People's Democracy

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


No. 15

April 20, 2008


RSS-BJP Try To Attack CPI(M) Offices

Statewide Demonstrations Denounce Sangh Parivar

Ashok Dhawale

AS part of their drive to attack CPI(M) offices that began with the violent attack on the AKG Bhavan at Delhi on March 9, RSS-BJP goons tried to attack CPI(M) offices at Pune and Aurangabad on April 2, 2008, when the 19th Party Congress of the CPI(M) was in session at Coimbatore.

A horde of Sangh Parivar goons carrying wooden rods and posters of an RSS outfit called ‘Hindu Garjana’ first hurled stones on the ground floor board of the CPI(M) office at Pune in the afternoon of April 2. They then started climbing the stairs towards the Party office which is on the second floor of the building. Party activists rushed down, stopped the goons on the staircase and physically pushed them down to the ground floor, so that they were unable to reach the office. Here they attacked our comrades with the rods that they were carrying, and three young Party comrades – Siddharth Roy, Deepak Bagade and Mangesh Mandave – were seriously injured in the attack. 12 of the Sangh Parivar goons were later arrested by the police.

That this attack was pre-planned was evident from the fact that these goons had brought along with them representatives from a TV channel which filmed the attack that was broadcast nationwide. Three days earlier, in a public meeting in Pune, RSS leader and BMS national secretary Udayrao Patwardhan, while referring to the Kannur violence, had publicly threatened that “we shall not leave even a bamboo of the CPI(M) office.”

In Aurangabad on March 31, the RSS-BJP held a demonstration on the Kannur issue in the Paithan gate area, destroyed the rickshaw union board of the AITUC and burnt the Red flag. Immediately, CPI and CPI(M) activists rushed to the spot, held a counter-demonstration and demanded action against the vandals. On April 2, a demonstration of several hundred CPI(M)-CPI workers was held in Aurangabad, by which time the news of the attack on the Pune office had also been received.

Late at night on April 2, another horde of Sangh Parivar goons tried to attack the CPI(M) office at Aurangabad and stoned the building. Here Party comrades from the SFI and DYFI were in readiness. They rushed down, drove away the goons, caught two of them and handed over to the police. One of them called Namdeo Bendre is the son of a local BJP corporator. Here also some of the goons were arrested.

In both Pune and Aurangabad, meetings of the Left and secular parties were immediately convened by the CPI(M) district secretaries Ajit Abhyankar and Uddhav Bhavalkar respectively. Here representatives from the CPI(M), CPI, PWP, SP, JD(S), RPI groups, Rashtra Seva Dal, union leaders and also the Congress and NCP attended. All of them denounced the fascistic attacks of the Sangh Parivar on CPI(M) offices as an assault on democracy and called for a campaign to expose the communal and authoritarian face of the Sangh Parivar.

As soon as the news of the attack on the Pune office reached Coimbatore, the 19th Party Congress strongly condemned the attack and a press statement to that effect was released in the daily press briefing.

From Coimbatore itself, the Party state secretariat immediately contacted the Party district leadership in Maharashtra and called for statewide demonstrations along with other Left and secular forces to denounce the cowardly and defeatist Sangh Parivar attempts to attack the Party’s Pune and Aurangabad offices and to be ready to physically defend all our other offices against possible attacks. Accordingly, large demonstrations took place in several districts of Maharashtra over the next two days.

The West Bengal state committee of the Party also gave an immediate call for protest demonstrations in the state, and this call was also widely observed.

The Sangh Parivar attempt to attack the Pune and Aurangabad Party offices was also raised in the state assembly by CPI(M) MLAs, who moved an adjournment motion on the issue. Leader of the CPI(M) group in the state assembly Narsayya Adam made a scathing attack on the RSS and BJP in the assembly and he was supported by other secular parties.

Now the Party and mass organisations in Maharashtra are conducting a big campaign against price rise and the dismantling of the PDS, on extension of the loan-waiver for peasants along with remunerative prices for their produce, for the implementation of the Forest Rights Act and NREGA and demanding comprehensive central legislation for unorganised workers and agricultural labourers. Large tehsil and district level demonstrations have taken place last week and these will culminate in a massive statewide rally by mass organisations like the CITU, AIKS, AIAWU, AIDWA, DYFI and SFI on the state assembly in Mumbai on April 22, the birth anniversary of Comrade Lenin. Condemnation of the RSS-BJP and its ideology forms an integral part of this entire campaign.