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Gangotri is melting: Will Indians respond with world's largest 'XR'?

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11.10.2019

“Get out of bed my friend
The tea is getting cold;
To the breach my comrades
The enemy’s getting bold;
The legends are exhausted
Every story has been told;
Look up into the void and see
Space and time unrolled…”
— From Al Sikander to As Likander by Bachchoo

Movements take time before they become mass and then they take time to take effect. Indian Independence, first mooted to grant us a democracy in the late eighteenth century, became a mass movement and came to flawed fruiting fifty or so years later.

From the observations of scientists and the world’s experience of storms, unusual temperatures, floods and furious arguments between climate-change activists and deniers, a mass movement has grown, at least in the West, demanding that “something be done”.

This week the centres of London and other UK cities have seen hundreds of thousands of marchers and campers, protesting in the movement called Extinction Rebellion or XR. In London they’ve stopped traffic to and in the centre, have chained themselves to the bottoms of lorries and cars stalled in the middle of roads and bridges to defy the police to drag them to their deaths and invaded the airports to prevent flights from landing or taking off.

Hundreds of them have been arrested by the police who are, unlike the police forces of Hong Kong, been benign but firm. Every day one witnesses on TV, or in person if one has ventured out to join the XR rebels, men and women, young and old being dragged by a couple........

© The Asian Age