People's Democracy

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

Vol. XXX

No. 25

June 18, 2006

Central Committee Statements


The central committee of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) issued the following statements on June 8 and 9 during its session in Hyderabad:


THE central committee meeting, at the outset, paid homage to the memory of Comrade Anil Biswas, member of the Polit Bureau and secretary of West Bengal state committee of CPI(M), Comrade T K Ramakrishnan, former member of the central committee and veteran Communist leader of Kerala, Comrade C Kannan, veteran Communist and trade union leader from Kerala, Comrade K Ramani, veteran leader of the Party and working class movement in Tamilnadu, Comrade Mahabub Zahedi, member of parliament and senior leader of the Kisan Sabha in West Bengal, Comrade Sheopat Singh, veteran leader of the Party and kisan movement of Rajasthan and K K Pawar, member of the Maharashtra state committee.


All these leaders of the Party had passed away during the last three months. 


Against Petrol/Diesel Price Hike


The central committee expressed its strong opposition to the increase in the prices of petrol and diesel announced by the central government. The government has refused to consider the proposal of the Left parties to reduce the tax/duty burden on petroleum products. At present, the taxes and duties constitute 57 per cent of the petrol price and 36 per cent of the diesel price. This could have been revised to offset any price increase. The government has not also accepted the creation of all price stabilisation fund by using the money collected through cess on crude to support the Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs). The government has also refused to review the duty drawback of Rs 3,500 to Rs 4,000 crores given as export incentive to exporter of petroleum products. In the last three years, the net gain for the government has been Rs 38,000 crores (Rs 8,000 crore in subsidy and Rs 30,000 crore in revenue). The subsidy reduction has been accomplished by shifting the burden on the oil companies.


At a time when the prices of all essential commodities is rising and burdening the people, the petroleum price increase will have a cascading effect. The diesel price increase will particularly affect farmers and transportation costs. 


The central committee calls upon all Party units to continue to launch protest actions against the price rise. The central committee appeals to political parties, mass organisations and all sections of the people to join the June 13 All India Protest Day to demand that the price hike be rescinded.


(June 8, 2006)


Solidarity With The Palestinian People


The central committee strongly condemned the stand of Israel, the United States and the European Union in cutting off funds to the Palestinian Authority after the Hamas formed the government. Israel has stopped giving $50 million collected per month which is tax and customs revenue that belongs to the Palestinian Authority. This immoral effort to starve Palestinian people into submission is against all international and humanitarian norms.


The UPA government has not condemned this stance of Israel and the United States. In response to the criticism of the Left Parties, the government has announced a token contribution for Palestine. 


The central committee wants the Manmohan Singh government to take a categorical position that the wishes of the Palestinian people have to be respected and all financial allocations should be restored to the Palestinian Authority.


The central committee authorised the Polit Bureau to finalise with the Left Parties a delegation of members of parliament to be sent to Palestine to study the situation and to express solidarity with the Palestinian people. 


On OBC Reservation In Educational Institutions


The central committee urged the UPA government to implement the understanding arrived at to introduce 27 per cent OBC reservation in educational institutions under the purview of the central government at the UPA meeting along with the Left parties held on May 22. 


The OBC reservation in central educational institutions should be introduced from the next academic session in 2007. There should be a commensurate increase in the seats in educational institutions. 


The central committee reiterated that the benefit of reservation for the OBCs should be go to the needy sections for which the Supreme Court guideline on excluding the “creamy layer” should be applicable. There has to be an allocation of seats for students from poorer sections who do not belong to the reservation categories.


The central committee also urges the central government to bring a central legislation to empower the state governments to regulate admissions and fees in all private higher educational institutions and professional colleges. Unless this is done, a large number of students belonging to all communities will be deprived of their legitimate right to education because of the exorbitant high fees and admissions disregarding merit. 

(June 9, 2006)