NFTV : Kerala : Article – By Vijoo Krishnan
On 22 March 2016, RSS goons burnt down the AKG Memorial Library and Cultural Centre at Thalookkara in Malappuram district, Kerala. The library, with over 6000 books and other materials was completely destroyed in the fire. A spontaneous Hartal was observed in the region in protest against the vandalism. The cowardly Hindutva forces who have launched a countrywide assault on reason shamelessly resorted to burning of books under cover of darkness. On the day when the people were paying tributes to Comrade A K Gopalan (AKG), legendary Communist leader and the first Leader of Opposition in Parliament on his death anniversary, the communal-fascist forces burnt down a library in his name.
The goons of the Sangh Parivar thought that burning down the library would help them advance their agenda of muzzling ideas and destroying thought. But they were grossly mistaken. Instead this grisly attack gave rise to a steely resolve among the people to resist the assault on reason by the forces of hatred. The insult to the memory of one of Kerala’s most loved mass leaders and leader of the downtrodden was not forgotten. A beautiful resistance was built through the “Each One Give One” campaign.
It evoked a massive, unprecedented response. There arose a worldwide effort in which people from all walks of life came forward to replace the destroyed 6,000 books with more than 20,000 books, and other equipment. Generous contributions have also ensured a new building in its place that is bound to emerge as a centre of resistance.
There were book collection drives all over Kerala, in various cities in India including Delhi, Mumbai and Bangalore, and even abroad. Numerous writers, artists, political activists, students, youth and others joined in the effort. Vehicles carrying books from all over Kerala reached Thalookkara. The activists who arrived with the books were given a warm reception by the people of Thalookkara.
The RSS received a major setback as the people unitedly stood up to defeat their agenda. The resistance offered by Thalookkara will be a harbinger of more powerful political and ideological battles against all that the communal-fascists represent.
The beautiful resistance against the burning down of the AKG Memorial Library and Cultural Centre by Sangh Parivar goons is inspiring. It has resulted not just in contribution of thousands of books and an expanded, better equipped library with support of people from India and abroad. Salute the people of Thalookkara and users of social media who initiated the campaign and spontaneously built a resistance rarely seen before.
Contribution of well-wishers in Delhi reached Ernakulam today and will reach Thalookkara soon right in time for the inauguration awaited by one and all. Thankful to all who came out wholeheartedly to support this initiative.