A round table meeting was held on 14th July 2020, at the Godavarikhani, AmbedkarBhavan on the issue of arrested intellectuals in Bhima-Koregaon case. This meeting was attended by different public associations, Civil Liberties Committee (CLC), leftist parties like CPI, CPIM, CPI-ML New Democracy and Dalit groups like All India Ambedkar Youth Association (AIAYA), Madiga Reservation PorataSamithi (MRPS) and Mala Mahanadu.
Mallareddy, District General Secretary presided the function, and it had the patronage of Shri BonkurMadhu, State Vice President of All India Ambedkar Youth Association. Several notable speakers addressed the participants. The names include Shri MadanaKumaraswamy, Joint Secretary of Telangana State, Civil liberties Committee,Senior Journalist Shri MadasuRammurthy,CPM District Secretary Shri Y Yakaiya, Congress party senior leader Shri GummadiKumaraswamy,IFTU State President Shri.K Vishwanath,Members of the Central Committee of the Telangana Coal Miners’ Union Sri Vaddepalli Shankar, CPI district leaders Shri GautamGovardhan, CPI-ML New Democracy District Leader Shri E Naresh, Chief Secretary of TelanganaState Dalit Liberation Shri MarwadiSudarshan, Farmers Association District Presidents Shri Mudimadugula,All India Ambedkar Youth Association State Leaders Shri ManthenaLingaya, MRPS state leader Sri Rasa PelliRavikumar. Besides these eminent speakers, the participants included leaders of many Dalit organisations and Political Parties like MrsPullaSucharitha, MrShanigarapuRamaswamy, Shri PogulaRangayya, Shri UppuletiParvathaalu, Sri GaddamNarayana, Sri GorreNarasimha Rao, Sri GaddalaSashibhushan, Lawyer Sri Akbar Elagandula Ramesh, Sri Perika Ravi, Shri. B. Ramaswamy, Sri NakkaRajender, Sri NallaSrinivas, Sri AlliGantayya, Sri KadashiLachchulu, Sri Kampally Swami, UppuletiHanumanthu, Sri Dasaratha, Sri UppuletiMallya, LingampallyVenkatesh,Kavitha.
All the speakers pointed out that the public intellectuals arrested in the Bhima-Koregaon case like Varavara Rao, BabasahebAmbedkar’s grandson-in-law Prof.AnandTeltumbde and nine others, had nothing to do with the gathering of the Dalits to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the defeat of the Pehwas. The main reason for putting these people behind bars is to silence the critics of the government as all the arrested persons were supporting people’s struggles.
The speakers noted with alarm that all of them are older people and keeping them in unhealthy congested prisons during the corona pandemic could stem from a desire of the government to let the arrested people die in the jail itself. It was noted that 81-year-old Varavara Rao is seriously ill and the leaders and delegates join the family of the poet in seeking urgent hospitalisation of the veteran writer for treatment and subsequent release.
The meeting gave a call for organising collective struggle to uphold the rights of the tribals, Dalits and other communities as otherwise the spirit of democracy will be undermined by the central and state governments. The organisers demanded unconditional release of critically ill poet Varava Rao and ten other intellectuals arrested in connection with Bhima-Koregaon as well asProf.Saibaba who is also having health issues.
After the event, a rally was held from Telangana Ambedkar Bhavan to the statue of Dr BR Ambedkar where the participants took an active part in chanting slogans against the Central and State Governments.