People's Democracy

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


No. 35

August 28, 2011



‘Intervene to Restore Peace

& Normalcy in Bengal


MORE than one and a half thousand sitting and former representatives of the people staged a dharna in front of the Parliament House on August 25, at the call of the Left Front of West Bengal. The aim was to draw the country’s attention to the violent attacks against the Left Front cadre, offices and houses in the state, taking place with the backing of the TMC-Congress government of West Bengal. Later a 17-member Left Front delegation, accompanied by MPs from the state, met the prime minister and submitted to him a memorandum, apprising him of the threats to the democratic system in the state.


Later, Left front chairman Biman Basu addressed a press conference at AKG Bhawan, explaining that the Left Front has not been demanding any action under article 356 of the constitution, but only that the centre must not remain a mute spectator to the attacks. CPI(M) Polit Bureau member Sitaram Yechury was also present at the press conference.

Earlier, CPI(M) general secretary Prakash Karat, CPI general secretary A B Bardhan, RSP leader Abani Roy and Forward Bloc leader Debabrata Biswas addressed the huge dharna.

On this occasion, CPI(M)’s Kerala state secretary, P Vijayan, handed over to Biman Basu a cheque of more than Rs 3.5 crore, as the “first instalment” of Kerala people’s support to the Bengal victims and their families.


The following is the full text of the memorandum submitted to the prime minister by the Left Front committee, West Bengal, on August 25, 2011.


WE have met the governor of West Bengal on May 16, 2011 and on August 12, 2011 to apprise him of the reign of terror unleashed by the All India Trinamool Congress (AITC) following the declaration of the last assembly election results in West Bengal. In this connection, a delegation from the Left Front Legislature party in West Bengal also met the chief minister on June 3, 2011. Since then, the leader of the opposition has written six letters to the chief minister which proved to go in vain as there has been escalation of terror and violent attacks in the state.


We are fully aware that the law and order, as presently prevailing in the state, is primarily under the jurisdiction of the state government. However, in the background of recent developments in the left wing extremists affected areas in the southern part of the state and in the Hills, Dooars, Terai and  adjoining areas in North Bengal, the present state of unrest has created distrust among the different linguistic people and is jeopardising the spirit and unity, integrity and harmony in these sensitive areas. We firmly believe that the union government cannot afford to be a silent spectator in a situation like this.


The Left Front government, when it was in office, fully agreed with your assessment of the left wing extremism as the greatest danger to the internal security of the country. There had been remarkable success in confronting this menace by the co-ordinated actions of the central and state governments, by the successful use of the joint forces. Unfortunately, the new government in the state has completely reversed this stand, thereby giving the left wing extremists a freehand to regroup and expand their area of operation much beyond what had existed ever before. The state administration, while keeping the joint forces idle, has concentrated its offensive against the leaders and workers of the CPI(M) in particular and those of the Left Front parties in general, who had been at the fore-front of the political, ideological and developmental process, in a word, multiform battle against the self-styled ‘Maoists’. Even the present ruling parties of the state are unable to carry out their political activities in those areas. Even the adjoining states have complained against the inaction of the West Bengal government in this regard.

The way the tripartite agreement has been signed on the problems of the Hills, keeping the opposition and, we believe, the PCC in West Bengal, in dark, will further complicate the situation there. Keeping on record the demand of Gorkha  Jana Mukti Morcha (GJMM) for a separate state of ‘Gorkhaland’ and opening a pandora’s box by providing a high power committee to explore the possibilities for inclusion of new areas, from Dooars, Terai and Plains in the proposed Gorkhaland Territorial Administration (GTA) are clear departures from the understanding arrived at the tripartite meetings held when the Left Front government was in office. We believe, you will agree, that this will lead to discontent, particularly among the tribal and other people of the Dooars, Terai and Plains and resultantly will destabilise the situation in these sensitive areas. In view of the situation which has developed, there may be a threat to the security of the country.


In the situation stated above we are compelled to seek redressal of our grievances from you. A report of post-poll violence unleashed on the Left in this state as on August 15, 2011 is annexed herewith for your kind perusal and necessary intervention. As summary of this report reveals, 30 Left Front leaders and workers [CPI(M): 28, RSP: 2] have been killed and seven more were abetted to commit suicide during this period; 684 women were assaulted physically, 508 molested and 23 raped; 3785 persons had to be hospitalised for the treatment of injuries suffered by them and many more were forced not to lodge complaint and seek hospital treatment. There had been 2064 cases of arson and looting of houses and 14,081 persons were evicted from their place of living. Around 40,000 in total had to leave their homes under threat. To buy peace and stay in their home, people have been forced to pay money to the local AITC leaders and workers. According to a conservative estimate, total extortion amount thus paid might exceed Rs 277.7 million. A total of 758 Party, trade union and other mass organisation offices were either attacked, ransacked, burnt, forced to close or captured. 77 student union offices have been captured. Their office-bearers have been driven out, some of them forced to resign and even others denied to appear for their exams. There has been a widespread attack on the rights of the peasantry whereby 3418 ryots were denied the right to cultivate their own lands measuring about 9222.73 acres. Besides 26,838 number of patta holders and sharecroppers have been forcibly evicted from 9222.02 acres of patta and barga lands. While ‘Maoist’ and KLO militants are promised to be released as political prisoners, thousands of Left Front activists have been implicated in false cases on fabricated grounds including those instituted on the plea of the so-called recovery of arms. Even the Left Party organs have not been spared. 241 billboards displaying Ganashakti daily in public have been dismantled and thousands of its copies have been burnt and the hawkers have been beaten up in order to disrupt its circulation chain.


All democratic institutions, the panchayats, municipalities, co-operatives, different elected bodies of educational institutions have been made defunct either by attacks, intimidations or government fiats. Even in certain areas teachers, non-teaching staffs and students are not allowed to enter their institutions.


The state is in unrest. The districts affected by the terror unleashed by AITC, the jangal mahal region now made a sanctuary for the ‘Maoists’, the mounting tension in the Hills, Terai, Dooars and the adjoining plains in the North are glaring examples of this.  Basic democratic rights of all sections of the people of the state are under threat. Even the INC, the partner of the ruling coalition, is not spared from these attacks. Even armed conflicts between the different factions of AITC are taking place. Anarchy has come to prevail over the rule of law. People of the state cannot be expected to remain a silent spectator in this situation for long.


We sincerely request you to take immediate remedial measures to restore peace and normalcy in the state.