People's Democracy

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


No. 48

December 02, 2007

Bengal Calls For Peace And Amity


A view of the massive CPI(M) rally passing through the areas in Kolkata which witnessed mindless violence


THE days following the attempt at communal disharmony in some areas of central Kolkata have witnessed a series of peace marches brought under the aegis of the Bengal unit of the CPI(M).


A serpentine procession was brought out in Midnapore town from where a strident demand rose for peace and amity throughout Bengal, and the processionists condemned the Kolkata disturbances. The march included 300 tableaux and a motorcycle cavalcade of riders carrying the Red flag. The marchers traversed across 130 kms of road length for several hours on end.


Serampore in the heart of the industrial zone of Hooghly was a scene of a several-thousands-strong peace march. After moving around the area with a call for peace and harmony, the area, the programme ended with a large rally where the speakers like CPI(M) leaders Santosh Chakraborty, Sumangal Singh, and Chandan Das called upon the people to identify and isolate the disturbers of peace.


At Bhangar in south 24 Parganas, a peace march moved along the Ghatakpukur crossing to the Sonepur bazaar, a distance of more than six kms, with a participation of more than ten thousand people. The rally at the end of the march at Sonepur saw a meeting addressed by CPI(M) leaders like Abdus Sattar Mollah, Tushar Ghosh, Qasim Mollah, Aziz-ur Rahaman, and others. A large peace rally was held at Dumdum in north 24 Parganas from the central jail maidan to Durganagar.


Another such large rally for peace and friendship was organised at Krishnagar in the district of Nadia where the processionists carrying banners and festoons marched from the post office crossing to the Sadar hospital crossing. Addressing the rally at the point of conclusion of the rally were Aakulannada Bandyopadhyay, Rita Chatterjee, and Pinaki Moitra.


A very long procession replete with Red flags circulated around Bally, adjoining panchayat areas, and Howrah Township where the participants included over and above writers, artistes, and intellectuals, a large cross section of the mass of the people. The marchers stepped across a stretch of 20 kms from Bally to Chunabhati. Flagged off by state secretariat member of the Bengal CPI(M) Dipak Dasgupta, the leadership that marched in step with the masses were Sridip Bhattacharya, Swadesh Chakraborty, Mohanta Chatterjee, Nemai Samanta, Kanak Das, Krishnaswapan Mitra, Pudmanidhi Dhar, Batokrishna Das, Rajen Roy, Madhu Mukherjee et al. The marchers went through the Salkia ‘four-way’ crossing, Howrah maidan Sibpore tram depot, Danish Sheikh Lane, and Bakultala.




A massive march was organised by the city unit of the CPI(M) in Kolkata, one of the largest peace marches put in place of late. From ten in the morning, people started to gather at the Ramlila maidan near the Moulali crossing in the heart of central Kolkata. Wave after wave of the mass of the people came along the C I T Road, turning right into the Ananda Palit Road, and thence through the narrower and longer Suresh Sarkar Road, exiting to the mixed area of Noor Ali Lane, Beniapukur Road, Anjuman Road, u-turning into Beniapukur and then emerging at the Ripon Street-A J C Bose Road crossing – an entire area that had seen mindless violence only a couple of days back.


The banners carried by the marchers said it all: ‘Consolidate Bengal’s tradition of peace, amity, and harmony!’ ‘Struggle against conspiracies and thwart attempts at disorder!’ ‘Do not listen to rumours, do not generate rumours!’ ‘We want peace and development, not anarchy and disorder!’ and ‘Protect and enhance citizen’s rights!’


The marchers had their ranks nearly doubled as enthused passers by would join in, especially as the procession entered Beniapukur, and the ranks continued to swell as the march moved ahead with an inspiring inexorability. By the time, a rally was held at the Ripon Street triangular park, more marchers were striding out from the Ramlila maidan. Those who spoke at the rally, in a mix of Bengali, Hindi, and Urdu, were CPI(M) leaders Hashim Abdul Halim, Mohammad Salim, Sudhangsu Sil, Mohd Nizamuddin, Rabin Deb, and Niranjan Chatterjee.




Elsewhere, far away from the bustle of the city, at Khejuri in Midnapore east, Shyamal Chakraborty, central committee member of the CPI(M), too, spoke of peace and development. Addressing meetings of members of the CPI(M) -- meetings that took the shape, size, and character of mass rallies -- Shyamal Chakraborty called upon the assemblage to win the hearts and minds of the people irrespective of political affiliation or lack thereof, through affection and sympathy. He called for a solidifying of the rural unity further.


In a time of reconstruction and acceleration of process of development, which is left stalled by the marauders of the Trinamul Congress and the CPI(Maoist) and their flunkies, revenge should never enter the process of thinking of anyone, reminded Shyamal Chakraborty, whether or not he or she had been at the receiving end of torture, loot, and ejection from home and hearth. Also addressing the meetings was CPI(M) state committee member Laxman Seth.