By Dr Shailesh Upreti
Garhwal Post, 18 February 2008
Dehradun, 17 Feb: “Uttarakhand and Globalisation: Challenges for Sustainable Development” was the topic of a seminar “Hamari Virasat” held, recently, at the Press Club of India, New Delhi. The annual magazine of CUMP (Creative Uttarakhand Myor Pahar) was also released on the occasion.
A gathering of around 50 people heard the eminent speakers on the occasion. The purpose of the seminar was to increase awareness and to understand the impact of globalisation on the society, culture and economy of Uttarakhand.
Rajendra Dhasmana, human rights activist and former Editor of Doordarshan, emphasised that people’s participation could play a crucial role in the development of the state. He also spoke on the need for organisations and people who could raise the voice of the masses against the ‘dictatorship’ of government mafia, police and bureaucracy. He also criticised the Uttarakhand government for harassing people in the name of Maoism in the state.
He drew attention to the ‘chimera’ of development and gave the example of the Tehri Dam. Before completion of the dam, it was state that 2500 MW electricity would be generated but, in reality, the scenario was entirely different. Only one turbine was functional and a number of unexpected complications had arisen. Similarly, the rehabilitation problem was still persisting. He lamented that everything was done without taking the local people into confidence. He appreciated the efforts of CUMP and its magazine stating, “The magazine is a truly serious effort having as it does articles on the social, cultural, economic, political and historical importance of Bageshwar since the era of ‘Kuli Begar aandolan’ to ‘Uttarakhand andolan’, Gandhiji’s visit of Bageshwar, to the memoir of Rahul Sanskrityayan and Sarla Bahan, Bageshwar Mahatamya to the folklore and folk tales of the place.” [more]