People's Democracy(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)
November 18, 2007
Nandigram: Whose Terror?
ENTIRELY predictable anti-Left, specially anti-communist, hysteria is being whipped up centering around the Nandigram incidents in West Bengal. Wild and motivated allegations are being hurled by all reactionary forces ably aided by sections of the media that the CPI(M) has unleashed “red terror” in Nandigram.
What is the truth? In these columns in the past and elsewhere in this issue, details of what actually happened in Nandigram are carrying. From the 3rd of January 2007, under the pretext of not permitting any land acquisition for a chemical hub, an unholy nexus of Maoists-Naxalites under the banner of the Trinamul Congress took control of the area. They prevented any sort of administration to enter the area. They forcibly evicted thousands of villagers from their homes and lands. Armed gangs fired upon a police party on March 14 when civic administrative order was sought to be restored. This “occupation” continued until recently when the legitimate owners of homes and property in the area forced their way after eleven months of living as refugees to restore their disrupted lives and activities. Is the return of the legitimate owners to their homes a crime? Is it not a crime to evict people, in several thousands, from their homes and force them to spend a life of squalor in refugee camps? Where was the conscience of the so-called intellectuals who are crying hoarse against the CPI(M) now?
An important aspect that needs to be taken into account is the role of the Maoists and the opportunity provided to them by the Trinamul Congress to spread mayhem and terror. Now as the CRPF has taken charge of the area, landmines have been located and three Maoists have been arrested. Clearly, these Maoist squads were armed with sophisticated weapons. In fact, the National Security Advisor, M K Narayanan, has, on record, stated that there is Maoist hand in the violence in the area.
The prime mMinister has recently described Maoist activities as, “the single biggest internal security challenge ever faced by our country”. An article in The Defence Journal gives some details of Maoist penetration in the Indian military and its State-owned ordinance factories. It says: “As recent as October 2006, Indian army recovered a massive cache of state manufactured arms and ammunition in the eastern city of Kolkata. Three people, including a soldier, were arrested in connection with the seizure of arms. The hoard included anti-personnel mines and ammunition. According to an October 3, 2006 BBC report, “An army spokesman said the cache of arms was meant for Maoist rebels and other terrorist groups active in and around eastern West Bengal state”. The report added, the Army spokesman Wing Commander R K Das said “the arms were meant for supply to Maoist and other terrorist groups active in the region”.
Those who are now railing against the CPI(M) must realise the company that they are keeping. Advani’s double-speak became clear when he opportunistically sought to reap political benefits by hailing the perpetrators of such crimes. The BJP’s NDA ally, Trinamul Congress, is the one patronising the Maoist elements. The intellectuals of all hues and colours must realise where they are ranging themselves in their eagerness to heap calumny on the CPI(M).
In these columns in the March 18 issue, we had stated: “Some years ago, in Keshpur in Midnapur district, these elements created similar mayhem and terror in order to establish their political presence. Many lives were lost even then, but once peace and order was restored and elections held, the Left Front scored resounding victories. Keshpur model is now being sought to be repeated in Nandigram. This, thus, constitutes a frontal political assault through the use of violence and terror by Trinamool Congress & Co.”
Further, “Like they failed in Keshpur, so shall they once again. This is a political challenge that has been thrown at the CPI(M) and the government in West Bengal. It shall be met politically. The Left Front government in West Bengal is a product of many glorious movements advancing people’s interests. Many valuable lives were lost in these struggles, but the reactionaries were never allowed to succeed.”
We reassert such determination. The Left Front state government has outlined many a measure to restore peace and normalcy in the region. While the common people are responding to these initiatives with eagerness, they continue to remain vigilant against these elements who seek to recreate an atmosphere of terror and mayhem.