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RED SALUTE TO LONG MARCH OF PEASANTRY

THE long march organized from Nasik to Mumbai announcing gherao of the Maharashtra state secretariat under the leadership of the All India Kisan Sabha (AIKS) raising the demands of the peasantry including remunerative prices for agricultural products, waiving of all agricultural loans urgently, implementation of Forest Rights Act etc was a significant move which has once again brought the burning demands of the peasantry to the foreground. This long march is a revolutionary form of struggle developed during the 1960s or even earlier putting forward peasant and workers’ demands, which can be emulated in other places also to defeat the intensifying corporatization of the agrarian sector too under neo-liberal policies, leading the peasantry and agricultural workers to impoverishment forcing many among them to commit suicide. It is in this context, all peasant movements and the revolutionary forces as a whole extended support to it.

At the same time, the AIKS leadership as well as the political leadership of CPI(M) behind them have to address two central questions: Firstly, are they going to be satisfied by the assurances given by the state government or will they join with like-minded forces and launch struggles to realize these demands? Secondly, are they ready to make an introspection on the failure of the state governments of Bengal, Tripura in the past and Kerala today to fulfill these demands?

In this context, we should see the significance of the Second All India Conference of AIKKS which took place at the same time demanding, besides writing off of loans and better prices of agricultural products, rejection of corporatization of agriculture, protection of land-livelihood-environment, land to the tiller like basic demands of the down trodden sections of the peasantry including dalits, adivasis, agricultural workers etc. More long marches and Bhangar like movements are required to achieve these demands
TOWARDS the fag end of its rule, as part of fulfilling the commitment it had given to corporate masters, through a Labour Ministry Notification, comprador Modi regime has totally legalized ‘hire and fire’ in the entire industrial sector throughout India. If not resisted and defeated, this Notification will make the whole concept of permanent employment itself meaningless and casualisation and contractualisation of work shall become the accepted norm. Such unilateral termination of ‘fixed term employment’ and consequent complete informalization of jobs through corporate-bureaucratic route and without even consulting the Parliament especially when the latter is in Session is authoritarian and fascistic and not only a gross violation of the fundamental right to life but also against ILO Conventions to which India is also a Party.

Nowadays, at the behest of imperialist-corporate thugs, Modi has been working overtime to streamline country’s 44 different labour laws into just 4 codes to drag India also at par with the ‘ease of doing business’ prescriptions stipulated by World Bank and American think-tanks. The latest Notification by the Ministry of Labour should be viewed as part of this broader traitorous, anti-worker offensive of super-imposing unfettered corporate power over the Indian working class, the biggest contingent of international proletariat today.

The 500 million strong Indian working class, more than 90 percent of whom are still condemned as ‘informal’ being denied even basic democratic rights, with its glorious tradition of resisting similar onslaughts in the past, should come to the streets without any let up to effectively challenge and defeat this biggest-ever bomb attack on the workers. And it is high time that the working class of India should unite in struggle with all the toiling and all the oppressed masses of this vast country to expose and overthrow this anti-people and anti-national regime. 
OUR Party and its supporters are going to observe the 49th anniversary of the Party Day on 22nd April at a critical time in the history of our country. With the latest attack on the working class, Modi government, in the last year of its term, is further intensifying corporate – communal fascist onslaught on all toiling and oppressed masses in most reactionary forms. Under Brahminical RSS ideology, it is dividing and impoverishing the masses, spreading hate politics, intensifying neo-liberal plunder, unprecedentedly enriching the corporates and making corruption all pervasive.

While all non-BJP parties are vociferous in defeating it in 2019 elections, none of them are opposing the neo-liberal regime. Nor are they prepared to abandon communal-caste appeasement electoral approach. As far as the CPI(M) led ‘Left Front’ parties are concerned, in spite of debacles in Bengal and Tripura, they expose their social democratic bankruptcy by vehemently embracing neo-liberal policies in Kerala. As elsewhere in the world, situation is created when people’s opposition, their resistances are frustrated in the absence of a revolutionary alternative to stem this rot.

If the Naxalbari Uprising, the emergence of communist revolutionary forces and the formation of CPI(ML) took place in 1960s in a challenging crisis situation, today these challenges are many times more serious. While voting out BJP is an immediate task, the Marxist-Leninist forces should combine it with developing non-parliamentary struggles and parliamentary struggles complementary to it, with the perspective of strengthening independent communist assertion for building people’s alternative with an anti-capitalist manifesto, for all round democratization and sustainable paradigm of egalitarian development.

While observing the Party Day spiritedly, let us intensify our efforts to draft the People’s Manifesto according to concrete conditions in every state and launch mass political platforms to develop non-parliamentary and parliamentary struggles, and for coordinating them at all India level. At the same time, observe 22nd to 28th April as Bhangar Solidarity Week, with the determination to develop Bhangar like people’s resistance movements focusing on burning mass issues wherever possible. In such a spirited atmosphere let us advance towards our 11th Party Congress in November to decide on building the People’s Alternative to throw out corporate-communal fascist forces and to advance towards people’s democracy and socialism

EMPEROR XI JINPING

XI JINPING’S proposed elevation almost as the “Emperor of China” following the latest amendments to the Constitution, allowing more than two terms for the president and vice-president, is the logical culmination of the capitalist-road chartered by Deng Xiaoping almost three-and-a-half decades back. It is now reaching its most intensified stage of imperialist degeneration. By the turn of the first decade of the 21st century itself, China had become the second largest imperialist power run by one of the most powerful dictatorships of corporate finance capital under the aegis of a bureaucratic monopoly capitalism integrated with and camouflaged under the highly centralized party apparatus.

Lenin had interpreted imperialism as outright reactionary system. The counterrevolution unleashed by Deng& Co. following Mao’s death systematically demolishing the self-reliant and self-sufficient communes has now reached a critical stage of corporate capital’s extreme concentration, the political manifestation of which is the present outcome. In the absence of even a namesake bourgeois parliament, the concentration and centralization of finance capital under “Socialism with Chinese characteristics” has intensified the inherent contradictions to that level which is irresolvable in a situation of so called ‘collective leadership’. The ascendancy of Xi as unquestioned supreme leader of imperialist China together with the incorporation of his “Thought” in to the Party Program, according to the laws of motion of capital, is not driving China to a tranquil situation, but certainly to a new era of chaos and crisis
IN VIEW of the forthcoming state assembly elections and the general election due in 2019, the Modi government’s 2018 budget has taken on a cautious populist mask even while carrying forward its pro-corporate agenda intact. All the various extra-budgetary measures such as granting of 100 FDI in retail, real estate and a whole set of “ease of doing” initiatives already taken at the behest of foreign-corporate capital on the eve of the budget coupled with the promulgation of GST firmly under corporate control that has pulled almost 65 percent of the country’s tax regime out of the parliamentary budgeting process have this time yielded much flexibility to the government for resorting to a “populist” budget.

Various announcements such as increase in agricultural credit, increase in the target of providing free LPG connections to poor households, more toilets, minimum support price for crops, etc. are intended to cool down the fury of peasants and toiling masses that are rising up in large numbers all over the country. But all these are mere extensions of those unfulfilled promises announced in previous budgets and no budgetary outlay has been set for them. For instance, take the case of the so called “largest health care and social security system” worth Rs. 1.38 lakh crore announced in the budget. No allocation of funds has been earmarked for this, as it is just going to be an emulation of the American model “insurance raj” in the health care system and the funds set apart will be channeled in to the coffers of corporate insurance companies and with a view to achieve this even the state-owned insurance companies- National Insurance, United India Insurance and Oriental Insurance are going to merged before being privatized.

In addition to the privatization of Air India, the national air carrier already announced, the 2018-19 disinvestment is targeted at Rs. 80000 crores. 24 strategic and core PSUs are listed for this biggest-ever sell-out. And public sector banks which are in crisis on account of the continuous repudiation of corporate loans, are going to have budgetary a recap to lend additional Rs. 5 lakh crores, a further appeasement to corporate firms. The defense allocation this time is the biggest-ever—Rs. 3.05 lakh crore, an increase of 11.03 percent compared to the 7 percent hike made in the previous budget. And corporate income tax reduction of 25 percent announced in last year’s budget has been further extended to all those, whose annual income is up to Rs. 250 crores.

Even while keeping a populist gesture, the budget has nothing to deal with the rising prices of essential items including food. Even as petroleum taxes alone are yielding around Rs. 5 lakh crores to the coffers of the government, there is no mention on reducing the excise duty on petrol and diesel for reducing their market prices. Similarly, the budget is completely silent on the ever-mounting unemployment problem. Though Modi had announced the creation of two lakh crore jobs every year when he ascended the throne, nothing has been done to this day and there is no mention in the budget on this question. There are no initiatives for removing inequality, and those programs announced for marginalized sections are not at all backed by adequate budgetary allocation. All the schemes announced in education and other service sectors are intended for corporatization of them through backdoor.

It is an election-eve budget to hoodwink the people and at the same time subtly serving corporate interests.

We appeal to the workers, peasants and all toiling people to grasp the true essence of the measures announced in the budget and rise up in struggles for a basic alteration of the neoliberal policies and for replacing the same with a people- oriented development program. 
THE victory of BJP in the elections to Tripura, Nagaland and Meghalaya in the Northeast, in spite of the serious consequences of the four years of Modi rule like spiraling unemployment, price rise, impoverishment of increasing sections of people, devastation of peasantry, corruption etc, shows that the parties ranging from Congress to CPI(M) who were in power in these states proved themselves incapable of challenging and defeating the corporatization and communal fascist policies pursued by the BJP rule in a frenzied manner, as these parties have no better alternative to put forward. As a result, they failed to mobilize the masses against the ‘no holds barred’ policies and practices of BJP to win elections. These victories of Sangh Parivar have further intensified the great challenge before the people.

It is a naked fact that it is the neo-liberal policies initiated and carried forward by the Congress led parties, along with communal-caste appeasement policies and increasing corruption which paved the way for the advent of the ultra rightist BJP to power in the absence of any progressive alternative to replace it, helping it to impose the corporate fascist policies. In spite of it, neither the Congress nor other ruling class parties including the regional parties are prepared to re-think and to reverse these reactionary policies. On the contrary, wherever they are still in power, they also pursue the very same anti-people policies. In spite of the serious debacle suffered by it in West Bengal after its 34 years of continuous rule, even the CPI(M) and its Left Front also have no alternate model to put before the people. The CPI(M) pursued the neo-liberal model with its own interpretations in Tripura for last 25 years. The same policies are vigorously pursued in Kerala also. Against the rampaging campaign of BJP promising everything under the sun, along with its communalization of the middle class and alliance with tribal front, CPI(M) thought that its left phrase mongering and the un-corrupt image of its chief minister can win another team for it. It refused to put forward an anti-corporatization, anti-communal fascist development model and democratization as an alternative based on an independent communist assertion because of its social democratic character. It is repeatedly proved in history that a social democratic party which has abandoned the path of class struggle and social change cannot replace big capitalist-big landlord ruling class parties indefinitely, just by raising left jargons.

It will be too much to expect that in spite of the debacle in Tripura, neither those who call for a unity of all anti-BJP parties including Congress as the panacea to defeat BJP, nor those within CPI(M) who oppose electoral unity with Congress, just as a tactical move to serve a Kerala like situation, will be prepared to reverse their policy of parliamentary cretinism and get prepared to strive for building a people’s alternative against the ruling system. It is a pity that some of the communist revolutionary forces still have illusions about uniting with the CPI(M) led forces for fighting electoral struggles. Fighting such illusions, the revolutionary forces give primary emphasis for developing people’s struggles against all manifestations of corporate fascism like the Bhangar movement, and build mass political platform of struggling left and democratic forces to fight parliamentary struggles as complementary to them. The results of the elections in these states of Northeast, especially Tripura, underline the correctness of this stand. 
OBSERVING 23rd March, the martyrdom day of comrades Bhagat Singh, Sukhdev and Rajguru, along with upholding the martyrdom of all comrades who sacrificed everything for the national liberation and democratic revolution of our country, and advancing along the ideals chartered by Bhagat Singh to complete these tasks are more important than ever today when the country and people are ravaged by ever intensifying corporate fascism under ultra rightist communal fascist forces. Before his martyrdom Bhagat Singh had cautioned that if the Inquilab do not take place and if the political power is transferred from gora sahebs to kala sahebs the ideals of freedom struggle shall be betrayed. Asserting why he is an atheist, he emphasized for an egalitarian caste-less, secular society. But his ideals were betrayed and what he cautioned happened.

After the transfer of power, colonial India was turned in to a country under neo-colonial domination; from Keynesianism to neo-liberalism the neo-colonial plunder went on intensifying under the big capitalist, big landlord rule; and for imposing their political hegemony the political parties from Congress to reformists continued the ‘divide and rule’ policy, appeasing communal forces of all hues and utilizing the horrific caste system. During this process they tried to take over all leaders of renaissance and national liberation movements including Dr. Ambedkar and Bhagat Singh, while systematically diluting and betraying their ideals. As a result, conditions were created for the growth of communal forces to take over power, intensifying corporate fascist rule. It is a travesty of history that these very same communal fascist forces are also taking over and defaming the names of these very same leaders of renaissance and national liberation movements for advancing their policy of national betrayal and imperialist servitude.

The task of the revolutionary forces is to beat back these forces, uncompromisingly uphold and develop the ideals and values of the renaissance and national liberation movements according to present conditions, and intensify people’s upsurges in all fields, creating conditions for social change. Let us observe the 23rd March, martyrdom day with this perspective. 
AS the corporatization is speeded up at maddening pace by the Modi government along with the aggressive communal fascist and divisive attacks by the Sangh Parivar, how to defeat BJP has become the central focus of all present political discussions. As far as Congress and other ruling class parties are concerned, opposing communal fascism of BJP means replacing it with communal appeasement they were/are following wherever they are in power. On neo-liberal policies, they have no basic differences with BJP. So, while defeating BJP has become the central task, the targets of the left forces should be qualitatively different. While focusing on defeating BJP, they have to develop their tactical line with the perspective of linking the struggle for it with the throwing out of the neo-liberal policies and strengthening left assertion in all fields to advance towards people’s democracy and social justice.

It is in this context, the rejection of the Yechuri line, which advocates alliance with Congress to defeat BJP, by the CC meeting of the CPI(M) has become a matter of wide discussion at all levels. But the fact is that though there are differences between Yechuri and Karat lines on the question of an alliance with Congress in present situation, there are no basic differences between them on the evaluation of the reasons for the debacle of the Left Front in WB or on the LDF government in Kerala still pursuing the very same neo-liberal policies. Neither of them projects the need for an independent left assertion with the orientation of achieving people’s political power and an alternative development paradigm opposed to the imperialist led devastating development perspective. As a result, there is dissatisfaction among its membership which is getting manifested in different forms including large sections becoming inactive as seen in WB.

While this difference towards the electoral approach to be taken up is growing, it has affected adversely the growth of the non-parliamentary forms of struggle which are highly needed to expose and struggle against the anti-people policies of the Modi government. In spite of having differences on the tactics to be followed in dealing electoral struggles, both lines do not give significance to strengthen independent left assertion. As a result, as the decision to build left alternative by its last party congress remained only in paper, same is going to happen this time also, since the very same reformist ideological political line is in dominance.

It is in this context, the significance of the political line adopted by the CPI(ML) Red Star should be seen. It emphasizes the primary importance of developing and expanding Bhangar like people’s resistance struggles against the neo-liberal/corporatization policies. At the same time, it calls for developing a Mass Political Platform based on a people’s manifesto uniting like-minded parties, organizations, Bhangar like people’s movements, oppressed classes and sections like dalits, adivasis, women etc, ecological movements and anti-caste secular forces. It emphasizes on independent left assertion in all fields with a long term perspective. Only in this way the struggle against the corporate-communal fascist forces can be carried forward energetically, speeding up the defeat of the BJP rule.

Let us expose the reformist tactics of CPI(M) led forces and develop the politics of People’s Alternative at state level and all India level. 
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The Communist movement in India has a history of almost a century after the salvos of October Revolution in Russia brought Marxism-Leninism to the people of India who were engaged in the national liberation struggle against the British colonialists. It is a complex and chequered history.