Alto Porvorim (Goa), Oct 14 (IANS) Noted activist Medha Patkar has said that BRICS has turned into a “Free Market Ploy” that serves the interest of “big capital” without any regard for “social justice and equity”.
Speaking at the opening plenary of People’s Forum on BRICS that began here on Thursday, Patkar said that BRICS had failed to challenge the hegemony of imperialist states and had done little to advance social justice and equity in these countries.
“In all these countries, private corporations are increasingly taking control of democratic institutions and overriding people’s participation in crucial decision-making processes,” she said.
Patkar said, “BRICS is no more interested in the annihilation of caste or in the welfare of its people. The question of gender equality and justice is not a priority for BRICS anymore.”
Referring to BRICS eighth summit in Goa, Patkar said, “Even if the governments of BRICS nations have started co-opting the language of the civil society and social movements during summits like these, they end up as just words and are never implemented once the summit is over.”
“It (BRICS) is fast turning into an institution that serves the interests of the elites in developing countries,” she added in a statement.
Expressing her views during the plenary that deliberated on the “Crises that People Face — What is BRICS’ Response?”, she sought to remind the world that despite being the largest democracy in the world, “India is also a sight where the poorest and the most marginalised people are continuing their struggle for social justice, dignity and identity”.
She accused India of keeping the people outside of the “decisions that are taken on their behalf for their development”.
The two-day forum began on Thursday at the Xavier’s Centre for Historical Research, here in Goa, with an aim to discuss how BRICS was increasingly aligning with capitalist and imperialists forces instead of challenging the imperialistic and hegemonic nature of institutions such as the World Bank and IMF.
Eminent social movement leaders from the BRICS region addressed the opening plenary, chaired by renowned women’s rights and environmentalist activist Norma Alvares.
Most of the speakers, who spoke at the event, the statement said, “emphasised on the need to build solidarities of communities in the BRICS countries and the need for the civil society in these countries to set a people’s agenda that can overcome the consumerist and destructive agendas of capital”.