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World Social Forum opens in Mumbai today
16 gen 2004
The World Social Forum opened today in Mumbai,India.
Mumbai, the commercial capital of India, is a city of 15 million people on the Arabian Sea on the west cost of India.
Several active contributors to the Michigan IMC are currently in India for the World Social Forum and will be posting regular updates.

Visit India IMC for full coverage of the WSF.

Additional coverage can be found on official WSF website

There are about 80,000 observers and delegates from all over India, Nepal, Bhutan, Korea, Africa as well as Europe and the Americas.

What is most striking about this forum compared to those in Porto Alegre is the change in composition. The people are very dark; the city is poorer, filled with millions who live in very small dilapidated shacks. They average income is around $400/year. Some people live under canvas strung over bamboo.

I saw hundreds of cows stabled in the city and farming as well.

The ocean is too polluted to swim in safely.

There are a lots of rural and country side workers organizations here as well as workers organizations from all over southeast Asia. Tamiland rural workers federation, the fisherpeoples world federation. There is a large delegation from South Korea, including a large anti-war group.

There are lots of anti-war and anti-Bush posters and slogans.

There is also a struggle against casteism. "Cast off Caste!" is the slogan of a Dalit group.

There are organizations of women in struggle against myriad forms of oppression they face: from capitalists, from patriarchal society, as sex workers. All these struggles are represented here.

There is lots of drumming and lots of dancing. All the cultures here use drums and other percussion instruments to accompany dancing. You can here drums and chanting all over the place. In particular, there were a group of women who danced with bows and arrows.

More tomorrow.
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