For The Cause Of Natural Water.
Neocolonialism appears before the third world
in the form of beverages. The beverage companies,
with their roots in the imperialist countries
or their satellites, trespass all boundaries and
teach people that several types of colas are better
than natural water. They have several beverages,
said to be nonalcoholic (as if natural water were
alcoholic!), prepared according to certain formulas
known to them only. They bottle this formula product
in the respective countries. They select tiny
villages where people are generally uneducated
or illiterate. They tap the total water sources
in these areas and gradually fill these places
with dirt and toxics detrimental to human and
This is the story of Plachimada in Palakkad District
of Kerala. On chemical examinations it was found
that the colas produced there contain great measures
of poisonous chemicals. It was discovered by the
peasants that these beverages are better suited
to be insecticides than to be drinking fluids.
Any certification by any Ameer Khan to the contrary
is a farce and the heinous selling of himself
by a great artist at the cost of the people who
love him and venerate him. .
It is in this background that the people of Plachimada
began to protest, then raise their voice and then
finally governments opened their eyes and were
forced to take action against the cola makers.
Naturally enough the courts came to the rescue
of the multinationals. Our courts have been gradually
sinking into a dirt pit of the vested interests.
The judgments in the Plachimada Cola case as well
as in the Self-financing professional college
case have proved beyond doubt that our courts
cannot rise to the rising expectations of the
constitution of our country . Its preamble explicitly
states that it aims at a socialist republic. And
funnily enough the courts interprets our constitution
to suit the interests of the rich. Courts stand
on the side of the perpetrators of exploitation
while the poor millions who should have benefited
from a socialist republic are left to the mercy
of the multicontinental expropriators.
A tiny village and its people rose in an unprecedented
style upsurge; and the leader par excellence of
this movement was a woman named Mylamma. Myle
in Malayalam means peacock; Mylamma should mean
the mother of peacocks. It has no connection whatsoever
with the present strike. She belonged to an adivasi
family. When she began to organize the poor housewives
of the village she was about fifty years old.
She was presumably illiterate and she upheld the
rights of the villagers for their water and its
sources. This feeble voice would have been merged
into wilderness had it not been taken up by the
fourth estate and the youth organizations like
Still Mylamma continued her struggle with such
a conviction that all would end well. For a time
it seemed so. But it did not. In the present stage
of the struggle it is the Colas that in the winning
positions; the same is the case with the Sardar
Sarovar struggle in which the leader is Medha
Mylamma became a source of inspiration for all
those who stand for nation and oppose imperialist
penetration. In truth Mylamma was fighting hegemonization.
While she was fighting she contracted Psoriasis
all over her body which she believed to be the
result of drinking poisonous water adulterated
with cola chemicals. Scabies began to haunt her.
If what she believed is true (I am sure the learned
physicians and scientists would jump into hasty
conclusions in favour of the multicontinental
corporations), another endosulphan calamity is
coming shortly in Kerala. To see a person like
Mylamma who has such openings to the social and
media fields to die of a disease like psoriasis
seems puzzling. So, it is something more than
that. What she said and believed must be true.
Her disease emanated from the polluted water she
and her villagers are forced to drink because
they have no other source of water. Mylamma sacrificed
her life for the cause of natural water.
And Mylamma is no more and she died at the age
of fifty six which is no old age according to
Kerala standards. Strenuous efforts and hard work
aggravated her disease and she had to succumb
But the cause for which she fought and won and
lost still remains unresolved. People of Plachimada
and for that matter the people of the whole world
should continue this struggle until victory is
achieved. Water is free to all and the best beverage
is that water which nature gives us. Countries
and states fight uncompromising wars for water
and in the name of water; in the meanwhile, Cola
steals water to make poison and sells it to the
people to drink.