It was last day of conference and protest day in Mehndiganj and we wanted to cover it as much as we could. As we reached near the conference place, I saw more than 10 cops sitting there. I had seen the video of protest in the year 2006 when Police bate protesters hard. I was a bit sacred to see them but I knew they couldn’t do it again because everything was covered on camera and Police had to answer the court for beating people.
We wanted to interview few people who were from out of Varanasi. Amanda was interested in activists from Kaladera, Rajasthan. There is a Coke plant in Kaladera also and have created same problem as Mehndiganj. We interviewed a activist named Mr. Kudi ji who runs movement against Coke in Kaladera. He was very nice and honest person. He told us about the problem in Kaladera. He told us that they had very good quality water before Coke but now it is very bad. It has sour taste and bad smell. TERI (Tata Energy Research Institute) have also suggested Coke to leave Kaladera.
He had two other activists with him who were wearing Rajasthani turban. I had heard a lot about length of Rajasthani turban. I wanted to see someone wearing it. I had heard that it could be made of up to 15 meters long cloth. I told them to tie their turban. I was shocked to see the length, it was 11 meters long. Amanda and me couldn’t believe it.
After interviewing him, we interviewed a guy from a laboratory based in Chandauli district that had done some research at Coke’s rain water harvesting sites. He told us that he went to several rain water harvesting sites of Coke but no one was working properly. He said that most of the water filter compounds were stuffed with bricks. Coke says that they are trying to balance the ground water by rain water harvesting but he said that if there is no rain how Coke could do it. I agree with him. We have less rain since past 5 years. His ideas were different. He thinks that we should try to bring rain, which is possible by only planting huge number of trees.