Tag Archives: Deepak Dengle

Kabir Kala Manch activists surrender, deny having any links with maoists #KKM


<kkm4 pic courtesy- indian exppress -Ramesh Gaichor, Sagar Gorkhe and their wives Jyoti Jagtap and Rupali Jadhav outside Oval Maidan Tuesday. Ganesh Shirsekar

The Hindu, May 7, 2013

In a theatrical turn of events which included, singing revolutionary songs in the office of Maharashtra’s Home minister RR Patil after being asked for the same by him, posing with him for photographs and waiting for more than three hours for the officers from Maharashtra Anti Terrorism Squad (ATS) to come and arrest, two alleged Maoists on Tuesday surrendered in Mumbai.

Four members of Kabir Kala Manch (KKM), a cultural group alleged to be having links with Maoists, on Tuesday afternoon staged Satyagraha near Mantralaya in South Mumbai. They are being accused as Maoists and absconders by the police under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA).

“We are artists. We perform for people and we sing songs which highlight the plight of people and of those who fight against the corrupt system. We are being falsely implicated in cases and wrongly framed as Maoists. We have done nothing but to sing songs,” said Ramesh Gaichor, one of the members of KKM.

All four, Rupali Jadhav, Hyoti Jagtap, Sagar Gorkhe and Ramesh Gaichor were accompanied by members of KKM Defence Committee, which included film-maker Anand Patwardhan, Adv Prakash Ambedkar, grandson of Dr. BR Ambedkar and president of Bharip Bahujan Mahasangh and Prakash Reddy of Communist Party of India (CPI).Ramesh Gaichor (28) and Sagar Gorkhe (27) along with their wives Jyoti Jagtap (26) and Rupali Jadhav (27) came to Oval Maidan at 3 pm.For two hours, they sang protest songs and gave out audio CDs to the crowd near the statue of B R Ambedkar. The group, along with Prakash Reddy of CPI, film maker Anand Patwardhan and Bharipa Bahujan Mahasabha‘s Prakash Ambedkar, went to Patil’s office at Mantralaya at 5 pm.https://kabirkalamanch.wordpress.com/wp-admin/post.php?post=467&action=edit&message=10#category-add

Ms. Jagtap, another member of KKM said that the four are staging satyagraha because they want their name to be cleared from the ATS wanted list. “We want to sing once again, but want to do it openly. We want all the accusations against us to be cleared because we are not Maoists,” she said.

Ms. Jadhav alleged that ATS teams have been visiting her house and threatening her mother. “They told her that I was killed in encounter in Gadchiroli. I see no reason in torturing our families. We are artists and not criminals,” she said.

To the surprise of all, none of the officials from state ATS turned up to arrest the alleged Maoists, two of whom are named wanted in the charge sheet filed in the court.

All four were then taken to the office of the Mr. Patil, where he was presented with an audio CD of group’s songs after which he even asked them to sing one of the songs. Mr. Patil even called all four of them for a group photograph. It was only after the home minister of Maharashtra informed the ATS chief Rakesh Maria over the telephone, that the ATS came to know about the satyagraha of ‘wanted’ Maoists, inside the administrative headquarter of Maharashtra.

The ATS team arrived at the office of Mr. Patil at 6 PM, after which it was informed that the custody of two females is not required and then can go home.

“We demand that all members of the KKM who have voluntarily come forward to face interrogation, must be granted bail speedily. There is no logic to detaining people who give themselves up, as they are obviously not going to run away,” said the statement issued by KKM Defence Committee.

Kabir Kala Manch : The Sound of Silence


By Neerja Dasani

10 October, 2012

The longer one lives in a representative democracy the more it seems that it isn’t quite what the civics textbooks make it out to be – you know the whole, ‘of the people, by the people, for the people’ stuff? For instance, when faced with the prospect of corrupt business practitioners causing huge losses to the state, pocketing politicians eager to facilitate that process or a music band protesting the effect of this nexus on the people, who is the government most likely to punish? It’s a bit sad how obvious the answer is, and sadder still, how resigned we are to this situation, no matter which part of the world we find ourselves in.

In the past few months there has been extensive media coverage of the Pussy Riot story in which three members of a feminist rock group were handed a two-year jail term for performing an anti-Putin song inside a Russian Orthodox Cathedral. The case has become a global talking point, including in India where many people have spoken out in support of the group and their message of freedom from a ‘repressive corporate political system’. But how many of us have heard of Kabir Kala Manch (KKM)?

Over a year ago the members of this Pune-based cultural group, found themselves being given a new identity by the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad – the one-size-fits-all term for anyone that makes the state squirm – Naxalism. Two members, Deepak Dengle and Sidharth Bhonsle were arrested while others including singer-poets Sheetal Sathe, Sagar Gorkhe and Sachin Male were forced to go underground. Even their families were persecuted since, as we all know, ‘sedition’ is genetic.

There seems to be a guarded silence around this case as far as the media is concerned – no breaking news, no SMS campaigns and no ‘expert’ panel discussions. The few people, who have come across this story, might not have done so, if it weren’t for Anand Patwardhan‘s hard-hitting documentary, ‘Jai Bhim Comrade’.

Ironically, one of the central motifs of the film is the legacy of Dalit protest music, which calls for a unified struggle against caste oppression, labour exploitation and inequality and is a vehicle for the reclamation of the dignity of those who continue to be denied it. KKM – featured prominently in the film – are moulded out of this same indignant material; they’re armed with assertively wry lyrics and haunting voices, which more than meets the requirements for an ‘anti-national’ label.

This list of ‘branded’ citizens is now growing at an alarming rate. Arun Ferreira, Jeetan Marandi, Debolina Chakraborty, Shamim Modi, Seema Azad, Vishwavijay, Prashant Rahi, Sudhir Dhawale, Vernon Gonsalves, Abhay Sahoo, Soni Sori etc., etc. – the names of people implicated by the state (many of whom are still in jail) just flitter in and out of our consciousness from time to time, disconnected from the issues they are fighting for, lost in the barrage of infotainment – our attention completely under arrest. We barely notice that the administration at Idinthakarai, Tamil Nadu, has set a chilling national record: the first time in independent India that 8000 cases of sedition have been filed at a single police station.

Aren’t these the freedom fighters of our times? By forcing into our collective mindscape a culture of dialogue, accountability and transparency, these activists are the real nation-builders. That the corporate state repeatedly tries to stifle their voices is no surprise, it’s a global phenomenon. What is unusual is the silence of those of us who can afford to speak out.

Perhaps we’ve all become too used to being mere consumers of democracy. Like the compromised poets in Benjamin Zephaniah‘s poem ‘Bought and Sold’; we’ve got a price tag for everything: elections, college seats, hospital beds, marital alliances, directive principles and even freedom. Our primary culture has become that of consumption and so we no longer know what it means to participate in the production of democracy.

But what if each of us decided to make our own little contribution to the creation of our shared cultures, to voice our common concerns, to make some noise? As Deepak Dengle asks in his poem from prison, “Who all will you arrest?/There are hundreds of birds of freedom, who all will you arrest?/We’ll take the cage and fly away and you won’t even know it” (Rough translation from the Hindi original)

Maybe it’s time to unplug those headphones and reconnect with the reality around us. If we all choose to exercise the freedom these activists are fighting for by singing their songs, reciting their poetry, or sharing their ideas with our colleagues at work, in schools and colleges, or on the bus back home, who can stop us? After all we’re all free to sing ‘Shiela Ki Jawani’, right?

So let’s make a racket and bring down this wall of silence. If a sound democracy is what we’re after, we’re going to have to tune ourselves in.

(For more information on the Kabir Kala Defence Committee you can log onto:https://kabirkalamanch.wordpress.com/ )


विद्रोह हा प्रत्येकाचा जन्मसिद्ध हक्क आहे – डॉ. गिरीश कर्नाड




कबीर कला मंच च्या सीडीचे प्रकाशन

मुंबई / अजेयकुमार जाधव

आज प्रत्येक स्वतंत्र नागरिकांना विद्रोह माझा जन्मसिद्ध हक्क आहे हे बोलण्याचा अधिकार आहे असे मत सुप्रसिद्ध नाट्य सिनेकलावंत डॉ. गिरीश कर्नाड यांनी व्यक्त केले.कबीर कला मंचच्या गाण्यांच्या सीडीचे प्रकाशन कर्नाड यांच्या हस्ते करण्यात आले त्यावेळी टे बोलत होते.

कोणत्याही कलाकारांच्या विरोधात अन्याय झाल्यास त्याचा निषेध करायलाच हवा.कबीर काल मंच हा दलित सांस्कृतिक ग्रुप आहे. यामधील कलाकार हे आपला अनुभव कथन करत होते यामुळे त्यांना देशाचे शत्रू समजून जेल मध्ये टाकले जाते. अशा लोकाना जेल मध्ये टाकणे चुकीचे आहे. समाजात ही भीती पसरवली जात असून पोलीसच ही भीती निर्माण करतात असे कर्नाड म्हणाले.

मावोइस्ट व नक्सालीस्ट याचे नेमके नियम काय आहेत असा प्रश्न उपस्थित करून जर या लोकांची पुस्तके घरी ठेवणे, वाचणे हे चुकीचे असेल तर माझ्या घरात मावोइस्ट व नक्सालीस्टची पुस्तके आहेत या पुस्तकांचे मी वाचन करतो म्हणून मी सुद्धा मावोइस्ट व नक्सालीस्ट आहे असे कर्नाड म्हणाले. विनायक सेन व असीम त्रिवेदी यांच्या बाबत सरकार वेगवेगळी भूमिका घेते याचा निषेध व्यक्त करून विद्रोही लेखक सुधीर धवळे यांना सोडवण्यासाठी जे काय करता येईल टे करून धवळे यांना सोडवण्यासाठी प्रयत्न करू असे कर्नाड म्हणाले.यावेळी डॉली ठाकूर, माजी पोलीस अधिकारी सुधाकर सुराडकर, कॉम्रेड प्रकाश रेड्डी उपस्थित होते.

The Best Songs and Poems of Kabir Kala Manch #mustread



Kamayani Bali Mahabal 


Advocate Kamayani Bali Mahabal, a lawyer and activist selects the five best of Kabir Kala Manch’s songs and poems:

1. Sheetal Sathe sings about her mother in MAJHI MAYE. Before she starts to sing, she says: ‘Everyone wants women to join protests against discrimination, but they dont want their own wives to’.

Watch the song on: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r7JRWE64CEw

2. Deepak Dengle writes his his poem KISS KISS KO KAID KAROGEY. This heart-wrenching poem was penned in the jail.

जेल से कविता: किस किस को कैद करोगे?

किस किस को कैद करोगे?
लाखों हैं मुक्ति के पंछी, कैद करोगे किसको
लेकर पिंजरा उड़ जाएंगे खबर न होगी तुझको
इस पिंजरे की सलाखों का लोहा हमने ही निकाला है
ये लोहा पिघलाने हमने अपना खून उबाला है
लोहा लोहे को पहचानेगा, फिर क्या होगा समझो
लेकर पिंजरा उड़ जाएंगे खबर न होगी तुझको
इस पिंजरे की दीवारों में हमने पसीना बहाया है
ईंट बनाने, सीमेंट बनाने मिट्टी को भी भिगोया है
मिट्टी कभी गद्दार न होगी, क्या बतलायें तुझको
लेकर पिंजरा उड़ जाएंगे खबर न होगी तुझको
इस पिंजरे के पुर्जे पुर्जे हमें बताते अपने किस्से
कितने मज़दूर दफन हुए हैं इस पिंजरे के नींव के नीचे
वो मज़दूर हैं साथ हमारे, कौन रोकेगा हमको
लेकर पिंजरा उड़ जाएंगे खबर न होगी तुझको
कैद में डालो, फांसी लगा दो, हंटर से चमड़ी भी निकालो
न्याय के रस्ते चल पड़े हैं, बाँध लगा लो, कांटे बिछा लो
कितना ज़ुल्म करेगा ज़ालिम, थक जाना है तुझको
लेकर पिंजरा उड़ जाएंगे खबर न होगी तुझको

3. Sheetal Sathe sings a song penned by her-EK MAITRA RAANGADYA. Another Sheetal Sathe song which gives me goose bumps has been translated by Ashutosh, a member of the Kabir Kala Manch.


Ek Maitra Raangadya
The nausea is served in the plate , the untouchable nausea
The disgust is  growing in the belly, the untouchable disgust
its there even in  buds of flowers, its there even in  sweet songs
that man should drink man’s blood ,
which is the land where this happens
which is the land of this hellish nausea
So it goes , my  dear friend, so it goes in the villages
so it goes my friend  from the harsh lands,  so it goes in remote places
Listen to this my friend , listen to the story of humans
Hear out the torment my friend, the torment of our lands
there is but one blood in humans
there is but one
The bones are made the same
the bones are but one
Juts like the water
ust like the flowers
ust like the wind
this body , natural,  is the same
Then how come is this difference?
how come this division by caste
then how come this division ?
how come human are valued differently
by this yardstick of caste
So it goes , my dear friend, so it goes in the villages
so it goes my friend from the harsh lands, so it goes in remote places
Listen to this my friend , listen to the story of humans
Hear out the torment my friend, the torment of our lands
and if we  are  the same humans
then why are we ouside the village?
The outsider cleans up the waste
then why do we have to  bow and beg
“curtsy oh my lord, I am passing through
Cursty oh my  master , I bow to you
curtsy oh my lord, I am passing through

Cursty oh my master , I bow to you”
Our  shadow is untouchable , our touch nauseating
this  disgust in you faces, this shit  in your thoughts
this nausea of your beliefs
is hanging from our necks , from our  settlements necks
So it goes , my dear friend, so it goes in the with Peshawai
so it goes my friend , so it goes with feudal lords
Listen to this my friend , listen to the story of brahminical Peshwai
Hear out the torment my friend, the torment of the untouchables
You burned the mothers on  the pyres
you  burnt her anger to ashes
you sacrificed her on the altar of the caste restrictions
told her ” go and become a Sati”
A living body, with the dead one, was made to die
what kind of religion you protected
by killing and cutting down living people ?
So it goes , my dear friend, so goes the story of Sati’s
so it goes my friend , so it goes with lives of my mothers
Listen to this my friend , listen to the story of Sati
Hear out the torment my friend, the torment of the Mother
You killed  our Shambuk, ourTuka you send heavenwards
on  our heart you struck ,  wounds  after wounds
and soe one was killed for water
someone for the temple
and someone was killed for the voice
and someone for the touch
So it goes , my dear friend, so goes the story Khairlainji
so it goes even now my friend , so goes the story Khairlainji
Listen to this my friend , listen to this ongoing story
Hear out the torment my friend, the torment of the Ramabai
But now you mass murderers
its time for you to stop
we are coming out ,
with our  dignity as our flag and standard
we are ready to fight , to figght back  at each step
those who sell their dignity , would no longer stand with us
So it goes , my dear friend, so it goes with the fight
so it goes even now my friend , so goes with teh true fight
Listen to this my friend , listen to this story of true struggle
come with me my friend from harsh lands, lets strat the decisive struggle of life and death

Listen to the song: http://soundcloud.com/kractivist/ek-maitra-rangdya-singer-and

4. Another KKM song which I find stirring; in true Ambedkar form is:

We are sweeping aside the temples,
we are sweeping them aside
my Bhima has reaffirmed the Buddha
the legion of 330 millon gods
cant find a single one, we find it a bit odd
in short thats what Bhima has found
We are sweeping aside the temples,
we are sweeping them aside
my Bhima has reaffirmed the Buddha
This so called incarnate holy man, that so called incarnate holy woman
incarnations, miracles , their claims of divination
its gullible’s congregation
We are sweeping aside the temples,
we are sweeping them aside
my Bhima has reaffirmed the Buddha
Sun signs moon signs, astrological chart
Mars and Saturn are acting smart
and these priests are versed in the cheating art
So We are sweeping aside the temples here

we are sweeping them aside
my Bhima has reaffirmed the Buddha
Pandhari, Shirdi-Tirupati, all are snares
The trustees of temples are now billionaires
its a buisness , its one all right
all Matha are making black money white
So We are sweeping aside the temples here

we are sweeping them aside
my Bhima has reaffirmed the Buddha
they made the religion , the opium of masses
poltics of religion, the gangs of asses
these gangs arecommitting genocide
behind the religions , they all hide
So We are sweeping aside the temples here

we are sweeping them aside
my Bhima has reaffirmed the Buddha
Let s kick this stupidity away
lets kick them away from us
lets take the scientific thoughts
and keep our heads about us
So We are sweeping aside the temples here

we are sweeping them aside
my Bhima has reaffirmed the Buddha

5. Finally there is VAAT PAHWAA says Deepak Dengle. It is a song of hope and struggle. Below is the Marathi poem by him from jail, which echos the same sentiments. The English translation is by Umesh Soman

Wait and watch, I come!
I shall come because there’s justice…
Sans justice can this world exist?
I am coming, my time has to come …

The song of the downtrodden has to be sung!
My coming has a meaning…
Its the selfishness of sharing a morsel with those who starve…
I shall come… But not alone…
My intention is not small…
Wait and watch!

Wait and watch
It is small paths that turn into roads…
Thousands of trickling streams,
Turn into a powerful river!
My coming will neither be simple nor tame…
A stormy wind or thunder it shall be!
Like the waves of a tumultous sea with my arms spread;
That love of yours like a mighty mountain;
I want to embrace…
You just wait and watch!

Here are two journalistic articles about Kabir Kala Manch; and why two members are in prison.



Petition for Kabir Kala Manch:http://petitions.halabol.com/2013/04/05/ensure-safety-sheetal-sathe-and-sachin-mali-kkm

Click here to read about the press conference and the release of Kabir Kala Manch’s music CD.

Kamyani Bali Mahabal is a lawyer-activist and a member of the Kabir Kala Manch Defence Committee.

Listen to song penned by Deepak Dengle, sung by Sagar Gorkhe -झोपड़ पट्टी रे


Kabir Kala Manch Members, have been born and bought up in slums, and this song reverberates their experience and understanding on the issue of  labour, poverty and politics.

Poet- Deepak Dengle

Singer- Sagar Gorkhe

झोपड़ पट्टी रे -२
हे अँगरेज़ आया मशीन लाया
मिल बनाया –झोपड़ पट्टी
चमार, गुनकर ,लोहार ,मेह्कार
सब समाया — झोपड़  पट्टी

सारी  दुनिया को ऊंचा उठा के
मजदूर रह लिया —झोपड़  पट्टी

झोपड़ पट्टी रे -२
बाम्बू , चटाई ,पत्र ,लकड़ी ,ऊपर प्लास्टिक
बन गयी झोपड़ी
रेलवे लाइन , बाजू  में वाइन
कैसे भी तो ढक गयी खोपड़ी
अपनी भाषा , कल्चर बनईके
बढ़ती  चल रही ,– झोपड़  पट्टी
झोपड़ पट्टी रे -२

सब है  दादा , सब है  भाई
लफड़ा, झगडा , यह मार कुटाई
दारू, गांजा , पनी मास्टर
भूखे बच्चे , रोती लुघाई
घर घर मान्य देसी शहर में
डूबती चल रही झोपड़ पट्टी

कामगार और किसानों के दम पर
आज़ादी के उड़े कबूतर
वोह राजा  के आया  काला
टूटा वोह सपनों का मंज़र
पांच  सालों में चुना लगा गए
देखती रह गयी झोपड़ पट्टी

झोपड़ पट्टी रे -२


Kabir Kala Manch members sing a slum dweller song