(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)
April 19, 2009
IN a show of people’s solidarity, and of unity of the poor, the Left-led villagers of hamlets strewn around Lalgarh and the Sijua area contained and chased away a massive armed aggression by the invaders of the various ‘Maoist’ splinters, with the Trinamuli hooligans bringing up the rear. The villagers withstood a barrage of gunfire, and then came out in their thousands flying the Red flag held proudly aloft and simply chased away the invading goons before they could reload their weapons.
The ‘Maoists’ had earlier been engaged, in the guise of the so-called ‘people’s committee’ in the onerous task of forcing ‘subscriptions’ of up to Re one lakh from the local traders and businesspersons, including rich farmers. They had also been seeking to taunt the local people into joining their ranks by blackguarding and ridiculing the names of the Left Front and the CPI(M). The villagers were gradually becoming very, very angry at these ploys.
The ‘Maoists’ had in mind an ‘occupation’ of the villages bordering on Lalgarh including Madhupur, Memul, and Godamouli in the run up to the Lok Sabha polls. The villagers of the area initially protested the initial bouts of incursion. When the shooting started, there was an initial hesitation and confusion amongst their ranks. Soon, led by CPI(M) workers, the villagers rose as one and shouting slogans and waving the Red flags started the chase, braving bullets.
The counter-charge was something the ‘Maoists’ and their band of armed Trinamuli underlings had not quite expected. They fired in panic, indeed emptied their guns, their aim getting awry in the mêlée, and then ingloriously ran away, the dastardly cowards, when finding that with a righteous roar, the villagers were almost on them. The chase however could not last long enough for, the assassins fled across the border into their safe abode of the Jharkhand state.
KILLING OF CPI(M)
However, the killing of CPI(M) workers continued unabated elsewhere. With the murder of Comrade Asim Mondal (45) of the jangal mahal of Belpahari in Midnapore west, the total number of CPI(M) workers martyred at the hands of the of ‘Maoist’ and Trinamuli assassins now stood at 58. Back on March 18, two CPI(M) workers, Comrades Durga Deshawali and Santosh Mahato were murdered by the same gang of murderers in the same rural zone.
Comrade Asim was quite a popular figure of the area. He would interact with a large circle of people of the villages. Anyone and everyone could approach him for help and guidance. He was in close touch with the poorer sections of the people of the area, in particular. This was greatly resented by the ‘Maoists’ and the Trinamulis. Comrade Asim also played a crucial role in winning back, after a gap of 25 years, the local Binpur-2 Gram Panchayat during the rural polls held earlier. The opposition were in a bind when they thought that the Binpur win might be repeated in this segment of the Jhargram Lok Sabha constituency, in the parliamentary elections. Hence, they chose to attack and kill Comrade Asim.
Comrade Asim worked in a shoe-making shop at the Bhulaveda crossing. He was in the shop, and it was six in the evening of April 10. He was engaged in small talk with a small group of clients when two men got off from a motorbike, approached him, took out two nine mm pistols — and shot him in the head and chest five times before ‘walking’ their vehicle for a distance, then firing off the engine and roaring away towards the thick dense thickets of the Dangarbihar jangal mahal. The clients stood shell-shocked as Comrade Asim fell to the ground, heavily bleeding, and died in front of their grieving eyes.
Biman Basu, state secretary of the CPI(M) has condemned this cowardly hit-and-run attack by the ‘Maoists’ and has called for an early arrest of the culprits. Comrade Asim leaves behind his wife, a son, and a very young daughter. Several large processions were taken out in the Bhulaveda area by the CPI(M) as well as at Hadda, Silda, and Belpahari villages, while another set of marchers walked bravely along the Lalgarh-Sijua area, a ‘Maoist’ stronghold off-and-on, condemning the murder of Comrade Asim and calling for a complete isolation of the killers from the people.
In between, the ‘Maoists’ have given a call for a ‘total ban’ on the entry of the police and of state administration officials for the Lok Sabha polls in the Lalgarh-Sijua area. They have declared their preference for the conduct of the polls by the members of the foreign-sponsored group of self-proclaimed ‘social activists’ who call them selves Sushil Samaj or ‘civil society.’
On the other hand, the Trinamulis have called for the ‘immediate removal’ from their posts of the state LF government’s chief secretary, the home secretary, the director general of police, and of the inspector general of police in charge of law-and-order. The chief electoral officer of Bengal has asserted that polling would be done as per regulations and the Model Code of the Election Commission of India would be followed, as in the past.