Vimalakka, or Arunodaya Vimala, has released a new song that celebrates the beauty, the diversity and the importance of the flora and fauna of the Nallamalla area in southern India. This land is currently under threat of uranium mining.
The song is more than a celebration though. It is a protest. As Vimalakka explains in a recent interview the song follows a campaign already in process to save the Nallamalla land from uranium mining.
In the song, titled Bathukamma, Vimalakka sings:
“Nallamala Tangedu pulo bhagya nivo Bathukamma vo! Adivitalli paravashinche atalammavo, nemali natyanivo, dunkutunna jalapatam sangitamo samara nadamo! Uranium tavvutanante oppanantimo, pratigatana tappadantimo!”
which translates to:
“Oh mother of life, the gift of Nallamala’s Tangedu flower.. who cheers with ecstasy for the peacock’s dance, the music of waterfalls, and the songs of resistance. We don’t agree for Uranium mining… We say, resistance is inevitable.”
Armaan Yadav is a rapper and poet from India who recently released the song Saffron Ablaze which covers the rising fascism in India and oppression of free speech.
“Over the last few years, India has been experiencing extremely violent acts, often motivated by religion and backed politically by certain groups of people in power. There has been a rise of fascism in the country, backed by the active censorship of voices of dissent– a vital force that keeps democracies in check. This track is an attempt to speak up against that. After all, the only way to maintain the right to free speech is to speak freely. Please note that just because I’m condemning the actions of a select few in this very short track does not mean that other political groups differ significantly. I will continue to actively combat what I feel is wrong, through words, not violence. True patriotism finds itself in the critique of the way of things, not in blind nationalism and mass hysteria. Thank you for supporting my music so far, I hope you continue to do so.”
Kodaikanal is a small city in India that sits 2000 m above sea level in forest hills. In 2001 a Unilever thermometer factory shut down after it became clear they were dumping broken thermometers filled with mercury within Kodaikanal.
After years of struggle between activists and Unilever a young artist by the name of Sofia Ashraf wrote lyrics to a music video that called Unilever out on there lack of actions and furthermore would go on to gather over 4 million views.
Unfortunately, to this day, the factory ground is still contaminated with mercury so activists have gathered to make a new video which states that they still care, they are still there and they still won’t step down until Unilever cleans the the mess they left behind. For this sequel T M Krishna and Amrit Rao joined the production of the highly catchy fusion music video.
The campaign asks you to participate by asking Unilever CEO Paul Polman to commit to a world-class cleanup of Kodaikanal – http://bit.ly/2tEfT51 or give a missed call on +91 7338730702 . In another video Sofia Ashraf explains the case thoroughly and highlights some of the errors Polman has made in defending Unilever’s actions, or rather, inactions.
Support our project
If you would like to support the Shouts project then we can continue to cover global protest music, update the webpage functionality and offer more in depth interviews with socially conscious musicians from around the globe.
If you would like to participate we would be very grateful and we promise to continue providing you with fresh, protest music voices!