KALARI in assosiation with Ekta Parishad and S.B.O.A Schools organized a contact program for the students with Gandhian activist Shri.P.V.Rajagopal on 26th July 2017 at S.B.O.A Matriculation and Higher Secondary School, Nagamalai Pudukkottai, Madurai. It was a notable speech by P.V.Rajagopal on Peace and Justice. Later it was decided to send letters to the Prime Minister of India by the students to initiate a Peace Ministry in the Government of India.
Rajagopal P. V., a Gandhian activist, is former Vice Chairman of the Gandhi Peace Foundation, New Delhi, and the president and founding member of Ekta Parishad.
Rajagopal was born in 1948 in Kerala, south India. His full name is Rajagopal Puthan Veetil, but he now chooses to use only his first name in public in order to avoid any caste-related stereotyping that might be associated with his full name. Rajagopal’s father was an activist fighting for India’s independence and therefore was frequently separated from his family. Rajagopal attended the grade school at Seva Mandir, being taught in Malayalam language. The school followed Gandhi’s philosophical principles with regard to life and work in a community. He later studied classical Indian dance and music, prior to completing his education at Sevagram, Gandhi’s Ashram in Maharashtra, with a degree in agricultural engineering. This is also where Rajagopal learned to speak English.
In the early 1970s, he worked in the violence-ridden area of Chambal in Madhya Pradesh to help rehabilitate dacoits.
Since 1993, Rajagopal is married to Jill Carr-Harris, a Canadian national, who is also an activist in social change.
After consolidating a membership of 200,000 people (the majority are women) across six states, Rajagopal began using the Gandhian technique of foot-march or padayatra to galvanize greater support among the poor. With a track record of ten state level foot-marches, he led a national march to Delhi in October 2007. In the march, Janadesh 2007 25,000 people marched 340 kilometers from Gwalior to Delhi and compelled the Government to take action in land reforms and forest rights.
Jan Satyagraha 2012
Though the Land Reform Commission has issued its report, the government has not yet accepted it.
Land reform through nonviolent action
In the context of the continuing growth of Naxalism in Central rural India, Rajagopal’s organization of Ekta Parishad with its mobilization of tribal peoples, women and youth as well as its advocacy of Land Reform, is one of the most successful nonviolent alternatives.
New land reforms, 2014 and conflicts
Modi government has proposed two major changes in the land acquisition act:-
1.It seeks to dilute provisions such as the mandatory consent of 70 percent of those affected in case of public-private partnership (PPP) projects.
2.It removes the provision of mandatory requirement for a time-bound Social Impact Assessment for land acquisitions.
Rajagopal accuses Modi as pro-corporate and claims that it will further aggravate the difference between the rich and poor in the country.
In 2014, he received the Indira Gandhi Award for National Integration, an award granted annually by the Indian National Congress party.