May Day and Eid greetings: Solidarity with workers around the world and Southasia

It was activist friend Kavita Srivastava in Jaipur who suggested focusing on ‘Labour Rights and Democracy’ for our April event ahead of May Day. Like all Sapan events since launch in March 2022 – the Southasia Peace Action Network – this was also on the last Sunday of the month.

As usual, we live-streamed the discussion on FB – video at this link. We truly appreciate all the ‘likes’, comments and shares that help ensure that our voices are heard amidst the din.

Thanks to old friend and talented musician Arieb Azhar in Islamabad for agreeing to sing at the last minute. Dhonobad Khushi Kabir in Dhaka for transliterating the first verse of the workers’ anthem, The Internationale in Bangla for him. She knows them all by heart. Arieb also sang some of his own verses in Urdu, reflecting contemporary realities. He’s doing an English translation to add. Here’s the clip – thanks Priyanka Singh in Delhi for uploading it so fast.

Priyanka has a great affinity for music and poetry – she was reciting a poem at the online PIPFPD event in January 2021 where I first ‘met’ her. Not surprised she also took time out to post the extempore song by young Lucky Akter in Dhaka ended her presentation with. A former former student activist working with Bangladesh’s oldest and largest peasant organisation, Lucky’s stirring call for rights is lovely even if you don’t understand Bangla.

We’re working on posting video clips of other speakers up at the SouthAsiaPeace YouTube channel. Check out our earlier videos and playlists. Every subscription, ‘like’, comment and share helps increase visibility for our cause. 

I worked with Priyanka on this Sapan syndicated feature about our event, Ahead of May Day, a call for worker unity, solidarity and a visa-free Southasia, joined by journalist Sheeba Aslam Fehmi. Wonderful to connect with Sheeba also and learn about her work with progressive activism in India – see Indian Muslims for Progress and Reforms.

Thrilled to report that several media outlets have published our syndicated piece, including Geo News, The Wire, Dhaka Tribune, Prothom Alo, South Asia Monitor, NayaDaur/Friday Times, VoicePk, Aman Ki Asha, and others. Updates here.

p.s. Looking for volunteers, interns, writers and ideas people. We invite you to endorse the Sapan Founding Charter and join us.

Ending with May Day and Eid greetings to all those celebrating. Solidarity and thoughts with those missing loved ones. Sorry got a little late with posting this.

Screenshot of Sapan website with our latest syndicated piece.

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