Bengaluru: "If the people of the country don't stand up against culture of intolerance, there will be more killings," declared journalist P. Sainath during his rousing speech at Central College here on Tuesday. And come together they did.
Cries of "We Are Gauri" rent the morning air as thousands of students, led by activist Medha Patkar, marched for Rally of Resistance. Over 20,000 people, including writers, rationalists, artists and students were present at the event, one of the largest non-political gatherings in recent history. Students from Christ University, NLSIU and St. Joseph's joined AAP workers at City Central Railway Station, where they began their march to the venue.
Gauri questioned caste and exclusion for the concepts of secularism and pluralism. They are embedded deep within our nation's soil and no majoritarian fascists can take that away from us. Those who choose to kill are cowards.
— Teesta Setalwad, activist
Dalit activist Jignesh Mevani stole the show with his fiery address, saying, “Despite attempts by Mohan Bhagwat, the PM and the sanatan sanstha, the massive turnout today indicates that their attempts to stifle our voices have failed," he said.
"Various journalists, including Ravish Kumar and I are on the fundamentalists' hit list," said journalist Sagarika Ghose, who is one of the five women to have received death threats recently on Facebook. "Why shouldn't a journalist report facts?"