People's Democracy

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


No. 30

July 24, 2011




Remarkable Ten Days in China

Sridip Bhattacharya


A ten-member delegation of the Communist Party of India (Marxist), led by Polit Bureau member Sitaram Yechury visited China upon the invitation of the Communist Party of China (CPC) during July 4-14, 2011. Other members of the team were Sridip Bhattacharya, M V Govindan, Narayan Kar, G Nagaiah, Ananta Deka, Gunasekaran, Prem Nath Rai, Ms Ranjana Nirula and Duli Chand. Sridip Bhattacharya was the deputy leader of the delegation. During these ten days, the delegation visited Jianxi province, the centrally administered Chongqin municipality and Beijing. Due to his preoccupation with the political developments in our country, Sitaram Yechury joined the delegation only on July 12 in Beijing and led the discussions with the top leadership of the CPC. The focus of this visit was on party building.




The delegation arrived at Nanchang, capital of Jianxi on July 4. From Nanchang airport, we were taken to Jian, a prefecture level city, nearly 250 kms away. During the road journey, we could have a glimpse of socialist countryside. We did not see a single mud house on the way. Old modelled houses were also very few. A large number of new buildings and apartments could be seen. Jian is not a big city, but has all the modern facilities.


On the morning of July 5, we were taken to the office of one of the city street committees of the CPC. Xi Quiao, Secretary General of the city street committee received the delegation and made a brief speech narrating activities of the street committee. Apart from party organisational activities, this street committee is involved in implementing Chinese government's programmes. From there the delegation moved to Jingangshan mountains. Jingangshan is termed as the cradle of the Chinese revolution. It is on this mountain in 1928, in Huangyangjie, the battle between communist forces numbering only 400, and Kuomingtang numbering 5000 took place and which the communist forces won. The great canon used by communist forces is on display here. Chairman Mao lived here during 1928 to 1930.


Nanchang is a famous city in China with glorious history. Nanchang uprising is of tremendous significance to the Chinese revolution. All the incidents leading to the uprising and the glorious fight put up by communists are presented in a very lively way in a big museum here.


On the same day, we visited the Jianxi provincial party school. This party school has been in existence for the past 60 years. The activities of the party school were explained to us by the party leaders in charge of the school. This school is for training the party cadre on one hand and the administrative cadre on the other. The school has both theoretical and practical training in its curricula.




Chongqing is one of the four municipalities of China that are directly under Chinese central administration. Chongqing is a unique city situated on the confluence of Yangtze and Jailing rivers. It is the largest city in western China. The delegation was taken to the Three Gorges museum. How this dam has changed the adjoining parts, including the city of Chongqing, has been displayed in the museum. From there the delegation was taken to a public housing community 'Minxinjiayuan'. Here we could witness the activities conducted by the party in continuously growing communities. We could understand that the CPC is adapting itself in the changing scenario of Chinese society and that the party is playing a pivotal role in solving the problems of daily lives – in the sphere of employment, creating self employment, the problems of old age people etc.


On July 8, the delegation was taken to a party school run by Chongqing municipal party committee. In the afternoon, we were taken to the office of international department of CPC. Zhanglie Xuan, deputy party secretary, made a brief speech in which the socio-economic condition of Chongqing municipal area was explained. She also explained to us about how party building is being carried out, how the capacity and ability of party is being enhanced and how strong measures are being taken by the party in dealing with the issue of corruption.


From there we were taken to a community named Chunhui where we met the the community people and grassroots level party committee. In the discussions, our delegation could get first hand information regarding party functioning at the grassroots level – the functioning of branches, party members etc.


On July 9, the delegation visited Shuangxi village. Here we got an idea of the development taking place in rural China. The living standards of Chinese people have developed remarkably. All the amenities are available in these rural houses. Here also we saw how rural areas are transformed into urban areas and agricultural lands into industrial lands. The party is seriously attending to the issue of rehabilitation.




On July 10, we left Chongqing for Chinese capital Beijing. From Nanchang to Chongqing to Beijing everywhere we saw posters, flags celebrating the 90th foundation year of the CPC. We had visited the huge National Museum in Beijing, which has inspiring sections on the history of Chinese revolution, reforms and opening -- all of which is presented in an elaborate manner.


The next day the delegation had interesting discussions with Han Yu, Director General of the organisation department of the Beijing Municipal Committee of the CPC. According to him, there are 1.8 million party members (of which 674,000 are women i.e., 37.3 percent) in Beijing municipal area; 82,000 party organisations, 4766 party committees and 73,000 branches. Among party members, 54.3 per cent are having education of above college level. Around 24.8 per cent of the party members (485,000) are below 35 years of age. The leadership of Beijing municipal party feels that their main work is to serve the people of Beijing. Primary organisations are run according to the principles and tasks set by the Central Committee of the CPC. During natural disasters, party members at the grassroots level come forward with donations to help the party and government in organising rehabilitation.


Innovation for party organisation is a serious issue for them. Chinese economy is going through gigantic changes. Party building, to cope up with all these changes, is taken up very seriously by the municipal party committee. Maintaining close relationship with the general people has been given special importance, with the principal task being to serve the people. Efforts are made to mobilise people through various types of activities. Teams are formed with people where party members are in-charges. Party is mobilising social resources to serve the people. There are even competitions among various districts under the Beijing municipality to serve the people better.


Party has given special emphasis on the enlargement of democracy at the grassroots level. Party's election system has been strengthened. Party members who win the trust of the people can be elected to various levels of the party. Democratic management, democratic supervision, democratic decision making are ensured. Major decisions are taken at the grassroots level by holding party conferences. Every year, at least 7-days training programme is arranged for branch secretaries. After this engaging session of discussion, we had the privilege of visiting the Badaling section of the spectacular Great Wall.


On July 12, the delegation visited the famous Tiananmen Square and paid tribute to Comrade Mao in his mausoleum. That afternoon we were joined by Sitaram Yechury, leader of the delegation. At the International Department of the CPC, we had nearly two and half hour discussion with Ai Ping, Vice Minister. Yechury said that since 1983 the relationship between the two parties has been strengthened. He stated that we have to learn two things from the CPC: first, united front tactics to ensure victory by weakening the enemy; second, it is not a mistake to commit a mistake, but it is a mistake if we do not learn from mistakes and it is a mistake if we do not show the courage to rectify the mistake. Yechury referred to the excellent speech of Hu Jintao, General Secretary of CPC, on July 1 while commemorating the 90th anniversary of founding of CPC.


The next day, July 13, a serious discussion on ‘Innovation and Governance and Building the Party’ took place. Professor Xie Chuntao, Vice Director General of the central party school delivered a lecture on the topic. In his presentation on theoretical innovation, Chuntao presented the history of 90 years of the CPC, which is full of various important struggles to apply Marxism- Leninism to the concrete conditions of China. In the afternoon session we had discussion with Professor Xu Zhengzhong from the Chinese academy of governance. The subject of discussion was Socialist Market Economy. During the discussion, Professor Xu presented the picture of Chinese economy since the establishment of People's Republic of China.


On July 14, the CPI(M) delegation went to the office of Organisation Department of the CPC to meet Li Yuanchao, member of Polit Bureau and Secretariat of the CPC Central Committee, head of the Organisation Department of the CPC, Central Committee. A meeting of nearly 90 minute duration was held in his office. Yechury specially mentioned about the good relations between the two parties and said that the relationship between the two parties' will help in fostering better relationship between the two countries, China and India. In reply to Yechury's specific question related to the effort of the CPC in fighting against corruption, Yuanchao said a lot of strictest punishment measures have been taken. Punishment includes even death sentence. Some erstwhile Polit Bureau members are still in jail on charges of corruption. Yuanchao also narrated on the functioning of Central Discipline commission of CPC. At the end, Yuanchao stressed the need of more and more stronger relations between our two parties, as well as our two countries. On that positive note, we ended a very fruitful visit to China. No doubt this was a memorable and educative journey.