People's Democracy

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


No. 38

September 18, 2011

Peasants’ Conventions call for

Struggle in West Bengal


From Our Special Correspondent


ALL Left peasant organisations in West Bengal have decided to build up strong movements on immediate demands of the peasantry in the state. Two conventions on two consecutive days were held on September 13-14 respectively in Kolkata and Siliguri to highlight the problems of the peasants and agricultural workers.


The peasants and the rural people in the state are now facing two pronged attacks: the ill effects of policies of central and state governments and the terror unleashed by the ruling party. On the one hand, the peasants are facing serious crisis because of increasing cost of production and the decreasing price for their produces. This year, the rice producers have failed to sell their entire produce, which was a rare case in West Bengal for three decades. The jute growers are in the midst of crisis as the price has fallen in an unprecedented manner. After the change of guard in the state, the panchayats, the most precious possession of rural people, have been made virtually defunct. This has negative impact on employment generation too.


Besides that, for the last three and a half months, the people in rural areas have faced most intensive and brutal terror.  Thousands of peasants have faced attack on their lands, hundreds rendered homeless; many villages have been burnt and looted. 


The time has come to intensify protest, declared the convention in Kolkata. Thousands of peasants gathered in Netaji Indoor Stadium at the call of  Left Kisan organisations including the AIKS (Harekrishna Konar Bhaban). Benoy Konar, senior leader of the peasants’ movement, while addressing the convention said, while peasants are suffering in flood, the state government is busy in turning Kolkata into London. Madan Ghosh, state president of the AIKS accused chief minister of hypocrisy who is claiming many things in media and doing just the opposite in reality. Ghosh particularly said that the peasants are being terrorised by the TMC miscreants. Subhash Naskar of Sanjukta Kishan Sabha, Probodh Panda of AIKS (BB Ganguly St), Hafiz Alam Sairani of Agragami Kishan Sabha also addressed.


The peasants from six districts of northern Bengal participated in the convention in Siliguri. Addressing the convention, Suryakanta Misra, AIKS leader and now opposition leader in the state, said, “The Left Front government is not there, but the Leftists are there. We will not allow snatching away of peasants’ rights in the state.”

Both the conventions witnessed massive gathering rendering it into a call of struggle.