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ESG is an independent not-for-profit organisation that promotes the cause of environmental and social justice through research, documentation, advocacy, training and campaign support. We aim to support the rights of local communities and voiceless ecosystems in a responsible, progressive manner that keeps contextual complexities in mind. Event Announcements community outreachprojects Updated: Press Releases campaignsbiodiversitytree fellinghasiru usiru Updated: Press Releases community outreachcampaignsbiodiversitypublicationsbrinjal Updated: Farewell to a rare Environmental Activist and Great Humanist: She had been battling cancer for a while now, and she passed away on the morning of 16th November Environment Support Group has a long and meaningful relationship with Latha for almost two decades now.
Latha was at once a fierce activist, with whom one could not hold an argument without proper preparation, and also a deeply humanistic woman.
No one who met with Latha would come away unaffected by her cherubic nature and affected deeply by her happiness. I met with Latha and her partner Unni in November By now Latha had already survived multiple struggles with a disease she would not allow to deter her enthusiasm.
And during my visit, Latha was so happy to see me that she pushed away her scheduled rest to just talk and laugh. We laughed a lot. We recalled all the good times when we had campaigned together.
And then we recalled how we came together to fight against powerful forces whose avariciousness was cost us our earth. I had given Latha an assignment: But as the mischievous student of life she was, she never sent any.
She took them all with her. Leaving us content with memories of her ever smiling face. Here’s a picture from my visit to Latha and Ammlni a year ago. To Latha, activism was not merely about fighting injustices.
It was about deep humanism. Hopefully we can meet up again in a chexhi mileau. I am in a new avatar Finding time to read, write, draw sing But the fire remains. Your visit was inspiring for both of us Why don’t both of you come down sometime on the way to some meeting or even without any agenda.
Missing those days and discussions. My checgi distance ammink is presently restricted by my Doctor!!! Here is a picture of Latha with Bhargavi.
Latha never allowed her battle with cancer to get the better of her activism. She was constantly in touch with what was happening around her and extremely active in guiding the Coalition for Environmental Justice in India.
She wrote two very powerful words a little over a week before her final goodbye. And MoEF is paying for the training. Shall we protest this.? Her message was simple and direct. Fight for what is right, relentlessly.
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As she proved to us with her very life. Until the very end she was active. Fighting for environmental and social justice. But with a smile that absolutely would melt any heart. She was clear that over two decades of successful struggle had determined the river shall flow and that the river would jump over grand Athirapally falls and continue her journey unim peded forever into the future. And towards this end, she organised a major convention on the Chalukady inviting former Indian Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh to speak at Chalakudy on 18 August Latha sincerely hoped the Kerala Government would drop this mindless proposal to build a dam.
A proposal that had gone through several revisions, expired environmental clearances, and whose feasibility was comprehensively rejected time and again.
Most critically, the damage the dam would do to the forests ached Latha very much. An amminj that she sang about and campaigned about. Earlier this year, she wrote about why we should work with her in stopping the Chalukady Dam, the environmental clearance for which had yet again just expired.
The third Environmental Clearance was granted on Gadgil led PH in We are not sure if they mean new one or extension. But then we will continue Latha was deeply concerned that Government’s were increasingly becoming insensitive to the concerns environmental and social activists were raising.
It seemed like a silver lining on dark clouds that were gathering over India’s environment. For Latha, while the decision was welcome, it was not sufficient, and she shared this view in an email: We should chfchi the meaning of river to include all its micro watersheds from wh ere the inflows are contributed.
Basically a river’s flow depends upon the health of its catchment. Automatically forests, biodiversity and wildlife, land use should be be part of that. However this will need thorough de schooling among our techno and bureaucrats in the first place. The New Zealand Act makes an indigenous committee member as Guardian. In the case of UKhand, it is again the Government agencies. That makes a huge difference in to what extent the rights will be interpreted.
When the Modi administration decided to whittle down the Envtl laws of India, even more than cyechi already been done before, and based on the controversial recommendations ammiji the TSR Subramanian Cmt.
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I think efforts should be taken to meet up with the Parliamentary Standing Committee Chairman in charge Ashwini Kumar and brief him on this apart from Jairam and Rajeev Gowda and others. Maybe a joint letter endorsed by groups across the country should be sent to MPs who can talk for us as a starter.
Had sent the submissions by you and many among us to N K Premachandran and briefed him over phone as well. One she held close to her heart was to ensure wildlife conservation and human rights concerns worked together. She wrote about the stress animals suffered during the long drought in April this year: Gaurs are getting killed in Munnar Marayur area in the Western Ghats due to infection from weather changes.
How do we address adaptation and mitigation measures? Just drinking holes are not going to help.
Restoration of catchment areas with involvement of indigenous communities and forest fringe villages will be needed. Farewell and peace Latha, my friend, our friend. ESG ammibi the News. Site designed with Drupal by Anjali Vaidya.