People's Democracy

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


No. 19

May 13, 2012


On Sri Lankan Tamil Issue


The 20th Congress of the CPI(M) expresses deep concern at the plight of the Tamil people in Sri Lanka. The Tamil people living in the Northern and Eastern provinces of Sri Lanka suffered heavy losses and casualties during the last phase of the armed conflict with LTTE. Thousands of civilians, men, women and children died during the hostilities. Lakhs of people were displaced from their homes.


Even three years after the armed conflict has come to an end, the Sri Lankan government has not undertaken fully the resettlement and rehabilitation of the people in their areas and providing them with the means of livelihood.


Despite the evidence of atrocities against the people and serious human rights violations, the Sri Lankan government has not taken any serious measures to investigate such crimes and to fix responsibility. Even the recommendations of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission set up by the government have not been implemented.


The Tamil people can live with dignity and equal rights within a united Sri Lanka only when there is a political settlement based on the provision of autonomy and devolution of powers for the Tamil-speaking areas. Here again, despite assurances given by the Rajapakse government, so far, no meaningful steps have been taken. Instead of arriving at a settlement through direct talks, the matter has been referred to a Parliamentary Select Committee.


The CPI (M) stands for a united Sri Lanka in which the Tamil minorities can live in peace and harmony with the majority Sinhala community. The Party appeals to all democratic forces in Sri Lanka to ensure a political solution to the Tamil question.


The Congress urges the Indian government to make all necessary political and diplomatic efforts to see that:

On Privatisation Of Financial Sector


The 20th Congress of the CPI(M) strongly opposes the privatisation of people’s savings by the Government of India.


India has a bright record with respect to people’s savings. Household savings amounted to Rs 17,49,311 on March 31, 2011, and gross domestic savings constituted 32 per cent of Gross Domestic Product.


Domestic savings are channelled by means of insurance, banking, mutual funds and pensions to make up a stock of capital that constitute an important resource for meeting infrastructural and social investment needs. These savings represent an alternative preferable to foreign capital in building our nation’s economy.


The primary reason for the nationalisation of national financial institutions such as the major scheduled commercial banks, insurance, and other institutions was to make funds available to the state for public investment. Today, however, the Government of India has chosen a different path: that of privatising financial institutions and sources of  domestic savings. The three Bills currently before parliament – the Banking Laws (Amendment) Bill, the Insurance Laws (Amendment) Bill, and the Pension Fund Regulation and Development Authority Bill, are part of the dangerous move to hand over control of domestic savings to the private corporate sector, including international finance capital.


There is a live danger that savings will be exposed to the vagaries of the stock market. The recent Budget proposal to give tax concessions on equity-based investments is a move in this direction.


The role played by financial derivatives in the financial crisis of 2008 is well known. Now insurance companies are also being allowed to invest in derivatives; and there are indications also that mutual funds will also be allowed soon.


This Congress


·        opposes the Banking Laws (Amendment) Bill, the Insurance Laws (Amendment) Bill, and the Pension Fund Regulation and Development Authority Bill;

·        opposes the dangerous move to allow savings to be invested in derivatives;

·        opposes the dangerous move to divert pension funds to stock market


 The Congress calls upon all sections of the working class to join the struggle to protect the people’s savings.


Demand to Make Rights of Disabled Justiciable


The 20th Congress of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) expresses its deep concern and anguish at the continued violation of the rights of persons with disabilities.


The recent incidents where disabled passengers were deboarded or humiliated are a case in point. Everyday thousands of disabled citizens face varying degrees of difficulties, harassment, and humiliation in public spaces because of the lack of facilities, insensitivity and stigma. Even though disabled women are particularly vulnerable to sexual harassment, police stations in the country have neither the facilities nor the staff to deal with the complaints.


The 20th Congress holds that despite in name being equal before the law, persons with disabilities continue to be discriminated and deprived of basic rights like health, education, livelihood, social security, access to political and civil rights.


The Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act, 1995 has proved to be ineffective and toothless because there is no monitoring mechanism or provision to punish those who violate the law. Consequently, the rights of persons with disabilities are violated with impunity and violators more often than not go scot free. The guidelines issued by various agencies/authorities also continue to be disregarded.


Provisions need to be made to make violation of rights of the disabled an offence and penal provisions be provided for.


The 20th Congress of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) demands effective legal intervention and penal provisions to make offences against the rights of the disabled justiciable.