Punjab Peasantry Re-Write History in Delhi
In depth they summarized how it gave Corporates a license to plunder the peasantry by having a total monopoly in dictating prices or obtaining land. The speakers elaborated how now the Corporates had a complete monopoly over the public distribution system and thus morally were a far greater menace to the peasantry than the traditional middlemen.”
The peasantry of Punjab belonging to 32 different organisations of the All India Kisan Sangharsh Co-ordination Committee have literally written a new chapter in history after igniting a spark into a Prairie fire. Arguably in the entire world has a farmers movement hit such a crescendo. There is hardly a adjective in the dictionary that can do justice to the extent of intensity or relentless spirit of the peasant agitators. Facing the deepest depths of despair and thwarted by impregnable police barriers they revealed death defying courage of an army. It was not just the vast numbers which climbed over 10 lakh but the great qualitative or electrifying impact it had striking the ruling classes in their very backbone.
Contribution of BKU-Ekta (Ugrahan)
The greatest credit for galvanisng the combat forces and their crystallisation in such magnitude goes to the Bharatiya Kisan Union (Ugarhan).It galvanised over one and a half lakh people, including around 50000 women alone. More than 50% of the protestors were the youth which was a positive trend. It was a perfect illustration of their surgical mass line practice. It confronted any type of legalism or economism to the core, by sustaining the agitation when other organisations decided to withdraw. Their storming into Delhi reminded one of a surgical operation of an Army batallion, with in depth understanding of the subjective conditions. It created the impact of a tornado in bordering regions of the capital. It has created such a thorn in the flesh for the ruling classes who are now even embarrassed to deploy the police to foil the protest.
It may take a book to describe the most soul-searching scenes at Tikri, Singhu, Jharoda, Ghazipur and Chilla, areas at the border of Delhi. The farmers confronted the teargassing, water cannons and barricades of the police weathering the chilliest of temperatures, with courage in proportions of Vietcong challenging the might of America in the Vietnam war. It was reminiscent of a boulder weathering the most turbulent of storms or gales. It set up Langars, established base camps, raised slogans waved flags and pounded tractors in. With the great methodology of an architect or surgeon it chalked out strategic points to agitate.
Significant solidarity was initiated by the Punjab Students Union (Shaheed Randhawa), Nauawan Bharat Sabha and Punjab Khet Mazdoor Union. It speaks volumes of the painstaking class -mass work to sharpen essence of revolutionary democratic politics has been undertaken at the very base. I would compare this effort of Ugrahan group with the best ever mass organised protests of the poor peasantry in world history. I apologise if I am being partial but most intellectuals have failed to portray the distinguishing features of the Ugrahan group in this development.
Speeches were continuously made highlighting how the agricultural bills were morally neo-fascist and destroy to dust any democratic aspirations of the peasantry. In depth they summarized how it gave Corporates a licence to plunder the peasantry by having a total monopoly in dictating prices or obtaining land. The speakers elaborated how now the Corporates had a complete monopoly over the public distribution system and thus morally were a far greater menace to the peasantry than the traditional middlemen.
The speakers stated that the dominance of corporate houses in agriculture sector meant the complete tarnishing of public distribution system. The new sytem would l ensure profit for the corporate houses and imperialist multinational corporations by depriving people of essential commodities. The new system would also increase black marketing and artificial glut and scarcity in the market. The leaders stated that this agitation was an attempt to save a profession like agriculture and to ensure food security of the masses. This is the reason that the agitation is getting support from people across the country and different walks of life.
The connivance of opposition parties be it the Congress or Aam Admi party or Akali Dal was exposed in no uncertain terms explaining that their economic policies were an integral part of the semi-feudal,semi-colonial state and thus in essence not different from the Bharatiya Janata Party. However still the main attack was on the Narendra Modi led Bhartiya Janata party illustrating how it blessed imperialism at crescendo never reached before or patronizing corporates more than any ruling party ever did in India. The expression on the faces of the peasantry was the very writing on the wall on the semi-slavery they were subjected to. The relevance of a broad united front of al democratic classes was brought to the fore. The manner reinforcements are sent reminding one of how a great army replenishes its forces.
In recent days it even highlighted how Industrial families were seizing Panchayat land and violating the Punjab Village Common land rule of 1964.They narrated how the state has about one and a half lakh acres of Panchayat land and their contracts and make crores of income with the government’s eye now on these lands. The intention of looting the prices of Panchayat lands is a direct raid on the interests and rights of the poor farmers. Whose interests are in farming on these lands.
Contribution of Other Democratic Forces
I also applaud the heroic role of the Kirti Kisan Union and the Naujwan Bharat Sabha who most qualitatively shimmered the spark of resistance and also mobilised a significant dalit landless labour section. Around 20,000 participated from Kirti Kisan Union who placed accent on the fascist rule unleashed by the centre and how it was empowering itself to crush all federal status of Punjabi people. In recent days some very notable work has been undertaken by the Punjab Students Union in solidarity and consolidation.Many convoys of Punjab Students Union are on their way to Delhi .No organisation shave mobilsed the Dalit agricultural labour Community as these forces. The Bhartiya Kisan Union (Dakaunda)) has too risen to the hour significantly.
Sadly some important leaders of Kirti Kisan Union accused the Bharatiya Kisan Union (Ugrahan) of sabotaging the movement projecting is as trying to promote its own image and violating the collective spirit. This was countered by many intellectuals and refuted by Urgahan activists themselves who explained that only by prolonging resistance can any revolutionary alternative path be paved. Even an ex- cadre from their camp to the core was critical of the comments of Comrades Sardara Singh Mahil and Rajinder. Publicly such leaders expressed that the BKU (Ugrahan) hosting a langar at the initial stages near the border was derogatory. However, the Ugrahan group gave no counter statement in light that it would cause friction amongst the participants. Almost every day interviews were carried out with Joginder Singh Ugrahan,the president of the BKU.
Reports of Important Protests in Delhi Movement
On 4th December BKU (Ekta Ugrahan) continued its protest at Tikri border where protesters have occupied kilometres of road and established five stages to address the gatherings. Shingara Singh Mann, Jaswinder Singh Soma, Harinder Kaur Bindu, Paramjit Kaur Pitho, Zora Singh Nasrali of Punjab Khet Mazdoor union, Amolak Singh of PLS Manch, Amitoz Singh Maur of Punjab student union (Shaheed Randhawa), Sushil Kumari, Rajesh Dhankar, Mukesh Khasa and Khushbir Kaur from Haryana addressed the gathering. The speakers explained that Modi government Is responsible for the discomfort of the local community is facing due to ongoing agitation. It was reiterated that this is an agitation for the security of the farmer as well as the food security of the country. (Sukhdev Khokri)
The speakers stated that the dominance of corporate houses in agriculture sector mean end of public distribution system. New system will ensure profit for the corporate houses and imperialist multinational corporations by depriving people of essential commodities. The new system will increase black marketing and artificial glut and scarcity in the market. The leaders stated that this agitation is an attempt to save a profession like agriculture and to ensure food security of the masses. This is the reason that the agitation is getting support from people across the country and different walks of life. The speakers appealed to the residents of Delhi that they should take the purpose of agitation into account while facing the problems caused by it. While appreciating the cooperation extended by the local community the speakers asked for more support from the capital city. (Information from Sukhdev Khokri)
A play, Superpower was performed along with choreographies by PALS Manch. Jagsir Singh Jida and his Lok Sangeet Mandali Jida performed in their typical style. Ajmer Singh Akalia presented revolutionary songs on the occasion.
On 4th December BKU (Ekta-Ugrahan) has named five protest sites after the names of historical personalities representing the legacy of struggles leading up to the ongoing agitation against farm Bills passed by the Modi government. The protest site spread over kilometres have been divided into cities named after these personalities – Baba Banda Singh Nagar, Chacha Ajit Singh Nagar, Bibi Gulab Kaur Nagar, Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar and Shaheed Sadhu Singh Takhtupura Nagar.
Union’s state secretary Shingara Singh Mann and Wome leader Harinder Singh Bindu said that these cities have been settled on the names of the heroes of our fighter heritage. They told that this city was settled in the name of Baba Banda Singh Bahadur, Uncle Ajit Singh, Gadri Gulab Kaur, Shaheed Bhagat Singh and Shaheed Sadhu Singh Takhtupura.
Shingara Singh Mann e said that a press gallery has also been installed in the name of Shaheed Ashfaq Ula Khan to provide information to the press in the ongoing front. He said that Baba Banda Singh Bahadur is the hero of the great rebellion of the farmer who has made the farmers own the lands with the strength of long and slowing down. He said that uncle Ajit Singh is the leader of the Jatt movement to take care of the Shanamati turban against the British government which is still a light torch for the farmers fighting for their rights. He said that Gadri Gulab Kaur is the heroine fighting against the colonial government who is fighting for his rights and is a light for the women in the Delhi front.
He said that Shaheed Bhagat Singh is the great martyrs of the National Liberation Movement who first presented the program of the British government as well as the elimination of the loot of indigenous robbers for the freedom of farmers, labourers, youth and countrymen. He said that Shaheed Bhagat Singh is still a great hero who made the heartbeat of farmers, laborers, women and youth who struggle to get rid of loot. He said that Shaheed Sadhu Singh Takhtupura is the hero of the current Kisan Movement who has been important in giving the form of a huge movement to our organization and the farmer movement by drinking the jam of martyrdom against the government-sponsored Bhau Mafia during the Akali BJP rule. Played the role.
Farmer leaders said that the towns, named after these heroes of their great fighter heritage, are the symbol of the narrow element of the Kisan Movement, whose roots are in the great heritage of the country’s secular and democratic traditions. He said that the city is also a symbol of the strong intentions of farmers, labourers, youth and women who stand against agriculture laws that they will return home after returning the five laws.
The leaders explained that the sites named after these legendary personalities manifest the progressive and secular character of the ongoing agitation against farm laws. The ongoing movement is in continuity with the glorious history created by struggling masses and that history inspires farmers, workers, women and youth to struggle against the injustice, they said. The duo remained confident that the ongoing movement would carry the people’s history forward and emerge victorious.(Tribune News )
On 5th December BKU Ekta Ugrahan embarrassed the Modi Government at its boiling point at six places and more than 500 places in districts in Punjab and Delhi Kisan Morcha.
Gathering together Shingara Singh Mann, Harinder Kaur Bindu, Paramjit Kaur Pitho, Amarjit Singh Saidoke, Jaswant Singh Tolewal, Puran Singh Doda, Manjit Singh Niyal, Gurpreet Singh Noorpura, Jora Singh Nasrali, Amolak Singh, Rajasthan leader Santvir Singh Mohanpura Haryana Teke Ram Narnol, Manjeet Julka, Om Prakash Rathi, Joginder Kathota Sarv Employees Association Haryana, Munisa Student Ekta Manch Haryana, Chandigarh, Young Student Amrit Kaur, Leader of Five Member Kisan Sangharsh Committee Gurbaz Singh.
Shingara Singh Mann said expressing solidarity on the invitation of all farmer organizations in the country that the BKU unity will also take a strong participation. Invitation to the different workers of the society to connect their leaders with this solution. Addressing them especially to the Dalit community and farm workers, they said that they should be a big part of the society in support of the movement of the labor stage and give a strong reply to the politics of the BJP which is distributing caste distribution. He said that shopkeepers and small businessmen who are being oppressed by the FDI and GST should raise a joint voice to dismiss these people’s killing policies. In the same way, this day should be made a joint voice of people of every stage including the workers, employees, students.
Solidarity Protests in Punjab
In solidarity in Punjab to illuminate spark of the agitation in over dozen places in Punjab solidarity rallies have been launched or cultural programmes.
On December 3rd on invitation of the Kirti Kisan Union, the leader of the Rural Labor Union Hariram Rasulpuri, Mata Gujri Women’s Chetna Committee, was held in support of the historic farmer’s struggle in the country at village Mehmudpur (District Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar). Addressed by Mehmudpur President Madam Kulwant Kaur, Secretary Ranjit Kaur and Press Secretary of Democratic Rights Sabha Punjab Buta Singh. Bawa Singh Atwal, the leader of Kirti Kisan Union and rational leader Ninderpal Maidita were also present on this occasion. The people of the village responded to the invitation of Jago with so much enthusiasm that more than 200 villagers including young people, children and women joined. And for two hours in the village, the slogans of Modi government Murdabad, Farmer’s struggle Zindabad, Labour-Farmer unity Zindabad were echoed. Demanding the abolition of anti-people agriculture laws and opposing the dictatorial decisions of the fascist Modi government, the villagers were invited to reach the maximum number of protests in Nawanshahr on December 4.
On December 5th effigies of the Modi government were burnt in Rasulpura, Mehamudpur and Kahma. At Chandigarh Road on December 4th Kirti Kisan Union undertook a major solidarity action in support of the Farmer Morcha organized in Delhi on December 8, Nawanshahr announced to close the district Nawanshahr on Langdoa Bypass on December 8. In the meeting, Auto Workers Union, Tempu Union, Taxi Union, Women Jagriti Manch, Indian Federation of Trade Unions, Kirti Kisan Union, Rehri Workers Union, Migrant Labor Union, Bhatha Workers Union, Dr. Ambedkar Mission Society, Rural Labor Union, Medical Practitioners Association, Democratic Teachers Front, Punjab Students Union, Sikh Organizations, Social Organizations, Leaders of Cooperative Meeting, Traders and Panchayat Representatives attended. Representatives have announced to make this closure a success with an opinion. Kirti Kisan Union Nawanshahr leader Tarsem Bains, IFTU state president Kulwinder Singh Waraich, Jasbir Deep, Buta Singh of the Democratic Legislative Assembly, said that people are protesting against the central government’s agriculture laws, electricity bill 2020.
On December 2nd in Bathinda city, the Farmers Struggle Support Committee conducted a huge torch march in the city in support of the farmers sitting in Delhi. The number of 4-500 mobilised comprised of 100 women, of whom 80 % were teachers. The projection of the slogans was contentful and the enthusiasm and rally completely effective. Funds were also given by the shopkeepers from the same market.
Support to Farmers Protest and Most Positive Happenings
Arguably never in Indian history has the base of Hindutva neo-fascism been given such a striking blow by democratic forces illuminating spark of liberation. There could hardly be a better illustration of the peasantry to establish its own striking power or how in essence the so call neo-liberal economy is model or manifestation of proto-fascism engripping the entire nation.
Major solidarity has been undertaken in states like Andhra Pradesh,Telangana, West Bengal, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh etc. Farmers organisation have openly intervened from Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan.
Very impactful solidarity demonstrations were undertaken by workers in industrial areas of Ludhiana. It is also a significant development that many small traders, shopkeepers or businessman have supported the struggle and even integrated with it. The student and youth community most sporadically came out in support of the peasantry which must be welcomed.
One of the most inspiring instances of this agitation was how BKU women leader Harinder Bindu shimmered flame of resistance to mobilize over 10000 women. It paid a fitting a tribute to the valiant effort of the organised movement to make women an integral part of the movement. The morale support of singer Diljit Dosanjh also was most inspirational in an era when most commercial singers turn their backs on people’s movements and literally sell themselves like slaves of the culture of imperialism or exploiter classes. I was also most impressed by a University student Hindol Mazumdar from West Bengal openly describing the BKU (Ugrahan) movement as an outstanding one which distinguished itself from economist or sectarian trends. It highlighted how the BKU Ugrahan thwarted leader Yogendra Yadav from making the peasants retreat. Even this is rare today when most revolutionary sympathisers are either absorbed in heroics of Maoist armed squads or neo-Ambedkarist pro-Dalit movements. In a small article he narrated the class essence of this struggle.
A most welcome developments has been the support of top sportsman and artists from Punjab wholeheartedly supporting the farmers struggle and willing to relinquish their awards or medals. This is a very rare occurence in India where top sportsman and artists are sold on making hordes of money and have scant respect for social values. Such a phenomena is a vitally lacking ingredient in the Indian democratic movement today.
Gatherings were also addressed by young film Saj Jatinder Mahar, renowned Rangkarmi Samuel John, student Vijay Dhankhar teacher leader Haryana. On this occasion, plays were played by Manavata Kala Manch Nagar (plus stage) and revolutionary songs were presented by Jagsir Jida, Ajmer Singh Aklian and Nargis.
The leaders of this struggle are not willing to sit on the negotiation table after even the fifth talk and have boldly declared a bandh on December 8th.They find the Govt.solutions or amendments futile after 5 successive rounds of talks ending in a stalemate.
A most welcome development has been the support of top sportsman and artists from Punjab wholeheartedly supporting the farmers struggle and willing to relinquish their awards or medals. This is a very rare occurrence in India where top sportsman and artists are sold on making hordes of money and have scant respect for social values. Such a phenomena is a vitally lacking ingredient in the Indian democratic movement today.
On December 4th Hundreds of students, Women’s Rights leaders, industrial workers and intellectuals of Delhi rallied today at Jantar Mantar to protest against the Govt. of India’s callous attitude towards the just demands of the Farmers. They were stopped and heckled by the Delhi police, but they held their ground and continued with their meeting, where leaders expressed their anger firstly the repression and hurdles placed on the march of the Punjab & Haryana farmers, then the failure to address their main concern and now the repression that has begun by giving Police Notices and preventing protests.
All over the nation organisations are boycotting toll plazas supporting the peasant protest. Above all, whatever differences the basic unity of the agitation against the bills has not been broken which is most heartening.
What Steps Should Be Taken to Consolidate Agitation
What is binding and will intensify this stir is the solidarity from force s outside Punjab and abroad. However, one must guard against trends that wish to portray this uprising as a resurgence of ‘Sikh movement’ confronting the anti-federal dictates of the state or a consolidation of ‘only rich peasantry. ‘Here I remind readers that Sikh or Punjabi people do not comprise a separate nationality. Tooth and nail we must of course refute those who identify Khalistani politics in this agitation. The essence of class polarisation must not be diffused here particularly by Ruling class politicians fostering Sikh identity sentiment and dividing the movement on communal lines. Leaders must also strike a balance and not become victims of either compromising with ruling class leaders or under estimating subjective forces at crucial junctures.
So far, the leaders have shown great political maturity when participating in talks with the rulers. Another crucial aspect is that it should not just reduce the Dalit landless labour community into an appendage or cosmetic force but an integral part of the agitation. The working class must also be mobilized in tandem with the peasantry, highlighting its relationship with their day to day lives or class struggles. I have never witnessed an agitation which has harnessed support from such a wide range of sections.
It is important that democratic forces all around the nation are galvanised in support to form a broad spectrum and that every oppressed or democratic section must form separate platforms in support be it students, teachers, government employees or doctors. It should also be connected to the secular democratic revolutionary resistance to Hindutva fascism as a whole with an acute connection made between Hindutva ideology and patronage to classes of Corporates and big landlords.
A protracted effort must be made to sharpen revolutionary class politics sand make peasantry demarcate from the ruling class ideology which in essence only divides the rich and mighty. It is also important that caste politics does not intervene to divide the agitation and even Ambedkarites come out in full support. It is important that Communist revolutionaries do not claw the agitators with their political line and pursue a patient, painstaking approach to educate the peasantry.
It can also develop in a platform to demarcate from the revisionist or reformist policies of the Communist Party of India and the Communist Party of India (Marxist) and win over m any cares belonging to peasant unions of those parties.
In my view however acute is the contradiction with feudalism such a development testifies the role or impact of imperialism in determining feudalism and how in regions like Punjab feudalism may not be the principal contradiction.
It is also of vital importance that polemical issues do not break the fundamental unity of the organisations, which would splinter the movement. Sharp demarcation must be made of electoral politics which in the past has often induced parliamentary tailism by democratic peasant forces.
A most important contribution will be a report on the agitation by Punjabi revolutionary journal ‘Surkh Leeh’. It should be propagated very widely in all circles with its incisive revolutionary democratic analysis. In detail is publishing a study on its political significance. For politically advanced leftsis sections the statement of the Communist Party Re-Organisation Centre of India (Marxist-Leninist) when it is published which would be of great relevance in connecting this agitation with the interest of the agrarian revolutionary movement as a whole
I thank the inputs or reports from BKU (Ugrahan) secretary Sukhdev Singh Khokri, Surkh Leeh editor Pavel Kussa, Rupinder Chaunda of Naujwan Bharat Sabha, Shingar Singh Mann of BKU (Ugrahan) as well as from Kisan Morcha and Delhi Kisan Morcha
According to the announcement of Modi government on 30th May, after the 68 days long lockdown, it is going to start un-wounding it, as ‘Unlock 1’ from 1st June. The guidelines allowing a phased re-opening of most activities across the country, and limiting the lockdown only to containment zones for a month till June 30. It also cut the night curfew hours from 9 pm to 5 am. The guidelines issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) allow re-opening of malls, hotels, restaurants and places of worship from June 8 in Phase I of unwinding, they also allow unfettered movement of goods and persons between states and within states. States have, however, been given the freedom to prohibit certain activities or put suitable restrictions if they deem it necessary for containment of the Covid outbreak.
This announcement of the MHA has come out when the ground level facts are revealing the total failure of Modi government in all spheres. When the lockdown was abruptly announced by Modi on 24th March, if the number of Covid19 patients and dead were about 500 and 35, after the 68 days of it, these figures has jumped to nearly 1,80,000 and 5500. The new patients detected on 30th May had increased to 8,200. If this trend continues by 30th June the number of patients may go up to 5 lakhs, with corresponding increase in the number of dead. If India’s position among the top ten maximum infected countries is already 7th now, soon India’s position may go up further. Still, he has not announced any policy change to rectify the situation, to save you from Covid! Opposing this anti-humanitarian policy of Modi which may take the country to a great catastrophe we should mobilize all progressive forces and fight.
The migrant workers, it was the total confusion created by Modi’s abrupt order compelled your desperate flight to your villages, trying to get whatever conveyance available or by walking. What you have suffered and many still suffering is hundred times more painful than what happened at the time of India’s partition in 1947. More people died in your still continuing colossal human tragedy than due to Covid19 so far. Still, his government has not announced free ration and monthly allowance to your families in distress. He did not announce any assistance for the families of the dead on the road, on the rails; even for the children who lost their parents. Similarly, as you may have heard, after super cyclone Amphan caused colossal havoc in W. Bengal and Odisha, with many died and lakhs of families rendered homeless, his relief to these states was just 1,000 and 500 crores. At the same time, in addition to writing off another Rs 68,000 crores bank loans, all the economic packages announced by him are for the corporate houses and elite sections.
If the economy was in recession even before the pandemic outbreak due to his falty policies, it is going to face terrific collapse now. At the same time, spreading hate politics based on Islamophobia, he has divided the people more than ever, even during this pandemic. The worsening of relations with Nepal and border skirmishes with China shows that for pampering relations with Trump administration he is creating enmity with all neighboring countries, even at this time of pandemic. He is spending more lakhs of crores for military, when he has no money to help you, even for returning to your villages. While the list of his total failures is very long, his letter followed by his radio speech to us, while completing first year of his second term, shows it is the most insensitive government this country had after 1947. After committing crime against us, he is trying to confuse us, to cover up his gross failures in all fields by telling blatant lies and distorting facts.
Against these anger should mount among us, the workers and all the oppressed. Six years of Modi rule has made vast majority of us jobless and starving.
Working class comrades, after working many years in far away cities you have come back to your villages penniless; many of you had to take loans for return tickets. You, the returned migrant workers, and the agricultural workers and poor peasants in the villages, the condition is going to worsen in coming days. After long slumber, though Supreme Court ordered to provide food, shelter and return journey free to all workers, the NHRC called the treatment of migrant workers by the Railways as barbaric, no action is going to be taken by Modi’s govt. The present heat wave in North and impending monsoon shall aggravate the poverty and distress of all of you. When Modi’s economic policies, now aggravated manifold under the pandemic, is worsening joblessness, the social and economic crisisis going to become more acute. Even before the Covid19 pandemic broke out, the economy in the country had reached deep recession. As all manufacturing works and small/medium units were closed down following the lockdown, there is acute financial crisis, with the GDP growth plunging steeply. An immediate recovery is difficult in present world situation. The burden of this crisis also will be thrown on the backs of us, the people, vast majority of us, including the lower middle class and peasantry are going to face acute distress.
Contrary to governments’ claims, the condition of the toiling people of all states is very bad. Casual/contract workers, fisher people, rural and urban poor as well as the poor peasantry who constitute more than two third of the population, after more then two months of lockdown, your joblessness is going to become really horrible. As nearly 20 million of you migrant workers have returned, with more millions yet to reach, not only the Covid19 cases among you and your families shall increase, but also your poverty and joblessness. The token amount allotted for more MGNREGS work,is not going to improve the situation.
Comrades, discuss these facts with your families, friends and villagers, or people around you, wherever you are. As these families are left jobless and foodless, the already existing starvation situation is going to reach alarming proportions. Joining with the progressive forces start a campaign with the following demands: Provide 45 kgs foodgrains monthly as free ration to all families; and Rs. 8, 000 monthly allowance to all jobless contract/casual workers, unemployed youth and to all needy people for six months from 1st June.
Make it a massive campaign uniting with all those agree with it. Decide slogans according to conditions in your area. Let us compel the central and state government to provide it soon; If they do not agree, let us launch mass movement powerful enough to achieve these demands!
After 68 days of lockdown, as a result of total failure of Modi government and its agencies, the no of patients are going to cross two lakh barrier and the number of dead is also increasing accordingly. Still, except for his sermons, Modi rule is not taking any steps to contain it. Still sufficient medical equipments, testing kits, ventilators, safety kits and other requirements are not available. It is not to bringing the private hospitals under government control to fight Covid. It is not allotting necessary fund. We should join hands to launch a powerful movement to compel Modi government to give top priority to contain Covid19 from spreading further and to cure those affected by it.
Using the lockdown announced to contain Covid and powers given to police and para-military to enforce it as cover, spreading Islamophobia the activists from Jamia and other areas belonging to Muslim minority are arrested and detained under UAPA. While it is clear as day light that the pogrom in Northeast Delhi was organized by the RSS, the Muslims are arrested in large numbers and even the anti-CAA activists are also arrested as accused in this case! Many intellectuals and human rights activists are arrested alleging as Maoist supporters. Similarly, in Chhattisgarh, Odisha, Jharkhand etc thousands of Adivasis are also detained for years alleging they were helping Maoists. Many of these are under detention for years under UAPA. Some of them are sick. Under Modi’s corporate fascist rule all democratic action in J&K and Northeast is also virtually banned. We appeal to all democratic forces, political organizations, mass movements to come forward to demand the release of all poltical prisoners.
The NPR/NRC/CAA movement was advancing powerfully when the pandemic broke out. Modi govt used the pandemic as a cover to suppress it. Now, using the Census as a cover and state terror it may re-start it. So, let us start discussion with all who were participating and playing significant role and start preparations to re-launch the movement.
CPI(ML) Red Star
1st June 2020
In continuation to Modi’s speech on 12th May announcing Rs 20 lakh crores stimulus package, the FM Nirmala Seetharaman has started explaining how this stimulus shall be implemented in a series of press conferences from 13th May. Today she has started this process, under the guise of self-reliance, a series of measures are announced for MSMEs after changing the definition by raising their investment and turnover limit. But, there was not even a mention of the informal and unorganised sectors. No Immediate relief for the dying many millions of migrant workers. No direct money transfer to the starving millions. At the same time, she announced many tax giveaways to middle classes. The state governments are completely ignored, when they are in extreme crisis on account of heavy responsibility to deal with COVID-19, and nothing to rejuvenate their financial position.. There was not even mention of the question of distributing the GST arrears due to states. Her high sounding and rhetorical presentation, had nothing concrete for the most deprived. There is a reference to more liberalisation in FDI, labour, land and necessary legal changes for that. But details are not announced..
When the whole world is in lockdown, Modi has no other option other than appealing for becoming "Atmanirbhar" (self-reliance). On the other hand, the "Make in India" program, announced by him after ascending to power in 2014, has become a farce and that slogan was a cover for transforming India in to a dustbin/dumping ground for MNCs In view of the announcements yet to come, especially related to liberalisation in FDI, labour laws, land acquisition, etc., the fate of Atmanirbhar is not going to be different. Meanwhile, the 15 items taken up today are oriented towards rejuvenating middle classes with tax exemptions and money availability while nothing is there for the most deprived inter-state migrant workers. No mention on the transfer of GST dues to State Govts. COVID is an opportunity for shoring up the vote banks for the ruling regime. In the name of atma-nirbharatha, Modi is continuing his organized plan to hoodwink the masses to implement the RSS agenda. When Covid19 broke out, not perturbed by another wave of its outbreak, as WHO and many scentists are warning, Modi is trying to strengthen his corporate fascist rule, helping the mad race of the foreign and native corporate forces for further accumulation of natural wealth. So, showing any feeling about the plight of the millions of migrant workers and their families is alien to Modi.
K N Ramachandran
CPI (ML) Redstar
13th May 2020
Press Statement from CPI(ML) Red Star:
Boycott NPR and Census Launched From 1st April, Intensify Anti-CAA/NPR/NRC Movement.
Compatriots, comrades! The people’s movement against the CAA/NPR/NRC is intensifying day by day, in spite of all attacks including the latest Northeast Delhi pogrom savagely targeting the Muslims organized by RSS goons. The call for blocking the launching of NPR from 1st April, to boycott it and to launch a countrywide Non Cooperation Movement is getting increasing support. Already six state assemblies have passed resolutions against NPR and many more states have announced that they will not implement NRC. Confronted with such resistance, the Modi government is now trying to fool the people by launching NPR clubbing it with the Census. We are not against the Census carried out in every decade, but when it is used as a cover by Modi government to launch the NPR some way or other, we have no other alternative but to boycott both. Our demand is: First scrap CAA, NPR, NRC, then go for Census!
If NPR survey is allowed to take place, following its completion by 30th September, all citizens who could not give full details demanded under it shall be noted as “Doubtful Citizens” (DCs). It is our history that from the time of large scale Hindu-Muslim riots followed by division of the country in 1947, and before and after 1971, when Bangladesh separated from Pakistan following violent strife, there were large scale movement of people across the borders. Many of them have no records. Not only majority of the 20 crore Muslims, but the scheduled castes (Dalits) and scheduled tribes (Adivasis) along with other backward sections are landless and houseless, illiterate, who migrate to new areas of work, and ravaged by floods and other natural calamities, whose number will be around 50 crores, have only voters’ identity cards, ration cards, Adhar cards or Pan cards which are not accepted as proof of citizenship under Modi rule!. They have no other records or papers. So, in a vast country like India with an expected 140 crores population, with nearly 50 crores extremely poor, at least 20-25 crores may become DCs if the NPR is allowed to be completed. As happened following the Assam NRC, they will be given 3 months time to prove their citizenship before the Foreigners’ Tribunals.
It is at this stage the CAA shall be applied. Based on it all the Muslims with DCs will lose citizenship. The others, the Hindus, Sikhs, Jains, Budhists, Parsis and Christians, can get citizenship based on CAA, if they prove they migrated from Pakistan, Afghanistan or Bangladesh due to religious persecution, which 99% of them cannot prove. So, in this first phase of the communal, ethnic cleansing based on Brahmanical, Manuvadi qualification, as RSS ideologues Savarkar and Golwalkar preached, nearly 20-25 crores of people, one third or half of them Muslims shall become stateless. They will be thrown to Detention Camps being constructed all over India. If Modi’s rule continues, more such cleansing shall follow till a Hindurashtra of Savarnas is achieved!
Recognizing the horrific consequences of the CAA, NPR/NRC process, spearheaded by students and women, the unprecedented people’s movement is sweeping the country. Frustrated by it, Modi government is targeting Muslims to divide the movement and unleashing state terror creating atmosphere of fear to suppress the people’s resistance and to impose the CAA/NPR/NRC at any cost. As a last resort, it is now trying to get the NPR done by combining it with the census. It is a trap. We should not be fooled by it. So, along with all other struggling forces, the CPI(ML) Red Star calls for boycotting the NPR even in its new form, clubbed with the Census! It calls for launching countrywide Non Cooperation Movement. As the tension is mounting as the 1st April is coming nearer, we should be clear that if the NPR is not blocked a humanitarian tragedy of colossal magnitude, a hundred times more horrendous than what happened under Hitler in Germany in 1930s shall happen in new form, under the corporate fascist Modi rule guided by RSS, the largest terrorist organization in the world.
Already the Indian Diaspora around the world have come out against this communal, ethnic cleansing under the pretext of NPR/NRC. Many governments across the world and democratic forces have expressed concern. The UN Commissioner for Human Rights is trying to intervene in the Supreme Court hearing on this question. In spite of all these, the Modi government is arrogantly rejecting the growing people’s resistance within the country, but also the international public opinion by claiming it is India’s internal question!
In this grave situation, the CPI(ML) Red Star appeals to all people to out-rightly reject all wily tactics of Modi government to impose NPR by clubbing it with the Census. Let us make it clear: We are not against Census, but firstly scrap CAA, NPR, NRC, then go for the 2021 Census! The Central Committee once again calls upon all party committees to join with the struggling masses and wage uncompromising struggles to stop the NPR even when it is coming along with Census to cheat the people! Defeat RSS/BJP’s fascist tricks and block NPR!
CPI(ML) Red Star
05th March, 2020.
Comrades, Compatriots, Though the BJP leaders from PM Modi and HM Shah to their local level cadres as well as the RSS parivar, with the help of main stream media and social media, are frantically engaged in a vitriolic disinformation campaign to mislead the people that there is nothing harmful in the CAA for the present citizens of India, and it is only for giving citizenship to those who are forced to migrate from the Islamic countries, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Bangladesh due to religious discrimination ( belonging to Hindus, Sikhs, Christians, Budhists, jains and Parsis but except Muslims), during the last two months of struggle to revoke the CAA and to reject the NPR/NRC, the people of India are understanding day by day the dangerous consequences if the NPR is allowed to be launched on 1st April, and the NRC is allowed to be prepared based on the CAA. Millions of Muslims shall be declared stateless and thrown to Detention Camps being constructed all over the country, while three or four times more from among the dalits, Adivasis and other socially and economically backward sections shall become stateless without any rights.
The CAA based NPR/NRC is a well planned RSS agenda to overthrow the 1955 Citizenship Act, and to replace it with citizenship based on religion and Manuvad, to convert India in to the homeland of the “Hindus”, the Hindurashtra as defined by Golwalker, where ultimately the religious minorities and all those outside the Savarna Castes shall be denied citizenship. This master plan is started with spreading hatred against the Muslims, but will soon affect the large number of people from other religions and all Avarnas, the shudras, ati-shudras, Adivasis and other most backward sections also. If, as Modi and Amit Shah say, the CAA is only for giving citizenship to those ‘religiously discriminated refugees’ from Afghanistan, Pakistan and Bangladesh, whose number is about 30, 000 only, such a huge poject like a countrywide survey and preparation of NRC of the 135 crores of people spending many billions of rupees and engaging lakhs of employees for months was not required, it could be done in a month through executive orders under present Citizenship Act. An over view of the planning of the Modi government with the launching of the NPR enumerations from 1st April shall show that it is nothing but preparation of the NRC for Hindurashtra.
This whole process start invariably with the preparation of the National Population Register (NPR) from 1st April to 30th September based on 21 questions including birth certificate of the applicant, citizenship of parents when the applicant was bone, documents to prove present address etc. Seeing the increasing opposition from the people, the central government is now consoling that many of this queries shall be avoided now. In state like Kerala, W. Bengal etc, where the state governments have refused to prepare the NPR, it is done under the cover of Census also. The master plan is to get the list of the present residents in India collected somehow or other with whatever details possible out of the 21 queries. In the process of preparing this register, the enumerators will be asked to note D, ie doubtful citizens, against the name of all those who have not sufficient papers or who refuse to give answers.
Once this NPR is somehow completed by 30th September, the second step, preparation of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) and the list of the Doubtful Citizens (DC) shall be prepared, as was done in Assam. Then the third step starts: all those in the list of DC shall be asked to go to Foreigners’ Tribunals (FT) with necessary papers to prove their citizenship. It is in this phase the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) enters. Based on this all Muslims in the DC shall be declared stateless and go back to any of these countries, Afghanistan, Pakistan or Bangladesh. As all these countries have made it clear that none of these migrants are from their countries, there is no question of receiving them. In the NRC of Assam, a state with about 3 crores of population, published on 31 August, 2019, 17 lakhs were declared stateless, out of which about 5 lakhs are Muslims. After the expire of 3 months given to them to prove their citizenship before the FT are over, except very few most others are confirmed as stateless. As CAA is not applicable to DCs as and when they are prepared. All others, 14 lakhs of ‘Hindus’ who are also stateless can get citizenship under CAA, if they can prove that they are refugees from Bengladesh, for which they have no papers as they are residents of Assam even before Bengldesh was formed in 1971. So, these 14 lakhs of people, Adivasis, dalits, Nepalese and other most backward sections without any papers are remaining in Assam without voting or any other rights of the citizens!
If this picture is projected at all India level, including the many millions of Bengali workers who have migrated to different parts of India from the time of 1947 division of India, at least 20 millions or more Muslims shall become DCS and declared stateless. Under CAA, all of them shall become stateless and sent to the DCs. What about the 300 million dalits and Adivasis and about 100 million other most backward sections, 90% of whom have no papers of any sort including land pattas? All of them shall invariably fail to prove before the FTs that they are citizens according to the provisions of the NPR. Neither they can prove that they are refugees from Afghanistan, Pakistan or Bangladesh, which they are not. They will be declared stateless, thrown out of their present habitats, facing a horrendous situation. Same will be the fate of dalit Christians and the poorest among the other minorities also. All these stateless people shall be forced to new slums, providing cheapest labor for the corporate houses, while their present habitats shall be turned in to land banks, to provide sufficient cheap lands to the corporate and real estate mafias. As all the stateless have to be thrown in to DCs, the corporate houses shall get trillion dollar contracts to construct them also!
Even before such a horrific situation is created by the CAA/NPR/NRC process, according to latest accounts, 1095 Indians are daily migrating to foreign countries, and already there are large number of migrated Indians in practically every country in the world. If the RSS concept of Hindurashtra is implemented by all these countries around the world, what will happen to these many millions of migrants is also forgotten by the RSS parivar and all those enamored with the Hindurashtra concept.
Comrades, Compatriots, Already voluminous materials have come out including videos explaining the horrendous consequences of this fascist project of RSS imposed by the Modi government. In order to impose it at any cost, divisive politics is brazenly pursued, creating atmosphere of hatred and fear, already leading to savage state terror created under Yogi in UP, the pogrom during the Delhi riots etc. If the RSS is not resisted more barbarous developments may break out in coming days. It is in this situation, the great significance of blocking the launching of the NPR from 1st April should be seen. It is the urgent responsibility of all secular democratic forces, all the organizations of the toiling masses, the trade unons and peasant movements, all those who uphold the democratic spirit of Indian Constitution and the anti-caste, secular values of the renaissance and independence movements, to join the oppressed people who are on the streets, the Muslims, dalits, Adivasis and other most backward sections now spearheaded by the students and women, to further intensify the ongoing people’s movement against the CAA/NPR/NRC in to a mighty storm that will block the launching of the NPR on 1st April.
Comrades, Compatriots, Let us dare to think about what shall happen if the present challenge is not boldly confronted; Let us dare to struggle uniting all the forces who can be united to resist and beat back the forces of reaction! It shall definitely lead the masses of this country to great victory in beating back the fascist forces who want to pull back India in to medieval barbarism!
CPI(ML) Red Star
1st March 2020
During the last six months after returning to power with bigger strength, Modi-2 has moved very fast further intensifying corporate- fascist policies. It has diluted RTI like laws, made NIT, UAPA like acts more anti-people. Article 370 and 35A were scrapped, reducing J&K to two union territories after imposing clampdown and militarization, turning Kashmir in to an open prison. NRC/Assam was announced, making 19,06, 657 people stateless. It is in a hurry to get the Citizenship (Amendments) Bill denying Muslim migrants citizenship, passed somehow in the next parliament session. Orders are issued to get the countrywide NPR ready by next September 30th, with the possibility of 4 to 5 crores people declared stateless. Construction of Detention Camps is speeded up in Assam, and even in some other states, with BJP chief ministers clamouring stringent NRCs in all states. Along with these, hatred, intolerance, and Islamo/Pak phobia is spread more heinously, provoking more mob-lynching. In short, fasistization of all fields is intensified dangerously, advocating muscular nationalism.
At the same time, the post 2014 policies of Modi raj starting with de-monetisation and GST have led to intensifying slow down in all fields of economy. As sales falls steeply, many production units are closed down or locked out throwing out many millions of workers, making unemployment worse. All industrial areas are in recession. At the same time, all sops announced in the name of reducing the impact of slow down, are swallowed by the corporate giants, making them fatter, while vast masses are thrown to more miserable condition. Remaining PSUs including the railways are privatised fast. All doors are opened for all round corporatization, devastating the nature creating climate crisis and severely pauperizing the masses.
As a result of all these, our country is in a critical situation. This demands uniting struggling left, democratic, oppressed classes and forces at every level, and launching people’s movements to expose and challenge the corporate fascist RSS/BJP forces who are trying to transform the country in to majoritarian Hindurashta! Still even after continuation of the clamp down in J&K for more than two months, crores of people facing the danger of becoming stateless under the communal NRC process, and worsening recession further impoverishing the masses, the BJP continues its winning spree in assembly elections since the parliamentary opposition is disintegrating, with many of its leaders flocking to BJP and Modi claiming increasing international support to his Rathyatra towards Hindurashtra!
But, the humanitarian crisis in Kashmir has led to non-cooperation movement by the Kashmiri people. The opposition to the NRC is increasing all over the country. It is taking massive forms in Manipur, Nagaland, Assam etc. Resistance from workers and peasantry and the democratic forces against Modi’s efforts to impose a Hindu- Hindi,-Hndustan; one nation-one election, one nation-one tax like exclusive policies arrogantly rejecting the diversity of the country, is also growing. At international level opposition to Modi-2’s moves which are creating humanitarian crisis in Kashmir and in Northeast are increasing In spite of much orchestrated ‘Howdy Mody’ with efforts to appease Trump, outside the stadium almost equal number of people demonstrated condemning Modi-rule. This international opposition to Modi rule is intensifying fast. Even though many form the parliamentary opposition forces are surrendering to RSS/BJP and others are still not organizing any movements in opposition, larger number of people’s movements against consequences of ever intensifying corporatization and fascistization under Modi-2 are coming up in different parts of the country. A polarization of public opinion against RSS/BJP is also slowly taking place.
It is in such a crucial situation, the Central Committee of CPI(ML) Red Star calls for launching a powerful Jan Akrosh Abhiyan) from 25th November, International Day against violence on women, to 10th December, International Human Rights Day in all the states we are working, based on the slogans: Restore Article 370 and autonomy of J&K people; End clampdown on J&K people; Resolve J&K issue based on right of self-determination of the people; Cancel Assam NRC; Withdraw Citizenship (Amendments) Bill; Stop all efforts to expand the NRC all over India; No to RCEP, privatization of PSUs, and corporatization; Stop all Brahmanical Manuvadi measures which pollute Indian polity ,create atmosphere of fear among people, especially minorities; Down with RSS and its Hindurashtra!; Struggle for secular, casteless, egalitarian society expanding boundaries of democracy with the vision of all powers to the people, and a development paradigm which rejects neo-liberalism in toto and works for building people oriented alternative development perspective!
Com Kn Ramachandran