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Seed Caravan organized from 11 to 16 of October

Written By Freedam to the nation resettlement of IDPs on Tuesday, November 18, 2014 | 1:07 AM



 Caravan for seed and food Sovereignty -2014

The formation of an island wide Seed Caravan for Food Sovereignty campaign stems from the need to address core issues related to the food system in Sri Lanka around the themes of Justice, Equality and Regeneration. As a consecutive step of the Seed Rights Campaign which started successfully in June, 2014 the Seed Caravan for Food Sovereignty campaign conducted  around the aim of mobilizing farmers, consumers and civil society groups for a fair and sustainable food system in Sri Lanka.
The campaign  scheduled in line with the commemoration of World Food Week. The campaign was spearheaded by the Movement for the Protection of Seed Rights which will be led by MONLAR with  farmers, women, plantation workers, fisheries and other civil society organizations based across the country (October 11th – 16th). The journey of the caravans started from Murukundi in the Northern Province in the island and  concluded in Colombo after covering a total 25 cities.In the same time small scale fisheries and farmers from Southern continue the parallel caravan from Hambanthota to Colombo covering the other ten cities.They started it at Hambanthota on 14 th October.   

Objectives
1. Farmers are the sole owners of the seeds and food resources for food production. Campaign to ensure it.
2. Influencing policy makers to develop and implement favorable policies to protect the rights of small scale farmers, to promote regenerative agricultural practices and to ensure the sustainable livelihoods
3. Ensure the right of access to nutritious, adequate, secured and culturally fit foods for all.





During 6 days of the Caravan more than 4000 Farmers, fisheries, labors and plantation workers from North, South and East joined their hands for a common struggle for people’s right for their resources and food. They exchanged seeds among themselves to oppose the proposed seed privatization act.
Awareness programs were held in more than 35 cities on the importance of promoting Eco-friendly food production systems and the rights of people to have safe and nutritious food.

Policy proposals formulated by social movements were handed over to Provincial authorities in around 10 Provincial councils. Participants held number of protests campaigns against land grabbing, water and seed privatization and agro chemical industry which causes severe threats to the health of the people and Eco systems.

The caravan was also a great platform for the people in all ethnic groups to join for a common struggle on their rights where they opposed the militarization and corporatization of natural resources which violates rights of the people for their resources and livelihoods. Northern provincial council minister of agriculture, minister of education and Tamil communities from Northern Province participated in the inauguration of Caravan in Kilinochchi showing solidarity among all ethnic groups against violation of their rights. Rev. Mahamankawadawa Piyarathena Thero, convener of the National Movement for Protection of Seeds distributed indigenous seed from south among the communities in North to mark the solidarity.

On 16th, Caravan joined with trade unions, civil society organizations and other social movements to mark the World Food Day. They marched to the Colombo Fort with displaying placards and distributing leaflets. Set of proposals for agrarian reforms to ensure fair and sustainable food system, which has been discussed and endorsed during the caravan, has been submitted to the government after the rally
11 October 2014 At Murukandi Kovil-Killinochchiya

Shared the traditional seeds among the farmers


Plant the tree 


conducted street drama


 March to Vauniya Town


Madawachchiya  town



 

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