People's Democracy

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


No. 11

March 17, 2013





Northern Jatha Evokes Good Response


Rajendra Sharma

Maimoona Mollah

K Veeraiah



Hissar: March 13


“This is a shame that in Haryana, Kurki (land attachment) notices have been served on more than 70 thousands peasants and on the other hand CAG has exposed huge scam in farm loan waiver of the UPA government”, denounced Brinda Karat, CPI(M) Polit Bureau member, addressing a big rally at the Red Square in Hissar. She also announced that the CPI(M) and All India Kisan Sabha will reject these notices and decided not to let the authorities enforce them.


Earlier in the day she also addressed a rally at Siwani. At Siwani, in an interaction with her, some peasants brought to her notice the Kurki notices issued and pasted on the walls of their houses by the authorities. Despite the jatha arriving late by a few hours, hundreds of people waited at the Siwani Sub Divisional Complex to greet the jatha. Here a dalit rape victim’s mother also met CPI(M) leader and brought to her notice the kind of problems she and her daughter are facing in pursuing the case.


Addressing the gathering, Brinda Karat expressed concern at the plight of farmers in this water-scarce area and raised the issue of adequate crop insurance and payment of compensation for the damaged crops. CPI(M) state secretary and Central Committee member Inderjeet Singh, CPI(M) Central Committee member and leader of CPI(M) group in Rajasthan assembly Amra Ram and state leaders of Party also addressed the rally.


Answering a volley of questions from the press regarding fresh exposure of Robert Vadra’s dubious land deals, Brinda Karat demanded “an independent inquiry” into all the charges. She also pointed out that the major culprit in such land deals is the dubious land acquisition policy being put in practice by various state governments and especially the Congress governments of Haryana and Rajasthan. She underlined that trying to limit its attack on individuals, BJP wants to protect such policies.


Brinda Karat also pointed out that wherever the jatha has gone, the question of poor being deprived of BPL cards has been brought to its notice. She also pointed the irony of mountains of grain rotting in government warehouses in Punjab and Haryana and poor being forced to sleep on empty stomach. Totally rejecting the differentiation of APL and BPL, she expressed determination to “snatch the right to food security from the unwilling hands of the government”. Brinda Karat also reiterated the demand of universal public distribution system and 35 kgs of grain at the rate of not more than Rs 2 to all the families every month.


The jatha, starting from Sikar, in the morning reached Rajgadh on Haryana-Rajasthan border to a rousing reception. Earlier, the jatha was also greeted at the entrance of Jhunjhunu district. Later, in a procession of motor cycles and four wheelers, the jatha was taken to Jhunjhunu Party office. At Rajgadh, expressing gratitude for the warm welcome to the jatha, Brinda Karat in a brief address also expressed support to the struggle of anganwadi workers of the area who are demanding payment of their back wages. Representatives of anganwadi workers also handed her a memorandum with their demands.


The day ended with an impressive public meeting at Bhagat Singh Park, Hansi. Before addressing the gathering, Brinda Karat and other jatha members paid floral tributes to Shaheed Bhagat Singh's statue in the park.


For Modi, India First means Corporates First


Sikar: March 12


Squarely challenging Narendra Modi's claim of believing in putting 'India First', Brinda Karat asked, “What is his definition of India?” Pointing out to Gujarat under Modi being worst in basic development indicators like malnutrition and in terms of workers' rights and inequity, she asked “is the India that he keeps first the India of Adanis and other big corporates?” Brinda Karat was addressing an impressive public meeting at Jaat Baazar as the Northern Sangharsh Sandesh Jatha reached Sikar.


Continuing, Brinda Karat said how can Modi, an embodiment of communal, divisive politics put 'India first'? Only a person who has a perspective that is based on the unity of working masses of India which goes beyond division of caste and creed can really claim to believe in 'India first.'


She also dismissed BJP's claim of presenting an alternative to Congress led UPA rule and emphasising its unity with Congress on basic economic policies, she termed it as a 'false opposition' and 'non-alternative'. Linking this with the main message of the jathas, Brinda Karat pointed out that so far, the country had seen many yatras and rath yatras that actually divided the society. But this is a jatha for unity of the country and to change it for better.


This huge public meeting was also addressed by Hannan Mollah, CPI(M) central secretariat member, Vasudev, Rajasthan state secretary of the CPI(M) and Central Committee member, Amra Ram, Pema Ram, member of assembly from Dondh, Maimoona Mollah from Delhi Party and few other state and local leaders.


During the course of the meeting, hundreds of brick-kiln workers also joined, coming straight from their demonstration at Collector's Office. A large number of women, peasants and minorities too attended the meeting. On behalf of the jatha, Brinda Karat also expressed solidarity with their demands.


The jatha reached the venue of the meeting led by an almost one kilometre long procession of motorcycles and four wheelers. Jatha was received a few kilometres before Sikar by this impressive cavalcade. Earlier, starting from Fatehpur this morning, the jatha was greeted on its way to Sikar at the entrance of Laxmangadh.


On 11th late evening, the jatha was received by an enthusiastic crowd of red flag waving activists and supporters at Sadasar, a small town on border of Churu, on its way to Fatehpur from Gadhsana. Another impressive welcome awaited the jatha at Sardar Shahar, where a large group of motorcycle borne activists welcomed and led the j from Kalyanpura outskirts of the city to the CPI(M) office in town. By the time jatha was received by a huge and enthusiastic crowd of supporters at the gates of Fatehpur, it was almost midnight.


Fight the loot of MGNREGA workers


Sri Ganganagar: March 10


“MGNREGA workers, especially women workers are facing a loot of their labour”, said Brinda Karat. Denouncing the loot of labour of poor rural workers, she also pointed out: “Piece rate payment of the work is an important instrument of this loot”. Brinda Karat, leading Northern Sangharh Sandesh Jatha was addressing a big gathering here today at Gandhi Chowk.


Addressing a largely rural audience of MGNREGA workers, peasants and industrial workers, Brinda Karat also pooh-poohed the promise of the Rajasthan government – of providing 125 days work and Rs 133 daily wage for MGNREGA work – led by Ashok Gehlot. She pointed out that MGNREGA workers are not even getting 100 days work and Rs 90 as daily wage. “On top of it, work has been stopped to such a huge extent that while earlier 35 lakh workers were getting work, now this number is reduced to only one lakh”.


The public meeting was also attended by a large number of representatives of shop keepers and traders organisations who not only greeted the jatha and extended their support but also praised the CPI(M)'s stand on the issue of entry of FDI in retail trade. Responding to their sentiments, Brinda Karat promised that Left will be in the forefront of the struggle for stopping the entry of multinational retail chains like Walmart on Indian soil. She also pointed out how CPI (M) in Guwahati, Tamilnadu and Andhra Pradesh has fought attempts of Walmart to begin its activities.


Brinda Karat also raised the question of the plight of Guaar farmers and demanded that the state government should come clear with its policy on this produce.


Hannan Mollah explained the purpose of the jatha. Amra Ram, Vasudev, Hetram Benival, ex-MLA and other state leaders also addressed the gathering.


Sangharsh Sandesh Jatha of the CPI(M) reached here on 9th evening to a rousing reception. Right at the entrance of the city, hundreds of trade union workers greeted the jatha by garlanding the leaders and raising full throated slogans. A procession of more than hundred motorbike riders with red flags led the way as the jatha traversed through the main roads of Ganganagar city. On the way, Brinda Karat and other leaders in the jatha also interacted with the editors and publishers of the daily Seema Sandesh.


Favouring Corporates Over Peasants


Hanumangarh: March 9


The jatha was received in Rajasthan at Sangaria on 8th evening. After an enthusiastic reception, the jatha travelled to reach Hanumangarh.


Addressing a large gathering at Bhagat Singh Chowk, Brinda Karat expressed concern at the fate of Guaar producing peasants of twin districts of Hanumangarh and Ganganagar and other areas who are being deprived of a possibility of good rate. This is due to the intervention of state government favouring big export companies at the cost of peasants. It is to be noted that Guaar, used for extraction of Shell Gas on a large scale, last year fetched exporters Rs 33,000 a quintal in export market with the help of speculative manipulation, while peasants were given only Rs 2,000. This year, larger number of peasants with larger investment have gone for this crop hoping for a good rate. But traders have brought the rate down, and government instead of acting against speculators who manipulated market last year has helped crashing of export price. This has pushed the peasants to an unending wait hoping for a better price to sell their produce. Government, too on its part is sitting idle and not offering any support in the form of Minimum Support Price.


Earlier, denouncing police repression on lawyers in Jaipur in strongest words, Brinda Karat, asked, “If this kind of treatment is meted out to protectors of law, one can well imagine what could await the poor or dalits who approach police with their complaints”.


At the same time reacting to questions regarding police force in Rajasthan resorting to agitational methods, she squarely blamed the state government for things coming to such a pass. “Has the Rajasthan government acted on time, High Court may not have issued the orders they did and hence no police agitation”. Expressing full solidarity with the agitating lawyers, Brinda Karat demanded withdrawal of all the false cases foisted against agitators and urged that the state government should start the talks, to find a solution for their demands. She was interacting with media here this morning.