People's Democracy

(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)


No. 37

September 12, 2010


Theekkahtir Launches Tiruchi Edition

R Sindhan


IT was a fitting conclusion for the August campaign of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) when the party’s Tamil daily Theekkathir launched its fourth edition from Tiruchirapalli, the historic city of central Tamilnadu.

The CPI(M)’s Tamilnadu state committee organised a weeklong campaign programme against the anti-people policies of the central and state governments from August 22 to 29. As a conclusion of this campaign, a huge public meeting was held at Tiruchi on September 5, the memorial day of Ponmalai martyrs, late CPI(M) leader A Balasubramaniyam and late freedom fighter V O Chidhambaram.

At this meeting, CPI(M) Polite Bureau member Sitaram Yechury released the first copy of Theekkathir's new edition and K Varadharajan, another Polit Bureau member, received it.

While addressing the gathering from those coming from central and eastern districts of the state, Yechury said "though a grand alliance was being built to oppose the Left, no force can bring the red flag down” and that “the Left parties will continue to champion the cause of the oppressed and fight for the people and issues concerning them for creating a better India.”

The ruling classes see the Left as the main obstacle to their economic policies and reactionary forces have ganged up to target West Bengal, as it was the main outpost of the Left. Observing that the people of West Bengal would give a fitting reply to this gang-up, Yechury urged for strengthening the struggle by mobilising people to change the present policies pursued by the centre.
The prime minister had stated that the Maoists were the single greatest threat to security. However, on the other hand, the Trinamul Congress, which is a part of the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government, is supporting the Maoists. Why does the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam, which is a partner in the central government, not speak against such contradictions within the UPA? This only exposes its opportunism, Yechury said.

The ruling classes have created two Indias, one of the rich and the other of the poor, he said, adding that the existing policies are only widening the gap between the two, Yechury pointed out.

K Varadharajan expressed happiness in the meeting that it was his own city of Tiruchi, with a tradition of the Left movement and great sacrifices of the Ponmalai martyrs, which is now going to publish the Theekkathir, Tamil daily which would be a powerful weapon in the hands of the working people.

Senior CPI leader R Nallakannu and CPI(M) Central Committee members N Varadharajan and U Vasuki also spoke. CPI(M) state secretary G Ramakrishnan presided over the meeting and V Parameshwaran, editor of the daily, delivered the welcome address. Veteran CPI(M) leaders R Umanath, Pappa Umanath, A Abdul Wahab, state secretariat members M N S Venkattaraman, S Noor Mohammed and A Lazer, Theekkathir chief general manager N Srinivasan, Semmalar editor S A Perumal, and CPI(M) district secretaries including S Sridhar of Tiruchi participated in the grand function.

CPI(M) Central Secretariat member V Srinivasa Rao, Daily Desharkatha editor Gautam Dass, Vinay kumar, Prajasakthi editor and Avik Dutta of Ganasakti were felicitated at the function.

On this occasion, Theekkathir released a special number which carried the messages of greetings from CPI(M) general secretary Prakash Karat, chief ministers M Karunanidhi, V S Achudanandan, K Rosaiah, Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee and Manik Sarkar, as well as the fraternal greetings from Ganasakti.

Taken together the four editions from Madurai, Chennai, Coimbatore and Tiruchi, Theekkathir circulation is now nearing 40 thousands.

Earlier, on the conclusion of the August campaign, massive public meetings were held at five centres. In Madurai, Polit Bureau  member S Ramachandran Pillai addressed the meeting while K Varadharajan participated in Neyveli. Sitaram Yechury attended the meetings at Nagapattinam and Salem. UVasuki addressed the Kovilpatti meeting.



Terming as ‘strange' the statement of Tamilnadu chief minister M Karunanidhi that the Left has a natural affinity with the Maoists, the CPI(M)'s Polit Bureau member Sitaram Yechury said at a press conference in Salem on September 4 that his party had been relentlessly fighting against the Naxalites of yesteryears and the Maoists of today since it strongly believes in the system of parliamentary democracy.

“We are engaged in running battles with these forces of violence,” he said, adding that the CPI(M), which had facilitated the Nepalese Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) to form a democratic government in Nepal, had no affinity with the Maoists in India who pursue the path of violence.

“There they shunned violence. We helped them as they opted for a democratic, competitive politics,” he said.

On the observation made by Mr Karunanidhi that the CPI(M) was encouraging the Maoists, he said it was “ideologically and factually” incorrect.

To a query whether it was an attempt to isolate the CPI(M), Yechury observed that “some agenda” was indeed there.
“A senior political leader such as Karunanidhi, who has been in politics for decades at the national level and a man behind many secular alliances in the past, knows all but still makes such a statement because of his allies with whom he shares power,” he said.
He also wanted to know the reason behind the chief minister's outburst against the CPI(M).