Another World Newsletter #1


Dear readers,


This newsletter has the main purpose of informing you about the process and efforts towards the World Social Forum 2004, taking place in Mumbai, India. The first WSF was held in Porto Alegre, Brazil, in 2001 as a counter meeting to the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. Thousands of activists from the most diverse social movements and organisations met at WSF to discuss alternatives to neo-liberal globalisation, learn from each other, and to strengthen their struggle by networking and organising on shared grounds. People gathered to question the international forces that are moving the world in a direction we don’t agree with, where profit, not people and society, are at the centre of concern. The incredible success of this event indicated the need to provide a platform for alternative world-wide public opinion by creating annual WSFs.  India will host the next Forum, and this is an exciting opportunity to enrich the search for alternatives to social and economic injustice with the diversity of voices from Asian and African movements and civil societies, joining those of the rest of the world. The more plural and open-based this discussion becomes, the better. This newsletter therefore, encourages your participation in the WSF process. This Forum is a space to discuss what kind of world we want, and how to build it.  Please send us your comments, suggestions, and questions at or contact us by mail. Let’s join forces and make the WSF happen, because Another World is Possible!!


Table of contents


1. Organisational structure of the Indian Process………………………..2
2. WSF Programme and Methodology…………………………………….2

                        - Format and Themes    ...…………………..………………3

                        -Information on events and delegate registration…….......3

3. Brief Update of WSF 2004…………………………………………….….4

                        -Meetings and Registration Fee Table…………………......4

                        - Building towards WSF 2004…………………..……………5

4. Upcoming events and Announcements……  …………………………..7 
5. CONTACT US!……………………………………………………………..7

6. Email contact list for state processes……………………………………8


1. Structure of the Indian Process

      In this first issue of Another World Newsletter we want to introduce the organisational structure. The India General Council (IGC) is the decision- making body of the WSF India and is presently formed by more than 184 organisations and social movements, including those of women, dalits, adivasis, agricultural workers, working people, youth and students. The India Working Committee (IWC), constituted of 67 organisations nominated from  IGC, formulates policy guidelines. The India Organising Committee (IOC) executes IGC and IWC decisions. Each IOC member is in turn a part of 8 functional groups established to organise the WSF event. The Mumbai Organising Committee (MOC), is comprised of Mumbai-based organisations and is also represented in each of the functional groups.

      These committees and working groups are formed by activists and volunteers with different cultural, political, sectoral, and geographical backgrounds, that are coming together to make the WSF happen. The success of this event however, depends on the support and participation of grassroots organisations struggling to create a more just and sustainable world.

  “The Forum is an initiative of organisations and movements, and of networks and campaigns of world society... diversity, not size is its fundamental political mark”-International Secretariat, WSF.

There are many things left to be done, and the process is open for your participation! A great way to be part of the process leading to WSF is by sharing your ideas, perspectives, and experiences about your movement and struggle; and through solidarity contributions. 


2. WSF Programme and Methodology


      The WSF 2004 event in India will not limit itself to the large event in Mumbai, but will also seek to be part of a wider process of social mobilisation that involves large numbers from diverse sections. Such processes, in the spirit  the WSF, will be open, inclusive and flexible to build capabilities of local groups and movements. The language of dissent and resistance towards imperialist globalisation, communalism (religious sectarianism and fundamentalism), casteism, patriarchy and militarism will have to be informed by local idioms and forms.

WSF India has adopted as its principle focuses:

ØImperialist globalisation

ØMilitarism and peace

ØCasteism, racism, work and other descent based exclusions and discriminations.

ØCommunalism, religious fanaticism and sectarian violence


      Apart from the opening and closing public meetings and events, each day of the WSF 2004 will feature panel discussions, debates, conferences, meetings, testimonials, and approximately 200 workshops; along with cultural events, rallies, and marches at which members of people’s movements and civil societies will focus on strategies to build a more people-centered world. A special effort is being made to make all events as participatory and dialogic as possible.


Format and Themes

The programme format aims to provide a larger space for self-organised activities, at which participating organisations will formulate their own programmes.

Two large public meetings and conferences, on every morning and evening about the chore themes of WSF, which are as follows:

·        Militarisation, War and Peace

·        Globalisation, Economic and Social Security

·        Sustainable Development: Land, Water and Food Sovereignty

·        Religious, Ethnic, Linguistic Exclusion and Oppression

·        Patriarchy and Gender

·        Labour and the World of Work

·        Media Culture and Knowledge.


WSF will also have panel discussions on:

§         Political Parties and Social Movements

§         Globalisation and its Alternatives

§         Globalisation, Global Governance and the Nation State.


These themes relate to issues that affect society in general and the forum will be attended by workers, peasants, indigenous people, dalits, the self-employed, minorities including sexual minorities, migrants and immigrants from around India and from around the world to discuss these issues.

While proposing events, participating organisations would be encouraged to go beyond academic discussions on the impact of globalisation by offering strategies of resistance and concrete alternatives to the various forms of capitalist globalisation and other forms of oppression.

A Youth Forum, which will run alongside the main event, is expected to draw 10,000 participants. In addition to exploring the WSF’s central themes, the Youth Forum will also consider issues of child rights, sustainable development, health and education, and employment.

Alternative modes of cultural expression are also a part of the WSF process. WSF 2004 will include participation from leading artists, musicians, singers, painters, poets, writers and filmmakers that will capture the cultural responses to the onslaught of globalisation, the politics of exclusion, sectarian violence, and war. 

In the run-up to the January event, a multiple-venue film festival will be held between October and December 2003. This festival will feature short films from across the globe that highlight the main WSF themes.


Events registration for WSF 2004 is now open! Proposals for event registration can be made only by organisations (not individuals). No registration or venue charges will be sought from organisations, but solidarity contributions will be greatly appreciated in order to organize the event.

- All proposals are acceptable except those not in accordance with the Charter of Principles.

- Preliminary evaluation of proposals will be carried during October in order to organise activities, and the WSF website will display all registrations, so that groups can self-negotiate and construct unified programmes, to avoid duplications. Participants will define their own unique log-in password and ID to allow online modifications of their proposals.

·Delegate registration has started! The registration forms are available upon request or online at These can be submitted online or through regular mail. The forms are now also available in French and Spanish.



3. Brief Update of WSF 2004

We are organizing the WSF 2004 event on the basis of meetings and discussions that are open to representatives of organisations so long as they agree to the WSF Charter of Principles. The aim is to maintain the India Process of consultation and participation as broad-based as possible. The Charter of Principles, which originated from previous WSFs, can be accessed at our website


Highlights of two key meetings in the past month are as follows:


India Process Meeting, Ranchi, Jharkhand, 18-20 July, 2003

            An important practical issue that was discussed at this meeting, attended by the Functional Groups, IOC, and IWC was registration fees. It was agreed that these should be dependent on the participant’s country of origin. This was based on the common sentiment that it would not be fair to charge the same registration fee to all participants because currency values are significantly different.








There will be a ThreeTier delegate registration fee for WSF 2004.

Tier I - Registration fee is US$ 100 for delegates from the following countries:














Korea, Republic of


United States of America


New Zealand






United Kingdom



Tier II - Registration fees is US$ 25 for delegates from:

The rest of Europe

Latin America


Asia (outside of SAARC)



Tier III - Registration fees is US$ 2 or INR 100 for delegates from:







Sri Lanka






Organisations registering 50 or more delegates will pay 25% of the individual registration fee per delegate [i.e., Tier I: US$ 25; Tier II US$ 6.25 and Tier III US$ 0.50 or INR 25].


Organisations can seek a reduction of the fees, if unable to pay, by applying to the India Organising Committee at:


Also at this meeting, names for potential speakers at WSF organized events were proposed. These include Nelson Mandela, Noam Chomsky, Nadine Gardiner, Hanan Ashrafi, Asma Jehangir, Aung Sung Su Kyi, Rigoberta  Manchu, Gunther Grass, Aijaz Ahmad, Susan Sarandon, Edward Said, and others.


International Council Meeting, Miami, USA, 23–26 June, 2003

The search for alternatives to neo-liberal globalisation should be emphasized and promoted at WSF. Participants will be encouraged to propose, discuss, and formulate alternatives for action in regards to their topics. This is in the hope that mobilisation and networking will be benefited. 

A conscious effort will be made to avoid duplications of the topics and themes of the seminars and workshops, and to minimize hierarchy between the conferences/panels and the seminar/workshops. To avoid duplications, collaboration between different organisations that propose similar events will be promoted. The IC committee on Content will assist the programme committee in India. The meeting of Asian groups during the IC meeting in Miami emphasized that greater Asian participation in the programme content and methodology could be promoted through greater participation of Asian members in the IC committee on content, which will assist the Programme Committee of the WSF 2004.


Building towards WSF 2004


The mobilisation process for WSF 2004 intends to promote an ongoing exchange of ideas, thoughts and information to bring about another world which is just and sustainable.


State processes.

         The following update is based on information available to us regarding a certain number of states. However, we would like to report in more detail about mobilisation efforts happening all across the country. More collective knowledge and information, including a complete list of contact people at the state chapters, can greatly improve networking, organizing, and participation at the regional and national levels. This is extremely important to build the WSF process and foster dialogue upon which concrete alternative actions can occur. Thus, we encourage the state chapters to please send us updates on their current and upcoming events, activities, and proceedings (i.e. art exhibits, rallies, perspectives on local issues, concerns, etc). We have included at the end of this issue, a list of contacts for state chapters to whom suggestions, comments, and questions should be directed. If there are any corrections, and/or additions to make, please let us know.





Update on States processes:

The states of Assam, Bihar, Chattisgarh, Himachal Pradesh, Jharkand, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Orissa, Tamil Nadu, Tripura, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, and West Bengal have formed committees and/or elected district representatives to coordinate and implement mobilisation strategies at the local level. Moreover, these chapters are constructing a more ample and diverse network of local organisations and individuals. In Kerala, the state Social Forum will be held in Trissur, December 20th -24th, 2003. Also in December, the Tamil Nadu Social Forum is scheduled to occur. In Orissa, a traveling photo exhibition will commence on October 2nd addressing the themes of poverty and hunger. Members of the Karnataka Social Forum have assembled a list of contact people in the state’s districts and have decided to hold District Social Forums. The state of Uttar Pradesh considers the Jatha for Peace, Unity, and Sovereignty, a top priority in their mobilisation activities. A plan outlining the Jatha (“jatha”: moving group), was presented by Shri Ghalib from the IWC at the UP Coordination Committee meeting on july 1st, 2003.


Jatha for Peace, Unity, and Sovereignty, organised by the All India People’s Science Network (AIPSN) and Bharatiya Jan Vigyan Samiti (BJVS) will initiate on September 8th, and end on October 2nd. During this event, more than 60 jathas travelling across the country will address issues such as health, education, and social equality, and propose alternatives of action regarding these issues. For more information, write to:


**Please let us know more about WSF processes in your state and we’ll keep everyone posted!


Sectoral Mobilisation.

Mobilisation is also developing according to sectoral interests. Women’s groups have already met more than thrice while similar consultations are being held by dalit Group’s, workers and Trade Unions, adivasis, youth and others. We hope to provide you with more information on these in our subsequent issues of the newsletter.


International Mobilisation

At a recent ILO meeting in Geneva, the IOC member Com. H. Mahadevan explained the WSF-India process and solicited the participation of all the trade unions present. He also addressed the Greek Social Forum and explained in detail about the WSF 2004. Feedback from him indicates considerable enthusiasm has been generated in the international labour movement regarding the WSF 2004.

Various presentations on the India process have been made by WSF representative Leni, at the preparatory meetings for the European Social Forum held in Italy, and also at regional conferences, such as that organized by the Tuscany government and the NGO ARCI, which mainly focused on youth issues.


Press Conference Announcing WSF 2004 in Mumbai, September 3rd, 2003

The process that set sail from the heart of Latin America in Brazil, formally dropped anchor in Mumbai with the formal announcement of WSF 2004 through a Press Conference at Mumbai on 3rd September at the Yashwant Rao Chavan auditorium.

 A panel representing the various parts of sectoral, regional and progressive political interests that have come together through the WSF process addressed members of the press. WR Varada Rajan chaired the session and the panellists included Kamal Mitra Chenoy, J Vincent, Nila Bhagawat, Gajanan Khatu, Indira Jaisingh, and the Youth forum representative Dinesh Suna. A delegation of trade unionists visiting Pakistan would address a press conference organised by the Pakistan Social Forum.

Press Conferences in Brazil and Ecuador were scheduled to take place simultaneously and announce the America’s Social Forum (ASF) in Quito, Ecuador, and invite people to India for WSF2004. Regional press conferences in India will also occur as part of the State level mobilisation process.

We have prepared an informational press-kit along with a brief video presentation of the WSF process in Brazil and in India. A CD of this video, and a PowerPoint presentation on the programme of WSF 2004 are available for anyone interested in using it any media related event.


4. Upcoming events and Announcements


Here are some of the upcoming events. For more detailed information on location and time, please contact the WSF office.


·Sept 8th-Oct 5th -Nationwide Jatha for Peace, Unity and Sovereignty.

·22nd September -  Gujarat Social Forum meeting

· 24 and 25th September - Asian Solidarity Group meeting at Chennai.

· 26th September - IWC & IOC meeting at Chennai.

· 27th September - IGC meeting at Chennai.

·October 2nd – Traveling photo exhibition in Orissa begins

·20th -24th December –Kerala Social Forum

·Jan 14th and15th -Pre-WSF Global People’s Health Movement/ People’s Health Assembly


· Venue. The WSF 2004 will be held at NESCO Grounds in Mumbai, January 16-21, 2004. 




WSF India Office

Bhupesh Gupta Bhawan, 3rd Floor

Leningrad Chowk

85 Sayani Road


Mumbai 400 025


Telephone: +91 22 2421 6249 and +91 22 2421 6251

Fax: +91 22 24216382






Email Contact for State Processes




Andhra Pradesh

Meena Menon

J Vincent

P K Murthy

Vijay Pratap


Prabhat Kumar

Bella Das

Vijay Pratap

P K Murthy

A D Golandaz


Anil Mishra



Ashim Roy

A D Golandaz

S Lomte


Amit Sengupta

Vijay Pratap

Jammu and Kashmir

Anshu Chauhan


Meena Menon

Vijay Pratap


Kashinath Chatterjee


M.P. Pasameswasan

Madhya Pradesh

Amit Sengupta

Vijay Pratap

P K Murthy



Lalit Babar

A D Golandaz

S Lomte

North East

Devabrata Sharma

Tapan Sharma

Soni Thengamon

Com. Vardarajan



Bibhu Prasad Tripathy


Tamil Nadu


U. P.

Amit Sengupta

Dr. C S Varma


Soni Thengamon

Vijay Pratap


Vijay Pratap

Rakesh Gaiaula


West Bengal

Sumit Chowdhury

Dola Sen

P K Murthy

Com. Vardarajan