People's Democracy(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)
March 19, 2006
Central Committee of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) met in New Delhi on
March 11 and 12, 2006. It issued
the following statement on March 13, 2006.
Central Committee took stock of the national political situation since its last
meeting held in December 2005.
Central Committee discussed the preparations of the Party for the assembly
elections to West Bengal, Kerala, Assam, Tamilnadu and Pondicherry.
Central Committee heard the report of the West Bengal state committee of the
Party on the preparations for the elections. It expressed full confidence that
with the overwhelming popular support for the CPI(M) and the Left Front
government, the people of West Bengal will return the Left Front for an
unprecedented seventh term in office.
Central Committee heard the report of the Kerala state committee about the line
being pursued for the assembly elections, the finalisation of seats and
candidates by the Party and the Left and Democratic Front. With the five years
of misrule of the UDF government, the Party and the LDF have gained big support
from the people and the UDF government stands totally discredited. The platform
of the Left and democratic forces is receiving support from new sections of the
people which will ensure the victory of the LDF.
this connection, the Central Committee condemned the decision of the UDF
government to refer the case of renovation and modernisation of certain power
projects to the CBI. This decision taken on the eve of the election is a
patently political move to implicate the secretary of the Kerala state committee
and a member of the Polit Bureau of the Party in a case. The same UDF government
had earlier entrusted the state vigilance department to investigate the matter.
The report of the vigilance director was submitted to the UDF government and
since it did not serve its interests, the cabinet decided to refer the matter to
findings of the Comptroller and Auditor General’s Report should be taken up
for discussion and scrutiny by the concerned committee of the legislature. The
CPI(M) has always stated that it is prepared to face any investigation in the
matter. The Central Committee
pointed out that such maneouvres by the Congress and the UDF leadership will not
succeed in diverting the attention of the people from the dismal record of
misrule and corruption of the UDF government.
Central Committee approved the electoral line pursued in Tamilnadu and Assam. In
Tamilnadu, the CPI(M), in cooperation with the DMK-led alliance, will work to
defeat the AIADMK alliance and increase the
representation of the Party in the legislature.
Assam, the Party will cooperate with the Left, the AGP and other secular forces
and fight both the Congress and the BJP.
Central Committee noted that some of the steps taken by the Election Commission
regarding the assembly elections are neither reasonable nor will it strengthen
the democratic process. The announcement of a five-phase polling in West Bengal
and three-phase polling in Kerala was uncalled for. While at the same time,
Tamilnadu has a single-day poll. In West Bengal, the Commission has taken the
initiative to prohibit wall-writing and other forms of electioneering which are
a normal part of taking the message of the parties to the people. It is not
understandable how the citizens who utilise their own houses for wall-writing,
putting up flags and banners can be prevented from doing so. Similarly, there
are questions about the role of observers in the election process. These need to
be clearly defined.
Election Commission has a vital role in ensuring free and fair elections. The
steps that the Commission takes must enhance democratic participation and not
curtail the democratic process.
Central Committee endorsed the stand taken by the Polit Bureau on the joint
statement issued on the occasion of the visit of US President Bush to India.
It is of the firm opinion that the “strategic partnership” forged by
the UPA government constitutes an erosion of India’s independent foreign
policy and strategic autonomy. The strategic alliance entails India joining the
United States in its hypocritical talk of spreading democracy which is nothing
but a cover for advancing its hegemonic aims and interference in countries to
promote “regime change”. The Manmohan Singh government has to explain
whether it endorses the Bush administration’s efforts at regime change in countries
like Cuba, Iran, Syria, Venezuela and Zimbabwe. The Central Committee questioned
the basis for involving US multinationals like Monsanto and Wal Mart in the
Knowledge Initiative on Agriculture.
Defence Framework Agreement of June 2005 is being carried out with the Maritime
Security Cooperation and the Logistics Support Agreement. Military collaboration
is no more confined to joint exercises but joint defence partnership with US
strategic interests in view. The Central Committee strongly opposed many of the
recommendations of the joint CEO Forum endorsed by the joint statement which are
a blueprint for opening up various sectors of the economy, including defence to
nuclear cooperation deal which has to be approved by the US Congress should not
be seen in isolation from the overall strategic alliance. The US tried to change
the July 2005 agreement, but there was strong public resistance by scientists,
the Left and other patriotic circles. The Central Committee called upon the
government to adhere to the seven points set out by the Polit Bureau in the
implementation of the nuclear cooperation deal. The US is interested in selling
its nuclear plants to India and make India mainly rely on nuclear power for its
energy needs. This is not in the interest of our energy security.
main problem is that this deal will be utilised to get India to fall in line
with the US strategic interests. There is a quid
pro quo involved which has already been seen in the way India reversed its
stand on the Iran nuclear issue.
Central Committee strongly deplored the course adopted by the Manmohan Singh
government in voting twice in the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Board in September 2005 and February 2006 which made India party to the Iran
nuclear issue being referred to the UN Security Council.
This is a basic departure from our independent foreign policy.
Central Committee cautioned the UPA government that this breach of the foreign
policy direction given in the Common Minimum programme is a serious matter. The
UPA government should realise that it has gone against the vital interests of
India in its relations with Iran and that there is no national consensus for the
pro-US orientation in the UPA government’s foreign policy.
Central Committee expressed concern at the price rise of food items and
essential commodities which is adding to the burden of the common people. The
prices of atta, sugar, pulses, edible oil and vegetables have all gone up. The
curtailment of the public distribution system at a time when the prices are high
is another injustice to the people. In this context, the cut in food subsidy in
the Union Budget is deplorable. Farmers’ suicides are recurring in many places
and the Centre has failed to address the problem meaningfully.
Central Committee noted that the Union Budget has not adequately met the
problems generated by the agrarian crisis and unemployment. In both these
spheres, the budgetary outlays are inadequate as also in the education and
health sectors. The Central Committee expressed its disappointment at the
government’s unwillingness to tax the rich and raise more resources.
The refusal to reintroduce the long-term capital gains tax is an example.
Central Committee reiterated its opposition to the privatisation of airports
which has begun with the contracts awarded for Delhi and Mumbai airports; the
corporatisation of mints and presses and to the opening up of retail trade to
Central Committee called upon all its Party units and mass organisations to
ensure that the Rural Employment Guarantee Act is properly implemented in the
200 districts where it has been launched from February.
Central Committee strongly condemned the bomb blasts in Varanasi which killed
over 20 people and injured many others. The
network of extremist groups resorting to terrorist violence is responsible for
this provocative attack. The
Central Committee appreciated the response of the people of Varanasi who have
refused to fall prey to such brazen acts of provocation.
this connection, the Central Committee condemned the BJP’s attempts to foment
communal tensions by taking out two yatras
around the country. The people have experienced the cynical and sectarian
politics behind such moves in the past and the BJP should realise that communal
politics will not find popular support.
Justice Banerjee report on the Godhra train fire case has exposed the role of
the BJP-RSS combine and the Modi government’s culpability in the pogroms
against the Muslims four years ago. The Commission has found that the fire was
an accident and not a case of deliberate arson. The 84 persons detained under
Pota in this case whose release the Pota Review Committee had recommended must
be set free immediately. The Best Bakery judgement case delivered in a
Maharashtra court is welcome as it is the first major case in which justice has
been rendered to the victims of the pogrom. The Central government has to ensure
that all other cases are taken up expeditiously and the CBI prosecutes the
guilty of serious crimes.
Central Committee noted that in the BJP-ruled states of Madhya Pradesh,
Rajasthan, Gujarat and in Orissa, where the BJP is in the coalition government,
communal outfits are being encouraged to target minorities and these state
governments continue to promote communalisation of educational and other
institutions. The Central Committee
condemned the attacks on the Christian community in Bhopal, Indore, Betul,
Itarsi, Seoni Malwa, Kota and other places.
The Central Committee called upon all its Party units and other
democratic and secular forces to be vigilant about the communal activities of
the BJP-RSS combine and intervene to counter such activities.
Central Committee endorsed the Polit Bureau’s stand on the attitude to be
adopted vis-à-vis the UPA government on various issues.
Since on a number of policy matters, the UPA government is going ahead
despite the opposition of the Party and the Left, such issues must be taken up
inside and outside Parliament more assertively. The Party should work with other
parties who agree on such issues to raise such matters in Parliament and to
forge joint platforms and movements outside.
Central Committee decided to make an overall assessment of the political
situation after the assembly elections and to chalk out its future course of
Central Committee called upon all Party units to observe the 75th anniversary of
the martyrdom of Bhagat Singh and his colleagues on March 23. The occasion
should be utilised to propagate this heroic martyr’s message of
anti-imperialism, secularism and socialism.