Following a post on Auroville Intranet (Auronet) written by the group of residents who claim to be the Working Committee thus by using the ID of the Working Committee (as since a few days the Intranet has been taken over by the Secretary of the Auroville Foundation office).
See Timeline on this event https://standforaurovilleunity.com/announcement/may-20th-2022/
The same who have been dismissed from the Working Committee by a decision of the Resident Assembly have created their own Working Committee and nominated arbitrarily new members. They continue to communicate as if they were entitled to do so, supported by the Secretary of the Auroville Foundation Office. Meanwhile the Foundation office have filed a FIR against some members of the Working Committee of the Resident Assembly.
See timeline on the event. https://standforaurovilleunity.com/announcement/may-21th-2022-2/
Post by M. on May 24, 2022
This is in reply to your post “Working Update #2”. Please find below some observations, followed by questions to which I hope answers can be provided, in order to bring clarity to the situation.
Regarding the update of the RoR:
A member of the Residents’ Assembly (A.) worked on updating the RoR twice since 2005, jointly with the Office of the Secretary to the Governing Board. This was also done in 2019/2020 when Auroville ID cards were issued. Can you please explain on which basis you say that “the RoR was last updated in 2005”?
All Aurovilians, after having been ‘Confirmed’ by the Entry Service (aka the Admission Committee), are invited to meet the Secretary (or as case may be the Under-Secretary) in order to sign the B-Form and be added to the RoR. This implies that the RoR would have been regularly updated. I have myself gone through this process when I returned to Auroville in 2018. Do you imply that none of the Secretaries we have had since 2005 undertook this task properly? If so, this would be a grave accusation and I hope it is substantiated.
As mentioned earlier, I remember widespread announcements in 2019 about getting Auroville Identity Cards, a project that was jointly held by the Office of the Secretary to the Governing Board and the Working Committee of the Residents’ Assembly. I also remember that a form needed to be filled in order to get this Identity Card. I myself applied for it, and subsequently got mine. I hope that applicants were first verified in the Register of Residents before any Auroville Identity Card was issued – if not, on what basis were these Identity Cards granted?
In my understanding, and based on the fact that Aurovilians are added to the RoR when they fill in the B-Form (see point 2; I cannot imagine that all our Secretaries since 2005 didn’t diligently undertake their duties as per the Act), the gaps that may be existing in the RoR would rather be linked to the people who left Auroville or passed away, and have yet to be removed the RoR. If this is indeed the case:
a.I do not understand on which basis this can be linked to a suspension of decision-making processes of the Residents’ Assembly, especially when our decision-making process uses the regularly-updated Master List (maintained by the Residents’ Service) rather than the RoR to vet whether one is eligible to vote. Please explain how, in your view, the validity of RA decisions and the update of the RoR can be seen as linked.
b.Considering the systems we have in place I would think that, in order to update the RoR with people who are no longer Aurovilians because they left a certain number of years ago, the first and most effective step would be to contact the Residents’ Service and compare the RoR with the updated Master List. By comparing both lists, one could first identify the gaps and work more efficiently from there. Has this step been taken and if not, why?
c.Another option I see, given the extensive information asked for on the form, is that the true purpose of this ‘update’ of the RoR is to collect additional information on Aurovilians. If this is the case, then: (1) on which basis is this additional information being collected; (2) why isn’t this campaign announced as such (a collection of additional information); and (3) how is this related to the validity of decisions of the Residents’ Assembly?
As I have signed my B-Form and have obtained an Auroville Identity Card in 2019, I assume that I am well entered into the Register of Residents and that filling in the new form is not required by me. Nevertheless, replies to the above questions would be most welcome.
Regarding the Visa situation:
Thank you for sharing these numbers, although it is hard to accurately gauge their meaning as no time period is specified; you say that “so far … 554 [applicants] have received their 5 year visa as recommended by the Working Committee”, but when were these applications made and when were they granted? It would be more useful for Aurovilians to know how many Visas / Letters of Recommendation (LoR) were granted since December 2021, and how many are pending. You have stated that no visas have been withheld, however you have yet to mention two serious cases, Omid and Margherita, who are currently stuck abroad without a LoR or a valid visa, and are unable to return to Auroville although they had settled here and have no provisions outside Auroville. There are probably other residents in similar situations.
Furthermore, it seems to me that the numbers you are providing fail to address at least two categories of residents:
1.great number of LoRs have been pending for many months, and without these LoRs a resident cannot apply for a new Visa, or the extension of an existing Visa. The number of pending cases was mentioned in the latest letter from the Auroville International Board. Why aren’t you mentioning this data?
2.There are many residents whose application processes have been stalled with the FRRO since months. I can be a good case study, as my application for a Residential Permit has been in process for nearly six months, which is abnormally long. Many others are in a similar situation. Isn’t this data that you should also mention?
Since your group of residents have taken the initiative to inquire into the matter of visas, I hope that you are also looking into the two categories of residents mentioned above and contributing actively to improving this dire situation. Please share with us which steps you are taking to improve the visa situation of Aurovilians who are currently stuck abroad, or facing difficulties with the stalling of their LoRs or their FRRO applications.
I believe that accuracy is important if we are to rebuild some trust between different parts of the community. Any unclarity can only create more tension in the current situation. Although I have faith that we are all exactly where we are meant to be, I also aspire and pray for more peace and collaboration in the times ahead.
To understand the conflict: https://standforaurovilleunity.com/blog/aims-ideals/the-conflict-in-auroville/