ELECTION SCENE: CPI(ML) RED STAR CAMPAIGNS FOR "DEFEAT BJP, BUILD UP PEOPLE’S ALTERNATIVE"

03 May 2019

In the elections to the AP assembly and Lok Sabha seats, the AP state committee organized a good political campaign propagating the party’s Election Manifesto, which was ranslated to Telugu and published in time, and projecting important local issues in the Guntur Lok Sabah seat fielding com. Hariprasad, AP state committee member for the LS seat and comrades P. Chenna Kesavalu, for Guntur East, Pushpalatha for Guntur West and T. Govindu for Prathipadu assembly seats within the LS seat. All party comrades actively participated in the campaign. As the only left candidate in the Guntur LS seat MCPIU and other organizations extended support to com Hariprasad. In AP the polling was completed on 11th April amidst many violent clashes mainly between followers of TDP and YSRCP and complaints on malfunctioning of EVMs.

In Telengana, though nomination for Kommula Srinivas for Peddapilly seat was submitted, it was rejected. So party comrades propagated party manifesto, supported the like minded left candidates and generally campaigned against the BJP and TRS.

In Maharashtra party had fielded two candidates to Nagpur and Ramtek Lok Sabha seats, comrades Yogesh Thakre and Bandu Mishram. The state committee organized an active campaign mobilizing all party comrades and sympathisers. The Election Manifesto and thousands of handbills were distributed and street corner and village level meetings were held besides house to house campaign where our party committees are active. Elections to these constituencies completed on 11th April. Besides, party is supporting the independent candidate Milind Rete in Mumbai North constituency. Comrades active in trade unions and student movement are also campaigning based on a handbill published by the party supporting the candidate Elections to this seat is on 29th April.

In Gujarat our party committee is supporting the candidate of  Bharatiy Tribal Party com. Aswin Parmar in Ahmedabad West constituency. Bringing out party’s hand bill supporting Aswin, our comrades are organizing a campaign based on party’s Election Manifesto.

In Kerala party has fielded three comrades Usha from Wayanad, Sudhakaran from Vadagara and N D venu from Thrissur. Com. Shahjahan is contesting from Ernakulam as party supported independent candidate. Besides party has extended support to com.Gomathi from Idukki seat and Freddy Jaison from Chalakudi seat. An active campaign is launched by the party committees and the mass organizations based on the Election Manifesto published in Malayalam and tens of thousands of handbills. Many people’s movements and environmental movements have extended support to these candidates. Support is also expected from those left sections who are for social justice and a system change. The elections were held on 23rd April.

In Tamilnadu com. Paulraj is the party candidate from Kanyakumari seat. A vigorous campaign is going on and the polling was on 18th April. The Election Manifesto is published in Tamil. Besides thousands of handbills explaining party’s call for the people’s alternative highlighting state specific issues were also used in the campaign. Due to technical problems com M K Muthu could not submit nomination from Theni seat. Comrades from other areas also participated in the campaign of com Pulraj.

In Karnataka, though the state committee had planned to field five candidates, the nomination of Veerupaxi Gouda from Raichur was rejected and candidates from Kudagu/Mysore and Bellary could not file nominations. Campaign for comrades Hemraj Veerapur and S.Vijaya from Koppal and Chikmagalur/Uduppi are continuing well.  Party is supporting the independent candidate com Prakash Raj from Bengaluru Central along with other left and democratic forces. The Election Manifesto was published in Kannada besides large number of handbills.

In Chhattisgarh party state committee has fielded com Bhojlal Netam as party candidate from Mahasamund constituency and the campaign under the leadership of CC members comrade Saura and Tejram is progressing well. Here the polling took place on 18th April.

In Odisha where along with the elections to Lok Sabha, the assembly elections are also taking place, party has fielded com Ranjan Mishra from Puri,  com Pramela Behera from Bhubaneswar, com. Tuna Mallik from kandhamal, com. Rajendra  Kendruka from Koraput and com. Sankar Sahu from Aska Lok Sabha seats. Besides com. Purna Mandingi from Laxmipur, com. Purna Chandra Pradhan from Bhanjanagar, com. Rajendra Prasad Bari from Bhubneswar and Ad. Abani Gaya (independent supported by party from Berhampur. Elections to Koraput LS seat and Berhampore assembly seat were held on 11th April. Campaign for other seats are progressing well. As reported by com sivaram this time the campaign by the party has reached at least more than 5% of the state’s population and the media was also forced to publish news of the campaign. Election manifesto was published in Odiya, besides few lakhs of handbills were also published taking party’s message to people.

In W. Bengal party has fielded from Dumdum seat com Shankar Das, Bankura seat com. Sukchand Soren, from Bishnupur seat com Jithendra Nath Roy, from Belarghat seat com. Manas Chakravarthy, from Barrakpore seat com. Hyder Ali, from Barasat seat com. Oli Md Mallick. Besides com Bikas Ranjan Bhattacharjee from jadavpur seat is supported by the Bhangar Committee. A very effective campaign is progressing well in which all comrades are actively involved. In the present situation in the state when BJP is trying to make headway in the state replacing the TMC and the Left front’s influence is waning day by day, party is trying to put forward its line of building up a people’s alternative uniting all struggling forces. It is gaining support from larger sections of people.

In Jharkhand, party is fielding three Lok Sabah candidates, from Ranchi com. Vikas Chandra Sharma, from Palamu com. Madan Ram and from Jamshedpur com. Malay Kumar Mahato. With the Election Manifesto and thousands of handbills explaining the problems of the state the state committee is organizing an active campaign. State specific environmental problems are also actively raised like the problems of the people suffering from uranium mining in Jharsuguda region. Adivasis threatened by evictions are also mobilized during the campaign.

In MP from Sidhi seat com. Heeralal Singh is contesting highlighting the large scale environmental challenges faced by the region as a result of the extensive coal mining and building of thermal power plants displacing millions of people from their habitats. The MP state committee is trying to organize an effective campaign in this very large constituency.

In UP the state committee is fielding five candidates to the Lok Sabha seats mainly from Purvanchal region: from Deoriah seat com. Chaturanan Ojha, from Chandaulir com. Kailas Sharma, from Amethi com. Basudev Maurya, from Gajipur com.Rajendra Vanvasi and com. Aravind Yadav from Kushinagar. The campaign is started in both places.

In Delhi a Lokthantrik morcha is formed uniting CPI(ML) Red Star, NDPI led by Arun Maji, Sarvodaya Prabhat Party,  People’s Front-Delhi, Samajic Nyay Manch, People’s Green Party and  Bahujan Samanvay Samithi based on a Common Minimum program. It is fielding three comrades, com Harsh Kumar Gautham (NDPI) from New Delhi, Jaswinder Kaur (NDPI) from South Delhi, P K Raghav from North East Delhi.. While campaign is started based on a joint handbill, in the coming days attracting more struggling forces from the Communist, Socialist and Abbedkarite streams the Morcha shall be expanded and campaign strengthened with the slogan : Throw Out BJP, Build Up people’s Alternative.

In Rajasthan, the party organizing Committee is fielding comrade Kika Meena from the predominantly Adivasi seat of Udaipur. The nomination is already filed and accepted. With saw symbol handbills are prepared and the campaign is started.

The Punjab-Chandigarh committee has fielded com. Lashkar Singh from Chandigarh and com Jeet Singh from Sangrur seats and the campaign is progressing. A press conference was held on 10th April at Chabdigarh releasing the Punjabi translation pf Election manifesto and calling on the people to defeat BJP and its allies and appealing to vote for Red Star candidates. n

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Kabeer Katlat

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.