People's Democracy

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


No. 07

February 17, 2008



"Only Struggle Can Evolve Third Alternative"

SPEAKING on the need of a third alternative, as distinct from a third front, CPI(M) general secretary Prakash Karat said sustained struggles are needed to forge such an alternative that would adopt basic policies quite different from those being followed by the Congress as well as BJP. The joint platform needed for forging such struggles have to fight the pro-imperialist LPG policies and also the menace of communalism. Karat said the CPI(M) is not going o have any kind of electoral alliance with the Congress party with which the CPI(M) has basic differences, even though the party differentiates between the Congress and the BJP on the issue of communalism.

Karat was addressing the CPI(M) rally at the Qasimiya Intermediate College in Najibabad, as the opening event of the partys 19th state conference in the city. He informed that the coming 19th congress of the party, to be held at Coimbatore (Tamilnadu) from March 29 to April 3 this year, will review the partys performance in the last three years and decide the basic direction of its work in the next three years.

Karat said it was on the basis of certain issues that the CPI(M) had decided to extend support to the Congress led UPA government at the centre after the last Lok Sabha polls. One of the two key issues was to keep the communal forces out of power, as they are posing threats to our national unity. Secondly, imperialist powers are trying their best to foist their policies upon our nation, and to foil their game to the extent possible was also one of the considerations. At the same time, while peasants are committing suicide in various parts of the country and this is the worst manifestation of the ongoing agrarian crisis in the country, the UPA government has failed to fulfil the promises it made to the peasantry. Prices are going sky-high while the prices of petrol and diesel have been hiked six times since May 2004. A part of the hike was nullified once, only after strong protest from the CPI(M) and the Left.

The CPI(M)s stand, Karat said, as always been to oppose the anti-people policies of the UPA government that has also been adopting a lenient attitude vis-à-vis the forces of communalism. The UPA had promised to hand over to the CPI all the cases related to Gujarat massacre 2002, but it has yet to honour its word. He also said the CPI(M) has always been against any strategic alliance with US imperialists and hence opposed the nuclear deal that was a part of such a deal, more so because the latter would make India dovetail its foreign policy to the USs strategic interests. The CPI(M) also opposes the FDI in retail trade as it would deprive crores of Indians of their livelihood.

While assuring the audience that the war can be won even if it is an arduous one, Central Committee member Suneet Chopra said there is need to take up peoples issues like the employment guarantee scheme.

Subhashini Ali, another Central Committee member, raised the demand of implementation of the Sachar committee recommendations for minorities. She said backwardness and poverty persist in Uttar Pradesh, crimes have registered growth and provisions of the SC-ST Act have been made ineffective. The poor have not been given requisite ration cards and the PDS has been battered in the state. This is high time the party intervened in the situation.

CPI(M) state secretary S P Kashyap said the Mayawati government is acting out of a feeling of vengeance. He asked the people to beware of the threats of casteism, communalism and terrorism.

State secretariat member D P Singh said the sugar mills in the state owe crores of rupees to the peasants as cane arrears. At the same time, cane cultivators are not getting proper rates for their produce and the sugar barons are looting them with both hands.

Munawwar Jalil presided over and Rampal Singh conducted the rally. According to the local people, this was the biggest rally in Najibabad town. The Qasimiya College ground was overflowing on the occasion.