ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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INDO-PAKISTAN RELATIONS-Appearance of Movement

the EZLN was more specific: "For the government it does not matter that we [the Indians] possess nothing, absolutely nothing, not a home, not land, not work, not education". In other words, the problem is not merely one of inequality, but also of poverty. And although the communique mentions home, work and education, too, a look at the recent history of Mexico suggests that it was the dispossession of their traditionally held land, by semi feudal landlords aligned with foreign-linked business interests, that has been the crucial factor behind the Indians' long-standing poverty. This dispossession got further entrenched during the latter half of this century, when powerful ranchers displaced the indigenous communities to turn fertile cropland into inefficient pasture land, primarily to feed the cities' growing demand for beef and to export meat to the US. The earliest revolt against this dispossession in this century was led by Emiliano Zapata, himself an Indian and a tenant farmer. After the uneasy calm of the next 50 years, more such uprisings followed in the 1970s. Not that these uprisings were in vain. Although Zapata was defeated, the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), which has been ruling Mexico since 1929 under different names and which came under the influence of reformers in 1930s, carried out one of Latin America's most far-reaching land reforms in that decade in which an estimated one-third of the rural population received

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