People's Democracy

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


No. 37

September 15, 2013





Citizensí Convention against

Attack on Democracy in West Bengal


Satanjib Das


A LARGELY attended Citizensí Convention against attack on democracy in West Bengal and to protect the unity and integrity of Assam was held at Guwahati on September 8, 2013. Dr Chandra Mohan Sarma, an eminent educationist and former professor of Guwahati University chaired the convention which was addressed by several distinguished personalities. The spacious auditorium of Bishnu-Nirmala Bhavan where the convention was held was packed to its capacity. The convention in a resolution adopted unanimously expressed grave concern at the onslaughts on democracy in West Bengal unleashed by the ruling TMC. It underlined that while the CPI(M) and the Left Front, the main opposition forces in West Bengal, bore the brunt of this onslaught, the attack was not confined to the Left alone. Even the Congress and other parties in opposition had not been spared. The fundamental democratic rights of citizens to express oneís opinion freely and to organise meetings, demonstrations etc, have come under severe attacks. The resolution noted that the chief minister herself had launched a tirade against the right to strike of the working class. In the arena of education, the goons of the ruling party are ruling the roost. The democratic process of election of studentsí unions has been done away with. The atrocities on women have registered an unprecedented rise. One party authoritarianism has raised its ugly head. This was manifested in the way the recent panchayat election had been made a farce, the resolution noted. The resolution pointed out that the attack on democracy in West Bengal bore an ominous portent for the entire country as this state was an advanced outpost of the democratic and working peoplesí movement. The weakening of this outpost would lead to weakening of democracy and resistance movement of the working masses against the anti-people policies of the ruling class in the entire country. The resolution therefore called upon all sections of people in the state of Assam also to come out against the onslaught of democracy in West Bengal.


The resolution also expressed serious concern at the grave situation in Assam arising out of the demands and movements to vivisect the state and form separate states. The decision of the Congress and the UPA to form separate state for Telangana had triggered these divisive movements. The resolution pointed out that the vivisection of Assam would not solve the problems of any of the ethnic groups of the state. Rather the problems would get more tangled. The resolution therefore called for maintaining peace and amity among different ethnic groups and for defending the unity and integrity of the state.


Dr Monirul Hussain, Professor Guwahati University, Sudhakisna Sarma, a noted singer, Kanaksen Deka, an eminent journalist and former president, Asom Sahitya Sabha, Prof Abdul Mannan, Mukut Bhattacharjee, a progressive writer, Bijon Lal Choudhury, an eminent poet and writer and Hamen Das, member, Assam state secretariat of CPI(M) addressed the convention. All the speakers expressed their serious concern at the situation prevailing in West Bengal and Assam and called upon the people of the state to come out boldly in defence of the unity of Assam and against attack on democracy in West Bengal.


The convention was organised under the auspices of the CPI(M) Kamrup metropolitan district.