Minutes of meeting to discuss organizing an All Indian Social Forum Event in Hyderabad on the theme of ‘Dignity, Diversity and Democracy’ Meeting organized on the 9th July 2016

Participants
Over 40 people attended representing several civil society organizations from across the Hyderabad. List Attached of Participants in Annexure I

Agenda
Preparation for Organizing All India Thematic Forum in accordance with the earlier meeting conducted to deliberate on the same.

Background
Representatives of several civil society organizations met in Yugantar on 6th June and 16th June and 1st July , 2016 in which a background on the World Social Forum- What is it?, How was it formed and its importance was discussed. Dates for the proposed event on the finalized themes “Dignity, Diversity and Democracy” were fixed and various working committees were formed. It was decided to organize the event on July 30th and 31st in Hyderabad. Five committees were formed with a team and a convener to lead each of them. An organizing committee which was an open to all one was formed with the all the existing members who attended the meeting.
Below are the updates presented  and decisions taken in the meeting
Logistics Committee – Convener – K Sajaya
The venue for the forum has been finalized and is below.
Opening Plenary on 31 July @ RTC Kalyana Mandapam, Baghlingampalli; Hyderabad @ 10 am

Workshops and other events: Dr. B R AMBEDKAR COLLEGE, BAGHLINGAMPALLI,

Closing Plenary on People's Movements on 1st August 2.30pm : Sundariya Vigyana Kendra, Baghlingampalli

There were discussions regarding the venue for the cultural programmes since there isn’t a big auditorium where performances can be showcased. In the open ground people can gather around and have smaller performaces but a stage cannot be built for the same.

Accommodation: The logistics committee will check the possibility of organizing accommodation at Montfort Social Institute (MSI) and Don Bosco were consulted for accommodation. Members present from the MSI confirmed that up to 70 people can be accommodated at MSI including rooms are dormitory style accommodations. The accommodation only for the speakers will be funded for the event. The attendees of the event will have to pay for their stay.

The logistics committee will also provide a list of hotels from around the area which could cater to three broad level of income groups that would be attending the event. This list will be updated on the website to allow the information to be shared with general public.

The question of availability of Internet at the various venues was raised. It was decided that a temporary internet connection should be got for the event. Book stalls and Organic food stalls will also be invited to set up at the event. The corridors at the venue can be used for setting up the stalls.

The committee confirmed that on Sunday the 31st July there is no hindrance to conduct self-managed activities, however on Monday the 1st of Aug, since the Dr. B R Ambedkar College will be working, the committee suggested that we should organise speakers who can address student of the college for their exposure.

Therefore the number of activities that will be conducted on Monday will be lesser in number. Since the people who come to the social forum people come with their drums, costumes etc, and there is no way to control it.

The map of the Dr B R Ambedkar college was discussed showing the possible location of various activities, cultural performances etc. It was suggested that some of the cultural programs maybe initiated on 30th July itself. However it was concluded that the cultural events will continue to be at the end each day’s session and it was collectively agreed upon by the organizing committee members present. A march can be organized on Monday from the College to SVK and police can be informed about the same.

The committee also iterated the importance of approaching volunteers immediately. The event will need many volunteers, up to 100, for the event and a few volunteers helping the organizing committee and the secretariat.

The sources for volunteers for the event were discussed. The members present from Aman Vedika said that they will provide 15 volunteers. Other suggestions considered for implementation are: 1. seniors from Bharat Scouts and Guides make good volunteers. 2. NSS can also provide volunteers. It was decided that the volunteers for event need to be identified as soon as possible and the volunteer training will be held on 20th July at the Law College at Basheerbagh. The students from Ambedkar College and Scouts and Guides can also attend the training session.

Program Committee – Convener – Rama Melkote
While the broad programme is fixed, the appeal to the organizations to register for parallel sessions is undertaken. Several organisations such as Amanvedika, MSI etc expressed interest to register parallel sessions immediately. The organizations have to pay INR 5000 for registering for parallel sessions.
However, since the payment gateway of the website is not up yet, we could not register. Therefore, we are accepting registrations via mail until the website is up.

Plenary:  The first inaugural plenary will comprise of student leaders from various universities from across the country that have led movements and struggles for various reasons. Several leaders such as Kanhaiya Kumar, Shehla Rashid, Chintu Kumari from JNU, Harishankar from FTII, Richa Singh from Allahabad University, Sudhanya from Jadavpur, Dontha Prashanth from HCU , Ambedkar Periyar Group, and others have been contacted. Some have responded positively and have confirmed while some confirmations are pending.

The second plenary will comprise of speakers from the people’s movement, the program committee is going to finalize them on Monday, 11th July in consultation with the All India group.

General Discussion: The committee also suggested that the event will be a no plastic zero waste event. The strategy for how this will be achieved will be created by 20th July. It was decided however it will be clearly mentioned on the website that it will be a green event.

Program Suggestions:

A list of suggestive topics for the self managed activities was prepared by the program committee which was read out to the participants of the meeting. This is indicative but not limited to list of topics for the self managed activities. This list will also go up on the registration page of the website.

The suggestions include - urbanism, hand loom workers, unions struggles, recent terrorists activities, peace education, terrorism, caste based discrimination and social exclusion. A candle march was also suggested in the memory of Rohit Vemula in the evening.

 

Media and Communication committee – Convener – Yadagiri

The convener confirmed that 2 teams need to be formed which will go to various TV Channels and News agencies and meet the editors. The committee will also arrange for a media room at the venue which will be reserved for media persons to keep their equipment. Press conferences will be arranged after each plenary.

It was discussed that media partnerships can be explored; however this was strongly opposed as the media partnerships usually end up in the media agencies over advertise at the venue.

After this the website was shown to the members present at the meeting. It was suggested that for the self managed activities the organizations should update a small write up on the activity which will be displayed on the website to make it more lively.

Donations can be made by individuals in the following denominations INR 200, 500, 1000. Organizations will have to pay 5000 for the self managed activities and the registration fees for individuals to be set at INR 100. The Charter of Principles from the WSF 2016 website will be added to the registration pages. The user has to accept the charter before successfully registering.

It was discussed that the merchandise such as caps, bags and badges with a schedule printout will be given to the persons who have registered. The Logistics team will decide and get back to communications team to organize the printing of the merchandize.

There is availability of slots where organizations can plug into the WSF 2016, Montreal, sessions if they are interested. The link below contains more information: http://openfsm.net/projects/extensionfsm2016/extension16-telecentre-acti...

Mobilisation committee – Convener – Anjaneyulu

The committee suggested that a wide reach out to the local civil society groups showed be initiated and teams should go meet them personally. The digital communication via sms and email is already initiated and will continue at regular intervals.

The mobilization for the self managed activities will also begin with immediate effect. It was discussed that in every state we need people to mobilize and this process of dissemination of information is very important. We should also encourage people to oerganize workshops together. Each organization we reach out to should take sector wise responsibility of mobilization across the country.

All the committees are to conduct their individual meetings on Monday, 11th July 2016.

Finance Committee – Convener – Sashi Kumar

The tickets of each of the speakers need to be sponsored by organizations. Each participating organization needs to contribute INR 5000 towards the tickets along with individual contributions of INR 1000.

It was discussed to create a small funding proposal in order to raise funds for the event. Options of asking funds from institutions, political parties and CSR contributions were accepted by the members present and also exploring possibilities of getting free food from hotels.

Cultural Committee – Convener – Ambika

Some of the suggestions brought to notice during this meeting:

  • Gaddar
  • Turkish music / instrumental performer
  • A standup comedian in staff college who agreed to perform in English and Hindi
  • A Dalit theatre group has agreed to perform
  • Bheem drums
  • Suggestion: involve The Little Theatre
  • Mini Film Festival showcasing documentaries
  • Young women performers from Goa – yet to confirm participation
  • HCU Theatre group
  • Goreti Venkanna

Conclusion:
The meeting was concluded with a note that the secretariat will now commence writing a newsletter at regular intervals and share with the all India group to update everyone on the happenings of the organizing committee. The next meeting date has been set to Saturday 23rd July 2016 and the participants have been urged to spread the word and help in raising funds for the event.

 

The World Social Forum (WSF) is the largest gathering of civil society to find solutions to the problems of our time. The WSF brings together in each of its edition tens of thousands of participants to more than a thousand activities (workshops, conferences, artistic performances …)

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  • All India Thematic Social Forum
    Secretariat Yugantar
    3-4-142/6, Barkatpura
    Hyderabad, Telangana, 500027
    India
  • +91 40 23449193
  • info@wsfindia.org
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