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“Ama Bhita Maati Bachao” (2007), a film by Girish Pant and Rajkumar documents people’s opposition to POSCO, their anger at the state government of Orissa for unilaterally imposing the project on them and their resolve to resist displacement at all costs. The main narrative of the film is in Hindi and the interviews with local farmers and activists are in Oriya (one of the main languages spoken in the state of Orissa), with subtitles in Hindi. The film is about 25 minutes long and has been loaded onto YouTube in 3 installments. (Part 1 is 9:48 minutes, Part 2 is 8:19 minutes & Part 3 is 7:57 minutes)

The filmmakers introduce their film thus on YouTube:
“A Film on people’s resistance against POSCO in Orissa (A Film By Girish&Rajkumar) Friends, at the moment, around 16 platoons of police force have cordoned off village Dhinkia where at least 1000 villagers are trapped. The violence wreaked on the people is completely state sponsored to take over the areas that are the strongest base of the POSCO Pratirodh Sangram Samiti at Jagatsingpur. The situation right now is volatile and further state violence seems inevitable. It is not a clash of pro and anti POSCO people as the media and the Orissa government are claiming — it is a desperate bid to pave the way for the South Korean corporate giant POSCO by using state force.”

The film’s depiction of various productive agricultural activities and ancillary trades (such as basket-making) belies POSCO’s claims that this is fallow land, whilst interviews with farmers and activists from the PPSS (POSCO Pratirodh Sangram Samiti = Committee for Struggle Against POSCO) reveal that although the government has employed paramilitary troops against the villagers at various times, it is yet to actually negotiate with them directly! Also, significantly, the people of Jagatsinghpur repeatedly invoke Kalinganagar and Nandigram (where villagers resisting the takeover of their land by the government were shot and killed by the police), and declare their readiness to sacrifice, if necessary, themselves and their women and children. The film’s opposition to the state government and to POSCO, while grounded in interviews with members of the affected communities (who articulate their opposition in no uncertain terms), also issues from a larger critique of a paradigm of development that is unresponsive to people’s needs and the imperialist logic that drives projects of industrialization such as the POSCO steel plant.

No to  POSCO: PART 1




Written by janjagriti

October 12, 2008 at 8:44 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

2 Responses

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  1. Wow. I wish there were English subtitles!

    In solidarity!


    November 1, 2008 at 4:19 pm

  2. […] protest against the arrest of Abhaya Sahoo. Sahoo is President of POSCO Pratirodh Sangram Samiti (POSCO Resistance Struggle Committee), which has been leading the people’s movement against a big land grab in the state of Orissa by […]

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