(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)
January 03, 2010
Tackling Rising Prices Flayed
Sarkar, Polit Bureau member of the CPI(M) and chief minister of
the irresponsible attitude of the UPA government in tackling the
price rise of foodgrains and other essential commodities. He attacked
particular union minister of agriculture, Sharad Pawar, for his
states could do more to rein in prices.
Sarkar addressed a huge public meeting at the conclusion of the 27th
conference of "Tamilnadu Vivasayikal Sangam", a state unit of All
India Kisan Sabha (AIKS), held at Dindigul, one of the strongholds of
peasant movement on December 21, 2009. The concluding public rally was
success with around 25,000 poor peasants, agricultural labour and
braving the heavy downpour to listen to the leaders' speeches. Dindigul
awash with Red flags. Manik Sarkar, further enthused the crowd by
umbrella on the dais and making his speech in pouring rain.
Manik Sarkar also delivered a special address to the state conference.
criticised the UPA government for continuing the non-implementation of
reforms in the country and contrasted this with the track record of
centre, while resisting the demand for distribution of land to the
poor, was generously giving away huge tracts of land to the rich people
various garbs. Even the ruling DMK is following this by not keeping its
electoral promise of offering two acres land to the landless poor.
pointed out how despite 60 per cent of land in Tripura being under
Forests, the Left Front government offered the remaining land under its
to the landless poor.
state conference was inaugurated by S Ramachandran Pillai, president of
on December 19, 2009. In his inaugural address, he said that the
must ensure remunerative prices for all agriculture produce to make
viable for peasants. It should also make more public investments in
irrigation, infrastructure and science and technology for development
agriculture. While increasing the flow of credit facility to farmers,
cover should be given for all crops as recommended by the M S
commission. Pillai asserted that without these measures, protection to
was not possible.
that agriculture is facing an unprecedented crisis, AIKS president said
landless farmers increased from 20 per cent in the 1990s to 32 per cent
Around 48 per cent of peasants are caught in credit crisis with most
exorbitant interest for their agricultural loans. The growth rate of
agricultural production and rate of foodgrains production has gone down
drastically. Drought and flood alternatively and regularly ruin large
of agriculture lands and the government continues its indifference to
central government had made considerable public investments in
power and infrastructure sectors till 1991. But with the speeding up of
neo-liberal reforms since then, it took a reverse path and stopped
investments resulting in today's situation of unprecedented
crisis. This is accompanied by the grabbing of agriculture lands by
persons, he added.
the propagation of Bt. Brinjal by MNCs, Pillai cautioned that such a
wipe out the rights on seeds by farmers. Instead, science and
technology on GM
seeds should be developed by public sector units and the seeds must be
available to farmers at an affordable cost, he suggested.
Party of India (Marxist) Tamilnadu state secretary
secretary of the sangham, K Balakrishnan, announced in the session that
intensive campaign against land grabbing would be held in villages on
15, 2010 and demonstrations staged
before all taluk offices on March 1. The conference, through a
demanded uninterrupted 20-hour power supply for agriculture, free power
connection to five lakh farmers who applied for it and settlement of
senior leader of the sangham, N R Ramasamy, hoisted the Red flag. State
president K Mohd Ali presided over the inaugural session while sitting
Dindigul and assembly leader of the CPI(M), K Balabarathi, delivered
Varadharajan, general secretary of AIKS, G Veeriahan, veteren leader of
Kisan movement in Tamilnadu, P Shanmugam, Dr Venkatesh B Athreya, Prof
Soundararajan, CITU Tamilnadu general secretary,
total of 517 delegates, which included 38 women delegates, attended the
conference that began in the evening of December 19 from all over the
The delegation included those from affiliated to the Vivasayikal
Tamilnadu Sugarcane Farmers Association, Tamilnadu Milk Producers
and Tamilnadu Tribal People's
secretary of Sangam, K Balakrishnan, presented a 60-page work and
organisational report to the session detailing about the agrarian
Tamilnadu and powerful struggles waged by the Sangam in the past three
There was good discussion on the report for nearly eight hours in which 68 delegates from 34 districts and
three affiliated organisations participated.
conference elected a 70-member new state committee with K Balakrishnan
as president and P Shanmugam as general
secretary. Nagappan was elected as treasurer.