People's Democracy

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


No. 51

December 18, 2011



Strengthen Struggles

At Local Level

Albeena Shakil


The 13th Delhi state conference of the CPI(M) took place on December 8-9, 2011 in Harkishan Singh Surjeet Hall at Azadpur Gaon, Delhi. The conference began with flag hoisting by Delhi state secretariat member Mohan Lal and laying flowers on the Martyrs Column. A condolence resolution was adopted condoling the deaths of Polit Bureau members Harkishan Singh Sujeet, Jyoti Basu and M K Pandhe, along with AIDWA leader Kalindi Deshpande and Delhi Party leader Alam Sher Siddiqui. The conference also condoled the deaths of Party comrades who were killed in political attacks or struggles as well as the people who had lost their lives in peoples struggles, terrorist and communal violence, accidents and natural calamities.


The conference was inaugurated by Party general secretary, Prakash Karat. He spoke of how many had predicted that capitalism would triumph undisputed after the demise of the Soviet Union. However, since mid-2007 capitalism is in its greatest crisis ever since the Great Depression of the 1930s. Advanced capitalist countries have been unable to recover from the crisis and are transferring the economic burden of the crisis on to the working people. It is clear that the promise of peace held out by Barack Obama is empty and the US, along with its NATO allies, is continuing with its military aggression. Several points of challenge to the neo-liberal order have emerged across the world: the Occupy Wall Street movement in the US, the anti-austerity movements in Europe and the advance of Left-wing forces in countries across Latin America. The economy of China too is growing fast and is predicted to surpass the US economy by 2020. The US and its allies are struggling to maintain their hegemony over the world. In our country too, two decades of neo-liberalism have had an adverse impact on various classes, including the peasantry, workers, lower middle classes, small manufacturers and traders, etc. While the Party is trying to overcome the electoral setbacks suffered by the Left over the past couple of years, the future of the Party and the Left movement lies in strengthening struggles against the adverse impact of neo-liberalism on the people. In Delhi, intensifying local struggles among various sections of the people would be the way forward, he stressed.


A presidium consisting of Brahmjeet Singh, Rampal and Sehba Farooqui presided over the conference. Delhi state secretary P M S Grewal was ill and was in no condition to attend the conference. Therefore, Delhi state secretariat member, Vijender Sharma, presented the Report on behalf of the Delhi state committee. He outlined how the Congress government in the state had intensified its neo-liberal onslaught over the past few years. Apart from being steeped in corruption, as revealed in the Commonwealth Games, the Delhi government had failed to take any significant step against price rise, had reduced expenditure on the people and had backtracked on many of its promises made before the assembly elections in 2008.


Based on the experience of work, he urged upon the delegates to intensify struggles against imperialism, anti-people economic policies, communalism and casteism. He also called upon the delegates to discuss ways to intensify sustained struggles on local issues of the people, against the adversities faced by the working classes, especially unorganised sector workers, on expanding work in new areas by targeting slums, building sustained struggles for ensuring the rights of dalits, minorities and women,and making more concerted efforts in priority areas.


A total of 165 delegates participated in the conference. Among them 56 participated in a political and objective debate spread over two days and enriched the Report. Resolutions were adopted on the rights of the working people, against price rise, against corruption, on the rights of women, on the rights of dalits and Muslims and against communal and terrorist violence. The Report was adopted by the conference. The conference elected a 25 member state committee. It re-elected P M S Grewal as its secretary.


Jogendra Sharma, central secretariat member, gave the closing address and urged upon the delegates to intensify struggles on local issues. He drew on the positive experiences and achievements of the Delhi Party and urged upon comrades to conduct focused and sustained struggles on issues concerning the people and particularly at local level. He especially urged upon delegates to expand the work of the Party in targeted slum clusters, among unorganised sector workers, on citizens issues like educations and health, and on social justice issues.


The conference was followed by a massive public meeting in Azadpur village. Vijender Sharma presided over the meeting. Asha Sharma, secretary of the host North Delhi local committee and Rampal, secretariat member, addressed the massive gathering and urged upon the people to join the struggles of the CPI(M) on peoples issues. Polit Bureau member, Brinda Karat spoke on the anti-people policies of the UPA government and its failure to curb price rise due to its faulty policies. She criticised the proposed Right to Food Bill and said that it would further curtail the Public Distribution System. She said the UPA government was completely steeped in corruption and had failed to reassure the people about its intention to curb corruption. She spoke on how growing numbers of people in Delhi were finding work in the unorganised sector and demanded comprehensive social security for them. She also said that the governments move to bring FDI in retail needs to be withdrawn completely because it would lead to massive job loss and would adversely affect small retailers as well as the farmers, small traders and manufacturers of the country. She called upon the people to strengthen the Left in the present context in order to advance the rights of the people.