(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)
August 15, 2010
Widen Support for Left & Democratic Alternative!
The extended Central Committee meeting of the CPI(M) began in Vijayawada on August 7, 2010 with a resolve to carry forward the struggle to present a real alternative in terms of the path of development and in terms of policies to the anti-people neo-liberal policies being intensively pursued by the Congress-led UPA-II government.
Outlining the CPI(M) charter for political and social change in India, CPI(M) general secretary Prakash Karat in his inaugural address said that this extended meeting would discuss how to carry forward such a programme strengthening Left unity and widening the support for the Left and democratic alternative. He said that the Central Committee has convened this extended meeting to take stock of the political situation in the country and to chalk out a political line which can help the party to tackle the current situation and meet the various challenges that it is facing.
Earlier, a five member presidium comprising of M K Pandhe, Benoy Konar, M A Baby, M A Gafoor and Rama Das was proposed by Prakash Karat to conduct the proceedings of the meeting.
M K Pandhe moved the condolence resolution and a resolution on martyrs. The delegates and those attending the inaugural session paid homage to the martyrs by observing one-minute silence.
Paturi Ramaiah, chairman of the Reception Committee welcomed the delegates.
we give the full text of the inaugural address made by Prakash Karat:
gathered here in the city of
in recognition of the city and the region, which became a centre of the
communist movement which had its origin in the late 1930s.
During the Telangana struggle and the repression launched on the Communist Party in the 1948-50 period, scores of communist leaders and cadres were shot down by the police in this region. Some of the topmost national leaders of the communist movement and the CPI(M) hailed from this region --- P Sundarayya, M Basavapunnaiah, C Rajeswara Rao, N Prasada Rao, M Hanumantha Rao, L B Gangadhara Rao, Koratala Satyanarayana and many others.
The Central Committee of the CPI(M) has convened this extended meeting to take stock of the political situation in the country and to chalk out a political line which can help us to tackle the current situation and meet the various challenges that we are facing.
prices of food and essential commodities burden the people; millions of
go hungry everyday. The inequalities in income and wealth grow
Congress-led UPA government boasts about the high growth rate
achieved. The GDP growth rate is taken as the reliable index of
and development for the people. But this is not true. What the
policies have led to is the primitive accumulation of
enormous growth of the capital and assets in the hands of a narrow
number of dollar billionaires in
The government's policies are designed to help big business make super-profits and to enable the transfer of resources to the rich and powerful. The fiscal and taxation policies of the Congress-led government illustrate this fact starkly.
The UPA-II government in the past one and a quarter years since coming to office is pushing for more neo-liberal policies. The government wants to disinvest shares in all profitable public sector units. Earlier, the Left parties had ensured that shares would not be sold of the ‘navaratna’ companies. Now everything is up for sale.
Agriculture, which employs half the workforce in the country, is in crisis. Agriculture grew by only 0.2 per cent in 2009-10. Foodgrain production fell by 7.5 per cent the same year. Suicides by farmers have not abated. Land reforms are being reversed. In agriculture, corporatisation is being promoted alongside the withdrawal of state support for the peasantry.
The government proposes to bring multinational companies into retail trade. The government seeks to push through legislation to FDI in banking and insurance sectors. The working class is under increased attack with labour laws not being implemented and more and more sections being pushed into contract, casual work and into jobs in the informal sector.
for all these anti-people policies is being propelled by the Indo-US
Forum. What the chieftains of big business in US and
How the government policy is injurious to the people's interests is glaringly illustrated by the relentless price rise of food and other essential commodities. Government policies are directly responsible for the ever-rising prices. Repeated increases in the prices of petroleum products is one major reason. Forward trading in foodgrains and other essential commodities is another major factor. The government has weakened and curtailed the public distribution system through a targeted system which excludes much of the poor. Yet, the government callously and arrogantly refuses to take responsibility.
leadership and the government speak hypocritically about "inclusive
growth" when the policies they pursue are designed to exclude the vast
majority of the people from access to food, education, jobs and social
of majority communalism work on the basis of the Hindutva ideology and
which is injurious for the country and people's unity. The BJP-run
governments --- whether it be in
meeting at a time when some parts of the country are in great
the past two months, the
At the other end of the country, in the North East, we have seen the ill-effects of the continuous blockade of the highways to Manipur. Even now essential drugs and commodities are not available for the people who are suffering great hardships. The problems of national unity cannot be solved by the over centralised approach of the ruling class parties. What is required is the creation of a federal system which accommodates the diverse aspirations of the people of the various regions and nationalities.
neo-liberal policies are not only affecting the economic
sphere. This is
an outlook and philosophy which worships the market and promotes greed
rapacity. Every institution of the state and every pore of our society
getting polluted and corrupted. The nexus between big business and
is now out in the open. Public policy making is suborned to serve the
interests of a rich and powerful stratum. The mining mafia of the
Such an atmosphere has begun to corrode the parliamentary democratic system itself. The people's right to assemble, to organise and to protest is being severely restricted by administrative and judicial actions. Trade unions are not allowed to function in special economic zones and many other enterprises; peasants face police repression if they protests against the lands being taken away; and student unions and organisations are banned in many educational institutions.
This is the
path the ruling classes have adopted, which is in alignment with their
stand adopted by the CPI(M) and its consistent opposition to the
policies and the strategic tie-up with
The Maoists have exposed their vicious and anti-democratic character through their murderous spree targeting the CPI(M). They do not stop at this but attack innocent people, as seen in the dastardly Gnaneswari Express sabotage. Such actions should dispel the illusion some sections of the intelligentsia have about the Maoists.
Left-led governments of
In the last
Lok Sabha elections, the CPI(M) suffered reverses in both
In the present dismal scene in the country, only the CPI(M) and the Left present a real alternative --- an alternative in terms of the path of development and in terms of policies.
On the economic front, the first and foremost task is to tackle the agrarian crisis. Instead of moving towards corporatisation of agriculture, the farmers are to be assured of inputs at reasonable prices, so that agriculture can be sustainable. The goal of ensuring food security requires that farmers be given sufficient incentives to produce more.
There has to be a universal public distribution system with adequate procurement to ensure that hunger and malnutrition are eliminated. The public sector should play a key role in the strategic sectors of the economy including the financial sector. Labour intensive industries should be encouraged, so that more employment is created.
Speculative capital flows must be regulated and profits from such foreign institutional investment taxed. Steps should be taken to recover the illegal money kept in tax havens and secret bank accounts. The corporates and the affluent should pay more taxes.
It is with the increased tax revenues that there can be increased public expenditure on education, health and social welfare.
The Left stands for firm adherence to secularism. This requires that the governments, both at the Central and state level, make no concessions to the communal forces. Terrorist violence emanating from whichever source should be put down firmly.
The Left stands for an end to caste and gender oppression. At present, the priority should be for the passing of the bill for women's reservation in the Lok Sabha; the implementation of the Ranganath Mishra commission report for reservation for the minorities in education and jobs and stringent steps to end all forms of caste discrimination, particularly untouchability. The rights of the tribal people over their own lands must be ensured by the implementation of the Forest Rights Act and protection of their rights by stopping large-scale, indiscriminate and illegal mining. The scourge of corruption in public life and in state institutions must be tackled by starting at the top.
This is the
charter for political and social change in