Mangaluru, Feb 17: Speakers at the Popular Front Day held today at Nehru Maidan in the heart of this coastal city took on the union government for what many of them termed “saffronization of the ‘system’ and massacre of the democracy in the country.
The event was organised to mark the decennial celebration of the Popular Front of India. Thousands of people, a majority of them youth, took part in the programme. A ‘unity march’ was also held ahead of the stage programme.
Delivering the keynote address, KM Shareef, former national president of PFI, urged the people to wake up before the judiciary is completely saffronized. “The saffronization of judiciary has already started. It is time for you to wake up and stop it,” he said.
He said that since its inception PFI fought for the rights of oppressed classes including dalits and minorities and will continue its effort to bring a social revolution in the country against all odds. He said that his organization indents to weed out communalism and fascism from the country.
Accusing Prime Minister Narendra Modi of trying to become a dictator, Mr Shareef said that the former has mocked all the values practiced by the father of the nation.
Dubbing BJP’s slogans of ‘nationalism’ as fake, he said that Mr Modi hailed from an organisation which seldom showed any respect to the national anthem or national flag in the past.
Recalling the birth of PFI following an empowerment rally organised at Palace Grounds in Bengaluru in 1997, Shareef said they had vowed to build a society with equal freedom and justice to all, without compromising with anybody.
The influence of communalism has been far-reaching beginning from pre-independence era. It gained pace from 1993 with attempts being made to saffronise the citadel of the society that includes legislative and judiciary, he observed.
Shareef also fulminated demonetisation of high-value currency notes in the name of fight against black money. It has eventually overburdened common people, he criticised.
Social activist Yogesh Master complimented the cadre for keeping the spirit of movement alive, despite of change in venue of the programme from Ullal to Nehru Ground.
Human Rights activist Abdul Majeed Qasimi, Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI) state president Abdul Hannan, Samaja Parivartana Vedike president Dheeman Deekayya, PFI state secretary Ibrahim Majeed Thumbay, Muslim Central Committee (Dakshina Kannada district) vice president Haji Hameed Kandak and other leaders were among those present on the occasion.