The following is the text of the political resolution for the 22nd Party Congress, adopted by the national council of the CPI at its session in Nagpur on January 16-18, 2015.
1. The 22nd Congress of the Communist Party of India is taking place at a time when the country is facing a grave challenge as it is being driven to extreme rightist direction, both politically and economically. It poses a serious threat to our economic sovereignty as well as to the secular democratic parliamentary system.
2. The advent of the Narendra Modi government as a result of the clear majority for the Bhartiya Janata Party in the Lok Sabha election marks a definite right-ward shift in the politics. As the corporate capital has staked everything for the victory of the BJP-led NDA alliance that was actively and aggressively backed by the RSS, the new government clearly represents the combination of the interests of corporate capital, rightwing ideology coupled with the worst form of majoritarianism and communalism.
3. Within the first six months, the new government has bared full its economic and political agenda. Forgetting all its promises on curbing price rise, bringing back the black money stashed away in foreign banks, providing relief to the people suffering from economic miseries, it has started pushing through the remaining agenda of neo-liberalism to shower concessions on corporate capital, opening the Indian economy as a whole for the foreign finance capital and launching onslaught on the democratic rights of the people particularly the working class by unleashing imposition of anti-labour amendments in the hard-won legislations of rights. Simultaneously, various wings of the Sangh Parivar are raking up different divisive issues to hasten the process of communal polarisation, the main political plank of the new dispensation.
4. The five-year rule of the UPA-II was marked by exposure of big scams and scandals involving mind-boggling amounts. Corruption was actually the result of unabated loot of the national and natural resources and sharing of this loot among the corporate looters and the ruling politicians who facilitated the loot. Scams like 2G Spectrum loot, Coalgate, gas pricing, Adarsh Colony, CWG and other such ones rocked the nation and people, particularly the younger generation that has kept itself aloof from political activities came out on the streets and corruption became the focal point of public discourse.
5. Along with corruption, the failure of the government to curb ever increasing prices of almost all essential commodities, growing attacks on women, rise in atrocities against Dalits and other weaker sections, mad spree for land acquisition depriving farmers of their land and livelihood under the garb of pushing through the industrialisation though it actually helped the real estate mafias, growing unemployment, commercialisation of education and public health system, pushing up more and more out-sourcing, casualisation and contractorisation of jobs and such other anti-working class measures compounded the miseries of the masses already under stress due to the evil consequences of the shameless pursuance of the policies of neo-liberalism imposed by the international finance capital through its organisations like IMF and World Bank.
6. All these problems were fully exploited by the BJP. It was helped fully in its bid by the Media, both electronic and print, that has been gradually monopolised by the corporate houses. While development was projected as the main plank, the Sangh Parivar was deployed in full strength to hasten the process of communal polarisation of electorate. The corporate houses and the Media as well as social Media did everything possible to side line the real socio-economic issues as well as marginalise the Left that could have projected the real programme-based alternative. Caste card was also used.
7. The success of this joint onslaught of the corporates and Sangh Parivar has resulted in the victory of the BJP and with Narendra Modi, the man known for his authoritarian bent of mind, the country faces a grave threat. It has thrown a challenge for the left and democratic forces. The very secular democratic set up of the country and its economic sovereignty are under threat.
8. Simultaneously it also has opened new opportunities to project a concrete policy-based alternative to alleviate the miseries faced by masses and take forward the country on the path of self-dependent economic development as well as protect its secular democratic fabric. For that expansion and strengthening of the left front that can play the pivotal role in uniting all secular democratic forces, is the need of the hour.
9. The rightward shift in our country’s politics and the economic crisis that is looming large is not an isolated one. It is very much the consequence of the global economic crisis that is continuously deepening since the so-called Great Recession that started in 2008. Though the protagonists of neo-liberalism, now and then repeat the claim that great recession is coming to an end, the crisis is yet not over. It is leading to stagnation. It is not a cyclic crisis of capitalism but a specific crisis of finance capital and cannot be resolved in the normal way. To pass on the burden of the crisis on developing world, the developed nations, particularly the US is frantically trying to establish the political and economic hegemony of international finance capital. The rightward shift in different countries and mushrooming growth of new political outfits, supposedly fighting corruption and such other bye-products of neo-liberalism are tools of the finance capital to divert the people’s attention from the real causes of the crisis as well as to marginalise the Left world over.
10. The fight against neo-liberalism is gaining ground world over. The path followed by the Latin American countries to liberate themselves from the shackles of IMF-World bank is a shining example. The slogans like CINA (Capitalism Is No Alternative) reverberating skies in different parts of the world and spread of ‘Occupy movements’ in different forms and slogans like ‘We are 99 per cent’ provide hope and will lead the masses to conclude that SOCIALISM IS THE ONLY ALTERNATIVE.
Global Economic Crisis and Political Developments
1. The protagonists of neo-liberalism are yet not ready to accept the reality that the global melt-down that started in 2008 is a structural crisis caused by the attempts of the International Finance Capital to establish its political and economic hegemony. They first called it recession and when it deepened, double and triple recession. Now they term it Great Recession. Though American economy had shown some signs of recovery as it had been able to pass on its burden on others either by imposing economic conditionalities or sparking troubles in different parts of the world to revive its basic military-industrial complex, the rest of the world including the developed European Union countries are still in turmoil and their economies are facing threat of stagnation.
2. In the wake of the disintegration of the erstwhile Soviet Union and collapse of socialist regimes in eastern Europe, it was proclaimed that history has come to an end (end of class struggle) and the only path of development is capitalist path. They propounded the theory of globalisation, privatisation and liberalisation. What actually was meant by this mantra was a total freedom for maximisation of profits by all means and a license to loot natural resources in any part of the world. As finance capital has neither national character nor grooming in industrial activity, it was bound to be brutal and inhuman in all its endeavours. We witness it in its manipulation for pliable regimes by means of war, fratricide, civil war and ethnic and sectarian clashes and ruthless promotion of right wing political forces and dictatorial regimes.
3. The Great Recession in America and European Union countries is an inevitable outcome of the financial and economic system based on promoting debts and borrowings. Not only families were lured to spend more than their income and trapped in the web of ever-increasing loans and compound interest but even governments were forced to traverse this disastrous course. The net result is bankruptcy of banks and financial institutions in the first stage, and later the bankruptcy of the governments themselves. Most of the European countries are on the verge of bankruptcy. The bailout packages to banks, corporate sector and maximum possible austerity measures meaning drastic cut in social sector spending has no effect. Miseries of the people facing unemployment, cut in wages and pension (in some cases abolition of pension schemes altogether) have multiplied.
4. America is the most indebted country in the world. Most of the US Treasury Bonds are held by the developing countries. China alone has lent the US 1,270 billion dollars that is it holds more than one fourth of US external public debt. This has caused turmoil in American economy. Every year it faces shut down of the government when either of the Houses refuses to enhance its borrowing limit. It happened in December 2014 as well. Now it finds the revival of its military industrial complex and sale of nuclear reactor junks as the only alternative for revival.
5. Most of the European Union countries are mired in deep crisis as the common currency Euro is continuously losing its value and may further stumble with falling demands from Russia and China. It has already tumbled to a record low against the dollar. Retrenchment has become the order of the day. In most of EU countries unemployment ratio has crossed 20 per cent mark. Similarly, most of them face heavy indebtedness. Public debt has exceeded 60 per cent of the GDP in almost all the EU countries. All of them have drastically slashed the social sector spending on a yearly basis. EU countries including Britain have not only resorted to widespread retrenchment but also stopped recruitment in various public sector units. Bailout packages from European Union Bank and others are pre-conditioned with demand for more and more “austerity” measures.
6. It is obvious that the economic crisis in which the developed economies are engulfed cannot be resolved in the normal manner. The finance capital that is at the root of the crisis is trying to pass on the burden on developing and emerging economies by political measures, military intervention and using the weapon of economic sanctions bypassing the United Nations Organisation and its Security Council.
7. There is a definite rightward shift in the policies of most of the countries, particularly the member countries of European Union. Rightist forces have ascended to power in most of these countries. The new rightist ruling cliques are taking measures to suppress the rising protest movements against neo-liberalism. In the crisis-ridden countries, the trends of fascism and racism are on rise. Rightist parties in almost all EU countries have adopted racist slogans and hate campaign against migrants as the main electoral plank.
8. To keep their control on natural resources, USA and its allies are militarily intervening in regions and countries by sparking conflict among neighbours are propping up disruptive movements that lead to civil strife. The nascent Arab Spring movement has been totally thwarted.
9. The democratic upsurge that started with the people’s revolt in Tunisia and soon engulfed the entire Middle East and North Africa has been thwarted by the imperialist interventions. Except Tunisia where after a small span of Islamists rule, the country has voted in favour of left-secularist coalition to power, the movement has been sabotaged that has pushed the entire region in turmoil.
10. In Egypt, due to the haste shown by the Muslim Brotherhood in imposing its obscurantist ideology, the imperialists have been successful in disrupting the people’s movement and the followers and colleagues of erstwhile dictator Hosni Mubarak have usurped power.
11. In Syria and Iraq, as a result of the direct and indirect intervention of the imperialist powers, both the countries are suffering the horror of civil war. Like Al Qaeda, the ISIS was also initially groomed by the American intelligence agencies and that has turned into a monster. It has occupied certain parts of territories in both the countries. With oil fields under their control, they pose a serious threat to the entire region. Saudi Arabia and Qatar that had actually financed and helped ISIS on behalf of USA are now facing the threat from their own progeny.
12. While suppressing the people’s revolt in Bahrain to protect the oppressive regime, the USA and its allies are behind the civil war in countries like Libya and Yemen where they support different fundamentalist and ethnic groups under the garb of backing democratic upsurge.
13. Several countries in African continents are also facing the onslaught of religious fundamentalists and ethnic separatists. Nigeria is the worst affected country.
14. The crisis in Ukraine that started with the imperialist-backed ouster of elected president of the country continues to aggravate. The imperialists are not ready to accept the objective realities of the region and want to use Ukraine as a tool to continue their dominance, particularly to restrict Russia that has emerged as a power along with China and other BRICS nations as the main hurdle to their plan of imposing uni-polar world order.
15. Apart from imposing unilateral economic sanction on Russia, the USA and allies are manipulating the oil prices to destroy the Russian economy. The prices of oil, mostly from the Middle East controlled by US stooge rulers are being manipulated to cause grave economic harm to Russia and to an extent Iran that refuses to fall in the trap of imperialist powers.
16. As the imperialist agencies have used religious fundamentalism as a tool, it has acquired menacing proportion. Terrorism based on religious fundamentalism is getting credence in different parts of the world.
17. In our neighbourhood, Pakistani society is facing a serious threat from the terrorist outfits based on religious extremism like Taliban. In certain tribal areas, particularly in FATA and North Waziristan region, terrorists have been able to float parallel administration. Despite the military operation in North Waziristan, the Federal government headed by Nawaz Sharif lacks concrete and comprehensive plan to root out terrorism. Pakistani soil is being freely used by Taliban to organise attacks in Afghanistan and India.
18. In this period Bangladesh has witnessed many upheavals. The trial of the war-criminals of 1971 liberation war is giving its verdicts case by case and already many criminals have been brought to justice. At the same time the conflict between the two main political parties and their uncompromising attitudes are adversely affecting the democratic pace and rights of the people thus fuelling tremendous discontent as well as contributing in the radicalisation of the young people. The Left in Bangladesh is trying their best to rise on the occasion and trying to mobilise the people of Bangladesh in defence of secularism, democracy and rights of the people. The better relations and proper response to the pending issues with Bangladesh from Indian side can bring some positive changes in the present situation.
19. In Afghanistan, the dispute over presidential election has been resolved for the time being but a stable regime in Kabul continues to be a far cry. Taliban still holds sway in large parts of the country and the ethnic discord in civil society is complicating the situation further. Though NATO forces are winding up their bases, USA has announced that its forces in limited number will continue to be in the country.
20. With the defeat of incumbent President Rajpaksa and election of joint opposition candidate Maithripala Sirisena as executive president, there is hope that the process of restoration of parliamentary democracy and reconciliation with the religious and linguistic-ethnic minorities will get a flip. Sincere efforts will be made to reconcile with the World-wide demand for impartial enquiry in massacre of Tamils and for constitutional devolution of power. Ethnic discard in Sri Lanka needs to be resolved through political dialogue.
21. In Nepal, efforts are on to finalise a constitution for which the term of constituent assembly has been extended repeatedly.
22. In the present situation the role of India in addressing the issues involved with neighbouring countries particularly with the countries belonging to SAARC with positive approach will definitely change the current situation and will create conducive atmosphere for peace, stability and cooperation in the region.
23. In several of the Asian countries where discontent against the economic policies of neo-liberalism is growing, attempts are on to divert the attention of the people from the real socio-economic issues by using NGOs and even floating political outfits in the name of fighting corruption and mis-governance. Indonesia, India, Pakistan and Thailand have witnessed such political developments.
24. But all is not negative in the international situation. Above all, the American attempts to impose uni-polar world order have been frustrated by various international groupings. Formation of financial institutions like BRICS bank, Asian Infrastructure Bank and growing cooperation among the emerging and developing economies are significant developments. Even in institutions like WTO and in Security Council on issues like military intervention in Syria, the emerging economies have adopted common postures and taken joint actions to foil the plans of USA and its allies.
25. China continues with its experiment of pursuance of policies of market economy to attain a certain level of economic development that can help in laying the foundation of a socialist society. It will take decades to start building socialism as the CPC claims. China has the highest rate of GDP growth and has already emerged as the number two economically developed country and may surpass USA in the next two decades.
26. In Vietnam, the three decades of economic renewal has brought rich dividend and the country has attained the second position after China as far as the rate of GDP growth is concerned. With additional revenue, it has been able to flood in huge amount in social sector raising the living standard of the people. Vietnam is reviewing the outcome of the pursuance of policies of socialist-oriented market economy whose certain negative features have come to fore.
27. The most significant victory has been made in Cuba. The people of Cuba along with the international community that has expressed solidarity finally have forced the USA to take appropriate steps to normalise the relations between USA and Cuba. The US President finally acknowledged that the policy of hostility and blockade for more than a half century had failed to isolate Cuba. The release of “Five Cubans” in the US jail is also a great victory of the Cuban people. But the issue of lifting embargo remains a big question though the vast majority of the countries have been demanding and voting for lifting the embargo against Cuba in United Nations for the last several years. The same applies on the closing down of the US base in Guantanamo bay. So the solidarity with Cuban people will continue till the total lifting of embargo is done and other conspiracies against Cuba are stopped.
28. In this period several countries of Latin America have emerged as a model for development by attaining great successes in the field of education, public health and over all development. Though the imperialist interference in Latin America continues, the current electoral victories of Left forces in Latin America particularly in Venezuela, Brazil, Bolivia and Uruguay along with other countries in the region have shown the way by nationalising the natural resources, tremendously increasing the funding of social sector with additional revenues acquired, breaking the shackles of World Bank and IMF by floating their own banking institution and having trade and exchange in their own currencies. Even at regional level the formation of the Community of Latin America and Caribbean States (CELAC) which includes 33 countries from that region founded in 2011 emerged as a political alternative to the Washington-based Organisation of American States (OAS). Latin American model is showing the path of alternative policies to foil the plots of neo-liberalism and imperialism.
29. Though the initial enthusiasm shown during the movements under slogans like ‘We are 99 per cent’ and ‘Occupy the Wall Street’ has not been sustained, sporadic movements are aplenty. In a number of countries various segments of the people are taking to streets on their sectional demands. Britain, France and Spain witnessed big strike actions.
30. Absence of organised Left and failure to project alternative policies is the biggest hurdle in politically capitalising the discontent. In countries like Portugal, Spain and Greece, Left has gained electorally. CPRF in Russia has acquired new strength and considerably increased its parliamentary representation. In Ireland the increasing strength of Sinn Fein is also a positive development. In Japan the Communist Party has tripled its representation in the Lower House. In Nepal also the CPN (UML) has re-asserted its supremacy.
31. One of the most significant achievements is the cooperation among the communist and workers’ parties world over. Various forms of cooperation among the parties at sub-regional, regional and global levels are already in existence. Till now seventeen international meetings of the communist and workers’ parties were held. The meetings among the parties not only help to understand each other’s problems but also contribute greatly for strengthening unity among the communist parties for joint activities. CPI will continue to participate in such activities at all levels.
An Overview of Indian Economy
1. The crisis in the Indian economy is due to the failure of the neo-liberal economic policies that the successive governments have been pursuing since nineties. The new Narendra Modi dispensation has aggravated the crisis with its shameless imposition of the remaining agenda of the neo-liberal policies. It is showering concessions after concessions on corporate houses and heaping new burdens on the people.
2. Contrary to the claims made during the first six months of the new government, all indices of economy have shown negative results. The growth rate of GDP is continuously declining and even the finance ministry has admitted that it will be below five per cent at the end of the financial year. The GDP growth rate declined to 5.3 per cent in the second quarter as compared to 5.7 per cent in the first quarter.
3. Manufacturing sector is at the centre of decline registering just 0.1 per cent growth in the second quarter against the 3.5 per cent growth in the previous quarter.
4. Industrial production is also declining. In October it fell by 4.2 per cent. Manufacturing sector that accounts for 75 per cent of total factory output is stagnated to 7.6 per cent.
5. Unemployment is on rise. Outsourcing and contractorisation and casualisation are s rampant. Labour laws are being amended to snatch away the hard won rights of the working class.
According to ILO unemployment rate in India is showing an increasing trend since 2011 when it was 3.5 per cent, the same rose to 3.6 per cent in 2012 and climbed to 3.7 the following year. It may rise to 3.8 per cent in 2014. Another worrying factor is the decline in formal employment. Informal employment counts for 94 per cent of total employment.
6. National assets of Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs) are being handed over to the private sector. The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs approved the sale of 5 per cent stake in ONGC, 10 per cent in Coal India, 11.36 per cent in NHPC to realise RS 43,800 crore. All profit-making PSUs including Nav Ratnas are under hammer in the stock market.
7. Financial institutions, particularly public sector banks and insurance are gradually being handed over to private sector, both national and international. ratio of FDI in these sectors are being raised.
8. Planning Commission that was instrumental in creating national asset through industrialisation via public sector has been abolished. It will adversely affect economy. Even though there were weaknesses in the functioning of the Planning Commission, it has done excellent job in industrialisation of the economy. It was also responsible for working out sub-plans for weaker sections and under developed areas. It has been replaced with an institution called NITI that will have representatives of corporate houses and work for promotion of public-private partnerships (PPPs), actually meaning total dismantling of public sector and opening gates for free market.
9. Government has already announced measures to shower tax concessions on MNCs by abolishing certain levies and changing laws to stop recovery of tax dues retrospectively.
10. The government has created a bad precedence by favouring a Rs 61,000 crore laon to Adani group from SBI to develop a coalmine in Australia.
11. Amendments to the coal nationalisation Act has been moved to pave way for total de-nationalisation of the coal industry. The government is doing everything to ride over the apex court verdict in Coalgate scam that caused a loss of RS 1.86 lakhs crores. As most of them have taken huge loans from banks to develop allotted coal blocks, the real loss is of over Rs 7 lakhs crore. Through an ordinance, state governments have been authorised to auction non-coal mines as well. Denationalization of such natural resources too has to be opposed.
12. The government is taking to ordinance route to impose neo-liberal policies. During past eight months, ten ordinances have been issued.
13. All other natural resources are also being handed over to private sector at throw-away prices.
14. Non Performing Assets (NPAs) of the nationalised banks is continuously increasing. It was Rs 2.43 lakh crore as on September 30, 2014. In place of recovering these loans, the government is working out plans to write off these loans taken mostly by the corporate houses.
15. In the name of reducing the fiscal deficit, the government has announced measures to drastically cut the budgeted funds for social sector. Already the finance ministry has announced 25 per cent reduction in budgetary allocations for education and public health sectors — for the current year as it has consumed 86.2 per cent of budgeted deficit in first seven months.
16. ‘Make in India’ based on export-oriented production is another fraud that will ultimately kill small and medium level industries, pave way for assembling units of MNCs and finally lead to de-industrialisation of the country.
17. All schemes and projects aimed at providing relief to the suffering masses are being sabotaged. MGNREGA is being abolished altogether.
18. The gap between the haves and have-nots is widening. The ratio between top 10 per cent and the bottom 10 per cent is 80:1.
16. Despite manipulation of figures, the number of people Below Poverty Line (BPL) has increased.
According to latest official figures 29.9 per cent of India’s population live below poverty line. In 2012, in absolute term 363 million people were below poverty line, high by 93 million estimated a year ago. It is more than Rangarajan Panel estimates though the spending criteria of Rs 47 a day in urban areas and Rs 32 a day in villages has been retained.
17. Real wages are continuously declining.
18. Inflation and continuous rise in prices of all essential commodities is the biggest problem for our people. Despite seasonal fluctuation the actual inflation is in double digit. Government is in no mood to take any concrete measure to curb the prices. It has refused to re-amend the Essential Commodities Act to control hoarding and ban future trading, the two main weapons for manipulation of prices to maximise the profit.
19. In place of conceding demand for introducing universal public distribution system to ensure food security the Union and state governments are gradually abolishing whatever is left of the PDS.
Economic and Social Fallouts of Economic Neo-Liberalism
1. Under the neo-liberal regime outsourcing and contract employment have become the norm in the job market. Call centres and such other points of employment have totally obliterated the concept of fixed hours of work. Long working hours fetching huge salaries (but without any social security) have given rise to a segment of youth that has no social concern of their own. Week-end culture and consumerism are becoming the norm.
2. Through advertisements and their financial hold on the media as a whole, the corporates and MNCs have created and fostered a consumerist culture which has lured the elites and a section of the middle-class. In turn it has built up a huge consumer market for domestic and foreign business houses. Consumerism is not denoted by expanding consumption of necessities according to the requirements of a life style with better incomes, but with the growing desire to acquire luxury goods, luxury brands flowing from the urge for a good life. It leads to adopt more and more credit based family budget and entrap this segment in debts and growing EMI shacks. Sections of the middle class and the new elite segment of contract workers are victims of this consumerist culture.
3. In the beginning, this elitist middle class was supposed to be the most ardent supporter of economic neo-liberalism as it was part and parcel of the tiny group of beneficiaries. But now the deepening economic crisis and attempts by the corporates to pass on the burden of crisis to others is making them realise the evil of this course of development. For example, this particular segment is doubly hit with sky-rocketing inflation. Apart from high prices, it has to pay enhanced EMIs for all loans as and when the RBI raises repo rate. The repo is raised as and when RBI takes measures to curb inflation.
4. Under the impact of globalisation and liberalisation, changes are taking place in the employment profile in the country. Outsourcing, downsizing, contracting out, home-working, casualisation, etc, have seriously cut into regular employment at work places. In addition there are workers in the unorganised sector and informal sector within the formal sector. Only seven per cent of the work force is in the organised sector, the rest is in the unorganised sector. The present policies are only adding to the latter number. The share of self-employment is also shrinking. The country is in the grip of jobless growth.
5. Hit by various miseries, consequences of economic policies pursued by the successive governments, this segment of population too has started taking to the streets. It was visible during the recent anti-corruption campaigns. Time has come for the Left to work out a strategy to draw this segment of population to the struggle for real socio-economic change. They can no more be left in the clutches of NGOs and so-called Civil Society Groups who actually work to de-ideologise and de-politicalise the masses. They blunt the class consciousness and thus serve the interests of bourgeois class.
Corporate and Crony Capitalism
1. The relentless pursuit of neo-liberal economic reforms has propped up strata of powerful corporate within the bourgeois class. Helped by the government policies of pampering this section, the corporate houses have accumulated unprecedented wealth and come to wield tremendous economic power. They are emerging as private monopolies in several vital sectors, such as power, oil, telecommunication and pose serious challenge to the public sector units in these spheres. This section of the bourgeoisie in its ruthless quest for super profits aims to extend its tentacles to other spheres of economy and also extend operations abroad. Narendra Modi government furthers the interests of this tiny group of capitalists.
2. The policies of liberalisation and globalisation have provided facilities for the multinational corporations to set up bases in India. Indian corporate houses are entering into a number of partnerships with these MNCs. Some corporates have acquired the strength to buy up a few foreign businesses and go in for mergers and acquisitions. With their economic and financial clout they are able to influence policies not only in the economic but also in political and other fields. The Nira Radia tapes exposed the extent to which corporates can go to influence even the formation of the Union cabinet. In the present regime, Adanis and Ambanis are seeking to dictate terms in the policy matters.
3. Corporatisation of economy and politics is also adversely affecting our culture, literature, art and languages. Consumerism is the dominant trend in these fields too.
4. Corporate capitalism in league with MNCs has created conditions for large-scale corruption and the play of money-power in national life.
5. Actually, all the scams and scandals that came to light in the recent past are rooted in the greed of capitalism to loot national resources. Such loot is shared with ruling politicians and bureaucracy at the highest level.
1. After the U-Turn of Modi government on bringing back the black money stashed away in foreign banks, the issue of parallel economy has become more complicated.
2. With whatever revelations made about the holders of foreign bank accounts for black money, the politician-black-money-holders nexus has become obvious. Even among the four names revealed in the Supreme Court, majority have been found donating huge amounts to both the Congress and the BJP.
3. It is difficult to assess the size of black money, parallel economy and funds siphoned off the country but it is astronomical. According to the Global Financial Integrity, between 1948 and 2008, nearly 462 billion dollars, about Rs 20.8 trillion are illegally siphoned off from India primarily to evade tax. As per the report titled Drivers and Dynamics of Illicit Finance Flows from 1948 to 2008, the author being earlier a senior economist at the International Monetary Fund (IMF), states: “It seems trade liberalisation merely provided more opportunities to related and unrelated companies to mis-invoice trade, lending support to the contention that economic reform and liberalisation need to be dovetailed with strengthened institutions and governments, if governments are to curtail capital flight.”
On an average, the annual illegal outflows from India between 1948 and 2008 amounted to 1.5 per cent of the gross domestic product. The outflows grew every year by 6.4 per cent after adjusting for inflation. According to the same report, the total value of illicit funds abroad represents 62 per cent of the size of the India’s underground economy. Black money is estimated at 50 per cent of India’s GDP, about Rs 39 lakh crores and is stashed in foreign banks. India tops the list with almost dollar 1,456 billion in Swiss Banks. If the money stashed in foreign banks is brought back, then 45 per cent of the poor people can get one lakh rupees each. If this money comes back, India can repay the entire foreign debt. If this surplus is invested, only interest from it will be more than our annual budget. It is difficult to estimate the volume of the illicit funds, but it is huge beyond any estimate and it is lack of governance, corruption at all levels, failure to enforce the laws, ultimately liberalisation without safeguards, that have resulted in such a colossal draining out of India’s national resources.
The governments all through ever since Independence had been reluctant to track down the flow of illicit funds, no question of making any serious attempt to recover the huge black money. The latest move, apparently under huge public pressure and judicial strictures is only nominal and betrays all sense of sincerity. While evasion of tax and outflow of black money are growing, the government is persistently increasing tax concessions. Liberalisation and market economy have provided no relief and growth has benefited the rich and the affluent middle class.
The dominance of market economy appears to have penetrated into the political system to such an extent that whichever government comes to power, the economic policies broadly remain the same. The U-Turn by the Modi government on black money is just one example. Modi government is not ready even to make public the list of black-money related account holders that is in its possession.
Many-fold Rise in Corruption
1. While in the developed economies of Europe, the economic crisis is reflected in growing bankruptcy of banks and other financial institutions, leading to the government’s bailout packages from public funds resulting in shifting of the burden on the common people by enforcing cuts in public funding of public services, social sector, cut in wages and pensions, as well as growing unemployment, retrenchments, layoffs, etc, in the developing world it is manifested through unprecedented rise of inflation, rampant corruption and widening economic disparities. Black money stashed away in foreign banks had always been a big problem in our country. Like UPA-II government, Modi government is also trying to protect the owners of such black money in the name of international treaties.
2. Since the Narasimha Rao-Manmohan Singh duo opted for economic neo-liberalism in the garb of economic reforms in early nineties, corruption has become all pervasive. Not only the number of scams and scandals involving top political functionaries has gone up, the amount involved in such scams is also mind-boggling. Starting with Jain Hawala scandal and Harshad Mehta share market scam, we have come to scams like 2G spectrum, Commonwealth Games scam, writing off of NPAs by top bankers, Adarsh Housing Society scam, Coalgate, KG-basin scam, so on and so forth. In all these scams and scandals, one or the other corporate house is party to the loot along with ministers and bureaucrats.
3. This loot of national wealth and the mind-boggling amount involved in recently revealed scams have made the common people, particularly the educated urban masses, very disturbed. They have started linking all their miseries to the all pervasive corruption, though it is just one of the bye-products of economic neo-liberalism. The recent huge participation of urban middle class in the agitations against corruption is reflection of growing anger among people. The CPI is for a strong and effective Lokpal Act. It spelt out its position, along with other left parties by moving concrete amendments to the official Lokpal Bill.
Labour Rights under Attack
1. An essential part of the economic policies of Narendra Modi government is to deprive the working class of all its hard-won trade union rights. The prime minister and finance minister are repeatedly assuring that their government is committed to “industry friendly” and “investment friendly” labour law reforms.
2. BJP government of Rajasthan started the over-hauling of labour laws and now the Narendra Modi government has taken it over. Already certain crucial laws have been amended and government has plans to totally over-haul the labour laws to deprive workers and employees the right to organise trade unions and legitimate struggles for collective bargaining.
Urbanisation and Its Impact
1. Urbanisation has got momentum with the mad pursuance of the economic neo-liberalism by the Union and state governments. It gets boost with the increasing migration of rural workforce due to the shrinking of job opportunities in agriculture and allied sectors. The most negative feature of the process of urbanisation is the unprecedented dominance of real estate sector by land mafias. The acquisition of land in fraudulent manner is a continuous menace that is ruining the lives of millions. The nexus of land and builder mafia, ruling politicians and bureaucracy is playing havoc. Millions are being dislodged from their land. The recent changes in land acquisition laws will further aggravate the situation.
2. Another aspect of this unplanned urbanisation is more and more privatisation of most of the civic amenities heaping new economic burden on the urban population. Even supply of drinking water has been privatised in a number of cities and towns. Migrant labour also adversely affects the wager system.
3. The most disturbing feature is the total neglect of provision of proper housing for the weaker sections of the society. Even housing schemes for these sections are being misappropriated by land and builder mafias. The party needs to take up the phenomenon of unprecedented urbanisation and its negative fallout more seriously. Reviving party bases and creating new one in the new cities and metro has assumed added importance.
Crisis in Agriculture
1. Since the last 15 years, the Indian agriculture sector is witnessing continuously chronic crises resulting in the decline of agricultural productivity. It is also a matter of grave concern that cultivable land is shrinking. As per the NSSO report 40 per cent of farmers want to quit agriculture and take up other suitable alternate livelihood avenues. Also, 3.5 per cent of agriculturists join the rank of agri-labourer per annum. The farmer is caught in a pair of scissors, with rising costs of inputs and un-remunerative prices of agricultural products. On top of all this, bank credit has dried up and indebtedness to private money lenders has grown. Even as subsidies for agriculture rise in the West, the very minimal life support and subsidies to our farmers are being cut. The small and marginal farmers are unable to participate in the market due to various restraints. They look on helplessly on the market forces and hoarders.
2. Agricultural growth has also dipped to 3.2 per cent from 5.7 per cent in the same quarter last year reflecting a serious agrarian crisis affecting more than 60 per cent population who live in rural India. Even the area sown for foodgrain production has declined, particularly the area sown with kharif pulses and core cereals. A preference of the farmers for cash crop and turning away from food production is visible. The crisis in agriculture is visibly reflected in the slow growth during the period 2004-05 to 2010-11. It is only three per cent. During the first quarter of 2011-12 this sector grew only by 3.9 per cent. The gross capital formation in agriculture as a proportion of the total capital formation in the economy has been on decline both in the public and private sectors. It declined from 17.3 per cent on an average during 1970 to 1980 to 11.6 per cent during the following decade and on an average only nine per cent during 1990 to 1994, a sordid story how agriculture has been starved of public investments and funds over decades. It has further declined in the first decade of new century.
3. Land is increasingly being diverted from agriculture to non-agricultural purposes in the name of development. Land acquisition is playing havoc. As land is snatched away from the farmer on different pleas, he and the agricultural worker as well as all those who depend on cultivation for their survival lose their livelihood. The latest moves by the Modi government to drastically alter the Land Acquisition Act of 2013, even through ordinance, will open floodgate for depriving farmers of their valuable multi-crop irrigated land.
4. Cultivation area is shrinking at a time when agricultural production relative to population growth is not keeping pace. Rising costs of production and falling prices have pushed 60 per cent of farmers to indebtedness. Lakhs of farmers are being driven to suicide. In the past 10 years more than half a million farmers have committed suicide. In states like Maharashtra, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, 1,22,823 farmers have committed suicide. During the past few months, incidents of farmer suicides are taking place even in West Bengal and Kerala. Vidarbha is witnessing suicides on a daily basis.
5. During the ‘reform period’ with liberalism as the guiding policy, bank credit to agriculture has come down and private lending has gone up. Instead of arresting the ever declining bank credit, the government has created new Mahajans under the garb of ‘Accredited Loan Providers’. Now bank loans are routed through this vehicle and even petrol providers. As market rate is the mantra, interest rate floats upward making the farmers’ lives more miserable. Micro-finance system is being used to exploit the needy people, particularly in rural areas by charging exorbitant rate of interest on the amount received from banking sector on nominal interest rates. Minimum interest rate charged is 35 per cent.
6. In the name of private participation in agriculture, the government has permitted corporate and contract farming. Mechanized farming by the new entrants has adverse impact on job opportunities in the agriculture sector. The unresponsive attitude of the government to the recommendations of NCF and problems related to organic farming too need special attention.
7. MNCs like Monsanto and Cargill are pushing ahead with their seed-fertiliser-pesticide strategy in our agriculture. The high cost, high risk and ecologically damaging ‘Genetically Modified’ technology is not the solution for our agrarian crisis. It will further damage the Indian agriculture.
8. Under the garb of promoting corporate farming, central as well as several state governments are distorting the concept of land reform and violating the land ceiling laws itself.
9. Ban on forward trading of agriculture produce has been lifted. The government has signed free trade agreement with ASEAN and European Union that will pave negative cascading effect on our agriculture producers.
10. The government surrendered to American-EU pressure on the issue of reserve stocks of food grains as well as subsidy to farmers during WTO negotiations. It will damage agriculture sector and endanger the concept of food security.
Outline of an Alternative to Economic Neo-Liberalism
The shameless pursuance of economic neo-liberalism by bourgeois governments of UPA and NDA or other parties have dipped the country in the mire of ever deepening economic crisis. The global meltdown has further aggravated the crisis. India needs to reverse the present strategy of economic growth per se. India needs a new strategy which is employment-friendly and people-friendly and bases itself on a fuller use of the capital — both public and private and on the available human resources. Such a strategy should undertake steps and policies for poverty reduction as a matter of priority. This is the real strategy of ‘inclusive growth’.
* The industrial growth should base itself on available financial and natural resources and must be employment-oriented. Due consideration be given to protection and development of handicraft and cottage industries that provide jobs to a big segment of our population. FDI should be restricted to the extent developed technology and know-how is required. Domestic market should be reserved for locally produced industrial products to the extent possible. In place of falling prey to slogans like ‘Make in India’ emphasis should be on expanding the domestic market by enhancing the purchasing power of the people.
* People-oriented strategy as an alternative to economic neo-liberalism should lay greater emphasis on investment in social sector by launching initiatives in spheres of education, skill development, health care, housing, increased access to finance by creating social funds for developing local communities.
* Public funding in agriculture and allied industries must be increased many fold. It will create conditions for take-off to a higher stage of all-round development and at the same time raise India’s human development index.
*An alternative programme should be based on a pro-people strategy of agrarian reforms which defend the interests of farmers and agricultural labourers and an employment-friendly policy of economic growth. It should be for farmers’ right to land, the youth’s right to employment and education, the people’s right to food, shelter and health care. Land reform must be in focus. Bandopadhyay Committee report on Bihar may provide basis for struggles on this issue. To help the farmers, particularly the small and marginal ones, new type of co-operative formations are needed that should counter menace of corporatisation.
* Comprehensive plan for augmenting irrigations facilities in the non-irrigated areas.
* Public sector should be preserved and expanded. Its working must be democratised by involving the workers and their trade unions at the unit level. All attempts of disinvestment of PSUs must be halted. Protectionism has to be imposed. Handicraft and cottage industry should be encouraged and helped to go for export-oriented production. Financial and technological upliftment of these sectors is the need of the hour.
* The small-scale and tiny industries play an important role in our industrial sector. It contributes 40 per cent of industrial production and about 35 per cent share in exports. It employs about 20 million workers. The government’s bias for the big industrialists has let them withdraw several items from the list reserved for the SSI sector. The government has also lifted the cap on FDI in SSI sector. This has led to take over by foreign capital or closures. The global meltdown has hit the SSI sector very badly. The new strategy has to be to halt this disaster by providing protection. Banks must provide liberal loans and other packages to enable SSIs to compete in both the local and international market. More attention needs to be paid on expanding and strengthening the cooperative movement. Export-oriented ‘Make in India’ plan will be most harmful for small and medium industries.
* Introduction of universal public distribution system with 35 kgs of foodgrains at a maximum price of Rs 2 a kg per month for all families. Food security law should be passed to ensure this.
* Separation of religion and state as the basic principle of secularism to be embedded in the Constitution; firm action to curb communal forces. Promotion of rationalism and scientific temper should be the core of education system.
* It should fight gender inequality, bias and discrimination and for empowerment of women.
*It should defend secularism, genuine rights of the minorities and take specific measures to uplift the deprived segments of our population like SCs/STs/OBCs and minorities and bring them to the mainstream of development.
Drift in Foreign Policy
1. Foreign policies of the countries are generally an extension of their internal particularly the economic policies. The Narendra Modi government from day one has shown its drift towards USA. As the new government is totally committed to implement the left-over agenda of neo-liberalism under the direct influence of its initiator, the World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF), the tools of international finance capital that is bent upon imposing its economic and political hegemony world over, more and more drift from the course of pursuing independent foreign policy for which there had been a more or less national consensus is becoming visible.
2. The talk of “strategic partnership” is no more confined to either the economic issues or specific to USA. Narendra Modi government is going all out to expand relations in all fields, particularly in defence with USA and its crony in Middle East, the Zionist state of Israel. The defence procurement from Israel had reached to peak during the UPA-II regime itself, under Modi, it is now becoming all embracing relationship, sacrificing our traditional friendship with Arab countries. Recently, the foreign ministry leaked hints to say that India will no more support the cause of Palestine in the forums of UNO. The concept of strategic partnership is being expanded to Japan and Australia, the trusted allies of USA.
3. In the era of globalisation of economy, regional cooperation and close interaction among the developing and emerging economies have become vital. Modi regime is cold shouldering this aspect of our policy. SAARC summit at Kathmandu got white-washed because our government tried to use this multi-state forum to score points on Indo-Pak relations. In the BRICS too, we played a passive role, particularly in relation to the establishment of the BRICS bank that could play an important role in foiling the US bid for a uni-polar world order. The same applies on our role in Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), formation of Asian Infrastructure Bank and cooperation within WTO and other international bodies.
4. In the present international scenario, India has to preserve and carry forward the foreign policy that promotes close relationship with our neighbours, bring together the developing and emerging economies, join forces with people fighting against neo-colonialism and imperialism and for world peace. Narendra Modi government’s policies are just opposite to this.
5. Unfortunate aspect of the present government’s foreign policy is that the internal communal atmosphere has also started affecting our foreign policy, particularly in relation to Pakistan and the Arab world.
1. Since the last Party Congress, the country’s politics has undergone drastic changes. With the formation of the NDA government headed by Narendra Modi, a definite rightward shift has occurred. The new government represents the combination of corporate capital, right wing ideology and rabid form of communalism. Within the first eight months, the government has fully bared its socio-economic and political agenda.
2. With BJP gaining absolute majority in the Lok Sabha on its own, the coalition era seems to be over, at least for the time being. After the Lok Sabha polls, BJP has won power in Haryana, Jharkhand and Maharashtra. Though there had been reverses for the party in the bye-elections to various assemblies, particularly in UP and Rajasthan, BJP has been able to spread its political influence in different parts of the country. The results of recent Jharkhand and J&K assembly elections have further confirmed this trend. But this also needs to be noted that in comparison to Lok Sabha results, BJP’s vote share has declined everywhere.
3. The Lok Sabha poll results and the victories of BJP in different state assembly elections have also exposed the fallacy of our present electoral system. ‘First-Pass-the-Post’ system that we have been following till now enables a party securing just around thirty per cent of the vote to capture the power. Electoral reforms with inclusion of proportional representation have become the need of the hour.
4. On economic front it is shamelessly and ruthlessly imposing the policies of neo-liberalism, politically it is using different outfits of the Sangh Parivar to hasten the process of communal polarisation, the main political tactics of the Modi-Amit Shah duo. For the first time, RSS, the mother organisation of BJP is directly interfering in the functioning of the government and even dictating terms. Pracharaks from the RSS have been inducted, not only in BJP but also in the government. Penetration of Sanghis and their ideological cronies in crucial government departments, academic and research institutions and even security and intelligence agencies is being carried out systematically.
5. The very formation and expansion of the union cabinet has bared the style of functioning of the government under Narendra Modi whose individualism and authoritarian bent of mind is visible. He is sidelining all possible challenges to his authority and filling the party and governmental posts with his own choice. In the process, he is clearly flouting the established norms of democratic functioning and even bypassing the parliamentary procedures.
6. The ruling combine does not have majority in the Rajya Sabha. In place of building consensus, the Narendra Modi government is resorting to Ordinance Raj. The basic idea is to facilitate the takeover of our natural resources by the corporate and crony capitalists. Already it has been done in the case of coal, insurance and land. To woo the MNCs various laws are being amended through ordinances.
7. This style of functioning poses grave danger for our parliamentary democratic system itself. Thus the challenges posed by the rightward shift in politics have become manifold. Economic sovereignty, secular polity, rule of law, parliamentary democratic set up and everything that the people have cherished are under threat. Every aspect of the threat is equally grave and one should not commit the blunder of prioritising the one over other.
8. With Media becoming a tool of the new regime as most part of it has been taken over by the corporate houses, every attempt will be made to distract people’s attention from the socio-economic issues faced by the people. Communalism is a double-edged weapon in the present context. On the one hand, it hastens the process of communal polarisation, the main political tactics of Modi team and on the other distract people’s attention from the real issues.
9. The communal threat has acquired dangerous proportion due to rise of minority communalism as well. In the absence of cherishable ideal, religiosity has gained ground in almost all religious communities, but it is turning into fundamentalism in minority communities due to fear psychosis generated by fierce onslaught of the majority communalism. Minority communalism ultimately becomes complimentary to the majority communalism.
10. As the corporate houses and their political tools are well aware that it is only the left parties that are capable of presenting a pro-people alternative programme, based on a set of socio-economic policies that counter and refute the anti-people economic neo-liberalism, all efforts are on to marginalise the Left. In the run up to the Lok Sabha election itself, all efforts were made to marginalise the left parties. Pliable regional parties were too manipulated for the purpose. This attack on the Left will get sharpened in the coming days.
11. The current political developments have added urgency to the need for strengthening and widening of the left unity. The coming together of the six left parties — the CPI, CPI (M), CPI (ML), Forward Bloc, RSP and SUCI(C) — in November and the joint campaign launched by them is a welcome move. But it is not sufficient. The platform needs to be further widened and expanded and more comprehensive unity in action needs to be built.
Direct Interference of RSS
1. Unlike the previous NDA government headed by Atal Behari Vajpayee, Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) , the mentor of BJP, is directly interfering in the affairs of the government as well as the BJP. It has deputed its pracharaks for the government as well as the party organisation. Major policy decisions particularly in the realm of education, social and cultural affairs, information and broadcasting are being “cleared” by the RSS. Penetration of individuals committed to Hindutva is on in different fields. History and syllabus are being revised from the point of view of Hindutva forces. Even Science Congress is being used to spread obscurantism. While corporate houses are masters for economic policies, the rest is being directly handled by the RSS. This poses a serious threat to our parliamentary system as RSS continues to claim to be an apolitical organisation.
2. Apart from directly interfering in the functioning of the government, various outfits of the Sangh Parivar have launched disruptive movements with very provocative slogans targeting the country’s secular fabric. Ayodhya controversy is being revived (even people holding constitutional posts like governor are indulging in it). All disruptive issues that were shelved during Vajpayee regime are being revived. From Love Jihad to Ghar Wapsi and from bid to denigrate Father of Nation by terming his killer Nathuram Godse as ‘patriot’ to indirectly cancelling minorities’ festival holidays, all are aimed to hasten the process of communal polarisation and disrupt the concept of unity in diversity. Most obscurantist ideas on science and our cultural heritage are being promoted by the government itself.
Flagship Programme in Peril
1. Narendra Modi government has made it clear that spending on social sector will be curtailed as the only way to reduce fiscal deficit. For the year 2014-15, already the government has announced reduction of 25 per cent in budgeted funds for education and health sector. It wants these two sectors to be totally privatised and commercialised.
2. Though MGNREGA was already under attack during the UPA-II regime, the Modi government wants to completely abandon the job-oriented scheme. While cut in allocation of funds to state and their non-utilisation was prevalent in the previous regime as well, it has become an admissible routine feature under new government. MGNREGA has to be protected by mobilising the concerned segments of the masses.
The result of the Lok Sabha polls where the BJP with just 31 per cent of votes has captured 52 per cent seats, the folly of the current First-Pass-the-Post system has been thoroughly exposed. Besides, with the growing mass consciousness against corruption, the demand for electoral reform is getting revived. Our party has always demanded comprehensive electoral reform. It believes that the present system of First-Pass-the-Post only breeds corruption. It should be replaced with appropriate proportional representation system. There are several reports, including one by Indrajit Gupta Committee on electoral reform. They must be taken up for comprehensive electoral reforms. Reforms must aim at curbing role of money and muscle power and combating communalism and casteism. The party must initiate a mass campaign for meaningful electoral reforms.
Jammu & Kashmir
The sensitive border state of Jammu and Kashmir continues to be a trouble spot. Although the militancy witnessed during the past one-and-a-half decade has come down, the lack of development and job opportunities, have made the youth restless. Besides, continued deployment of armed forces, use of AFSPA and violation of human rights also generate troubles. AFSPA must be gradually withdrawn from Kashmir as well as N-E region.
Over 70 per cent of people in J&K participated in the recently held assembly election. But this should not lead to misconception that the basic problem is over.
While talking to Pakistan to resolve the J&K problem, the Centre should take concrete steps to grant adequate autonomy to the state and autonomy to the regions within the state. Special economic package needs to be implemented sincerely. All efforts should be made to involve people and political forces of J&K for negotiating a permanent solution.
North-Eastern States in Turmoil
1. The North-Eastern states continue to be in turmoil. In Assam, frequent recurrence of ethnic and communal violence reflects the failure of the state government in resolving the long-standing issues and maintaining law and order. The coming to power of a rabid communal party at the centre has given a flip to communal and other divisive forces. Hundreds of lives have been lost during the past ten months in frequently recurring communal violence. The issue of infiltration from neighbourhood and questions of citizenship of those who have migrated much earlier still spark fire. The issues need to be resolved with all dimensions keeping in mind to maintain communal harmony and peace in the region.
2. In Manipur, the activities of separatists as well as the oppressive measures used by the para-military forces continue to be the basic reason for the turmoil in this state. Territorial integrity of the state needs to be protected as it is repeatedly threatened by slogans and movements for Greater Nagaland.
3. Economic packages announced have either remained on paper or have been embroiled in corruption. Development of the region still remains a dream.
4. AFSPA that has been grossly misused and has become a tool for human rights violation and oppression by military and para-military units need to be lifted from Manipur as well as from all North-Eastern states gradually.
5.North-Eastern states need special attention and a comprehensive plan for development while protecting the ethnic and cultural identities of people in this region .
From among the three Left-ruled states — West Bengal, Kerala and Tripura — only in Tripura, the Left Front retained power for the sixth consecutive term. It continues to be an ideal, not only in Tripura but also for the people all over the country for its good governance and pro-people measures.
In Kerala, the LDF lost narrowly in breaking the record of alternating power between the LDF and Congress-led UDF. But LDF continues to be a force to be reckoned with due to its consistent struggle on people’s issues.
The situation in West Bengal is alarming as the TMC led by Mamta Banerjee that came to power unleashed a reign of terror against he Left. Attacks on left leaders, cadres and offices of the left parties continue to be the main plank of TMC and its government. The state is in turmoil as law and order situation is worsening regularly and people are getting disillusioned due to failure of the state government in fulfilling the promises.
On the other hand rampant corruption involving ministers and leaders of TMC is yet another cause of people’s disillusionment. There are also accusations against them for cooperating and collaborating with terrorist elements from Bangladesh.
This situation is being fully exploited by the BJP and various outfits of Sangh Parivar who have launched fierce communal offensive to intensify the process of communal polarisation.
The Left in West Bengal is re-asserting itself by countering the challenges posed by both the TMC and its government and the BJP helped by Sangh Parivar.
Commercialisation of Education
1. Under the neo-liberal regime, education system is being privatised and commercialised on an unprecedented scale. The so-called Right to Education Act (RTE) that came into force since April 1, 2010 is also being used to further commercialise the education system and make higher education out of reach of the children of even lower-middle class. Education is a right not the privilege. Only 15 per cent of the total number of students enrolled in the first standard are availing the higher education facilities. There is no set up for equal education opportunities. Education sector has become the most profit-making sector in India.
2. Education sector has been opened for foreigners to open their shops under the garb of opening universities and educational institutions of higher studies. This will lead to further commercialisation of education. International education mafias are treating India as a 700-million-dollar education market. It will directly affect our national education system. The concept of equal educational opportunities for all will be totally distorted.
3. Under the garb of public-private partnership the government is going ahead with the target of totally privatising the education sector. Even the institutions that built infrastructure with the liberal grants from UGC/ ICHR/ ICSR and such other government agencies, as well as got land on nominal rates are gradually being handed over to education mafias.
4. The CPI stands for reservation in admission to educational institutions, to SCs, STs, OBCs, minorities and other weaker sections and it should be enforced on the private educational institutions at all level. Minority educational institutions should be forced to grant admission to deprived segments from within the community. Exemption granted by the apex court should not be used for “selling” the seats.
5. With RSS taking over the portfolio of HRD, basic education system itself is under threat. Penetration of Sanghis to distort history and other syllabus has to be combated.
6. Children from 0 to 18 years of age must get free and compulsory education as a matter of basic right. Computer software must be made available free to all students. Scientific and technical education must be within the reach of all. Education should aim at developing scientific temper. All attempts for distorting this concept have to be resisted.
Dalits and Adivasis
1. They are the most deprived sections of our society. The fruits of development have not reached them. Together Dalits (16 per cent), the Adivasis (8.5 per cent) and Muslim minorities (16 per cent) make up nearly 40 per cent of our population. When such a vast section of our society remains deprived and distressed, neither democratic movement can advance nor real development can take place.
2. The march of globalisation and shameful pursuance of policies of economic neo-liberalism have most adversely affected the Adivasis who have been displaced from their land, water and other natural resources and chased out of their forest dwellings. Among over two crore people displaced from their land, 40 per cent are Adivasis. Most of the uprooted people are in wilderness as there is no proper follow up for their rehabilitation. Paltry amounts paid as compensation cannot help them to arrange their livelihood. Adivasis are also displaced for exploration of mineral wealth. Ecology is adversely affected. The latest changes in land acquisition laws will multiply their miseries. Their resistance is met with fierce repression that paves way for the exploitation of their grievances and anger by extremist elements like Maoists. POSCO episode is an example.
3. In place of addressing their just demands and grievances the ruling classes adopted the sinister design of making Adivasis fight Adivasis by organising and arming a section from among them and setting up their armed camps in most affected areas like Bastar of Chhattisgarh. The most sinister of such formation was known as Salwa Judum that was patronised by both the Congress and BJP. Despite order of Supreme Court for disbanding of Salwa Judum, the ruling classes continue to carry on operations in the garb of fighting Maoists resulting in mass killings. The pretext of fighting the Maoists has also been used to target the mainstream left forces, particularly those belonging to CPI that has considerable influence in the region. A number of CPI cadres are still languishing in jails on cooked up charges. A recent alarming development is induction of armed forces in Maoist-infested areas.
4. With the positive intervention by the CPI and other left parties, Forests Right Act was passed in 2006. But the government has been wavering on implementing this law that provides for continued habitation of forests by Adivasis. For centuries Adivasis have been protectors of forests and coexisted with wild life. It is the forest officials, forest mafia and contractors in collision with capitalists that have destroyed our forest wealth. The threat of evicting forest dwellers and denying them their due rights on one or other plea is a genuine one. While struggling for honest implementation of the said Act to the benefit of the Adivasis, we must also take up issues like reservation in jobs and education and other concessions that are announced. Grassroots struggles for the implementation of these measures are a must.
5. The policy of reservation was worked out by the leaders of the freedom movement and the framers of the Constitution, with a view to help the Dalits and Adivasis to overcome their age-old deprivation, the stigma of untouchability, caste-based discrimination and to bring them up to the level of the mainstream human advance. Though reservation has helped in bringing up a section of middle class among the Dalits, it has not broken the caste system nor allowed the Dalits to break out of Chatur Varna.
6. The pursuance of neo-liberalism is in effect reversing the policy of reservation and handing over the neglected and discriminated sections of society to the cruel hands of private capital. The demand for more technocrats and skilled workers by private capital is limiting the job opportunities for Dalits and Adivasis. This justifies the demand for extending reservation to the private sector.
7. While working among the Dalits we come across certain leaders from among them that counterpose ideological questions like ‘caste versus class’ and some of them take open anti-communist positions under the garb of posing Ambedkarism against Marxism to alienate the Dalits from the mainstream left and democratic movement. The attempt needs to be foiled by conducting ideological work based on concrete socio-economic realities of our society.
8. Sub-plans for Dalits and Adivasis have been formulated at different levels of governance but the implementation has been hazardous and in some cases the state governments have diverted funds for such plans to some other projects. CPI should be vigilant in getting such sub-plans adequate fund, proper formulation and implementation. The party at the grassroots must also take up result-oriented struggles for making all benefits available to the Dalits that are announced for them.
9. CPI stands for abolition of discrimination among Dalits and Adivasis on the basis of the religion they profess. Presidential order of 1950 must be withdrawn.
10. CPI stands for application of Sixth Schedule of the Constitution in all tribal areas including Bastar where their population is around fifty per cent.
Other Backward Classes (OBCs)
1. The CPI has always recognised that in our country class and caste divisions are two aspects of social reality. Communists have to fight against all forms of discrimination based on castes, if we do not want class unity to be disrupted by caste divide. We should also note that by and by class differentiation has taken place among sections of OBCs (about 52 per cent of our society) and Dalits, though not so much among the scheduled tribes. A middle class is coming up in some sections of Dalits, while among the OBCs (excluding the most backwards), both middle class and bourgeois elements have appeared. These elements sometimes whip up casteism both against the age-old casteism (Manuvad) which the forward castes have been practising through centuries, but also against other castes within their own categories. It gives rise to mutual conflicts. The Gujjar agitation in Rajasthan is one such case. While upholding the banner of social justice to the weaker sections, the party must ensure that such claims are reconciled peacefully and that unity is maintained.
2. Dalits, Adivasis and the most backward among the OBCs are the most oppressed sections of our society and need to be mobilised and organised, on their specific demands as well as for the broader struggle against economic neo-liberalism. Without them we cannot expand the communist movement in the country.
Muslim and Other Minorities
1. Since the presentation of Sachar Committee report and Ranganath Mishra Commission report, the two entities appointed during the UPA-I regime that was dependent on the Left support for survival, the debate within the Muslim minority community got focused on socio-economic upliftment of the community for a short duration. It was a departure from the past when the community has always been used as ‘vote bank’ by one or the other bourgeois political parties by promoting sentimental issues. The shift from political emotionalism or emotional politics can be carried forward, if we take up the genuine grievances and demands of the community for speedy redressal.
2. The minorities, particularly the Muslims, look upon the Left as the most ardent champion of secularism and fighter for the rights of the minorities. Consistent anti-imperialist positions of the Left too have attracted the Muslims towards it. But all this evaporates when emotional issues rock the community.
3. To divert attention from the real socio-economic issues, attempts have been unleashed on futile debates like reservation for the community as a whole. CPI has been demanding since 1975 that all professional communities among the Muslims be recognised for all socio-economic benefits including reservation in education and employment on par with their professional counterparts among the majority community. Besides, CPI stands for abolition of discrimination on the basis of religion in recognising the Dalits and Adivasis.
4. The reservation pattern announced by the Left Front government in West Bengal during its last days and the formula evolved by the Achutha Menon ministry in Kerala long back may provide the basis for evolving a mechanism and system to end discrimination against minorities in the matter of employment and education.
5. As large segments of the Muslim community belong to various artisan communities like weavers, government must announce special packages for their promotion. The party must take up the implementation of these packages and other schemes like scholarships at the grassroot level.
6. It is high time that our comrades at grassroots level take up implementation of the measures announced in the wake of Sachar report and create our own base among them. Under Narendra Modi, the ministry for minority affair is virtually diluting all the schemes that were announced in the past. Minority related projects have been specifically targeted under the plans for reducing fiscal deficit by cutting social sector budget allocations. Communists have to boldly champion the cause of the minorities. By perpetuating the socio-economic and educational backwardness among such a large section of our population we can neither advance the democratic movement nor ensure real progress and prosperity of the country.
7. Christian minority too has come under attack during the recent period, particularly in BJP-ruled states like MP, Gujarat and Chhattisgarh as well as in Delhi, Odisha and Karnataka. Our party has to fight all sorts of oppression on minorities. Our comrades should help organisations like All India Tanzeem-e-Insaf that fight for realisation of genuine demands of the minorities.
8. The latest offensive of Sangh Parivar for re-conversion has created a fear complex in the minority communities. The sinister design need to be opposed vigorously.
9. In the absence of any ideal to attract the masses, there is general shift to religiosity in all communities, particularly so in the minority communities. It leads to religious extremism and fundamentalism.
1. Without active participation of women who constitute almost 50 per cent of our population in social and political life, it is not possible to bring about rapid advance and radical transformation in the country. Though the economic necessities and changing times are forcing more and more women to come out of their homes for jobs and employment, they continue to face feudalistic attitude at work sites as well as in their homes. They are even discriminated in the matter of remunerations paid for the services rendered except in government and PSU jobs.
2. The girl child is denied even the right to be born. She is victim to female feticide, particularly in the affluent families. This has resulted in continued decline in sex ratio. The demographic imbalance in our population is a matter of serious concern. The girl child faces discrimination even in the matter of nutritional needs and access to education.
3. Apart from feudal and patriarchal outlook, volunteerism is a new weapon to exploit women. Asha, Anganwadi and mid-day meal workers are being exploited under the garb of volunteerism.
4. Whereas feudal and traditional patriarchal value system continues to oppress and degrade women, globalisation has further hit them. Trafficking is on increase. Commodification of women is on through advertisements and other means for promoting consumerism. The struggle for gender equality and for a rightful share for women in all walks of life has developed into a struggle for empowerment of women. The most important step in this direction could have been passage of the legislation granting 33 per cent reservation to women in Parliament and state legislatures but it is lurking as most of the bourgeois political parties are not sincere for it. The CPI and other left parties are committed to it and will continue to mount pressure for its passage.
5. Since the incident of Nirbhaya, the gang rape in a bus in national capital, the issue of women protection has assumed urgency. Though governments have announced several measures including legislative one, harassment and attacks on women have increased.
Activities of Maoists and other Left Extremists
1. Acute deprivation, heart-rending poverty and unbridled exploitation of people in some areas have given rise to a brand of left extremism generally termed as Naxalism or in the recent past as Maoism. It has become clear that treating this as a law and order problem will not provide a solution. Today they are operating in a larger area than before. They even talk about “Red Corridor” from Kathmandu to Kanyakumari. But this is not true. It is the unresolved socio-economic problems of the region where they find space to operate and enjoy a measure of support from sections of the suffering people, especially from tribal sections. Common people in such areas suffer at their hands and also at the hands of the police who are after them. The mad drive for land acquisition under the garb of industrialisation too has added to the deprivation and miseries of the people, particularly the tribals. They also fall prey to the pseudo-revolutionary word mongering of Maoists.
2. The administration in states, in place of addressing the grievances of people in the affected region, started dividing the masses. In Chhattisgarh, both the Congress and BJP regimes adopted the tactics of arming a section of the tribes under the garb of Salwa Judum. Youth were armed and used for fratricide. The practice continues despite ban by the Supreme Court.
3. Despite claims of three-pronged policy to fight Maoism — law and order, development work and political fight — in most of the states police excesses, non-implementation of the development programme, corruption and state-sponsored drive for domination of ruling party are the main features.
4. Apart from that, the Union government too is having an agenda. It is trying to create an impression that left extremism is more dangerous than terrorism. It wants to create an impression that Communists as such are dangerous. This is a very sinister move and needs to be countered effectively. As CPI has units and areas of influence where these left extremists too have influence, it is necessary that we take up the challenge, politically, as well as ideologically. The party should carry out an ideological-political campaign and demarcate its policies from the policies pursued by them. The Maoists are actually disorienting the masses from the real Communist movement and thus harming the cause. We should insist that the rise of left extremism is a socio economic problem. While opposing the violence by Maoists, we should also condemn the brutal repression by the police under the garb of fighting Maoists. Mostly, the common people and cadres of parties including those of CPI are victims of this police repression. Recently police had also enacted a number of false encounters to kill targeted Maoist leaders. This needs to be condemned. Deployment of army in these areas needs to be opposed.
5. While rebuffing the government’s move to discredit and marginalise the Communist movement as a whole by claiming that left extremism is more dangerous than terrorism, we must initiate a dialogue and ideological campaign to refute the wrong interpretation of Marxism-Leninism by the left extremists.
Terrorism and Communalism
1. Terrorism and communalism, both on rise, pose grave threat to our secular democratic polity. During the first six months of the Narendra Modi government there had been over 600 cases of communal clashes in different parts of the country, particularly in the poll-bound areas. These clashes were organised by different organisations of Sangh Parivar to hasten the process of communal polarisation. Officially, under Modi, incidents of terrorist attacks and plans for such attacks have also increased.
2. But it is true that the threat posed by terrorism based on religious fundamentalism is gaining ground due to the absence of clear alternative and idealism. New regime’s attempt to erode all forms of rationalism and scientific temper is further complicating the situation. Terrorism in India is not a religion specific.
3. The ATS and NIA investigations revealed that a number of terrorist attacks like Malegaon bomb blast, Mecca Masjid blast in Hyderabad, Ajmer Dargah bomb attack and blast in Samjhauta Express were the handiwork of Hindutva-linked organisations like Abhinav Bharat. A number of RSS Pracharaks and Sevaks had been charge-sheeted in these cases. But now the new dispensation is gradually diluting these cases and even those convicted for organising communal riots and conducting false encounters are being bailed out. Police have arrested a few leaders of these Hindutva organisations but have failed to get those Muslim youth released who were falsely implicated in these cases. These Muslim youth falsely implicated need to be released and rehabilitated. Simultaneously action should be taken against those police officers who falsely implicated them and doled out all sorts of cooked-up stories. Separatism and ethnic hatered also breed terrorism, particularly in North-Eastern states. Persons from N-E are facing hatred campaign in different parts of the country including the national capital, Delhi.
4. There is no doubt that the problem of terrorism does exist in our country. There had been smuggling of such elements from across the border, but our variety of terrorism has no link with the US theorised concept of Islamic terrorism. The Narendra Modi government has revived more vigorously the poisonous formulation by Atal Behari Vajpayee, when he was Prime Minister that “all Muslims are not terrorists but all terrorists are Muslims.” In our country the root of terrorism, be it the so-called Islamic terrorism or left extremist terrorism lies in socio-economic conditions. Left extremism is gaining ground due to socio-economic deprivation and discrimination.
5. Communalism continues to be a serious threat. Religious fundamentalism and conservative interpretation of religion are being promoted to attain the goal of communal forces. Sangh Parivar is bent upon communalising the politics.
6. Hate Muslim campaigns and clashes with Pakistan are being used to hasten the communal polarisation.
7. Rise of Hindutva has given chance to Muslim communal forces to spread their areas of influence. Minority communalism ultimately compliments the majority communalism.
8. There had been demands to adopt a comprehensive approach to the problem of terrorism and re-orient the investigations of terrorist attacks keeping in view the recent investigations. CPI stands for it and demands over-hauling of investigating agencies and police force.
Climate Change and Ecological Imperialism
1. In the mad drive for profits and ever-greater profits, capitalism has ignored the consequences that follow in the form of environmental pollution. Narendra Modi government is clearing project after project that will badly affect environment. Its land acquisition law will have adverse impact on environment as a whole.
2. Since the signing of UN framework convention on climate change, USA had been manipulating to pass on the responsibility on the developing countries, though the fact is that USA itself is the biggest polluter. It is most unfortunate that Modi government even on this vital national issue is surrendering to USA.
3. Surprisingly, the Modi government, in place of joining the resistance to US manipulations is collaborating with it. Despite being partners in BRICS, even China and Brazil too acted for limited national interests that do not conform to the larger interests of the cause of climate change.
4. The party has to pay more attention to this aspect of fight against ecological imperialism.
Left Unity and CPI
1. Left suffered a set back in the last parliamentary polls and earlier legislative assembly elections in West Bengal and to some extent in Kerala. It was an electoral defeat in Kerala, while in Bengal and other places it was also a political defeat. Due to the defective electoral system electoral defeats are inevitable depending on the political balance of forces supporting the Left and its rivals. But erosion of bases and support of the masses is a matter of serious concern.
2. The Left is facing the biggest challenge in its history. At a time when secular politics also suffered a set back with the semi-collapse of Congress, the takeover of the country by Right in the shape of BJP and the pathetic performance of Left have disappointed the people, particularly the Left following. They feel helpless.
3. The crisis of the Left is not a sudden and new phenomenon. It has several reasons which are to be analysed deeply with proper introspection.
4. The Left played an important role in the national freedom movement and in shaping the policies and politics of the country in the post-independence period. The heroic struggles of the Left for land reforms, labour laws, in defence of working class agitations, in defence of Tribals, dalits, peasants and agricultural labour and the minorities had its imprint on the policies of the nation. We were always recognised as the champion of the downtrodden sections of the society and as a force that was setting the socio-economic agenda.
5. The undivided Communist Party could get 9.5 per cent of vote in the first general election. After split the Communist fallowing was also badly divided. CPI(M) emerged as a bigger left Party in West Bengal, Kerala, Tripura and having influence in a few pockets of other states. CPI continues to have influence in most of the states and is the only pan-India party but slowly the bases are shrinking. In Tamilnadu, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana both the parties have got more or less equal influence. CPI is stronger in Bihar, Jharkhand, Punjab, Chhattisgarh, Manipur, etc. CPI(M) has better organisation and political performance in Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh and Kashmir. In other states both exist but both are weak. RSP is limited to West Bengal and Kerala and Forward Bloc to West Bengal, though both have their presence and activities in a few other states. CPI (ML) liberation has some base in Bihar and Jharkhand.
6. Though more left parties emerged on the scene, the Left influence did not expand later. All the Left put together could never get 9.5 per cent of the vote and ultimately it has been reduced to less than 4.5 per cent in the 2014 elections. CPI fared more badly with 0.8 per cent vote share.
7. In the recent elections both the main bourgeois parties committed to neo-liberal economic policies, were fighting bitterly, the Left could not take advantage, and failed to retain its vote bases.
8. The emergence of a huge middle class in India, and its acceptance of neo-liberal economic policies and globalisation as it also benefited to some extent have alienated a big chunk of them from the Left. The working class which has shown more unity and participated in impressive joint struggles, confined its battles to own issues, mostly economic but did not respond appropriately to political development. Trade unions have to take up the task of politicalisation of working class.
9. The emergence of regional parties, rise of casteist and communal forces reduced the strength and influence of left parties in some areas.
10. There was a big socialist movement outside Communist Parties in the country. They split, united, again split several times and became weak. These groups who now exist as regional parties with an element of caste influence are trying to reunite.
11. The disintegration of Soviet Union, the world socialist bloc, and the split in Indian Communist movement have further weakened the Left and CPI in particular. Absence of any clear alternative or ideal has also disillusioned a vast section of our sympathisers, particularly the youth and students. All this has caused zigzag in our percentage of votes polled.
12. There is an argument that aligning with the regional parties has weakened our bases. It may be true to some extent. Electoral alliances are misunderstood as political alliances and we failed to convince and politicise the people that electoral alliances are temporary and must be sub-ordinated to political tactical line of the party. In parliamentary democracy poll pacts on principled basis will be inevitable. Party may have to continue to have electoral alliances with regional parties with the purpose of increasing our representation and to carry forward our political tactics. This aspect should be re-examined more deeply in future. In any case, electoral tactics should be subordinated to political tactics.
13. Economic policies determine political course. The transition from fudalism to capitalism brought neo-rich into politics in a big way and they forced for more pro-capitalist policies. In the era of neo-liberalism the Congress shifted from centrist party to no-liberal economic policies. The emergence of corporates, and a considerable crony capitalist class in India, influenced BJP to shift from outdated swadeshi to rightist pro-corporate policies, along with Hindutva communalism.
14. The corporate forces through their finances and Media both electronic and print, maligned the Left and did their best to marginalise the Left. Corporate houses now openly dictate policies.
What is to be done!
The craze for rushing through the implementation of the remaining agenda of the neo-liberalism and intensified offensive of communalism is definitely posing a great challenge. Simultaneously, it is providing great opportunities to the Left to project itself as an alternative by popularising the alternative socio-economic policies.
Left is the most committed secular force in the country. It is only the Left that is capable of projecting alternative to economic neo-liberalism to which most of the bourgeois political parties, both national and regional are committed.
Emergence of a strong and expanded left front will attract other secular democratic parties, particularly the regional ones, to join forces with the Left to build a programme based left-democratic alternative.
The Left Unity
The Left unity is the main subject that is being discussed among the people. United activity, united struggles, militant battles will create conducive atmosphere for such a unity.
Unity in action by communists is the main pre-condition for Left unity. Split and division among Left, particularly the Communists, raise question on our credential as well as identity. The expanded left front can only restore the confidence of the people. Reunification of communist movement on a principled basis is the need of the situation. But it cannot be rushed through and should be on a principled basis. It should be after proper discussions at all levels and by forging unity in action.
From the platform of 22nd Congress CPI once again reiterates its resolve for reunification of Communist movement on a principled basis.
A stronger united left movement with relentless joint struggles will create confidence among the Left following and the general masses.
Ideological, political battles are to be carried on with vigour and consistency to reestablish the independent identity of the Left.
With Left unity as base, our strategy should be to build a broad left-democratic unity. It means to forge unity with all those forces, groups and parties who agree with us on a minimum democratic programme which includes the defence of secularism, democracy and pro-people economic policies as alternative to neo-liberal economic policies.
Strengthening of CPI
1. Strengthening CPI is the basic necessity to forge the left unity as well as left democratic unity.
2. Reconnect with the people, rejuvenate the Party Organisation, expansion of bases, injecting young blood into the party and its leadership are the needs of the day. Documents adopted by National Council in its special session in September 2014 should form the basis for it.
3. People’s issues are to be identified and the party has to unleash consistent battles on their issues at the grass root level. There are different forms of struggles. We organise some agitations to focus attention on some important issues of people and sometimes to express dissatisfaction or unhappiness. But they are symbolic.
4. We should re-orient party at grass root level to organise result-oriented struggles, sustained battles to achieve the just demands of the people, like wage struggle, land for tiller, house-sites, against atrocities and discrimination in any form. Drinking water, irrigation facilities, electricity, civic amenities, roads, hospitals, schools and many more such issues can be identified as well as class issues like wages, social security, etc, should be taken up. These struggles will reconnect the party with masses.
5. If we can organise result-oriented militant struggles at grass root level our party with its big mass base, larger influence, and credibility as a party of the exploited and downtrodden sections of the society can re-emerge as a strong fighting party.
6. The wrong policies of the rightist communal BJP and its anti-poor policies are to be exposed by consistent campaign among the people. We have to consistently raise the political consciousness of the masses on basic policy issues. Workers and employees have started challenging the new regime on policy issues. Recent coal strike and action plans of bank employees and transport workers are an encouraging sign. Our slogan is: No to Rightist Communal Policies; Dislodge Regime of Corporate Rightist Ideology and Communal Combination.
7. Politics cannot be a hobby for communists. It is not a one issue job, limited to fight elections. Be with the people always should be our moto.
8. After almost seven decades of independence there continues the caste discrimination and practice of untouchability, atrocities on their assertion for their justified rights. Tribals are being hunted and thrown out in millions from the forest and land in the name of development. Minorities are living with fear and a feeling of insecurely and becoming easy targets of fundamentalism.
9. Poverty and inequality are on rise. Concentration of wealth in the hands of few lakhs people while overwhelming section of people are in utter disgusting poverty.
10. According to an international survey, the wealth in India has grown enormously during the last 1½ decades. From the year 2000 to 2014 average eight per cent increase in wealth has been registered. But this average accounting increase is only on papers, in reality while the wealth is accumulated in the hands of 0.3 per cent of our population. In India 2,38,000 rich people are in the top one per cent of global wealth holders. 650 of them are billionaires, while 90 per cent of the Indian population are deprived of their share in the wealth that is created. Wealth inequality is much higher than income inequality. A section of middle class was among the initial beneficiaries.
11. The gap between the rich and poor is widening beyond all scales. This should be fought back. India cannot afford to be a rich country with majority of poor people.
12. Unemployment is on increase frustrating the youth with helplessness and anger. Working class is in distress with pro-capitalist pro-rich policies of the government. Price rise is a big burden on the people. Agricultural labour and peasantry are in distress. Atrocities on women are on increase. Country is in chaos. Communist Party needs to work among all these sections of people mobilise them, organise them and fight along with them.
13. The takeover of BJP from Congress is not the normal transfer of power from one bourgeoisie party to another. Power has been taken over by a combination of corporate capital, rightist ideology and rabid communalism which is steadily making India a full fledged strategic partner of US imperialism. Hence it is to be fought tooth and nail.
14. Lack of zeal for organising grass root movements on concrete issues leads to casual approach to struggles. Lack of grass root activities keep us away from elections to Panchayat Raj institutions. This approach should be changed.
15. Our party is weak in Hindi heartland as well as in Western states. In spite of our efforts neither CPI nor the other left parties could penetrate deep into these areas. More consistent efforts have to be made to expand our bases in Hindi belt and Western India, consolidate old bases and expand new bases with better organisation. It has been repeatedly said that our own independent political bases are to be built, if we want to have our say in the politics of state or region.
16. Reasonable representation in legislatures and parliament is necessary to voice the grievances of the poor and downtrodden. Struggles inside and outside Parliament should be carried on simultaneously. As our representation is weak in legislatures and Parliament, we need to concentrate more on the struggles of the people on their basic issues. Electoral tactics should aim at ensuring adequate representation of the party in legislatures and Parliament.
17. Without a strong party, nothing could be achieved. Building, strengthening and activising the party is the main task.
What Should be Our Political Tactics
1. Our basic goal is to transfer the Indian society to socialism, ending all types of exploitation. The immediate task is to defend and save secularism, democracy, and all rights and facilities to working class, toiling masses through struggles, and build a pro-people alternative of left and democratic forces.
2. Extreme Left will try to cash on the present difficulties of the Left and campaign for armed struggle as the only way citing Left’s failure through parliamentary path. Left extremism is not at all the alternative in the present circumstance in spite of the set back of the Left in parliamentary elections. Mass movements and militant struggles can help in countering it along with ideological struggle.
3. Building a strong left movement and unity of the Left is the need of the hour but that alone cannot achieve our goal. The goal of an independent strong Left need not hamper our efforts for building a broad left democratic unity based on principles of secularism, democracy and pro-people economic policies.
4. Prioritising the slogan of all out secular unity in the name of fighting the dangerous onslaught of communalism, will only water down the principles of left democratic unity. Actually, taking up only the issue of secularism will ultimately become complimentary to the BJP’s tactics of communal polarisation. The miseries and exploitation of the masses, pauperisation of the masses in the name of economic development through neo-liberal economic policies will definitely alienate people from the present regime and create avenues for the growth of the Left as a viable force.
5. The left democratic unity cannot be achieved by meetings and conventions alone. It is also to be achieved through valiant battles of the people unitedly on these issues.
6. We have to unite the left forces around a socio-economic alternative in the interest of the nation. This will pave way for a broader left and democratic unity on the basis of alternative socio-economic policies and for defence of secularism. Dislodge the ruling combination of corporate capital, rightist ideology and communalism.
1. Despite concerted attempts by the ruling dispensation, corporate controlled Media and various outfits of the Sangh Parivar to distract people’s attention from the disastrous socio-economic policies pursued by the Narendra Modi government, various segments of the people have started challenging the government policies and intents. The provocative moves and statements to spark communal hatred and discard had been widely condemned and people have reiterated their resolve to defend the secular democratic polity of the country.
On the economic front also, voice of protest is being raised. Workers and employees in different segments of economy affected by ruthless imposition of neo-literalism are coming out in protest. Land acquisition law amendments have been opposed from different quarters, including some unexpected ones.
The Indian people are conscious of their democratic rights and have the capacity to rebuff any ruler who attempts to destroy our cherished goals of strengthening economic sovereignty, democracy and secular fabric. They have started moving for it against the diabolical designs of the Narendra Modi government.
2. The 22nd Party Congress of the Communist Party of India reiterates its resolve to build a programme-based Left and Democratic Front to accomplish the tasks of democratic revolution that should pave way for ushering in the country to a socialist revolution to build a socialist system by applying Marxism-Leninism in our condition based on experiences of our movement. Socialist India continues to be our goal that should lead to ending the exploitation of man by man, establishes social ownership on basic means of production and services, provide equal opportunities in the matter of job, education, health and housing, end all sorts of discrimination on the basis of caste, creed, language, religion, gender and ethnicity and establishes a real secular society that promotes rationalism and scientific temper.
3. The party will strive to build a left and democratic alternative based on pro-people policies by mobilising and unifying various segments of our people particularly the working people. The party stands for the broadest possible class unity on various class fronts on specific class issues.
4. Politically, the party will concentrate on building and expanding the left unity and conducting joint mass struggles and campaigns to rouse the consciousness of the people on alternatives to neo-liberalism that will attract the followings of other democratic forces, including the regional parties. Mass struggles will pave way for building a left and democratic alternative to the present two combinations of bourgeois political parties that are committed to neo-liberalism.
5. s the threat to our secular polity and democratic system has grown many fold, the prty stands for broadest unity of the secular forces for protecting our secular democratic system , communal harmony and national integrity.
6. The party will continue to organise all oppressed and deprived people including Dalits, Adivasis, Mahadalits, OBCs, minorities, women, workers, kisans, khet mazdoors, youth and students on their specific demands that should enable the party to build strong political bases in these segments.
7. Several segments of our middle classes that were among the initial beneficiaries of the neo-liberal reform policies are now getting hurt by these very policies in the form of growing indebtedness and increasing burden of EMIs. Party will attend to their problems and organise and unify them with the struggles of the working people.
8. Growing commercialisation of entire education system has made even secondary education out of reach of overwhelming majority of our population. Students and youth will be rendered all help and support in their fight for education and jobs being the basic right.
9. Neo-liberal policies, particularly the slogans like “Make in India” are threatening the very existence of small and medium industries and leading the country towards de-industrialization. Party will support these segments along with workers and people engaged in handicrafts and self-employing trade to protect these sectors. Unbridled entry of FDI in retail trade will render crores of retailers and traders jobless. They too have to join these forces in the fight against anti-people policies of neo-liberalism.
10. The CPI stands for unity in diversity and protection of plurality of cultural heritage and will be a strong supporter of all those intellectuals, writers, artistes and cultural activists in their fight against obscurantism, fundamentalism and imposition of conservative ideas through the change of syllabus and other means. We will support them for promoting rationalism and scientific temper.
WTH ITS RICH HERITAGE OF A PARTY FIGHTING FOR THE PEOPLE’S CAUSE, THE CPI FIRMLY BELIEVES THAT ALL THESE MASS STRUGGLES AND CAMPAIGNS WILL LEAD TO THE BUILDING OF A PEOPLE’S ALTERNATIVE TO PAVE WAY FOR A SOCIALIST INDIA. SOCALSM IS OUR FUTURE.