Dear Prime Minister Manmohan Singh:
We are individuals and groups writing from across Asia to express our deep concern on developments regarding the Narmada Bachao Andolan (NBA) and its fight for justice for the thousands displaced by the Sardar Sarovar Dam.

We learn that activists, including Ms. Medha Patkar, Mr. Jamsingh Nargave and Mr. Bhagwati Patidam, have been on an indefinite fast for 2 weeks already to protest the gross negligence of your Government in providing timely and appropriate rehabilitation to those displaced by the project.  It is indeed regretful that in response, your administration sent in a posse of over 400 police to forcibly arrest Ms. Patkar and Mr. Nargave. Media reports indicate that several peaceful activists of the NBA were beaten up. This violent and unjust response to peaceful and democratic protests is a violation of the democratic traditions of India and is a blot on your Government.
It is well documented that the Sardar Sarovar Project has displaced tens of thousands of indigenous peoples and farmers, very few of who have been fairly compensated and rehabilitated.  The move to further increase the dam height is completely unwarranted when families who were promised rehabilitation (and have still to receive it) are sitting for justice in the streets of Delhi. Independent reports estimate that thousands of people spread over 200 villages in the project-affected areas still await basic rehabilitation. In this context it is not surprising that two of your predecessors, Mr. V. P. Singh and Mr. I. K. Gujral, have called for dam construction to be halted until the rehabilitation issue is adequately addressed. 
Many of us have been deeply inspired by the non-violent resistance traditions of the NBA, which are rooted in the unique Indian concept of ‘satyagraha.’ The struggle by Ms. Patkar and her colleagues ask for nothing more from your Government than a reaffirmation of the Indian Constitution’s commitment to democracy and justice.
Echoing the NBA’s demands, we call upon your Government to immediately undertake a thorough assessment of the Sardar Sarovar Project on economic, social, environmental and developmental parameters. Until such an assessment, with the active participation of affected communities, is done we believe that a standstill in project construction is a just and reasonable demand. 
 We will remain in constant touch with our friends in India and will continue to help them in anyway we can in their fight for justice from your Government.
1. Dr. Vineeta Gupta, Association for India’s Development, Washington DC
2. Grainne Ryder, Policy Director, Probe International, Canada
3. Nancy C. Alexander, Director, Citizens’ Network on Essential Services (CNES)
4. Focus on the Global South – Thailand and Philippines