War cry at Mumbai Social Forum

Thousands of anti-globalisation activists have declared war on big business at the fourth World Social Forum underway in India's commercial capital of Mumbai.

    More than 100,000 activists are attending the Social Forum

    On the second day of the meet, activists from South Korea joined Indian farmers, American volunteers and Afghan women to sing, dance and denounce multinational companies.

    By conservative estimates, more than 100,000 activists have gathered in the bustling city from across the world to raise their voices against big businesses.

    "Nestle, Coca Cola quit our countries. Give us our rights," Jose Bove, a French sheep farmer told a cheering crowd packed in an auditorium in the city's northeastern suburb.

    Strident support

    Nobel laureates Shirin Ebadi and Joseph Stiglitz also joined the chorus, throwing in their lot with the raucous activists.

    "Nestle, Coca Cola quit our countries. Give us our rights"

    Jose Bove
    Anti-globalisation activist

    Bove, best remembered for demolishing a half-built McDonald's outlet in France four years ago, said global firms producing packaged food and beverages should be shunned and urged that agriculture be taken out of the framework of the World Trade Organisation (WTO).

    "WTO has to get out of agriculture. Its policies are threatening our future," he said.

    It is the first time that the Social Forum is being hosted outside Brazil and Mumbai seemed to be living up to the occasion.

    Designed as a counterweight to the World Economic Forum, the Social Forum has become the platform for people who believe globalisation hurts developing countries.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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