Kolkata: In West Bengal, Hul Kranti Diwas was observed in West Bengal with several blood donation camps being held across the state. Hundreds of activists donated blood in remembrance of the famous hul bidroho (kranti) – a Santhal rebellion in 1855 against the atrocious zamindari system.
The programme, in remembrance of martyrs in the first armed rebellion against British colonial rule, was held in over hundred places in West Medinipore district, highlighting the present situation in the country wherein tribal rights on forest and natural resources are being usurped by corporates, leading to growing economic disparity faced by Santhals and other tribals. The programme also highlighted the fact that a large number of the country’s tribal population was still deprived of education, health, housing and safe drinking water.
On Wednesday, rallies, panel discussions, tribal cultural festivals, including games like soccer, archeryu and haribhanga (a tribal game) were orgnised in the villages to commemorate the Hul Kranti Diwas.
In Medinipur city, the statues of Sidhu and Kanu, two martyrs, were garlanded. Programmes were also held in 15 paces In Debra block Narayangarh (12 places), Keshiary (11 places) and Shalboni in seven places, as also in Daspur block in Ghatal, Chandrakona Road, Garbeta Goaltor, Khirpai, Kharagpur rural, Pingla and Sabang.
In Hooghly, Nadia and 24 Paraganas, too, programmes were held across the districts.
The Communist Party of India (Marxist) also held a Facebook live on the ‘Significance of Historical Hool Diwas and Present Condition of Tribal Society’, where discussions were led by Prof Susanta Das, Sunil Hansda, Pulinbehari Baskey, Banya.
In another programme, a mass was held, anchored by Kumar Rana former director of Pratichi Trust and addressed by intellectuals like Marooona Murmu , Boro Baskey, Tanika sarkar, Dipankar Bhattacharya, Achin Chakraborty, Jaya Mitra and Shamim Ahmad.
Most of the speakers highlighted the great Hul rebellion in 1855 as a farmers’ rebellion against feudalism as well as British imperialism.