(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)
March 16, 2008
Attack On AKG Bhavan
ANGRY CPI(M) workers in Delhi, carrying posters condemning the BJP- RSS led attack on the Party headquarters, chanting ‘Fascism Down Down’ called upon the people to give a fitting reply. They marched to the Parliament Street police station in Delhi from Jantar Mantar on March 10 to protest against the premeditated attack on March 9, 2008.
The protestors resolved to intensify political opposition to the RSS-BJP and demanded strict action against the culprits. A warning was also issued to the RSS-BJP to desist from such acts in the future. The rally by the CPI(M) Delhi state, called upon all peace loving and secular people and political parties of the country to intensify the struggle against the politics of hate and violence practiced by the Sangh Parivar.
The rally from Jantar Mantar was indeed colourful in that it was a micro cosmopolitan Delhi, with workers, teachers, youth, students, lawyers and jathas of women, academics and artists, all rallying in unison, led by the Delhi state leadership.
Inside parliament, angry CPI(M) MPs echoed their anger while all along Parliament Street road blocks had been erected amidst heavy police arrangements. This was in sharp contrast to the lack of police arrangements on March 9, 2008 at the Party headquarters.
Earlier in the day, several CPI(M) cadres gathered at Jantar Mantar from where the rally started, with placards condemning the attack. Shouting slogans, they demanded stern action against the BJP and RSS for the attack on A K Gopalan Bhawan. The demonstrators also charged the police with inaction. Some of those injured in the violence were also part of the demonstration. A large contingent of police was deployed to avert any fresh violence.
Speakers pointed out that the pre-planned attack was led by BJP luminaries from Delhi, including leader of opposition in the Delhi assembly, Jagdish Mukhi and the Delhi Major, Aarti Mehra. Four cars of BJP leaders filled with stones were seized by the Delhi police, including the official car of Jagdish Mukhi. This dastardly act was followed by another attack by RSS activists on the house of the CPI(M) Karnataka state secretary, V J K Nair.
The speakers included Polit Bureau member, S R Pillai, and Central Committee member Jogender Sharma, Md Amin, Inderjeet Singh and PMS Grewal, and Tarit Topdar, MP.
The speakers condemned this act of political violence and dubbed it as not just an attack on the CPI(M) but also on democratic values and institutions. It reflects the political frustration of the BJP-RSS at the growing role of the CPI(M) in national politics and its steadfast defense of secularism. The RSS-BJP is unable to grow wherever the CPI(M) is strong. The victory of the Left Front in Tripura has caused more heartburn for the RSS-BJP. In Kerala, the RSS has indulged in repeated attacks on the CPI(M) and killed 30 Party activists over the last six months in Kannur. The RSS has also failed to join peace meetings called by the state government, thereby, exposing its true intent. The RSS-BJP also recently targeted the visits of Sitaram Yechury and Brinda Karat to Harayana and Bhopal, respectively.
Twelve persons owing allegiance to the RSS and the BJP were detained for the attack on the CPI(M) headquarters. The CPI(M) had accused the police of inaction. ‘’They had information but they failed to prevent the attack,” the CPI(M) said.
PROTEST marches were taken out right from the morning the moment the news reached the CPI(M) offices in Bengal that the Central Committee office of the CPI(M) has been subjected to a sneak attack by the RSS-VHP combine, even as the Central Committee meeting was going on.
Two large processions were organised- one from Gol Park in south Kolkata and the other from Vaishali in eastern Kolkata, over and above the numerous protest marches organised in every mohalla, para, locales of towns and cities. Such programmes were also organised in virtually every panchayat area of the state.
In a statement, Biman Basu, state secretary of the Bengal unit of the CPI(M) called upon every unit of the CPI(M) to take the mass of the people along as they organised the protest marches throughout the day and the evening. Biman Basu called upon the Party workers and the mass of the people neither to be provoked nor to be entrapped in any aggravating conspiracy of the religious fundamentalists.
Biman Basu condemned the RSS-VHP attack as a cowardly act and said that the outfits had announced the ‘demonstration’ to be held on March 8, and then switched a day later to try to catch the CPI(M) workers off-guard. Biman Basu regretted how a few Central Committee office bearers and workers at the central office received injuries and had to be hospitalised. A few vehicles of the Central office, too, were damaged.
The draconian endeavour of the forces of religious fundamentalism, said Biman Basu, was not a part of the political culture of India. The apparent cause that was utilised by the forces of religious fundamentalism to run amok was an attack on CPI(M) workers at Kannur in Kerala by RSS workers there.
CPI(M) Mumbai committee on March 10, 2008 staged a militant protest demonstration at Andheri railway station, in western suburbs against RSS-BJP fascist cowardly attack on AKG Bhavan on March 9, 2008. The demonstration condemning BJP-RSS attack and inaction of Delhi police demanded deterrent action against the fascist goondas. It continued for about two hours, with demonstrators, which included Party state secretary Dr Ashok Dhawale, Mumbai secretary Mahendra Singh, CITU state president K L Bajaj, Party Mumbai secretariat members Sonya Gill, Ramsagar Pandey, Party Mumbai committee members Amaity Irani, Chandrakant Bhojgar, Jagnarayan Kahar, Vasant Khandare, Sudhir Paranjpae, K K Prakasha, P R Krishnan etc., and large number of Party activists, holding banners and placards with slogans, attracted attention of thousands of suburban train passengers entering or passing out of the railway station. Many of them stopped and attentively listened to speeches of Ashok Dhawale, Mahendra Singh, K L Bajaj, Sonya Gill, R S Pandey, Sudhir Paranjape, Jagnarayan, Vasant Khandare etc., who addressed the demonstration. Speakers came down heavily on RSS and BJP and exposed fascist character of the BJP- RSS attack. They denounced the attack as fascist violence and warned the audience that democracy was not safe unless fascist tendencies are combated and appealed to people to unite for the same.
Under the banner of the CPI(M) and several mass organisations, the people expressed their protest in the form of demonstrations, rallies, rasta rokos and processions and burning the effigies of the BJP and RSS all over Andhra Pradesh on March 9, 2008 denouncing the attack on the office of the Central Committee of the Party by the workers of the RSS and BJP in New Delhi. Reports reached from almost all the districts in the state of these spontaneous actions of protest at several places in each district organised instantaneously on hearing the news of the RSS-BJP attack on the office of the CPI(M). These protests took place in cities and several towns in the districts of Khammam,Nalgonda, Warangal, Visakhapatnam, East Godavari, West Godavari, Guntur, Cuddapah, Nellore, Chittoor, Prakasam, Krishna, Srikakulam, Vijayanagaram, Karimnagar, Adilabad, Nizamabad and the twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad.
In Hyderabad, a massive rally was taken out from M B Bhavan, the state headquarters of the CPI(M), to Narayanaguda, with state and city leaders of the Party and mass organisations leading it. They marched forward holding Red Flags and raising slogans denouncing the RSS and communalism. Addressing the rally, Y Venkateswara Rao, state secretariat member of the CPI(M), termed the pre-planned attack on the Party Central Committee office as a mean act and appealed all the democratic minded people to condemn it. Unable to face the CPI(M) politically, such attacks were being made on it, he said and made it clear that the Party would not fear such attacks, murders and repression. V Krishnaiah, state secretariat member of the CPI(M), pointed out that the Party has been in the forefront in many struggles and warned that the RSS would face the wrath of the people if it wanted to attack the Party. Sarampally Mallareddy, state secretariat member of the CPI(M), demanded severe punishment to all those who resorted to the attack. On March 10, 2008 also people in the twin cities, including the old city of Hyderabad, held protest demonstrations and burnt effigies of the RSS and BJP.
Leaders of several political parties strongly condemned the RSS-BJP attack. N Chandrababu Naidu, president of the Telugu Desam Party, strongly condemning the attack, observed that the attack by the workers of RSS-BJP was unwarranted. Official spokesman of the Pradesh Congress Committee, N Tulasi Reddy, demanded the government to take stringent action against those who resorted to the attack. Former legislature party leader of the Telangana Rashtra Samiti, K Vijayarama Rao, termed the attack undemocratic. State secretariat member of the CPI, K Ramakrishna, termed it a fascist act. State secretary of CPI(ML) Liberation N Murthy demanded arrest of the attackers.
PEOPLE of Tamilnadu voiced their strongest protest against the vandalism of RSS-BJP combine-attack on the CPI(M) office in Delhi – by joining in thousands in the demonstrations organised by CPI(M) throughout the state on March 9, 2008.
In Chennai, at a short notice of 4 to 5 hours, people started arriving in thousands; men, women, and children from all walks of life gathered near MLAs Hostel in Anna Salai, from where a large procession was taken out and a meeting was held before State Guest House.
N Varadarajan, state secretary, said by turning out in such large numbers in a few hours to register their anger and strong protest, the people gave a sharp rebuff to communalism in Chennai. Those who assassinated Mahatma Gandhi are continuing their violent activities and spreading communal hatred throughout the country in various manners. Attack on CPI(M) office in Delhi was the height of their intolerance against CPI(M) because CPI(M) is leading the struggle against communalism consistently from the beginning.
T K Rengarajan, Central Committee member and G Ramakrishnan, state secretariat member spoke in the meeting condemning the RSS-BJP. Chennai North district secretary T K Shanmugam, Chennai south district decretary Beema Rao and S K Mahendren, MLA also addressed the gathering. The procession attracted many people along the route and many young children carried placards with slogans against communalism.
About 125 caders of CPI(M) were arrested on March 9 when they demonstrated against RSS-BJP before the central bus stand in Trichy immediately after hearing the news of the attack in Delhi. They also burnt an effigy of L K Advani. They were later released.
All district headquarters in Tamilnadu and many smaller towns witnessed spontaneous, angry, and emotional protest demonstrations on March 9 against BJP-RSS. The number of centers crossed well over 300 on March 9 itself. On March 10 also, demonstrations were held in some other places.
DMK president and chief minister of Tamilnadu, M Karunanidhi has condemned the BJP-RSS attack on CPI(M) office. Besides D Pandian, CPI state secretary and Pattali Makkal Katchi have also condemned RSS and BJP.
The people of Tamilnadu expressed their firm and strong support to CPI(M) in its fight against communalism.It clearly showed that there is no place for communalism in not only Tamilnadu but also they will not allow it to raise its head any where else in the country.
THE Dehradun district unit of the CPI(M) organised a protest demonstration and rally on March 10 against the RSS attack at the Party’s headquarters in Delhi a day before. Starting from the CPI(M) office in the city, the procession moved through various localities and went to the Ghantaghar where an effigy of the RSS was burnt down and a protest meeting held.
All the newspapers in the city gave prominent coverage to this protest demonstration in this capital town of Uttarakhand.
However, hundreds of the RSS goons launched an attack and pelted stones at the CPI(M) office at about 3 p m on the same day. Deplorably, the Uttarakhand police remained mute spectators to this attack, presumably at the bidding of the state government controlled by the BJP.
Soon after this RSS attack, Dr Harak Singh Rawat (leader of opposition in the state assembly), Samajwadi Party leader Dr S N Sachan and CPI state secretary Samar Bhandari came to the CPI(M) office and strongly condemned the attack. An all-party meeting was organised next day to discuss the situation.