Azadi Bachao Andolan

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World Bank -  IMF : Quit India (an open memorandum) 

New Delhi
17th April 2000

Press Release

Branding them as agents of MNCs, the protesters assembled at the Lodhi Road Offices of the IMF and the World Bank, demanding them to quit India. The rally under the auspices of Azadi Bachao Andolan expressed its solidarity with the protesters at Washington and claim that the hidden agenda and tactics of these institutions have become clear to the people of the South.

Andolan claims that there is no justification to repay the foreign debt,

It claims that each year poor countries are paying 85 billion dollars more as interest repayment etc. than what they receive as a loan. And then political leaders and bureaucrats of the developing countries have been pressurised and even bribed to devalue their currency and sell out their public assets.  An open memorandum (enclosed) was handed over at the two offices.

Speaking on the occasion, senior Gandhian leader, Jagganathan ji narrated the plight of the fishermen uprooted due to prawn culture.  Thaneshwar, a representative of the construction labourers’ organisation told about the proposed winding up of national load construction nigam and the plight of the workers at Hindustan Steel Company.  Umravati of Jagriti Mahila Samiti narrated the illegal demolitions of the clusters of the poor in Delhi.  Swami Agnivesh highlighted the threat to culture due to the process of globalization.  Jiten Kohi and his group presented a skit and poems making the rally more interesting.  There were participants from Lokayan, NAPM, Navdanya and Chetnalaya.

V.P. Srivastava
Delhi Unit


(an open memorandum) 

We the people of India are here to declare that the real face, intentions, the hidden agenda and tactics of yours to loot and exploit have all become crystal clear to the people of the South – the people whose needs, interests and aspirations have so ruthlessly and ashamedly been suppressed under the perfidious terminology of growth, development, participation, empowerment etc. by you.  Your role as agents of monstrous corporations, representing the rich of the developed world is now evident to the human rights activists, environmentalists, women groups, peasants and workers throughout the world, including those in rich countries, who join hands today to demand you to wind up.  For survival of humanity on the earth, your exit along with the WTO is indispensable.

In the entire history of IMF, in which it gave short-term support to 70-80 countries in the event of their BOP crises, with the exception of South Korea in 70s and India in 80s, no country of the South ever came out of the trouble. IMF only contributed to aggravate the crisis.  In sub-Sahara Africa it resulted into the death of millions of children year after year.

Since 1985, the net lending by the world bank to the developing countries is negative, precipitating their debt crisis. The countries overburdened by the foreign debt are forced to open their market, then to devalue their currency and finally sell their assets to the MNCs of the developed world.  Going beyond its charter, the IMF is campaigning for free capital flow and financial integration.  The world bank with its projects on education is attempting to enslave the mind of the young.  The family system is threatened, the way AIDS awareness is being imparted through the world bank-assisted health  projects.

These policies lead to greater inequality in society. In 1999-2000, 0.05% of the population earned in the stock market Rs. 4,00,000 crore while this was the income earned in entire Agriculture, on which 67% of the population depends for livelihood. These policies are accentuating  regional disparities in India.

The employment potential of the new investments proposed after 1991 is low which is resulting in growing unemployment in the economy. The employment generated per crore of investment proposed after 1991 is 1/5 of that which took place in the organized sector before 1991. The total net additional employment generated in the organized sector in India is about 2 million between 1990 and 1998 while the annual increase in the work force has been around 6 million. Most big companies and specially the MNCs have been retrenching workers since 1991. The environment has suffered a decline with the state showing less sensitivity to the kind of industries coming into the country. The growth rate in food production between 1990-91 and 1998-99 has dropped below the population growth rate. This is going to have an effect on the food security of the country which affects the poor the most.  The size of the black economy has grown from 35% of GDP in 1990-91 to 40% of GDP in 1995-96. The number of scams has increased exponentially since 1990-91 and the amount of money involved in each scam has grown sharply. The budgetary crisis is forcing the state to retreat from its obligations to those who are marginalized in society: the poor, the old, women and children.

Considering the above facts, the package of New Policies initiated in India since 1991 at the instructions of  the World Bank and the IMF, 97% of the population has suffered an economic decline.  Is it NOT enough for you to leave ??

  V.P. Srivastava
Convenor, Delhi Unit

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