People's Democracy

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


No. 43

October 24, 2010

An Alternative Left Agenda

Placed Before People of Bihar

CPI(M) Releases Election Manifesto


CPI(M) Bihar state secretary Vijaykant Thakur released the Party election manifesto for  state assembly polls at a press conference today in Patna. State secretariat members Sarvodaya Sarma and Ram Pari were also present on the occasion. The CPI(M) has fielded candidates in 30 seats out of the total 243 and is contesting the elections in alliance with the other two main Left parties in the state, CPI and CPI(ML).


After making a sharp critique of the rule of the JD(U)-BJP alliance government led by Nitish Kumar for the last five years as also of the earlier bourgeois landlord parties regimes, the manifesto places before the people of the state a Left alternative agenda for real development of the people and the state.


Identifying the implementation of land reforms as the crucial imperative for removing utter poverty in the state and ensuring its real development, the manifesto demands the Nitish government to make public the Report of the Bandopadhyaya Commission on Land Reforms and implement its recommendations. Thakur said in his remarks that the Commission had identified that around 22 lakh acres of ceiling surplus and bhoodan land is available for distribution among the landless and has recommended that each family be given at least one acre of land. The manifesto demands implementation of this recommendation. Along with this, the other recommendation of providing protection to share croppers by recording them must also be implemented. Irrigation facilities, which are non-existent now, must be provided in a big way to ensure that the farmers are not dependent on only monsoons. All these would help in providing year long work for the agricultural labour.


The CPI(M) manifesto also stresses on the need to develop agro-based industry, cottage industry and other small and medium scale industry in the state apart from taking steps to revive the sick units, including the 25 closed sugar mills. It criticises the largescale contractualisation of workforce and calls for steps to undo this. It demands strict implementation of labour laws.


Lambasting the largescale corruption in PDS and other welfare schemes, the manifesto demands universalisation of PDS. It holds both the state and central governments for the unprecedented price rise breaking the backbone of the people. Houses must be built for the homeless people by the government. The large scale migration of young people from the state cannot be stopped with mere advertisements in newspapers and TV advising against migration as was done by the Nitish government. The manifesto demands that concrete steps must be taken to provide avenues for employment for the youth in order to stem this migration.




The CPI(M) manifesto notes that the coming together of the three main Left parties for these elections with a concrete alternative Left agenda before the people paves the way for realignment of political forces in the state. The struggles against the neo-liberal economic policies of both the state and central governments, against communalisation and casteist politics and the struggles on people's burning issues would get a boost in the coming period, it expects.


Answering questions, Thakur said the CPI(M) is committed to further strengthening this Left unity despite the fact that there could  not be agreement between the parties on around 20 seats. The land struggle led by the Party would be intensified in the coming period both within and outside the state assembly. More than hundred comrades have become martyrs in this struggle since 1993.

(N S Arjun from Patna)