Call for development with social justice

  • Speakers at Book Exhibition seek inclusive growth

Dara Gopi

Vijayawada: Speakers at a meeting on “Inclusive Development” organized at the Vijayawada Book Exhibition here on Thursday emphasized the need to take social justice as core concept for development. They regretted that the successive governments have ignored social justice while planning for development. The poor and the underprivileged have been displaced from their houses and land holdings in the name of development, they said and regretted that the growth indicators have widened the gap between the poor and the rich.

Ramon Magsaysay Award winner and Safai Karmachari Andolan activist, Bezawada Wilson, regretted that the successive governments have ignored the words like poverty and hunger while planning for development. In every development, the country had displaced the poor and the core concept of doing justice for majority people had been ignored. While welcoming India for developing technology or even rockets from ISRO, he wondered why the same technology is not used to relieve human beings from cleaning drains, physically removing night soil even after 70 years of Independence. He said that the technology plans have not included the common man, the poor and had not addressed the issue of hunger in the country. He felt that these issues should be formed part of development now failing which people would refuse this development.

He took strong exception to the present political dispensation and its supporters for mocking people who raise issues concerning the neglected sections of the society. The rights of women, Dalits, the weaker sections and the underprivileged are being mocked by a section of the people who are to be condemned and shown their place.  

Prof. Gopal Guru of Jawaharlal Nehru University regretted that technology is reducing the human interface. The mobile phones or social media, which is part of the advanced technology, had totally reduced human interactions and their relationship. Stating that development should not make human beings invisible, he wanted the governments to plan development keeping people at the center. He wanted the governments to maintain balance between development and the people.

Former chief secretary Kaki Madhava Rao felt the need to create equal opportunities and equal justice to the people. Stating that the four pillars of democracy have failed to protect the interests of the people, he stressed the need for the civil society to become the fifth pillar and be a watch dog.

Senior editor and editorial director of Sakshi, K Ramachandra Murthy, stressed the need to promote healthy discussions in the society to ensure equal justice to the people. He said that no section of the people should be ignored or kept out of development. He wanted civil society to play active role in ensuring that development is for the majority of the people and protects the rights of the neglected sections.

Former minister Dokka Manikyavara Prasad, Acharya Nagarjuna University professor Swaroopa Rani and others spoke.

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