On a cold Saturday morning of 15th November 2014 in New York City, with temperatures in lower 40s, well over 120 people assembled at the Katherine Hepburn Park in front of the UN building. Men, Women and young children coming from all corners of United States, representing various organizations and forums, irrespective of their religious convictions joined this protest. This was to lend their unequivocal support in display of solidarity with the bereaved Jadhav family of Javkhede village (Ahmednagar district in Maharashtra State of India) and exhort the administration to serve speedy justice and punish the criminals.
Friends, the success of conducting this peaceful protest march and sit-in in front of the UN Headquarters, New York, is indeed a monumental and historic landmark in our struggle.
Large sized photographs of all the three victims of Jadhav family (Sanjay the father, Jayshree the mother and Sunil, their young son) were setup at the protest site. The protest started by a short opening introduction by Milind Awasarmol and elaborated by Rajkumar Kamble. This was followed by Buddha Vandana and observance of 2 minutes of silence in remembrance of the deceased.
The march began with a candle vigil, while numerous banners and placards were upheld by the protesters. The messages displayed on these were voicing anti-caste, anti-atrocity and pro human rights sentiments.
After the candle vigil and during the sit-in, almost all protesters came forward to speak and expressed their anguish over the incident and raised their demand for justice and intervention of the UN for addressing caste based atrocities. This was covered by the attending media at the protest.
AANA handed over a Sum of USD 300 to the bereaved old parents of deceased Sanjay Jadhav.