People's Democracy

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

Vol. XXX

No. 10

March 05, 2006



Killer Bush Go Back!

S K Pande & G Mamta



FROM Kashmir to Kanyakumari and from Tripura to Gujarat, every nook and corner of our country reverberated with people’s protests – big and small – and an emphatic message: “Killer Bush Go Back”. Keeping aside our well-known tradition of Athiti Devo Bhava, the people joyously shouted at the top of their voices: Bush Haivan Vaapas Jao (Devil Bush, Go Back).


At the time of going to press, we have received news of spirited demonstrations being held in Kerala, Tamilnadu, Assam, Tripura, Bengal, Maharashtra and other states. The highest representative forum of people, parliament, also witnessed impressive demonstrations by dozens of MPs belonging to Left and secular parties, both inside the House and in the parliament premises. Both Houses were adjourned due to this protest.


In Delhi, right at the time our rulers were signing away the nation’s sovereignty to US imperialism, under the garb of agreements, thousands of indignant countrymen thundered few hundred metres away from parliament: “No Surrender To Imperialism”. The 50,000 strong anti-Bush marchers settled down to hear their leaders speak after a two hour long march from the historic Ram Lila maidan on March 2. While some said the turnout was beyond expectations, others called the anti-Bush rally organised by the Left and secular parties in New Delhi as one of the largest in recent times against any foreign head and his policies.


A riot of colour, interspersed with posters and buntings with tableau and cartoons, some atop buses and trucks all vent their anger against Bush and the UPA government’s servile support to Bush. It was a rare rally where the blue of the Rapid Action Force (RAF) and the dingy khaki of the Delhi police force were overwhelmed by the red and green of the CPI(M), CPI, RSP, Forward Bloc and Samajwadi Party, JD(S) and Indian Justice Party. Thousands of banners, posters and buntings fluttered gaily. It was indeed spring in bloom.


Bush go back, flags dominated along with slogans accusing the government of being traitors. Bush look alikes, in a variety of dresses and colours lent their own meaning. The posters  screamed: Go Back Bush. Standing tall was another “I  am Bush - I ambush.” The students of JNU and Jamia had their faces painted – black, blue, green, singing Ye Mashal Jalte Rahe Raath Tak (This Torch Will Burn Till The Evening).


Men, women with babies on waist, students, academics, political workers, the ordinary man on the street were all rubbing shoulders with thousands of toiling workers from different states who congregated at Ramlila ground since the morning. There was significant participation from the land of Bhagat Singh, Punjab. Many people from remote UP villages had come with headgear, drums, deer horns, pipes etc. Some wore colourful folk dresses while others sported black balloons with message “Go Back Bush”, which were later released in the air by top leaders.


During the march, Joanna, a wild life photographer, with a ‘Not with you and Not a terrorist!’ contradicting Bush’s statement of ‘Either with us Or with the Terrorists’ written on her T-shirt was annoyed with the UPA government for having invited president Bush. “This man is wreaking our world. His policies are harming the humanity and environment at large”, she said.


Sugandha, Kriti Sahni and Nipun Kapur from Lady Shriram College were furious at the red carpet welcome offered to George W Bush. “He is a wrong man bent on signalling the death of democracy”, they said. Peasant women from Haryana and Uttar Pradesh participating in the rally said that they have come to join the protest as the policies dictated by the Bush administration are impinging on their livelihood.


Teachers from Delhi University and Jawaharlal Nehru University participated in the rally. ‘Bush regime is the worst offender of human rights and civil rights’, says a teacher at Delhi University. She said, “We don’t want our government to support the US moves in Iran” and questioned why the government is welcoming the biggest killer in the world.


Kamla, an Anganwadi worker from Delhi said, “Bush is the biggest lutera of the world. There is no one to save us from him but ourselves, and so I have come here to join the protest.” She said Bush is a “mass murderer killing thousands of innocent children in Iraq war”.


Tista Basu, a sixth standard student from Sardar Patel School drew a cartoon of Bush that said ‘Bush – You’ll soon have to cry’. 


Activists of Students’ Federation of India wore stickers on their bodies saying, ‘Killer is in town, Drive him away’.  ‘India am Bushed, Youth of the nation wake up’ said a Democratic Youth Federation of India’s placard.


There was also a sprinkling of some westerners in the rally. An Australian couple, Bonnie and Scott told People’s Democracy that they completely share the sentiments being expressed in the rally. Bonnie, who is a teacher in her country, said that people in their country were also fighting against their government’s pro-US policies. She opined that this protest was much more passionate and much more representative in terms of participation.





Prakash Karat addressing the protestors


The rally culminated into a public meeting after reaching Parliament Street. Seated on the dais were top leaders of the parties holding the protest rally. The presence of veteran CPI(M) leader Harkishan Singh Surjeet on the dais enthused the gathering no end. Also present were Sitaram Yechury and Brinda Karat (CPI-M), D Raja (CPI), Devrajan (Forward Bloc), Ram Gopal Yadav (SP) and Danish Ali (JD-S).


Setting the tone for the protest meeting, CPI(M) general secretary Prakash Karat in his opening address demanded that Bush must be jailed and tried for the innumerable war crimes he has committed as president of the United States. “He is a war criminal and our government has no reluctance in inviting him as State guest”, he said. Reminding about the unanimous resolution passed by our parliament after US aggression on Iraq demanding the US to quit that country, Karat said it was a proud occasion. Bush wants to adopt the same tactics vis a vis Iran but the people of our country will not tolerate any attack either on Iran, North Korea, Cuba or Venezuela.


Karat warned the prime minister Manmohan Singh that if the nation’s independent foreign policy is deserted then the UPA government will be totally isolated from the people. “Manmohan Singh government should note that the Left is as serious about imperialism as it is about communalism. The Indian people would not tolerate if it compromises with imperialism. The responsibility for any fall out would be totally on the UPA government”, he said. Debunking the claims of unanimity on foreign policy issues, Karat said it is only the BJP which is siding with the Congress on servility to US imperialism. There have been protests in every nook and corner of the country against Bush visit.


Referring to the signing of various agreements by the UPA government with the Bush administration around the same time, Karat felt that these pose a major challenge before the nation today. The US is prying open our agricultural sector for the benefit of its MNCs like Monsanto, which will ruin the lives of our peasants further. “The reason for our farmers committing suicide in our country is the policies of Bush administration”, he said. Karat ended his speech with a call to the people of the country to take forward this resistance to US imperialism and more particularly the struggle against the UPA government’s compromising attitude.


Samajwadi Party president and Uttar Pradesh chief minister Mulayam Singh Yadav blasted the UPA government for bending before the pressure of US government. He contrasted this with the tough approach adopted by the then UF government, of which he was the defence minister, regarding the issue of signing the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT). “We did not relent to the pressure and refused to sign the treaty as it was an unequal regime”, he said. Saying that Bush has slaughtered millions of people in Iraq, Afghanistan and intended to repeat it in Iran, Mulayam Yadav extended full support to the Bush Go Back campaign. He said the Congress, the BJP and Bush are one and the same in terms of thought and policies. He questioned the rationale of the UPA government in completely ignoring the views of our scientific community and nuclear specialists on the issue of Indo-US nuclear accord and going ahead with its signing.


Mulayam Yadav ended his speech calling upon the Left parties to make serious efforts for putting in place a third alternative in the country and extended his full cooperation to that endeavour.


Addressing the gathering, CPI general secretary A B Bardhan lambasted the UPA government for cutting off India’s relations with the non aligned countries and joining the US imperialism as a junior partner. As the US has made advanced plans to attack Iran, what will the stand of  the UPA government be when it actually carries out the attack, questioned Bardhan. “Will you support and join the attack? Or will you justify it”, he asked. Bardhan reiterated the Left parties stand of advocating nuclear weapon free world and opposition to unequal treaties.


He revealed that the Left leaders told the prime minister on his face that Bush is not our guest as he is a killer who slaughtered lakhs of people in Iraq. Not willing to make any detailed comment on the prime minister breaking the protocol and going personally to the airport to receive Bush, Bardhan said he felt shameful. And referring to Bush patting the back of our prime minister at the airport, he said it reflected the satisfaction of a master who was applauding for the work being carried out as per his directions.


Forward Bloc general secretary Debabrata Biswas, RSP leader Abani Roy, CPI(ML-Liberation) general secretary Dipankar Bhattacharya, Indian Justice Party president Udit Raj were among those who spoke. A B Bardhan presided over the meeting while CPI(M) central committee member Joginder Sharma conducted the proceedings.