(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)
February 14, 2010
MAMMOTH RALLY IN KOLKATA SHOWS DETERMINATION
Fight Back is On
IT was yet another Sunday of Red flags in Kolkata. Hundreds of thousands of people marched through Kolkata streets and merged in Brigade Parade Ground on February 7, 2010 at the call of the Left Front, with determined spirit of fighting back the forces of anarchy and terror.
This mammoth rally came in the backdrop of more than two hundred of the tested and tried valiants of the CPI(M) and the Bengal Left Front being butchered over the past year, and the body count never stops growing. Thousands yet live in terror, in makeshift sheds of light polythene, in the unusually long and bitter Bengal cold. Leaders are being specifically targeted.
The slogan rang out,
loud-and-clear, from the masses
of the people that a new phase of the struggle – of protest and of
has commenced in
The rally was not a show of strength, but a show of courage and commitment to the Left movement. People from Lalgarh, Shalboni, Ranibandh, Balarampur, areas most affected by Maoist violence, attended the rally in numbers and many of them were actually the family members of the martyrs. Well-known faces of the jangal mahal greeted us with the clenched fist salute, thin arms quivering with rage – and a sway of happiness - as they mingled friendly with the massive people presence.
Debraj Manna of Dharampur in
Manifestly, it was a rally of the younger generation. Thousands of students and youth led the processions that rushed towards the ground; their spirit was evident through vigorous slogans, Che flags etc. SFI, in the recent period, won overwhelmingly in college students’ union elections battling severe attacks.
People came from afar in endless, orderly streams across Bengal and then along the roads, streets, lanes, and by-lanes of Kolkata. Busy professionals mingled with the workers, students with the kisans, youth with the khet mazdoors. We saw a doctor, literally run out, hastily tucking in her stethoscope into a large handbag, out of a eastern Kolkata medical institution on the CIT Road and catch up with her comrades-at-arms of the branch that she leads, and then she mixed seamlessly, happily into the slogan-shouting river of humanity.
Chief minister and CPI(M) leader Buddhadeb
Bhattacharya, addressing the rally, said that there was an impending
Bhattacharya further said, “West Bengal has advanced a lot. Now, some forces are trying to thwart every step towards development. They are taking recourse to murder, separatism, and even spreading communal poison.”
He reminded the packed gathering that covered every millimetre of the maidan, and beyond, that the time had come to build up resistance to the unholy efforts going on towards creation of social and political anarchy in Bengal, to bring back the days of the jackal of the seventies. “Come what may, we will not surrender”, asserted Bhattacharya and said, “We are accepting the challenge of defeating the danger”.
Left Front chairman and CPI(M) state secretary Biman Basu, in his address, sharply criticised the UPA government and said that their pro-MNC , pro-rich policies had led to rising prices and increasing burden on the poor. The central government has failed to take any measure against hoarding and black marketeering. He called for isolating the forces of anarchy.
Md Amin warned the centre that the working
be compelled to go for all
Left Front leaders, including Ashok Ghosh (Forward Block), Kshiti Goswami (RSP), Manjukumar Majumder (CPI) called for bigger and united struggle against the anti-people policies of the centre and anti-democratic actions of the opposition forces in the state. CPI(M) Polit Bureau members Sitaram Yechury and Nirupam Sen were present at the rally.
Though he was not physically present, the rally reverberated with the memories and ideals of Comrade Jyoti Basu. A big cut-out of his, in a saluting posture, was placed beside the stage. Books and magazines on the departed leader were bestsellers.