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Soni Sori to kick off Bastar tiranga yatra tomorrow

Rajkumar Soni | Updated on: 8 August 2016, 15:25 IST

Tribal activist and Aam Aadmi Party leader Soni Sori's Bastar Kranti Yatra will kick off in Dantewada on 9 August.

The 200-km yatra, which will start from the Ambedkar statue in Dantewada town, will culminate in Gompad in Konta, where Sori and the yatra participants plan to hoist the tricolour on 15 August, Independence Day.

The move attains significance as the CPI-Maoist-controlled area marks Independence Day as a black day. The region refrains from celebrating independence as the Maoists have declared the area as being a "liberated zone" that is "not under India"

Sori is expected to be joined by the JNU student leader Kanhaiya Kumar, Rohith Vemula's mother Radhika Vemula and Mohammed Akhlaq's wife Ikraman. The yatra will also see participation from bodies like the People's Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL), the CPI (M-L), Dantewada Journalists Committee, tribal activists, activists of the Jan Mukti Morcha and members of the Raigarh Mahila Manch and Bastar Legal Aid, to name a few.

Also Read: Will Maoists red flag Soni Sori's Tiranga Yatra in Bastar?

The Action Group For National Integrity (AGNI) - the latest anti-Naxal front in Bastar - has backed the yatra. "If the Soni Sori group wants to unfurl the Tiranga in Gompad, home of Maoists, how can we step forward to stop them," Ashok Misra, convenor of AGNI, said.

Also Read: Anti-Naxal front AGNI's top leader found convicted in a theft case

However, Sanket Thakur, AAP convenor for Chattisgarh and one of the organisers of the yatra, has said that the support from AGNI was a pretense and alleged that the organisation was spreading rumours.

"We think about everything before acting. When Soni has undergone a change of heart then how can we oppose her unfurling the national flag," Anand Mohan Mishra, ex Bar Association president said.

The yatra is expected to pass through 150 villages to highlight the atrocities committed against the tribal residents. During the journey, the participants of the yatra are expected to install statues of Ambedkar and tribal icon Birsa Munda.

First published: 8 August 2016, 15:25 IST