This struggle has inspired many struggles against displacement, for land and environmental protection in different parts of the state. It has inspired movements against the imposition of neoliberal policies by the TMC government including imposition of UAPA like black acts on leaders of people’s movements. The Bhangar People’s Movement has created a platform for the unity of all political parties, people’s movements and various mass organizations opposed to the TMC government’s policies to come together.
This unity started emerging with the launching of Jomi Jeebika Vastutantro and Porivesh Rakha Committee and the solidarity movement in support of struggling Bhangar people started taking concrete shape with the Raj Bhavan March at Kolkata on 22nd December and the people’s mobilization at Bhangar on 11th January. The martyrdom of Mofzil Khan and Alamgir during the police repression and police firing on 17th January was followed by the massive protest march at Kolkata on 30th January and other follow up actions. While the state repression continued including arrests of movement’s leaders imposing UAPA, the people’s resistance also went on strengthening as reflected in the big mobilization during the mass dharna at Bhangar from 5th to 11th April and the increasing number of movements expressing solidarity with it. All these have developed in to broadest unity of democratic and struggling people’s movements at the state level.
It is in this situation the representatives of all political parties and various movements who attended the mass dharna on 11th April discussed and decided to organize a mass march to Raj Bhavan March on 8th May with the demands: (1) Scrap the Central Power Grid Project of Bhangar; (2) Withdraw all cases charged against villagers and leaders of the movement and immediately release them; (3) Provide adequate compensation to the relatives of the two comrades killed in police firing, for the injured and for the houses, shops and mosques damaged; (4) Scrap UAPA; and (5) Take strong measures against communal forces.
We appeal to all political parties, mass organizations, people’s movements, democrats, students and all progressive sections who support the Bhangar people’s movement and oppose the autocratic, anti-people policies of the TMC government to join the this mass march and make it a great success.
The Central Committee calls on all party committees to observe 8th May as All India Solidarity Day and to organize programs in all states mobilizing all like minded forces.
KNR, GS, dated 12th April.
We strongly condemn the heinous efforts made by the ruling party’s goons and the administration for the last two days (from 3rd March 2017) to disturb the peaceful atmosphere of the villages surrounding the Power Grid in Bhangor. The peasants and villagers are peacefully protesting against the anti people Power Grid and demanding the cancellation of the Power Grid Project in toto.
On 3rd March the local goons under the leadership of local TMC leaders Kaisar Ahammed and Nannu Sheik were hatching conspiracy to take hold of the villages in their grip and were planning to attack the villagers who are protesting against the Power Grid. The miscreants gathered on 4th March also. The local police administration who were also present there was helping to deteriorate the situation. They wanted to create terror among the villagers so that they are forbidden from the movement against the Power Grid. But the villagers mainly women resisted these efforts and chased away the miscreants for the time being.
We came to understand that the police administration is going to deploy huge forces in the area and preparing for an attack on the innocent villagers during which the local TMC goons mix up with the police and vitiate the total atmosphere to thwart the movement by force as earlier happened on 17th January. The entire situation is alarming. The government, instead of arranging dialogue with the villagers and the Jomi Jeebika Vastutantro and Porivesh Rakha Committee to resolve the issue, is planning for confrontation which will lead only to Singur- Nandigram like situation.
In the meantime, it is to be noted that as a part of bigger and larger democratic exercise, a Peoples’ Hearing is going to be organised on 4th & 5th April to hear all the concerned parties to the Bhangor Power Grid Issue by the Solidarity Committee with Bhangor Peasants Movement (Bhangor Andolan Samhati Committee) to derive at a more clear and factual conclusion of the issue. We apprehend now from the above acts of the administration and the ruling party, that they are trying to thwart the entire exercise since they are afraid of the outcome of such a true democratic exercise initiated by the Solidarity Committee which consist of panelists from different walks of life like intellectual, political activists, Jurists, Human Right activists, civil society representatives etc.
We, therefore, once again request to all concerned authorities in the administration on the one hand, and democratic loving people on the other to interfere immediately in the issue and arrange dialogue so that the situation is not escalated further and the issue is resolved in a peaceful and democratic manner.
In the absence of any evidence, the Sessions Court seems to have wilted under pressure from the prevailing political atmosphere that someone must be held guilty to teach ‘lessons’ to the workers. As such he has held the 12 committee members and Jiyalal guilty though there is not a shred of evidence to tie them to any attempt to murder anybody. In fact two of the committee members were not even present at work on that day. There is no evidence to tie any of the others convicted either.
We condemn this verdict as bowing to the political atmosphere being created and not giving the verdict based purely on the basis of evidence which must hold up beyond reasonable doubt. We demand of the state government to immediately revert the punishment and release the workers, before it has to be taken up to higher courts to examine its propriety. We call upon the working class and all the democratic people of India to come out on the streets and fight against this unjust conviction.
Free the 13 Maruti Workers immediately!
Compensate all those arrested for the time spent in prison!
Reinstate all those arrested with full back wages and continuity of service!
Workers and oppressed peoples of the world, unite!
Trade Union Centre of India (TUCI)
19th March 2017
While observing the centenary of October Revolution, it is the responsibility of the working class movement to evaluate the past and to draw lessons, so that it can make a new beginning according to present conditions.
The observation of May Day will become meaningful only if it is approached with a revolutionary perspective. It is the task of the communist party committees to vigorously take up political education of the working class, recruiting more and more from among them as party members. While training them for struggling for their economic demands and democratic rights, they have to be educated to struggle for a new society without the hegemony of capital, for socialist transformation. Let us combine the campaign to observe the centenary of the October Revolution with the task of politicization of the working class with full vigour.
K N Ramachandran
CPI(ML) Red Star
11th March 2017
THE Central Committee of CPI (ML) Red Star extends its fraternal greetings to the Second Congress of Front Line Socialist Party (Sri Lanka) held on February 1, 2017. The main theme of the Party’s Second Congress, which is convened after a gap of almost five years, is entitled: “A Party for the Class for Socialism against the Imperialist Neoliberal Program” assumes utmost political importance at a time when imperialism allied with ruling classes in the entire South Asian countries are mounting neoliberal, far right attacks on the working class and the oppressed peoples of this region. Everywhere in the region, religious fundamentalist and revivalist forces and pre-modern identities in one form or another are profusely used by finance capital not only to directly attack the people but also to divide their fighting unity and divert people’s attention from the enemies’ tactics. Along with such reactionary forces, international capital is also keen to prop up ultra-rightwing and repressive political regimes for unleashing unbridled corporatization on the masses by curtailing the hard-earned democratic rights of the people. As a result, the working class and toiling masses of both Sri Lanka and India today are confronting more or less the same threatening situation albeit with region-wise specificities.
In India, for instance, the Hindu supremacist and ultra-rightist Modi regime, while intensifying neoliberal corporatization whose latest manifestation has been the notorious demonetization, is intensifying its attacks on all toiling masses including dalits (scheduled castes), adivasis ( scheduled tribes), Muslim minorities and all oppressed classes and sections. The Indian state’s big-brotherly attitude in SAARC has not only made that grouping defunct but also has worsened its relation with all neighbouring countries. In particular, under the Hindu fundamentalist Modi rule, the Kashmir issue and Indo-Pak relations have further worsened. Acting as a junior partner of US imperialism by signing the LEMOA agreement and allying with US’ anti-China policy, India is trying to become a regional bully in South Asia and a factor in inter-imperialist contradictions in this part of the globe.
Of course, this shift in politics towards the far right is to be situated in the broader international context today when a quarter century of neoliberal globalization has accentuated all the inherent contradictions of the world imperialist system. While the capitalist-imperialist system is going through an irreversible and prolonged crisis, wealth concentration in the hands of a tiny corporate-financial elite has become so destructive that vast majority of the toiling masses the world over is driven to devastation and destitution of hitherto unknown levels. As a result of global corporatization and ballooning of the financial bubble coupled with deindustrialization and joblessness, world’s top 8 billionaires own as much combined wealth as the bottom half of the world population comprising 3.6 billion people today. Over the past quarter century, the top 1 percent super-rich has gained more income than the bottom 50 percent combined. In spite of heinous and barbarous imposition of neoliberal policies on the working class and broad masses of people and counter revolutionary offensive in the form of curtailing people’s democratic rights, capitalist crisis is intensifying as is manifested in the global developments since 2008. Imperialist attempt to shift the burden of the crisis to the shoulders of the neo-colonially dependent countries and to the working class in the imperialist countries has met with resistance as exemplified in a series of upsurges all over the world in the in the first decade of the twenty first century, especially in North Africa and West Asia. But in the absence of working class leadership capable of providing ideological-political orientation, these movements have not become successful to impart serious blows to imperialism and its lackeys.
Though repeated agitations of the people are continuing in various forms, presently we are witnessing a rightwing offensive in various parts of the world. In a context of unprecedented inequality, poverty and deprivation, international “refugee crisis” corruption, cultural degradation, and gruesome ecological catastrophe which are reflections of the depth of the crisis, imperialism is propping up xenophobic, anti-immigrant, chauvinist, neo-fascist, racist and religious fundamentalist forces to divert people’s simmering discontent against the ruling system. Obscurantist terrorist outfits such as IS are nothing but the byproducts of the US and EU led interventions in West Asia and North Africa. As an inalienable component of this imperialist offensive, to depoliticize the people, a whole set of postmodern and post-Marxist prognoses based on even pre-modern “identities” are manufactured and spread by imperialist think-tanks and neoliberal funding and research institutions. Utilizing them, imperialists and their lackeys continue their hegemony over the people by tearing apart the veil of bourgeois democracy and by snatching away democratic rights and are even resorting to fascistization in diverse forms. The concrete forms of this trend now ranges from the advent of Donald Trump as US president to the emergence and strengthening of several neo-fascist forces in Europe including such manifestations as Brexit.
In relation to this, and reminiscent of the Depression years of the 1930s, a striking dimension of neoliberal globalization today has been the rising tide of chauvinistic “economic nationalism” or “protectionism” espoused by ultra-rightwing forces trying to utilize people’s simmering discontent against corporatization everywhere. Protectionism including “inward-looking” and “beggar-thy-neighbour” policies has always been a slogan effectively used by neo-conservatives to hoodwink the masses suffering from pro-corporate policies on the one hand and to carry along the middle classes with ruling system by dangling the promised capitalist prosperity before them on the other. While so called liberal practitioners of neoliberalism and academics who are in favour of a more integrated global market interpret “isolationism” or autarky as an apparent retreat from the philosophy of free-market ideology and the policy of unfettered global capital flows which are going to be codified in WTO’s forthcoming Trade Facilitation Agreement, the emergence of Trump like phenomenon espousing reactionary protectionism as manifested in latter’s negative attitude to TTIP, etc. pinpoints to growing policy differences within imperialism. And, as the contradiction between the people and the ruling system everywhere is mounting and as the crisis is systemic and irresolvable, the contradictions within the ruling classes and inter-imperialist rivalries are bound to sharpen in the coming days.
At a time when the revolutionary communist parties and organizations the world over are observing the centenary of the October Revolution this year under the banner of International Coordination of Revolutionary Parties and Organizations (ICOR), it is high time to strive for a concrete evaluation of these contemporary trends in the background of hitherto experiences to make revolutionary advances to people’s democracy and socialist transformation.
In taking up these tasks, let both our parties strive to strengthen fraternal relations with a view to advancing towards revolutionary transformation in our own countries. It will definitely strengthen the South Asian and international relations based on the spirit of proletarian internationalism.
The Central Committee of CPI (ML) Red Star wholeheartedly extends its revolutionary greetings to the Central Committee of Front Line Socialist Party (Sri Lanka) and to all the delegates attending the Second Congress.
Let us strengthen fraternal relations between Front Line Socialist Party and CPI (ML) Red Star!
Let us strive for the unity of the peoples of South Asia!
Workers and the Oppressed Peoples of the World Unite!
CPI (ML) Red Star
As member of CPI (M) for more than three decades, comrade RBM was active in Puri, Odisha, and was working as an advocate concerned with real issues of the toiling people. He was well- known as a people’s advocate. After getting disgusted with the CPI (M) line, comrade RBM resigned from it and shifted his political work to Bhubaneswar and has been a member of CPI (ML) Red Star for the last 20 years. Comrade RBM was elected as a Member of the Party’s Central Control Commission in the 10th Congress of the party held at Lucknow in 2015. Comrade RBM was also working as Executive Committee Member of the Party state committee. As Odisha State President of AIl India Krantikari Kisan Sabha (AIKKS), comrade was actively involved in organizing the peasantry, more particularly the landless poor peasants. He became the founding member of the OPDR and was elected to its All India General Council in its recent Hyderabad Conference.
The Central Committee extends the Party’s deep condolences to comrade’s bereaved wife and to the children. The unexpected demise of Com RBM is a great loss both to the struggling people and to the Party at this critical juncture.
GS, CPI(ML) Red Star
AN internal emergency like situation prevails in Bhangar area of South 24 Parganas in W. Bengal where the villagers are struggling against forcible land acquisition and the construction of the power grid which destroys their livelihood and the environment. Instead of discussing and resolving this question with the villagers and the Committee for Protection of Land, Livelihood and Environment which is leading this movement, the Trinamul Congress government in the state led by Mamata Banerjee has unleashed a reign of terror in the area. Following the provocative attacks on the villagers on 16th January night, on 17th morning the protest demonstration of the villagers was lathi charged, and fired upon in which Mofijul Khan and Alamgir Mollah were killed. The Committee members as well as leaders of the CPI (ML) Red Star are detained and provisions of UAPA are imposed on them. In spite of repeated appeals, the authorities are refusing to discuss with the Committee to resolve the question. On the contrary police and TMC goons are let loose against the struggling people.
In this situation, a countrywide campaign is needed to restore democratic rights, to save the villagers from forcible land acquisition and to save their livelihood and environment. As a part of this ongoing struggle, a signature campaign is started to show the extent of mass support to this movement, besides a People’s Hearing in April. Legal actions for the release of all arrested comrades including comrades Pradip Singh Thakur and Sharmistha Choudhury against whom UAPA provisions are also imposed have to be carried forward.
The Central Committee of the CPI (ML) Red Star appeals to all progressive and democratic forces to fully support this people’s movement for protection of land, livelihood and environment, to join the protest against the state terror unleashed by the state government against the villagers and Party leaders and to financially help the West Bengal committee to face the present challenges. Please send whatever financial help is possible mentioning WB Help to the account number of the Party Centre : CPI(ML) Red Star, Account No. 13120 1601000407, IFS Code- CORP0001312, Corporation Bank, Nawada Branch, New Delhi- 110059.
CPI(ML) Red Star