”

Chants such as “Vedanta Vedanta, Blood on Your hands!” could be heard inside the meeting where several activists and shareholders confronted Vedanta’s billionaire CEO Anil Agarwal on their operations in Odisha. As you would expect from the 10th richest man in Britain, Agarwal justified their brutal activities as “economic improvement” to “spread wealth” and bring “development to the most backward part of India”.

The cost of this so called development has been over 100 deaths, 1000 people displaced from their land, fertile agricultural land destroyed and wide scale pollution of rivers and drinking water all in pursuit of mega-profits for fat cat billionaires with blood on their hands.

Since the action, Vedanta have shown how rattled they are, by stepping up their pressure on the activists in India. Two leaders of the Dongria Kondh have been abducted. There’s a very short list of suspects. The two missing men have been the prime movers in the grassroots resistance to the mining operations in the locality.

Foil Vedanta typifies that working method of Globalise Resistance. From the very birth of GR in 2001, we’ve worked with different groups to organise individual actions (Stop Kissinger), participated in ongoing campaigns (against the DSEi arms fair) and helped to establish new coalitions to help kick start campaigns on different issues (Stop the War, Campaign against Climate Change, No2ID).

We are keen on furthering our work in this way. Check the website regularly for other campaigns, such as the one just bubbling under the surface – about Ferrexpo, another mining company, this time in Ukraine, treating it’s workers abominably and provoking strike action that needs your solidarity.

LiNKS

http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid62744310001?bclid=207400659001&bctid=292372127001
Channel 4 News report on the London action (go to 04:00 minutes)
http://www.survivalinternational.org/news/6337
Survival Internnational report on the recent abductions in Orissa.
http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/article538594.ece
Report of the protest in The Hindu newspaper, india

 

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