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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)

Oppose Jingoism, now terming their erstwhile ally ‘anti-national’. When PDP and the National
Conference came together to form the Govt. in J&K, RSS-BJP Govt.

dissolved the state assembly as an opposition led Govt. would not have
permitted them to use the Kashmir situation for their electoral purpose. On
Pulwama attack, questions have been raised about different aspects of
commission and omission which call for answers. It is pertinent that J&K
By launching an air strike inside Pakistan this (February 26) morning, is under the rule of the Central Govt. In the treatment of Kashmir situation
Indian Govt. has adopted a course which may lead to conflict between the by the Govt. and the corporate media, the Kashmiris and their concerns
two countries, a conflict which is not in the interest of the people of the two are absent. It is appearing to be a fight for a Kashmir without Kashmiris.
countries. Whatever may be the actual damage caused by the air strike,
There were attacks against Kashmiris in different parts of the country,
this attack deep inside Pakistan is being seen as a humiliation by the
mainly in the states where police machinery is under the control of RSS-
Pakistan Army and is bound to lead to further escalation by some sort of
BJP or NDA Govts. In capital Delhi, Uttarakhand, Haryana, UP, Bihar,
retaliation by them. The Air Force action has been termed as a ‘non-military
Kashmiri students and traders were targeted by the mobs collected by
pre-emptive action’ by the Govt. of India. It was avowedly aimed at
RSS-BJP cadres. They were roughed up, rusticated and asked to leave
destroying a training camp of Jaish-e-Mohammed in Balakot in Manshera
and go back to Kashmir. The Govt., including the Prime Minister, kept
district of Khyber Pakhtundkwa province. It is the first time since 1971
silent on these attacks and Modi made a very general statement only after
that Indian Air Force has crossed the Line of Control. Jaish-e-Mohammed
the Supreme Court had issued directions to the state govts. to provide
had claimed responsibility for the suicide attack on the CRPF convoy near
protection to Kashmiris. However, nowhere was any action taken against
Pulwama in Jammu & Kashmir on February 14. In this attack 42 CRPF
those who had been guilty of these attacks.
personnel were killed.
RSS-BJP Govt. and the corporate media have launched a jingoist war
RSS-BJP Govt. has been running a communal and jingoist campaign in
mongering campaign which has serious portents for the country and the
view of the coming elections in the country and is trying to utilize Pulwama
people. It shows the desperation of these forces in view of the coming
attack for its election campaign. It has betrayed all the promises it had
elections, so much is at stake for them in view of the deepening economic
made to the people, particularly on generating employment, increasing
crisis and deteriorating conditions of the people. However, such escalation
incomes of peasants, recovering black money, ushering in growth etc. It
has a momentum of its own. While western imperialist powers and Israel
has failed on all these counts. Its jingoist campaign is to cover up these
may back Indian Govt. on the air strike in view of their strategic and
failures and to set an anti-Pakistan agenda for the coming election. RSS
commercial interests and the interests of thier military industrial complex,
and its affiliates link this agenda with their anti-Muslim communal campaign.
the brunt of the burden will have to be borne by the people of the country.
They are trying to impose their majoritarian outlook and policies designed
to impose thier Hindutva on the people and are using their control over the RSS-BJP Govt. has torpedoed all attempts at improving relations with
state machinery for that purpose. Their attacks on the minorities, particularly neighbouring countries. Its attitude towards opening of Kartarpur Corridor
Muslims, under different pretexts are examples of that. However, their efforts is an example though it is not in a position to block it. It has discouraged
at bringing the communal Citizenship Bill have been fought back by the all people to people contact which can bring to the people of the two countries
people of North Eastern states. the facts of the problems faced by them.
RSS-BJP have been planning to use the Kashmir situation for their CPI(ML)-New Democracy opposes war mongering and demands de-
communal jingoist agenda for the coming elections. Having run a coalition escalation between India and Pakistan. Both the countries should desist
Govt. with Mehbooba Mufti led PDP, they dissolved that coalition and are from military action across LOC and international border. We call upon the

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)
Govts. of both the countries to take recourse to dialogue to solve all major Latin American countries have seen the rise of rightist rulers. In
outstanding issues. CPI(ML)-New Democracy opposes attacks on neighbouring Colombia, protégé of ultra-right Uribe, Ivan Duque Marquez,
Kashmiris in different states and supports democratic aspirations of the has been elected while the largest country of the continent, Brazil, has
people of J&K. seen the election of neo-fascist Bolsonaro. Argentina has a right
conservative President in Macri while Chile is ruled by Pinochet admirer
(Statement issued by the Central Committee of CPI(ML)-New Democracy Sebastian Pinera. All these leaders are pro-US, supported by pro-US big
bourgeoisie and admirers of the erstwhile military rulers in their countries.
on February 26, 2019) US imperialism has chosen the time when it can get support from these
ultra-reactionary regimes.

At the root of the US offensive lies the US drive to get hold of Venezuelan
oil. Venezuela has one of the biggest oil reserves in the world. Before the
rise of Chavez, US firms used to control oil exploration. But over the
decades their participation has been replaced by the Russian oil giant,
Rosneft, which has stakes in nine major oil fields in Venezuela.
US Imperialism’s Attempted
Imperialism’s Even while Trump Administration has announced withdrawal of forces

Coup in Vene zuela

from Syria and Afghanistan, it is embarking on regime change in Venezuela.
Explaining this, US Vice-president Mike Pence said that although Trump
dislikes interventions elsewhere “he thinks differently about this
hemisphere.” This is Munroe doctrine in action. Trump any way talks of
US imperialist rulers have embarked on regime change in Venezuela, extracting maximum from US military interventions, like he said that US
an oil rich country of South America. They are orchestrating a laid out should have seized Iraqi oil. Last year he openly toyed with the idea of
script towards achieving this aim tearing away every single norm of military action in Venezuela to control its oil resources. US is the largest
international law and showing utter contempt for the sovereignty of importer of Venezuela oil importing roughly half a million barrels per day
Venezuela. with China and India being the second and third largest importers of oil
This regime change offensive of the US imperialist rulers is unfolding in from Venezuela.
the backdrop of intensifying struggle in a number of Latin American countries
The US action in attempting to remove Maduro Govt. in Venezuela is
between the people opposed to US domination of their countries and a
aimed at its rivals, particularly Russia and China, who have extensive
section of elite aligned to and backed by US imperialism. This offensive is
interests in Latin American countries including Venezuela. China has
unfolding at a time when the continuing slump in commodity prices in the
become the leading trade partner of a number of Latin American countries
international market has put a lot of strain on the Govts. of a number of
including Brazil. US action is also aimed at punishing Venezuela for its
Latin American countries which have embarked on spending a bigger share
close ties with Iran whom US is targeting. So US subversion in Venezuela
of the profits from the exports of these commodities on the welfare
is part of Trump Admn.’s drive to make US the overlord of Latin America
measures. These policies which some Latin American leaders are
again, pushing back inroads made by rival powers in the region. It is part of
christening as socialism of 21st century, have run into difficulty owing to
the US imperialist drive which includes trade wars against its rivals. US
falling incomes of these govts.
National Security Advisor admitted as much when he conceded that US
US imperialist rulers have unleashed this offensive when a number of strategic interests were in play, including US concerns about the activities

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)
of its foes in the region. Venezuela’s money!
With economic problems of Venezuelan Govt. increasing with the decline It is worth mentioning that the language used by Guaido in denouncing
in oil prices in the international market and coming to power of ultra Maduro's presidency has been identical to the language used by US Vice-
reactionary regimes in the bigger countries of Latin America, US imperialism president Mike Pence who had in an op-ed in Wall Street Journal just before
saw the moment to install its supporters in power in Caracas. While he the Rally on January 23 where Guaido declared himself the president, called
may criticize his Republican and Democrat predecessors in the White Maduro's presidency as “illegitimate and usurpation of democracy.”
House, Trump has stuck to the time worn trick of US imperialism to couch
its neocolonial ventures in the terms of restoring democracy and US, its allies and Venezuela’s elite aligned with US imperialism are
humanitarianism. Sections of Venezuelan bourgeoisie hostile to Chavistas demanding immediate elections terming Maduro’s election as illegitimate.
in power have long relied on US support for seizing power and have been However, they have not accepted Maduro’s offer of conducting elections
carrying out the behests of US imperialism. Before the Presidential Election to the National Assembly, demanding Presidential election and that too
in May 2018, opposition in Venezuela was close to a deal with Maduro these not to be conducted by the present Govt. If they had people's support
Govt. on conduct of elections but backed out of it at the behest of US they would have accepted Maduro's offer and had they won the National
imperialism and went on to boycott the elections. The new term of Maduro Assembly elections, obviously their demand for Presidential election would
was inaugurated on January 10, 2019. have gathered much force and legitimacy. But in fact they do not want
elections but control over the election process. They want regime change
The regime change conspiracy of US imperialism aided by western and undiluted control over the Venezuelan state. Their eyes are on the oil
imperialist powers has been prepared over some time. Besides instructing wealth of Venezuela. As the situation in the Middle-east is getting
Venezuelan opposition to boycott the elections in May 2018, it is reported increasingly complex and US control over the region is facing increasing
that several weeks ago the Bank of England blocked Venezuela Govt. challenge, US imperialism is looking to control another major producer of
from repatriating $ 1.2 billion in gold reserves held in London. US Admn. oil in the world.
has also been withholding payment for Venezuelan oil for some time. These
only show that the preparations for the present push were going on for US imperialist rulers are threatening Venezuela with military intervention
quite some time. though their preferred mode of intervention is to carry out a military coup.
They are repeatedly asking military leaders to overthrow Maduro Govt.
After the inauguration of Maduro's Presidency, the regime change policy
threatening and offering bribes to military commanders. They are propagating
was put into operation. A little known opposition politician Guaido, leader
fake news of dissenssions in the Army which has stood firmly with the
of a small party, was chosen as a leader of the united opposition as other
Govt. and are projecting every individual defection as a big crack in the
better known figures stand badly discredited among the people. He was
unity of armed forces of Venezuela. They had employed these tactics in
made speaker of the National Assembly. Overnight Guaido, not much known
Syria as well but they failed there and are failing in Venezuela. They are
in Venezuela, become the face of united opposition on the instruction of
stationing their troops in neighbouring countries like Colombia. These are
US Administration. On January 23, he called a meeting in the capital Caracas
the same tactics they pursued in Iraq till they militarily overthrew Saddam
and declared himself to be the President. He was immediately recognized
Hussein's Govt. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has appointed Elliot
as President by US Admn. and its allies in a pre-meditated and orchestrated
Abrams as 'Special Envoy' on Venezuela. Abrams has been the notorious
planner of CIA wars in Nicaragua and El Salvador and a convict in Iran-
In the most blatant move, US Admn. has frozen nearly 7 billion US $ of Contra affair. He was also associated with the failed coup attempt against
Venezuela’s state oil company and declared it to be available to Guaido Hugo Chavez in 2002. He has been brought in to plan and oversee yet
group. Hence, coup attempts in Venezuela are being financed with another military coup in a Latin American country.

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)
The tactics of US imperialism of engineering a coup are also old. The
National Assembly is being shown to be the only representative organ in
For um Ag
orum ainst Hindutv
Against HindutvaaF ascist
Venezuela disregarding the election victory of President Maduro. On the Offfensi
Of ve Launc
ensiv hed a
Launched att All India
one hand, economic sanctions are being imposed on Venezuela to deepen
economic crisis in that country and to increase hardships for the people, Convention a
Conv gainst F
ag ascist Of
Fascist Offfensi ve
on the other the same are being shown as the reasons for military
intervention. And the National Assembly dominated by pro-US factions is Delegates from Punjab, Andhra Pradesh, Telengana, Maharashtra, Tamil
accusing Maduro of usurpation, echoing an earlier era when Chile’s President Nadu, Assam, Tripura, West Bengal, Bihar, Jharkhand, Uttar Pradesh,
Salvador Allende was accused similarly by the then right wing legislature Haryana, Delhi, Uttarakhand, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Kerala,
in Chile. That CIA coup had brought military to power in Chile leading to Rajasthan, Odisha, Gujarat and Karnataka all entering Pyare Lal Bhawan
decades of military dictatorship in that country infamous for its suppression at ITO in New Delhi on the 21st of February 2019. All busily pinning delegate
of democratic rights and for forced disappearances of opposition to the cards, sipping tea in the foyer and browsing through the impromptu book
military rule. stalls as they waited for the programme to start. This was the scene on
The crisis in Venezuela demonstrates the limits of distributive policies 21 st Feb. morning at the venue in New Delhi of the two day All India
termed as ‘socialist’ by their protagonists. It also demonstrates the limits Convention against Fascist Offensive called by several mass organizations
of reformism whatever the terminology they are couched in, the claims of a acting together.
new system while keeping intact the wealth and domination of bourgeoisie; To the peal of drum beats, dancers poured onto the stage which was
in short, claims of changing the system without class struggle. Despite decked with a big backdrop depicting the medley of movements which
these limitations, progressive forces the world over are opposing the have challenged the fascist offensive let loose under the aegis of the BJP
shameless blatant intervention by US imperialism in the internal affairs of RSS Central Govt. across the country over the past four years. As the
a sovereign country, of trying to overthrow a Govt. and install its puppets cultural presentation drew to a close, President of the Delhi Committee of
in power. At stake for US imperialism is the oil wealth of Venezuela while the IFTU, Animesh Das, took the stage to welcome the delegates and call
it is also a part of the US imperialist drive to assert its hegemony in Latin on stage the seven member Presidium consisting of V. Venkatramiah,
America, a reinstatement of the discredited Munroe doctrine. Under the Anuradha, Dhruv Narain, Chittipati, Baldev Jha, Kripa Shankar and Narayan
Trump Admn. US imperialism is pushing hard to preserve and strengthen Dutt. He also called on stage the Chairperson of the Reception Committee-
its dominance in a period when inter-imperialist contradictions are intensifying Dr. Manoranjan Mohanty, the Inaugural Speaker- Retd. Justice Janardhan
in a multi-polar world. It is the essence of Trump's slogan of "Make America Sahay, Chief Guest- Arundhati Roy and B. Pradeep (General Secretary
Great Again". IFTU) who was to present the Approach paper of the Convention.
Indian Govt. has maintained silence over these open attacks against Dr. Mohanty touched upon the multiple attacks on minorities and Dalits
the sovereignty of a member of the United Nations. This is despite India over the past four years, the killings of rationalists, the economic offensives
being one of the main importers of oil from Venezuela. RSS-BJP Govt. in against the people and the country, the attack on education and especially
India has drawn the country closer to US imperialism and its subservience the institutions of higher learning and on the resistance movements against
is on open display. all these. He highlighted the need to bring all these movements together on
one platform and welcomed all the delegates to the Convention which was
an attempt to do so.
Inaugural speaker Justice Janardhan Sahay greeted the organizers for

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)
demonetization. He said the various attacks by the Sangh Pariwar in the
last four years need to be seen in this context.
The second session of the day was on the Saffronization of Education.
In his powerful presentation, Dr. Anil Sadgopal stated that we need to resist
the combined challenges of saffronization and commercialization. He stated
Inaugural Session : that the Skill India Mission was a huge attack on Education. Thereafter,
Seated on the dias speakers of different student organizations intervened in seven minutes
(From left) Dr. each to highlight different facets of the fascist offensive. Dr. Harjeet Bhatti
Manoranjan Mohanty, (ex President, RDA AIIMS) spoke on the issue of medical education, Rajinder
Justice (Retd.) (Punjab Students Union) focussed on attacks on the teaching of history,
Janardan Sahay and Apeksha (BASO) on attacks on institutions of higher education, BCM BHU
Arundhati Roy representative, Vinay and Ujwal on behalf of BSCEM also highlighted the
attacks on Education and institutions of higher learning by the BJP-RSS
Central Govt. This session was presided over by Dhruv Narain.
Attacks on minorities were sharply highlighted by Jaspal Singh Sidhu
(Journalist, and earlier from UNI) in a session presided over by Chittipati.
The session was then postponed to begin the session on attacks on Women.
convening this convention with the purpose of uniting the various resistance
movements against the Modi government’s attacks. He stated that the Uma Chakravarti (Historian and Women’s rights activist) was the main
present government is following the old policy of divide and rule of the Speaker for the session for Fascist offensive against women and she
colonial rulers. Under the facade of nationalism dissent is being stifled. covered a wide range of issues. She was supplemented by interventions
Attempts to communalize history writing are being made. He spoke in detail by three women leaders, Sandhya on behalf of POW, Poonam on behalf of
about the attacks on institutions. Chief Guest Arundhati Roy discussed PMS Delhi who sharply focussed on the attacks by Hindutva forces and
caste inequalities and the Hindutva project of the RSS. She said that in the
country the nine richest men own assets that are equal to the assets of
some five hundred million people. Communalism, casteism and corporate
capitalism have to be fought. She said we have to fight for our history,
fight for our present and for our future. After their addresses, B. Pradeep
spelt out the Approach paper of the organizations convening this Convention
and read out a few excerpts from it. Anuradha presided over this session.
The next session focussed on the Economic Policies of the Fascist
Offensive. V. Venkatramaiah, who presided over this session, introduced
the topic. After the lunch break, the speaker of this session, N. Venugopal
(Journalist) dealt with the different aspects of the economic attacks against
the country and the people and the intensification of pro imperialist policies.
He dealt in detail how the economic policies of the BJP government have
led to further hardship to the broad masses of the people as seen with A view of the Hall

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)

Some of the Speakers at the Convening Committee announced at the Convention. IFTU
Convention : Saeed Naqvi General Secretary B. Pradeep (Third from left) and AIKMS
(Above left), Dr. Mashqoor President V. Venkataramaiah (Fifth from left)
(Above right) and our hands.
Chandrashekhar Azad Ravan Echoes of the continuing fascist offensive against minorities were heard
(Below right) as Dr. Mashqoor ex-President of the Students Union of Aligarh Muslim
University stood to speak about the charges of sedition slapped on him
and 11 other students of AMU just a few days earlier by the UP Govt. of
Seema Azad from Uttar Pradesh. This session was presided over by Yogi- that too with a slew of charges under other criminal provisions. He
Narayan Dutt. The evening was then devoted to cultural performances. eloquently described the offensive against Muslim students and also how
he has been charged with raising slogans of Pakistan Zindabad on his
The second day began by continuing the sessions on attacks on
campus at a time when he was actually present in Delhi. A powerful voice
Minorities and Dalits with Damodar Turi highlighting attacks on adivasis.
of the Dalit fightback came to the dias with Chandrashekhar Azad Ravan,
The next session began with Masiuddin Sanjari from UP representing
leader of Bhim Army, who spoke to lend his support to all struggles of
“Fasivad Virodhi Manch” narrating the ordeals the Muslim community is
resistance. Sanjeev of Satyasodak Samaj also spoke in this session and
facing. Retd. Prof. Biswajit Chakravarty spoke about the attacks on the
added several aspects of the attack on Dalits.
minorities in Assam especially in view of the NRC and the now lapsed
Citizenship Bill. Duddu Prabhaker of KNPS gave a detailed view of the Then began the last session of the Convention, titled Voices of
oppressive caste system in the country. This session continued after the Resistance against the Fascist Offensive. Baldev Jha presided over the
session on Media was held as an intervening session. Saeed Naqvi (former session and he also spoke on the topic. Aparna from the IFTU was the
editor Indian Express) and Anil Chamadiya (Journalist) were the two next speaker and she highlighted the myriad colours of the fight back of
speakers. Both presented wide ranging and different aspects of the current people of India to the fascist offensive and the need of the hour of bringing
fascist offensive and also the possibilities of social media as a weapon in all these streams of resistance together to beat back the offensive. Other

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)
speakers of this session were Yogesh of Naujawan Bharat Sabha speaking
on behalf of Bigul, Nagendar of Inqualabi Mazdoor Kendra who spoke in The All India Strike and
solidarity with the forces organizing the Convention, Abhinav from KNPS,
Ashok Ghayak of AIKMS and others. Lachhman Singh Sevewal delivered
the solidarity message of Dalit Jabar Virodhi Committee and also kept
their suggestions on its scope. Due to lack of time, this session was
curtailed to address the most important aspect of the Convention- the road Aparna
ahead. Leaders of some organizations were present as observers. Several
organizations including Karnataka Janashakti wished success to the On the 8th and 9th of January 2019, a two day strike was held throughout
Convention though they were not able to attend the same. the country. It was announced by a platform of 10 Central Trade Unions
Com Gautam Mody (General Secretary NTUI) presented the joint Call while continuing to exclude specific all India trade union centres. Thus five
on behalf of all convening organizations, wherein it was decided to form fighting trade union centres gave a call on the same dates so that there
the Forum Against Hindutva Fascist Offensive. Calls were given for should be united trade union action. Only the BMS and its associated trade
marking 23rd March, the Martyrdom day of Shaheed Bhagat Singh, Rajguru union federations dissociated from the strike call. There were thus two
and Sukhdev and also the 100th anniversary of Jallianwala Bagh on 13th charters of demand, with the second incorporating the demands of the first
April on behalf of the newly created Forum. Com. Anuradha then announced but also raising additional topical issues of the working class of India.
the structure of the forum. It would consist of the open ended All India The trade union platform with 10 central trade unions and some
General Council of all convening organizations and a Convening Committee. federations included the INTUC. Two weeks before the strike, Congress
She announced the list of organizations which have come in so far for Govts. took over from the BJP in the three Hindi heartland states of
membership in the General Council. The Convening Committee members Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh. One of the first acts each
are B. Pradeep (IFTU), Ashish Mital (AIKMS), Sandhya (POW), Ashok of them did was to announce loan waivers for peasants. This step both
Ghayak (AIKMS), Dhruv Narain (FFI), Gautam Mody (NTUI), Anuradha acknowledged the expressions of peasant anger and also fulfilled its own
(FYM), Kripa Shanker (FVM), Baldev Jha (PIFI), Santosh (PDSU) and Narain electoral promise which was necessary to woo the peasantry. But there
Dutt (IK). was no announcement for the working class.
The Convention closed to rousing slogans against the fascist offensive Why was an announcement to be expected? The reason is, that one of
and an electrifying dance performance by Arunodaya Cultural Organization. the first policies to be announced by the Modi Govt. at the Centre after
The entire Convention was enlivened over two days by presentations by coming to power was that 44 hard won labour laws would be thrown into the
the different Arunodayas, Navyug Kala Manch, Dalit Sanskritik Sangathan, dustbin. The central Govt. said that it would replace them by four Labour
PKM and RELA, with Cultural programmes’ co ordinator on behalf of the Codes and thus ‘’rationalize the laws’’. The aim was not any rationalization
Preparatory Committee, Vira Sathidar, skilfully managing the limited time but to totally dilute the laws and uphold the right of managements to not
slots. only hire and fire but also ignore even statutory labour laws.
All India strikes by almost all trade unions except BMS as well as several
other protest programmes by different groups of trade unions managed to
ensure that none of the Codes got through parliament. But in the states
ruled by BJP govts., sweeping changes were made. Among these changes
was changed the applicability of Chapter VB of the Industrial Dispute Act,

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)
a change being demanded by delegations of imperialist govts. since the platform of 10 trade unions but roped in by them at state levels, did the
early years of new economic policies. same. This flamboyant disregard for even projecting the strike as a serious
reaction of the working class against the attacks of pro corporate govts,
The demand ’No anti worker changes in labour laws’, has figured in brings out the inherent weakness of this time’s strike action. From start to
every All India strike call of the 10 trade unions platform and of course that finish these trade unions only meant the strike to be solely directed against
of other central trade unions too. INTUC is not only part of the 10 trade the Central Govt. of BJP-RSS and not on the attacks on the working class.
union platform but the strike call for 8th and 9th January was announced The charter of demands or the anti worker moves as such were hardly in
from the Convention in Delhi by the INTUC leader. Hence, it was naturally focus for them. This determined both the failure of the strike to capture the
expected that in order to ensure the credibility of the All India Strike call in anger of the workers of various sections and the lack of seriousness in
the eyes of the working class, the new Congress state govts which took implementation also. This attitude was there to an extent even in the earlier
office two weeks before the strike would immediately repeal all the changes two one day general strikes- one called one year after the other- called in
made in the state’s labour laws by the outgoing BJP govts in Rajasthan, the past four years and has influenced the workers’ response to such calls
Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh. This did not happen. Though the INTUC also.
was also raising the demand for no changes in labour laws, there was no
move by the new Congress govts to reverse labour law changes in these The report of the Convention in Delhi by these 10 unions on September
states. Apparently no injury was feared to INTUC’s credibility and INTUC 28th which was published in “People’s Democracy” (October 1st to 7th, 2018)
itself was quite confident that it would not be questioned by the other trade highlights the understanding of the 10 centres about the strike action. The
union centres on the 10 trade union centres’ platform. These include the strike call itself is ‘’against the anti worker, anti people and anti national
CITU and AITUC which are related to the major parliamentary left parties. policies being pursued by the BJP Govt at the Centre led by PM Modi”. It
Rajasthan especially was a state in which the BJP’s Vasundhara Raje states that the national convention was called by 10 central trade unions
Govt. had gone ahead and implemented several of those labour law changes which have been "consistently fighting the neoliberal policies jointly since
which the Central Govt. of BJP-RSS had been trying to push through the 2009"(remember this platform includes the INTUC which is never known to
labour codes. Specially, it had amended Chapter VB of the ID Act wherein have opposed the new economic policies in any form at all). It records that
some protection is afforded against arbitrary lockouts, layoffs and closures the BMS left the joint trade union movement after the installation of the
if over 100 workers are employed in any establishment. The other two BJP Govt at the Centre. The two day strike programme was presented by
state govts. had also made changes. As no changes in existing labour the President of the INTUC on behalf of the Platform before the Convention.
laws was an important demand in both platforms’ charters of demands, as The report in the People’s Democracy further says, after asserting that
this issue has been one of the most important issues before the working representatives of all sections of workers supported the two day strike
class since the BJP-RSS Govt came to power at the Centre and launched call, that ‘’The Convention termed the BJP Govt. as anti worker, anti people
an attack on 44 hard won labour laws, for the strike action to be considered and anti national and called upon not only the working class but the entire
serious and a genuine working class fight back, it was necessary that people to ensure its decisive defeat in the ensuing elections so the struggle
either the INTUC ensured that the new Congress Govts. announced reversal for pro people, pro worker policies can be heightened’’. So if a Congress
of all labour law changes affected by the erstwhile BJP-RSS state Govts. govt. comes to power, the struggle stands heightened and no pressure
or that the other trade union centres disassociated from INTUC before the should be put on it even if it refuses to undo the anti worker changes-
strike. Unfortunately, there are no reports that any of the other 9 Central merely undo- made by the earlier BJP Govt. even while the working class
trade unions in the platform with INTUC deemed it necessary to raise the is embarking on a two day general strike on the very issues. What genuine
issue at all. All of them continued to place INTUC’s name prominently response can there be from the workers of those three states which see
even in their separate posters calling for the strike at both the level of the Congress Govts not touching the anti worker changes effected by the
various states and the central posters. Even the unions not in the All India earlier BJP Govts. It also exposes the importance – or lack of it- that the

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)
Congress party accords to the working class issues. response, the demonstratable and obvious effect of the two day strike as
well as a spirited response did not actually come forth. An unsympathetic
The twelve point charter of demands placed by the 10 trade union centres regular media may have contributed though it could hardly have ignored
had been reiterated by earlier strikes- a two day strike call in 2012 when big actions. This however does not take away from the fact that in several
the UPA Govt. was in power, and again on 2nd Sept 2015 and 2nd Sept. industries and several private industrial sectors effective strikes were held.
2016 at the time of the Modi Govt. The strike response this time should be
analysed in detail. Public sectors mostly did not strike work anywhere in One acute truth about the two day strike call was that the 10 central
the country. Neither did any Govt. employees’ unions in most states. As trade unions did not rise to even theoretically linking it with living issues.
far as can be known, in the coal sector the strike was more of a formality On the 8th and 9th of January 2019 17 workers were lying trapped inside an
as far as the major unions were concerned, both for the regular workers illegal rat hole mine in Meghalaya and had been lying so for almost four
and for the contract workers. In the NTPCs work was struck by contract days. As the situation worked out, despite claims that the National Disaster
workers in some NTPCs (e.g. in Telengana) while in the main support Force was present from day one, pumps of adequate size were moved in
actions were held by unions who were in the strike. This seems to be true only after 17 days when the Supreme Court expressed distress though
of all public sectors. To what extent port and dock workers closed down how even the Court expected that the workers would be found alive under
work is not substantiated with the hue and cry which would result if work water after 17 days is anybody’s guess. They were humans not fishes. But
was shut down in them for two days. the drama has gone on with the Navy finally retrieving one disintegrating
body after almost a month. From day one it was clear that the rat hole mine
Most essential services functioned in the absence of any strike call at had got connected to a source of fast moving water and there was little
all from the participating unions. In Delhi, some unions of the electricity possibility of pumping out the rapidly refilling hole unless some innovative
workers (privatized sector) gave a strike notice but the Arvind Kejriwal measures were applied. In the absence of that the miners could be safely
Govt. promptly imposed ESMA. There was no open condemnation of this presumed dead by the 8th and 9th of Jan. These illegal mines are actually
by either AITU, CITU, AICCTU or any of the others of the 10 central trade functioning because the Supreme Court has allowed the private owners to
unions platform. Educational institutions throughout the country from KG pick up ‘already extracted’ coal from collection points and this is on for
to PG level saw contractual workers holding mainly protests but few strike past four years! In this garb rat hole mining has continued undisturbed by
actions. The bank unions had already observed a strike on 26th December the local administration and apparently unreported to the Court. Whatever
2018 instead of a coinciding date on their own charter and that day there the details, the fact is that the Central ten trade unions did not bring the
was a real shut down of bank services. On 8th and 9th there was a strike call focus of the working class or of the strike itself on those workers trapped
but the response most sporadic, with some states reporting a shut down under the water due to the complicity of every wing of governance and
of banking in some private banks, SBI maintaining that its services were completely highlighting the total lack of importance of the life of the workers
unaffected and most states saying that there was one day strike in private for them. This should have been done- the trade union leadership has failed
banks on the first day. In totality there was poorer strike on the 9th in most those workers and that is a fact. Workers in the rest of the country too
parts of the country; Kerala and the two Telugu states may have had better would have been more clearly able to see their own status in this society,
response. What shut down to greater or lesser extents were private industrial had this issue been raised in a major way. Unfortunately, there was the
areas, that too primarily on the first day. Severe violence against striking spectacle in India of the working class observing a strike called by all
workers was reported from one centre in Rajasthan. Centres of MNCs, major trade union centres (through two platforms) where the majority of
Gurugram in Haryana and Noida-Greater Noida in UP remained virtually Trade union leadership completely ignored the trapped workers. The 10
unaffected. Construction workers and other scheme workers like AASHAs trade unions anyway were moving on a charter of demands which pays no
and mid day meal workers etc were part of rallies and protests and also heed to the spike in deaths in various types of workplaces as a result of
observed strike. But overall, though the trade unions have claimed a massive negligence of owners and managements, which in turn is due to increasing

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)
dispensability of working class rights, decreasing investments on safety polio free countries. Apart from a concrete demand to entitle them to regular
measures and whittling labour law enforcing machinery. Basically however, minimum wages and statutory rights of PF and ESI with the govts concerned
it is due to the working class not asserting that its lives have to be counted paying the employer’s contribution, the demand for implementation of labour
and what clearer proof is there than their deafening silence in this strike? laws also concerned them intimately as also other women workers in
The platform of 5 Unions of IFTU, NTUI, NDLF, AIFTU(New) and ECTSU factories and all other types of employment. The law on crèche facilities is
had gone into the strike with an 18 point charter of demands which had a almost never implemented, neither in private industrial areas which do not
lengthy demand regarding the accidents at workplaces (December 2018 even have general common crèches run by the govt concerned, nor in the
New Democracy). Though in most places these unions propagated their construction projects undertaken by large contractors, both govt and private.
charter and spoke on these issues, it is not clear how much conviction Differential wage for same work is the rule even in the industrial areas of
could be conveyed to the entire leadership on the sheer relevance of this the Capital city and in textile sector everywhere in the country. How many
charter. The mainstream media anyway does not, in the main, even try to women are getting maternity leave (seeing the tiny number the Central
reflect the situation on the ground and mostly focussed on the official Govt. is talking of funding half the pay of the women employees during the
statements of the platform of ten trade unions. period of such leave as an electoral bonanza), especially among construction
workers where women do manual work mostly and where their wages can
In fact, January 2019 was a black month for the working class. The
be paid through the massive deposits of money with the Construction
year opened with not just the 17 miners trapped in a rathole mine in
boards. However even where the women came out in the two day strike
Meghalaya but workers being burnt alive in a factory fire in Capital city
these issues were not adequately focussed on as they were not separately
Delhi and one unprotected worker being killed by toxic fumes inside a
thought out and prepared. So they continued to remain under the general
sewer in Delhi. The Capital had seen 17 deaths in an industrial fire exactly
demands of the workers where they inevitably get lost in the narration.
one year earlier in Jan. 2017 when 17 workers were killed. Almost two
dozen workers have died while cleaning sewers in the past one year in this The problem with low key general strikes, particularly when this is due
city. It only reflects the real situation all over the country- fires due to to lack of seriousness of the Unions calling for the strike, is that they bring
hanging wires, construction workers not getting safety kits at the time of down the workers’ faith and conviction in the movement; they do not however
registration in any state while the Supreme Court bewails the non dispersal detract from the fact that the workers are restless about their exploitation.
of the huge funds in their name to them, sanitary workers not being given Such low key strikes do not become issues and do not force Govt to respond
safety masks and oxygen cylinders. Do we need a bullet train more or or change its agenda and this breaks the faith of the workers in such moves.
maybe machines robots to clean sewers? About BMS, the less said the
However, actually general strikes are a powerful weapon; they allow the
better; it apparently finds the Central Govt. very responsive on workers’
workers to participate without making the individual employer the target
issues and no doubt thinks the same about the BJP ally ruling in Meghalaya,
and this can potentially bring all the small scale and even tiny sector into
the 17 workers in the rat hole mine notwithstanding.
movements apart from the organized sector. In the two day strike in 2012,
Women workers were important participants in demonstrative actions. expressions of workers’ anger had flared up in many parts of the country,
It is clear that as AASHA, anganwadi, midday meal and other such scheme especially in Noida and in Delhi’s Okhla among the garment workers.
workers, they are subject to open exploitation, receiving doles in the names
of stipends. The AASHA workers are the worst off, being officially Contractualization and job insecurity are very big issues as of course
designated as voluntary workers but actually being literate women workers are the very genuine issues of the scheme workers and construction
in need of regular jobs but finding no other employment. It is worth noting workers. They must be seriously addressed by the trade union movement,
that it is actually this underpaid workforce which is responsible for the especially worked upon with both conviction and vision by the revolutionary
success of the Pulse Polio programme which has put India on the list of and militant trade union movement.

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)
World over, there is attack on wages and rights of workers as well on
leftover welfare measures. The experience in France is worth keeping in Crisis of Sugar
Groowing P easantr
mind. The French President is reported as having ‘stared down’ the orderly
movement of the public sector and the rail employees led by the major
trade union centres against attacks on welfare measures and also jobs. In
the face of the Yellow Vest upsurge, the same President not only backed
down on increases in tax, but declared a hike in minimum wage for the first Ashish Mital
time in decades and also relief for pensioner workers. This happened in
December 2018. It has been written about this movement that all sections
of the working class living in the small towns and rural areas were the Sugarcane arrears have become huge. They had crossed Rs 19,000
actual participants in the movement while the major four trade union centres crores on December 31, 2018 and are expected to go up to even Rs 35,000
stood aloof. The real fighting centres of India’s working class must rise to crores, if, as sugar mills complain, their cash flows do not improve. For the
the challenge before them. two states of UP and Maharashtra which produce 75% of the crop, they
have crossed Rs 11,000 crores. Unrest amongst cane growers is rising
The threats to and thus the challenges before the working class fast and now a large number of mills are seeing large gatherings of protesting
movement to defend existing job security and rights are very real and very peasants pressing for payment of dues, without which they have no means
serious. The pro imperialist policies are not an issue of contention between to invest in the next crop. But the BJP Govts. have failed the bravado of
the parliamentary parties of India. The new economic policies press for Narendra Modi’s boastful speeches on solving problems, at least this one,
right of hire and fire and attack on job permanency as well as rights. and ensuring full and timely payment of cane dues. They are mostly silent,
Sectarianism is definitely the bane of the movement at this time of even as they seek to divert attention to other issues like Kumbh, Ram
unprecedented attacks. Thus must be faced that the sectarianism of the Temple and the Holy Cow.
so called ‘left’ trade union centres, whereby they are just not willing to give
space to militant and revolutionary trade union centres under various Obviously, facts speak louder than Jumlas. The Central Govt.’s Annual
pretexts but open their arms to the INTUC and BMS without hesitation, is Report 2017-18, Department of Food and Public Distribution, has these
not at all accidental. The militant and revolutionary unions must, while facts to present on cane arrears. As a percentage of the total payments
extending their reach, bring out before the workers in their practice and due, the arrears in the year ending 2013 were 45.12%, in 2014 they were
through their movements the need for genuine fight back. The movements 68.09%, in 2015-- 76.2%, in 2016-- 85.95%, in 2017-- 59.76% and in the
must also face that sectarianism is also practised to actually cover up year ending 2018 it was 60.13%.
capitulation. For understanding the human magnitude of this problem, the sugar sector
involves 5 crore sugar cane peasant families and at least around 5 lakh
workers in sugar mills, apart from those involved in harvesting, transport,
trade and services. There are 732 registered sugar mills, almost half in the
private sector, with a combined capacity to produce 338 million tonnes of
sugar per year. There are also two stand alone refineries which import raw
sugar or buy locally to produce refined sugar.

The Crisis
At the Maharashtra govt’s declared FRP (Fair & Remunerative Price) of

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)
Rs 245/q this year, the total cane dues were Rs. 7450.9 crores up to to high yield varieties (Co-238) sugar production in last 8 years has increased
December 31, 2018. In South Maharashtra mills the FRP is around Rs. significantly.
285/q as sugar content is higher, while in Pune and Ahmednagar it is around
Rs. 220 – 230/quintal. Unlike UP, the mills here bear the cost of harvesting C Rangarajan Commission and the Amended Sugarcane (Control)
and transport charges from field apart from paying the FRP. Of the dues, Order 1966
one third was paid, rest is arrears. 75 of 181 factory have not paid any
money though it is to be cleared within 14 days as per the Modified Sugar On 22.10.2009 the concept of Statutory Minimum Price of sugar cane
Cane (Control) Order. Most of these mills are in the Southern districts of was changed as per this order to paying "Fair and Remunerative Price”
Kolhapur, Sholapur, Sangli and Satara. The mills normally make second (FRP) from 2009-10 onwards. This was to be paid within 14 days by the
and third payments of dues from the earning from sale of sugar, molasses, sugar mills and of the actual revenue earned by the mill, a share was to be
alcohol, bagasse, co-generated power and press mud by March and Diwali. apportioned for the peasants at the end of the season. As per this formula,
For the first time this season even the first payment has not been done. for 2017-18 sugar season the FRP was fixed at Rs. 255/q for 9.5% recovery
with an increase of Rs. 2.68/q for every 0.1% additional recovery. The
In UP, the arrears of 2017-18 were Rs. 1770 crores. In the current revenue sharing formula was fixed at 70:30 if all products sold are taken
session up to January 4th, mills had purchased cane worth Rs. 10,051 and 75:25 if only sugar is taken. Rangarajan considered that peasants
crore at the SAP (State Advised Price) of Rs. 325/q, which practically is bear 69% of cost of sugar and they should be paid 70% of the value of sale
the FRP as cost of harvesting and transport is borne by the peasants of sugar and by-products.
(calculated as per Rangarajan Committee and court orders). Of this the
mills were to pay Rs. 7210 crore within 14 days, but have cleared only Rs. In 2013-14 the Central Govt. also implemented other changes in
2857 crore. At the average recovery of 10.9%, the mills say they can pay accordance with the Rangarajan recommendations, basically deregulating
the peasants only Rs. 244 – 248/q. As in Maharashtra, in UP too several the sugar sector. The levy obligations, whereby sugar mills had to sell part
mills have huge arrears to clear, while only some are regular in their of the sugar produced at subsidized rates for PDS, were discontinued and
payments. But it appears that it is only a matter of time before they too alcohol production was liberalized. This helped mills to earn better.
start defaulting. The problem now is that sugar prices have fallen, 70% of revenue is
Mills complain that sugar realizations are only at Rs. 2900/q and at this less than the FRP and the mills want to pay less. International prices too
rate they cannot pay more than Rs. 230/q. They are demanding splitting have fallen and imported sugar is able to land at Rs. 18 per kg. Mills also
the FRP payment into Rs. 230/q now and balance Rs. 50 - 70/q later. suffer due to this and they are unable to get export orders as per the
Peasants oppose this as they have immediate KCC (Kisan Credit Card) Minimum Indicative Export Quota fixed by the Govt. Despite this the Govt.
and other loans to clear and make investments for their next crop. Sugar is also permitting sugar imports.
Corporations, led by ISMA (Indian Sugar Mills Association), are demanding
In India the sugar output in 2017-18 was 31.7 mt, 56% higher than the
an ex mill price of Rs. 35-36/kg in place of the CCEA fixed rate of Rs. 29/
previous year. Total availability today is 35.5 mt. Domestic consumption
kg. They say that of the mandatory export quota of 7 million tonnes also,
estimated is only 25 mt. So we are stranded with a good amount of unsold
only 1.5 million tonnes have been contracted and only half of this has been
sugar. The reason for this is also not difficult to seek. It is not that we are
shipped. Hence the mills are over stocked. ISMA claims the stocks have
surplus in production because we in India consume only 18.8 kg sugar per
doubled since December 2017 to 15.4 million tonnes.
person per year (average of 18 in Asian countries in 2016) while European
In June 2018 also the total arrears were high at Rs. 22,000 crores, countries consume an average of 36kg, Oceania (Australia, New Zealand
mainly due to slump in sugar prices. Mills complain that while the FRP has and others) 36.4 kg and North America 33.2 kg. The real problem is low
risen, prices of sugar have fallen nationally as well as internationally. Due purchasing capacity of Indian people.

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)
Narrow Vision and Short sighted Solutions that the developed countries heavily subsidize their agriculture with low
cost good quality inputs, good infrastructure, technical support and support
Unfortunately the entire problem is viewed very narrowly by the ruling for marketing, calamities, etc. But the Indian govt. is trying to reduce input
classes and projected as one between peasants versus mills, as of subsidies and still trying to keep the industry competitive, all at the cost of
helplessness before foreign markets and of the Govt. having only limited the peasants! India should provide much better infrastructure, support and
options of financial ‘support’. Sugar cane produces such a large variety of subsidy to agriculture if it is to keep it alive.
utilizable products, that it can be put to develop our own markets better as
well as to secure the energy needs of the people. But our ruling classes do Secondly, while there are some areas where international market can
not have that kind of a broad vision. be tapped, the solution actually lies within the country. Producing raw brown
sugar is an alternative as it has a good market. Also, compared to Brazil
Problems in Govt ‘Aid’ selling 26 billion litres of ethanol to oil making companies in 2017-18, Indian
sugar mills contracted just 1.4 billion litres. In India too ethanol blending
To tide over the crises of payments banks extend 85% for the value of has been raised from 5 to 10%. Ethanol sells at Rs. 40.8/litre. There is a
sugar as working capital to pay the peasants and for paying for salaries, big scope to better utilize baggase by developing paper and card board
gunny bags, chemicals, repairs. But several mills are unable to take benefit industry as well as using it directly as an energy resource. These will provide
of this as they do not fulfill the requisite criteria, unpaid debts and bad better agro industrial development and provide alternate employment.
investments also being a reason. In 2014 the Govt. had also started a
SEFASU (Scheme for Extending Financial Assistance to Sugar Third and most important is that India has a huge population which is
Undertakings) scheme of interest free loans and another of soft loans. But severely deprived of this energy rich food. Earlier the Govt. used to supply
these too suffered the same fate and have not helped the mills to clear the sugar in PDS to all BPL card holders. But under the National Food Security
dues. A separate Sugar Development Fund was raised from extra cess of Act all card holders, except a miniscule few covered under AAY (Antyodaya
Rs. 200/q on sugar sales to help mills to renovate. The GST has abolished Ann Yojana) are deprived of PDS supplies. Even they are given only 1 kg
this. In May 2018 the Govt. had announced Rs. 5.5 per quintal of sugar per family per month at Rs 13.5 per kg while the Govt. bears Rs 18.5. This
cane crushed in 2017-18 season as financial assistance to sugar mills. amounts to only 200 grams a month per person, or roughly 6 grams per
But this was too meagre as the gap, according to them, is more than Rs 50 day. Increasing PDS supplies certainly is an answer to the crises ridden
per quintal. Moreover 40% mills were unable to take benefit of this as they sugar industry, but the Govt. will not even look this way. We should also
don’t fulfill the criteria. In 2014 the CACP had set up a Price Stabilization compare this figure for Antyodaya families to the consumption of sugar in
Fund – PSF. Later in 2017 onions, potatoes, pulses were added. ISMA rich countries. It is only 12 kg per year per family while these countries
demanded funds from this to clear the peasants’ dues. This is on the surface. consume in the range of 36 kg per person!
What remains hidden is the massive and all permeating corruption in
systems of bank loans, govt. grants and misappropriation by the And lastly there should be a proper audit of all the financial aid that has
managements. gone to the mills. The peasant should not be left to suffer both distress
sale and improperly granted Govt. aid.
One very important factor that the Govt. has continuously avoided is
that of bringing down the input costs, including reducing diesel, fertilizer
and insecticide costs which will not only bring down peasant debts, but will
keep cost of production, FRP and sugar prices low and make our produce
more productive. The main reason why international sugar prices are low is

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)

Women Must Build Organized consequent to the development of private property and thus it will have to
be fought in all social systems in both theory and practice till the full
Struggles and Widen Consciousness to democratization of society and abolishing of private property. Thus the
Fight Patriarchy! women’s movements divide today, just as the suffragette movement for
right to vote had done, into those who restrict movements to maybe even
major reforms but while defending the status quo which maintains patriarchy
Fight the Pro imperialist, Pro Landlord and those who fight also to abolish the basis of Patriarchy.
Patriarchal, Anti Dalit, Anti Minority
The assault of patriarchal Hindutva forces is not restricted to policy
Assaults of Hindutva Forces and RSS-BJP making. While shedding tears for Muslim 'sisters' to enact the Triple Talaq
Central Govt.! Bill with the express purpose of demonizing Muslim men, it practices
lynchings by police backed hordes to murder the fathers, husbands and
2018 has been an eventful year for women in India. Apart from attacks brothers of the same 'sisters'. No sympathy has been expressed for Dalit
on women and their partners for inter caste and inter religious marriages or women- that worst off among all exploited-but their families are similarly
friendships, apart from cases of domestic violence and sexual assaults lynched. The right to marry of their choice of upper caste girls and women
from harassment to rape dotting the whole map of India, there have been of the majority community are curtailed in khap panchayat backed "bahu
some All India women centric events. On the one hand were the events in beti izzat" mobilizations in defence of Manu’s strictures for women and
Sabarimala and the Central Govt.’s scheming Triple Talaq Bill to woo “Muslim against ‘love jihad’. The last is entirely a creation of the Hindutva myth
Sisters” of the Prime Minister. On the other was the poignant, assertive makers. Sabarimala beats it all in the deployment of rabid anti women
Me Too Movement of women from various work spheres against sexual hordes including women by Hindutva forces to do violence against women
assaults at workplace. In addition were big mobilizations on sectoral issues. of reproductive age of majority community who want to worship at the shrine.
Women peasants and agricultural workers took part in big ways in the Manuwadi "traditions" are invoked to falsify history and rouse obscurantist
mobilizations of peasantry in various parts including in the Capital, focussing and patriarchal backwardness in the land which worshipped productivity
on the agrarian distress. The beginning of this year has seen a two day All and the mother goddess from primitive times. It sharply brings out the
India strike by the working class and the participation of large sections of need for the women’s movement to strengthen movements to build
working women in the same to greater or lesser extents. Women students progressive scientific outlook if the fight against feudal, upper caste
and teachers have fought the assaults of Hindutva on Higher Education patriarchal values which Manuvad enshrines, is to be truely fought.
and institutions including the moves for saffronization, commercialization
The Me Too movement took off with the combined inheritance of the
and ‘’Dronachariazation’’ of Higher Education.
Vishakha judgement and the post Nirbhaya case movements. It brought
The developments from the stirrings of women for equal right to vote, to the issue of sexual violence including harassment at workplace to centre
the sharp division in this movement and the emergence of the socialist stage in a new way from that done by Bhawari Devi’s experiences. The
women’s movement for right to vote for all women irrespective of colour burning questions surfaced once again of democratizing workplace culture,
and property form the historical background to the declaration of 8th March by making this issue part of objectives of class and sectional organizations
as International Working Women’s Day by the Socialist Women’s especially by fighting patriarchy within these organizations and by all
International. The understanding of women’s emancipation has had to demanding elected gender harassment committees at workplaces. The need
entwine with the movements for building an egalitarian society in every also comes to the fore of women themselves coming forward to take part
country and in each country women’s movements have been able to analyze in work and leadership of class organizations to help both themselves and
the concrete context of why this is necessary. The birth of Patriarchy was others fight regressive patriarchal values. Women must also fight for equal

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)
representation in all fields and for 50% reservation in employment. Women
remain missing in the higher positions especially in judiciary, managements
On Reser
eservvation ffor
or Economicall
and administrative positions in institutions and universities due to definitive Weaker Sections fr
eaker om Upper Castes
gender bias.
In a desperate and cynical move, RSS-BJP Govt. at the Centre moved
Though the Central Govt has suppressed the NSSO survey on
to amend the Constitution to provide for reservation for allegedly poor among
employment, there are reports that it shows up how women have been
the upper castes in admissions to Educational institutions and Govt. jobs.
squeezed out of employment. Working women must build struggles to
The poor among the SCs, STs and OBCs are excluded from this category
demand implementation of equal wages, of crèches at places of work, of
by excluding those covered under Article 15, Clause 4 & 5 and Article 16
maternity benefits for all women workers and also fight to make these the
Clause 4 of the Constitution which are enabling provisions for reservation
general demands of class and workplace organizations. This alone can
for persons belonging to the SCs, the STs and Other Backward Classes.
ensure that women are able to get a fighting chance to hold on to jobs. All
types of women workers and employees should get PF cover, as that is This move immediately after RSS-BJP defeat in three Hindi heartland
their concrete empowerment. The women’s movement must organize states, namely Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan, shows the
women peasants and workers to demand pattas be issued in joint names desperation to consolidate the votes of Hindu upper castes. This is
and equal wages be paid for work in agriculture. For this, it needs to be particularly important in the light of growing resentment among the people
restated, women must enter sectional organizations in a big way and make particularly among the peasants and youth due to the brazen breaking of
their demands the general demand of such organizations. electoral promises by RSS-BJP to double peasants’ income and create
two crore jobs every year. This resentment has also affected the upper
In various parts of the country, repression is on in various sectors and
castes, particularly the poor among them. Hence, it is an attempt by the
movements in which women too are participating. Women in the North east
ruling RSS-BJP to divert this anger and consolidate the votes of upper
are struggling against the communalization of citizenship with the
castes. This is also an attempt to woo the chauvinist elements among the
Citizenship Bill. Women in Assam are fighting communal politics in
upper castes who were agitated against the Central Govt. for bringing an
exclusions in the preparation of NRC. Women adivasis and peasants are
Ordinance to annul the effect of a Supreme Court judgment which had
having their lands robbed by governments whether in Telengana or in
virtually annulled the Prevention of Atrocities (Scheduled Castes and
Maharashtra or in Rajasthan or in other parts of the country. There is
Scheduled Tribes) Act. Widespread protests were held on April 2 last year
widespread repression in Kashmir where the AFSPA reigns supreme. There
against this Supreme Court judgment.
is severe attack on the democratic movement, its participants and on the
right to dissent. The women’s movements must support all such movements This move is cynical as there is no study to show that the upper castes
and oppose repression. falling in the categories being talked about by the RSS-BJP Govt. i.e.
below Rs. 8 lakh annual income or 5 acres of land, do not already enjoy
Finally, on 8th March, the women’s movements must think of rededicating
more than 10% share of the seats in the educational institutions or in Govt.
themselves to widening and strengthening the concrete movements against
jobs. The pegging of economically weaker sections at so high an income
patriarchy, of arousing consciousness among women themselves to fight
slab shows that it is not meant for the poor at all but is only a diversionary
the obscurantist and patriarchal forces and demand equality in every sphere.
tactic to divert the attention from the real issues facing the common people
The movements must also strengthen solidarity with the revolutionary
including those among the poor of the upper castes. This move is also
movement which seeks to overthrow the forces sustaining patriarchy and
cynical as the number of jobs in the Govt. and public sector enterprises
build a new democratic society and culture.
have declined over the period of RSS-BJP Govt.

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)
This move is a clear admission of the Govt. of its failure to create jobs. often became a battle cry of the upper caste chauvinist elements backed
According to studies, the number of jobs created over the last five years of by the ruling class parties particularly RSS-BJP and Congress. While there
RSS-BJP rule is abysmally low though a large number of jobs have been is a need to make provision for the economically weaker sections, RSS-
lost. Though through statistical jugglery the Govt. has been flaunting high BJP Govt. move is not in that direction as amply demonstrated by the
economic growth, but it is limited to growing wealth of a very small section definition of economically weaker sections by their Govt. Incidentally the
and has rather robbed the people of their employment. A number of studies Govt. has kept a similar yardstick for defining creamy layer for exclusion
have shown that the number of employees in the Govt. and public sector of those from OBCs from reservation as it has kept for inclusion in the
jobs has fallen as well as there is a decline in the number of those employed affirmative action for the economically weaker sections. The very reasoning
through any means. Demonetization and GST have hit hard the small is flawed and it will not mean any benefit for the really economically weaker
businesses which are the main providers of employment outside agriculture. sections.
Agriculture on the other hand, is suffering from pro-corporate economic
policies with stagnant or even declining income and growing unemployment The duplicity of the RSS-BJP Govt. is also on display. Recruitment in
in the rural areas. faculty positions in central instituions is on hold since March 2018. In
November 2017 Allahabad High Court had struck down Reservation taking
This move of the Govt. is also without constitutional sanction as university as a unit and had mandated reservation department wise. This
reservation in education and employment was meant to address the mode of implementation will reduce reserved seats to less than half. The
backwardness of certain sections due to historical injustice i.e. caste guidelines issued by the Dept. of Personnel had worked out a roster system
system and to address their low representation in Govt. services. The which worked against the candidates belonging to the categories for which
present move does not address the causes hitherto addressed by the
provision of reservation is made. Though different Govt. agencies have
Constitution. A similar move was also made by Narasimha Rao Govt. but
subsequently worked out roster for reservation which is relatively better for
was struck down by the Supreme Court then but now the Constitution itself
the candidates from the categories for which reserrvation is made, however
has been amended. Supreme Court will now have to address the question
this is not uniformly implemented in the Govt. institutions of higher
of whether it violates the basic structure of the Constitution. This reservation
goes against the Supreme Court rulings on the quantum of reservation as education. The department or subject wise reservation roster is also called
such i.e. less than half as the Constitutional Amendment itself provides 13 point roster as it plots seats to be reserved on a 13 seat scale, while
that it is in addition to the already existing reservations for SCs, STs and taking university or institution as a unit for reservation is called 200 point
OBCs. Any how the Supreme Court’s verdict of pegging Reservations to roster taking all the positions in the university/institution into account. As
less than half of the total was itself flawed. On the one hand the Supreme the number of seats available in a department or subject are small and
Court held that Reservation was satisfying the doctrine of Equality through general category candidates get priority in the allotment, candidates from
a mechanism of bringing about equality among unequals and on the other reserved categories suffer.
Supreme Court pitted Reservation against the principle of equality. Now
An all India survey on higher education 2016-2017 published by HRD
Supreme Court will have to once again give opinion on the artificial ceiling
ministry found that around 8% faculty members were from SCs and 2%
it has kept on reservations.
were STs. And despite such a low representation from these sections there
While reservation enabled by the Constitution Amendment does not is wide disinformation campaign that candidates from SCs and STs are
address any historic wrong nor address lack of representation, it may serve occupying a large number of such positions. This disinformation campaign
a purpose of making the task of mobilization of poor from upper castes in has provided the fodder for the anti-reservation agitations in the past and
anti-reservation agitations difficult. There have been no shrill cries this been used as a tool to direct the dissatisfaction among the common people
time against violation of the so-called sacred principle of merit which so of upper castes into chauvinist channels.

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Central Govt. has filed an appeal in the Supreme Court. In the meanwhile
Central Govt. has prepared "The Reservation in Direct Recruitment in Union Budget 2019-’20 :
Central Educational Institutions Bill" to overcome the objections raised in
the High Court judgement but the RSS-BJP Govt. has not introduced the Peanuts for Voters in
Bill in the Parliament. This demonstrates lack of political will on the part of
RSS-BJP to implement reservations for SCs, STs and OBCs. This can be Continuing Pro-Rich Policies
contrasted with the super speed with which a Constitution Amendment for
enabling reservation for the economically weaker sections among upper Jugglery of figures, empty claims and rhetoric devoid of intent mark the
castes was rushed through both the houses of Parliament and given Budget exercise of Modi Govt. The Budget exercise, to the extent it has
Presidential assent to become the law. Its implementation was also remained an indicator of the direction of economic policy of the Govt., is
announced immediately. an indicator of largesse for the rich and jumlas for the poor. And in the
process Modi Govt. has insulted the very sections it claims to have
This RSS-BJP move, which has been supported by Congress and many
favoured in the Budget 2019-20. That this budget is being touted as ‘populist’
other ruling class parties, is an admission of the failure of the present
only shows that ruling class politics has firmly anchored itself to the “trickle
policy frame work to address the cause of failure of providing education
down effect” whereby labouring masses are supposed to benefit from the
and jobs to all. These ruling class parties have failed to make education,
favours granted to big capital. That these policies are facing increasing
particularly good education, accessible to the children of the common
challenge the world over does not deter its advocates in India. Corporate
people. The state of govt. schools is ample evidence of the gross neglect
media has been bending over backward in showering praises on Modi Govt.
of the future generation by those in power. The economic policies pursued
for presenting a Budget for the people, even while terming it as an election
by the ruling class parties have resulted in jobless growth, moreover in
budget. But just beneath the surface lies the actual state of affairs. Over
loss of jobs. Their policies and the present system managed by them can
the last year, the big capitalists have increased their wealth by 39% while
not provide jobs to the unemployed, cannot provide good quality education,
the lot of peasants and workers has worsened. The Union Minister presenting
can not serve the basic needs of the people and need to be thrown out
the Budget praised his Govt. for attracting over 239 billion US dollars over
lock, stock and barrel.
the last five years but said not a word about what it has done to promote
This move by RSS-BJP is an election gimmick, is an attempt to set the domestic industries or agriculture as there is nothing to say.
agenda for the coming elections. People should see through this jumla. It
Modi Govt. has tried to paper over the deep economic crisis facing the
is an attempt to divert the people’s attention from its failures to address
country. Not to allow its claims to be judged at the altar of the performance
their issues and to fulfill its election promises.
of the economy, it did not even present the Economic Survey. It has
repeatedly changed the method of calculating GDP only to paint its tenure
(This statement was issued by the Central Committee of CPI(ML)-New in better light but this cannot hide the dire straits in which the Indian economy
Democracy on January 12, 2019) finds itself. Further, these high growth figures allow the Govt. to show its
income as much higher whatever the reality. For example nearly 12% lower
collection of GST in the current year has not prevented the Govt. from
claiming much higher collection in the coming year.
The Union Budget, interim only in name, does not address the two crises
much talked about recently, namely the job crisis and the agrarian crisis
leading to distress among youth and peasants. Modi Govt. is in denial

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)
mode. It has stopped collection of data with regard to peasant suicides by though there was speculation of a loan waiver. According to the Minister
the Crime Records Bureau since 2016. Modi Govt. has also stopped loans of the peasants from official sources have increased to Rs. 11.68
publication of employment data collected by National Sample Survey lakh crores not including big sums from private sources. Govt.’s failure to
Organization which was finalized by the National Statistics Commission. address this issue is reflective of its lack of concern for the well being of
This gave the glimpse of the real extent of unemployment as being the peasants whom RSS-BJP feel they can continue to lead astray through
highest over the past four and a half decades, in fact since such statistics their communal mobilizations, mandir issue, gau raksha and the like.
began being compiled. It is only a glimpse as unemployment rate at 6.1%
is only a fraction of the actually existing unemployment rate particularly The Union Minister presenting this Budget also made much of Modi
taking into account vast underemployment in rural areas of the country. Govt.’s concern about the well being of workers of unorganized sectors. A
Modi Govt. has not addressed the issue of growing unemployment, rather pension scheme for this vast section of 420 million (including agricultural
it has denied the very growth of unemployment, patting itself on the back labourers) has been announced with a paltry allocation of Rs. 500 crores.
on job creation. The Minister cited EPFO data omitting the fact that this This is a contribution based pension scheme with only matching contribution
did not represent new jobs, a fact clarified by the EPFO itself. A number of from the Central Govt. which will have control over the workers’ money
studies have noted that while creation of new jobs under RSS-BJP Govt. over the decades. Starting his/her contribution at the age of 18, the worker
led by Modi is miniscule, a large number of jobs have been lost and even will get a pension of a paltry sum of Rs. 3000 per month after completing
participation of Indians in employment has declined. 60 years. This allocation for such a vast section is less than the allocation
for cows at Rs. 750 crores. When it comes to labouring people, the Govt.
Modi Govt. has not addressed the deep seated agrarian crisis which coffers become sudden empty while they are overflowing when largesse to
has brought the peasants into agitations. No measures have been announced corporate or rich sections is in question. The same Govt. has delivered big
to reduce the cost of inputs, fertilizers, irrigation, pesticides or diesel etc. blows to the unorganized sector through its pro-corporate Demonetization
Nor has it announced acceptance of MSP @ 150% of the cost of production and GST implementation which has pushed millions of workers into
as per terms of Swaminathan Committee recommendation. Nor it has joblessness. According to CMIE study over 11 million jobs were lost due
announced any measures for creating employment in the rural areas, putting to these policies. There has been no announcement about treating AASHA,
it in the vision till 2030, not in this Budget. The announcement of Rs. 6000 Anganwadi and Mid-Day Meal workers as employees entitled to minimum
per year for every peasant owning upto 2 hectares (5 acres) of land is only wages, PF and ESI.
demeaning. It is even less than the similar measures announced by some
Modi govt. duplicity towards the rural poor can easily be seen from its
state govts. e.g. Odisha and Telengana, though Central Govt. has much
cutting the allocation towards MNREGS. It has announced allocation of
more resources. It does not account for cost of inputs even in half an acre
Rs. 60,000 crores for the coming year which is less by nearly 1100 crores
of land even for one crop. Modi Govt. has left out even tenant peasants/
as compared to the revised estimates of this year. This deduction is much
share-croppers who constitute a big section of peasantry, what to talk of
more than double the allocation for the pension scheme.
agricultural labourers. The discussion in corporate media is only on a layout
of Rs. 75 thousand crores which is but a miniscule if the number of rural Modi Govt. has announced rebates in Income Tax which means that no
people affected by agrarian crisis is taken into account. This very corporate IT is payable for income upto Rs. 5 lakh per year. This has to be seen in
media does not highlight how a few of the big capitalists are given handouts the background of no increase in IT slabs over the last four years despite
running into lakhs of crores. This announcement of Modi Govt. is the most rising cost of living. Even now, Modi Govt., which treats those with incomes
cynical exercise about the most pressing concerns of the biggest section upto Rs. 8 lakh as economically weaker sections, will make them pay
of the Indian people. Income Tax.
No steps have been announced to address indebtedness of the peasantry Modi Govt. has continued its short-sighted long winded policies,

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The Claim of AAP Govt

neglecting allocation on capital expenditure. On the other hand, Govt. has
made Rs. 80,000 crores from disinvestment in the current year and has
targeted to raise Rs. 90,000 crore in this year’s Budget. Education, health
and social sectors continue to be neglected. There is gross decline in the
allocation for the social sector schemes. There was not even a mention of
University or Higher education by the Minister presenting the Budget. The
on Education Reforms:
increase in expenditure on education is largely to account for increase in
the number of seats to allow for reservation for economically weaker sections A Brief Analysis
(EWS). The whole talk on Health is reduced to Ayushman Bharat, a scheme
carved out by merging existing schemes. However, the total allocation of
Rs, 3000 crores for taking care of the need of health services for 50 crore Mrigank
people is at best laughable. There is no evidence of improvement in PHCs,
about which much noise was made in last year’s Budget. Ever since AAP government has taken over the reins of National Capital
Territory of Delhi, it has been propagating its achievements in many fields
With such disregard for the concerns of the people, RSS-BJP govt. has including education and health. Many progressive individuals too are taken
tried to put ‘josh’ into their supporters by symbolic announcements. They in by this trumpeting. The Government claims that it has reformed the
hope to counter people’s anger born out of their distress with attempts at school education system and now government schools are doing better
whipping up ‘nationalist fervour’ and ‘communal polarization’ along with than private schools and results have improved. Since so was not visible
upper caste consolidation mixed with so-called social engineering. RSS- in reality, an investigation into the claims was warranted. In this light, PDSU
BJP Govt.’s policies, which are bringing untold miseries to the broad masses has done a survey in two schools of Sagarpur, Delhi. There was also some
of the people, should be exposed and opposed. information available on the sites of education directorate and some other
sources on the web. These are the basis of the facts used in this article.
(Issued by the Central Committee of CPI(ML)-New Democracy on
February 1, 2019)
Some of the main changes done by this Government includes
stratification of students right at the age of 10 or 11 i.e. class VI onwards.
Children have been divided into three groups, initially called Pratibha,
Nishtha and Vishwas. This was done based on a separate examination
testing their ability to read and write English. Better students were put in
Pratibha section, middle ones in Nishtha and lower ones in Vishwas. Later
Vishwas was termed neo nisthta and then merged with Nishtha. Students
were thus put in separate sections with different teachers. Not just different
teachers but with different syllabi too, and different examinations. While
the Pratibha children are taught full syllabus with prescribed books, Nishtha
children are taught less numbers of chapters. They are given books called
‘Pragati’ books, which are basically activity and workbooks. They were
initially published by an NGO called Pratham. Now they are prescribed by
the Government in schools of entire Delhi. The profit of the publishing

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)
NGO can be seen clearly. The supposed idea behind this was to help of children. It reminds one of colonial era. This is a new apartheid policy.
students to improve their levels.
Table 1
This classification has many disastrously adverse effects. One, this
enhances the discrimination already prevalent. As it is the people from PDSU Survey of 2 Schools in Sagarapur
poorer socio-economic background are forced to send their children to School 1 School 2
government schools, where despite well qualified teachers, teaching standard
is poor due to lack of facilities. And number of such children forms majority Class Pratibha Nishtha Pratibha Nishtha
of school going children. 6 166 157 82 167
Secondly, it discounts child psychology. When children living in the 7 150 149 52 184
same locality, studying in same school are labelled as meritorious and
non-meritorious it will only generate complexes in the children. Some 8 83 172 53 183
students will consider themselves better than others and others will inculcate
an inferiority complex. These students will not see eye to eye. Pushing Children out of regular school system
With different syllabi and different examinations, students in different Another big change that has been done has resulted in pushing the
categories and sections of the same class (e.g. 6th Standard) will learn students out of regular school system. An upper age limit has been imposed
differently. Students who were not so good in the beginning will be stamped after ninth class. Children failing in IX were forced to register for ‘patrachar”
forever as poor students as they will not get a chance to be better as they system of Delhi govt. This was done without actually explaining to the
will be taught differently. And after VIII when they will reach the next class, students or parents. They were asked to sit with class IX students. But
they will have to face the full syllabus, which is designed with assumptions patrachar exam that was held was of Xth. Anyone with some common
that students have learnt entire syllabus of the past. They will find it difficult sense can see that students who failed in IXth, sitting again in IXth and
to cope and their backwardness will be perpetuated. We usually see that in giving exam for Xth will obviously fare badly. And this is exactly what
class IX marks wise top strata gets science, next commerce and bottom happened. In year 2017 result was merely 4% and in many schools 100%
one opts for Arts and humanities. But now, effectively, this selection will students failed. But now these students are not students of regular schools.
be done in class VI itself. Selection of streams will be done right from the For readmission they have to seek Transfer Certificate (T.C.) from Patrachar
children of the age of 10-11 years itself when they might not even be knowing and they cannot be admitted in X, and for IX they are overage. Thus, they
what is happening. are forced out of the school system. Delhi government has an agreement
with NIOS and students are asked to register there. While Delhi Government
Moreover, its declared objectives that it will enable children to improve bears expenses for registration, examination fee is to be paid by students.
does not seem to be coming true in practice. (See Table 1) One would
expect that this classification will result in getting more students in Pratibha Among working class, there is a common problem of moving to and fro
section in next classes. But the data reflects otherwise. The data show between native place and Delhi. This adds lag years in children’s education.
that this number is either constant or worsens. We have seen that schools With this upper age limit in force, these children too are getting out of
nearby working-class localities, slums etc. are even worse off. In many regular school system. And conditions are worse for girls. When they are
schools Pratibha section has not even formed or is very small. forced out, many parents do not even think it necessary to enrol them in
open schools. But they are either sent back to native place or parents try
Thus, this stratification has only increased discrimination already present to marry them off.
in the education system and it will lead to unnecessary superiority complex
to some and dejecting inferiority to most, and will lead to dehumanization Now the screened and filtered children reach class X so results will

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)
obviously be better. These are results after throwing out majority of students. clean. There are more students than the designed capacity of rooms and
The AAP govt pats its back for this apparent improvement in results. Let number of desks available. In many schools three to four students have
us further analyse the results. Table 2 shows results of class X and Table been forced to sit at the desks meant for two. In this congestion, they are
3 that of XII. It can be easily seen that number of students appearing for not even able to write. In a school in Bindapur, there was a complaint of
class X is constantly decreasing. And in 2018, results were also only leaking of a roof. Tender was floated for replacing the roof of the entire
68.90%. but if we compare with 2013, number of students passed in 2018 school. The result- now four roof are leaking. One is well aware of the
is about 47.83% of number of students that passed in 2013, which is less corruption in civil department.
than half. Even in 2017 it was 72% only. The reason for the apparent better
figure is obvious, students have already been filtered. And all this is after Table 3
Minister of Education has spent months in Finland, and many selected Result of Class XII
Teachers have been trained there. One can easily see where the education Year Total Students Pass % Students in Class Difference in
budget is being spent. X two Years ago absolute & %
Table 2 2013 139003 88.65
Result of Class X 2014 166257 88.67
Year Total Students Pass % Pass Students 2015 140191 88.11
2013 197934 99.46 196858 2016 131354 88.91
2014 180203 98.81 178067 2017 121681 88.27 140086 18405 (13.13)
2015 140086 95.81 134223 2018 112826 90.64 140638 27812 (19.77)

2016 140638 89.25 125526 There is absolutely no attempt is seen to improve Students Teacher
ratio. As we can see from above para, a class as usually about 60 to 100
2017 155263 92.44 143525
students which is far more than the ideal ratio of 1:20 or a maximum of
2018 136663 68.90 94160 1:35. How are they being taught; how will they listen to the teachers is not
the bothering the government. There ae many schools which do not have
Similarly, if one glances at the results of XII, many interesting facts teachers of particular subjects. Many times, the same teacher is asked to
can be revealed. Result of class XII is always worse than that of X. If we teach in two schools due to shortage of teachers. The effects of this do not
compare the number of students who appeared in X two years ago, we can need an explanation.
see that number is constantly decreasing since 2015, the years of effect
of the present ‘reformed system’. All the students are given Mid-Day meal up to class VIII. The quality of
the same has been questioned many a times. Many times children fell
Some basic issues ignored for show off sick, rats jumped out of food. But there is no improvement seen in this.
Some NGOs are given the contract of supplying Mid Day meal. Instead of
Amidst this propaganda, certain basic issues have not been addressed. this if women of areas are given this job, and it is made compulsory that
What is apparent is that at many places new buildings have been erected. teachers and principal will eat the same food with students, it will be helpful.
Though they made unnecessary rooms at places, but did renovate old creaky
buildings and increased capacity of some. But in these beautiful buildings, Another issue is of the School Management Committee (SMC) which is
basic facilities are not available. Toilets used by students are not useably mandatory under RTE Act. It must have the local MLA into it. But usually

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)
it has a representative of MLA, who is a local domineering person, with called National Skills Qualification Framework (NSQF). This is likely to be
very little idea about education. But it interferes in teaching and insults made compulsory for jobs in unorganized sectors in future. And children
both teachers and principal. leaving schools system before VIII or after XI will not get this certificate.
So, all of them will be categorized as unskilled labour and will be out of
Adding layers jobs, even if they have acquired some skill otherwise. AAP government
This is another dreadful feature of AAP Govt.'s education reform. While has been promoting this. It has opened many proclaimed “world class” skill
all the time progressive section of people have been fighting for “equal development centres. Here again, NGOs are being given a bigger role.
education for all” and abolishing dual education policy (actually multi-layered), Infringement
this government it out to increase layers. First in announces opening of 54
Model schools. Now they have opened five “schools of excellence”. These This government plans to install CCTV cameras into class rooms to
schools will have 2 sections per class- upto 8th class 25 students per section monitor teaching. And parents will be given a smartphone app to see online
and after that 40 students per section. That means only 250 students in the teaching process. This is infringement of a teacher’s right to teach.
lower classes and 400 students in higher classes. Here, students from Teachers will be scared and will only formally or mechanically be teaching.
other areas can also be taken. It will further add to discrimination and will Any creativity, innovation, imparting of values will be done away with. While
enable influential people to get good education for their children at it may be all right to have CCTV cameras in the campus for security
government expenses. This will add a further layer to this education system, purposes, having them in class rooms and online transmission is highly
that too by government as a matter of policy and “reforms”. There is also undesirable.
talk of infiltrating NGOs into these schools. This will mean a clever
Increase in budget and PPP
introduction of PPP system.
Another boast of this government is that it has increased education
Pushing Agenda of WTO/WB budget significantly. While this is a fact but a large chunk of it is not being
spent in education. A whopping Rs. 670 crores is kept for CCTV cameras.
The Delhi Government has started a Mission Buniyad. They give basic
Another 75 crore is kept to buy tabs for the teachers. Govt. has started
training of reading and writing in summer and extra time. This may look
siphoning off money to NGOs and coaching institutions in the name of
good at first glance. During this mission teachers were asked to execute
improving ‘poor students'. BCL has been contracted to teach spoken English.
the training manuals provided to them strictly and they were monitored.
Many schools’ grounds have been given to these coaching institutions for
Idea here is it merely makes the children literate and not educated. Language
running coaching classes on holidays. These institutions are asked to coach
cannot be learnt in isolation. It has to be learnt with experiences and reading
50% students free and the rest can be charges for making profit.
different things. This is part of the imperialist agenda and world wide such
programmes are on. The idea is to create literate but not educated students, Government has not bothered for fee waiver of examination fee charged
who will serve as cheap labour force to MNCs. by CBSE and NIOS. Instead of providing assistance, it has magnanimously
opted to be guarantor for education loan. This will both help and legitimize
Secondly, there is added emphasis on vocational courses. It only helps
high charging private institutes for higher learning, it will help both financing
children to acquire some skills. They are deprived of learning of different
banks and Institutions.
subjects which may impart some intellectual content. Students coming
from working class background are likely to be part of the same. It implies Pratham has already been mentioned for its books. Many other NGOs
that children of working class will never be part of higher echelon. They will have been given a prominent place in policy planning. Pratham officials
only learn skills which are required to work in MNCs. Division of mental have been given a very prominent and decisive role. This too is interesting
and physical labour has been done right here. Ministry of HRD runs a program that some officials of Pratham are also advising Union MHRD. Govt. has

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)
engaged a private organization Centre Square Foundation (CSF) to prepare
grading reports of schools. CSF propagates that government should not
run schools but schools should be left to market. government can give
some coupons/vouchers to poor students to partly meet the education
(From March 2 to March 6 in 1919, representatives of communist
parties of different countries met in Moscow and formed the Third
It can be seen that the claim of improvement is actually only a International, Comintern. On the occasion of its centenary we are
propaganda. Delhi Govt. has further destroyed school education. Meaningful reproducing this article by V. I. Lenin on the formation of the Third
education is going further out of reach of common children of Delhi coming International. It was published in May 1919.)
from working class and lower middle class. As it is, elites have dominated
use of good education as they can send their children to expensive private
schools. And for most of the rest, government schools were the only option. The imperialists of the Entente countries are blockading Russia in an
In government schools, despite good qualified teachers, due to lack of effort to cut off the Soviet Republic, as a seat of infection, from the capitalist
proper facilities and atmosphere education was not up to the mark. These world. These people, who boast about their “democratic” institutions, are
students were always behind students of private students not because of so blinded by their hatred of the Soviet Republic that they do not see how
abilities but because of lack of facilities. But now with stratification, the ridiculous they are making themselves. Just think of it, the advanced,
scenario will be worse. Most will never be able to compete with elite students most civilised and “democratic” countries, armed to the teeth and enjoying
in higher classes and shall be cursed to be backward. And this stamp will undivided military sway over the whole world, are mortally afraid of the
be put at the age of 10 years. Children who already had poor chances of ideological infection coming from a ruined, starving, backward, and even,
going ahead, will now be further pushed into backwardness. they assert, semi-savage country!

Secondly a very big section has been put out of the regular school This contradiction alone is opening the eyes of the working masses in
system, much in the line of prescription of WTO/WB. And Delhi government all countries and helping to expose the hypocrisy of the imperialists
is sacrificing students to artificially raise its results. Clemanceau, Lloyd George, Wilson and their governments.
In fact, this government is much too keen to follow the liberalization We are being helped, however, not only by the capitalists’ blind hatred
agenda under different garbs. It has transformed the system to produce of the Soviets, but also by their bickering among themselves, which induces
only literate students- cheap workforce for MNCs, encourage PPP and them to put spokes in each other’s wheels. They have entered into a
NGOization of Education. It is not addressing real issues like proper student veritable conspiracy of silence, for they are desperately afraid of the spread
teacher ratio, availability of sufficient teachers of all subjects and classes of true information about the Soviet Republic in general, and of its official
nor is bothered about recruiting permanent teachers. Availability of basic documents in particular. Yet, Le Temps, the principal organ of the French
amenities like clean available toilets, teaching aids, well equipped labs, bourgeoisie, has published a report on the foundation in Moscow of the
computer labs etc. is also not ensured. It has not even bothered to think as Third, Communist International.
how can one improve the standard of all the kids and improve entire
For this we express our most respectful thanks to the principal organ of
the French bourgeoisie, to this leader of French chauvinism and imperialism.
Some model schools, “schools of excellence” and new buildings are We are prepared to send an illuminated address to Le Temps in token of
only for showcasing and covering up the real issue. It has no vision for our appreciation of the effective and able assistance it is giving us.
quality free education available and accessible for all.
The manner in which Le Temps compiled its report on the basis of our

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)
wireless messages clearly and fully reveals the motive that prompted this The Second International marked a period in which the soil was prepared
organ of the money-bags. It wanted to have a dig at Wilson, as if to say, for the broad, mass spread of the movement in a number of countries.
“Look at the people with whom you negotiate!” The wiseacres who write to
the order of the money-bags do not see that their attempt to frighten Wilson The Third International has gathered the fruits of the work of the Second
with the Bolshevik bogey is becoming, in the eyes of the working people, International, discarded its opportunist, social-chauvinist, bourgeois and
an advertisement for the Bolsheviks. Once more, our most respectful thanks petty-bourgeois dross, and has begun to implement the dictatorship of the
to the organ of the French millionaires! proletariat.

The Third International has been founded in a world situation that does The international alliance of the parties which are leading the most
not allow prohibitions, petty and miserable devices of the Entente imperialists revolutionary movement in the world, the movement of the proletariat for
or of capitalist lackeys like the Scheidemanns in Germany and the Renners the overthrow of the yoke of capital, now rests on an unprecedentedly firm
in Austria to prevent news of this International and sympathy for it spreading base, in the shape of several Soviet republics, which are implementing the
among the working class of the world. This situation has been brought dictatorship of the proletariat and are the embodiment of victory over
about by the growth of the proletarian revolution, which is manifestly capitalism on an international scale.
developing everywhere by leaps and bounds. It has been brought about by The epoch-making significance of the Third, Communist International
the Soviet movement among the working people, which has already achieved lies in its having begun to give effect to Marx’s cardinal slogan, the slogan
such strength as to become really international. which sums up the centuries-old development of socialism and the working-
The First International (1864-72) laid the foundation of an international class movement, the slogan which is expressed in the concept of the
organisation of the workers for the preparation of their revolutionary attack dictatorship of the proletariat.
on capital. The Second International (1889-1914) was an international This prevision and this theory—the prevision and theory of a genius—
organisation of the proletarian movement whose growth proceeded in are becoming a reality.
breadth, at the cost of a temporary drop in the revolutionary level, a temporary
strengthening of opportunism, which in the end led to the disgraceful collapse The Latin words have now been translated into the languages of all the
of this International. peoples of contemporary Europe— more, into all the languages of the
The Third International actually emerged in 1918, when the long years
of struggle against opportunism and socialchauvinism, especially during A new era in world history has begun.
the war, led to the formation of Communist Parties in a number of countries. Mankind is throwing off the last form of slavery: capitalist, or wage,
Officially, the Third International was founded at its First Congress, in March slavery.
1919, in Moscow. And the most characteristic feature of this International,
its mission of fulfilling, of implementing the precepts of Marxism, and of By emancipating himself from slavery, man is for the first time
achieving the age-old ideals of socialism and the working-class movement— advancing to real freedom.
this most characteristic feature of the Third International has manifested
How is it that one of the most backward countries of Europe was the
itself immediately in the fact that the new, third, “International Working
first country to establish the dictatorship of the proletariat, and to organise
Men’s Association” has already begun to develop, to a certain extent, into
a Soviet republic? We shall hardly be wrong if we say that it is this
a union of Soviet Socialist Republics.
contradiction between the backwardness of Russia and the “leap” she has
The First International laid the foundation of the proletarian, international made over bourgeois democracy to the highest form of democracy, to
struggle for socialism. Soviet, or proletarian, democracy—it is this contradiction that has been

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)
one of the reasons (apart from the dead weight of opportunist habits and Britain was the model of a country in which, as Engels put it, the
philistine prejudices that burdened the majority of the socialist leaders) bourgeoisie had produced, alongside a bourgeois aristocracy, a very
why people in the West have had particular difficulty or have been slow in bourgeois upper stratum of the proletariat.53 For several decades this
understanding the role of the Soviets. advanced capitalist country lagged behind in the revolutionary struggle of
the proletariat. France seemed to have exhausted the strength of the
The working people all over the world have instinctively grasped the proletariat in two heroic working-class revolts of 1848 and 1871 against the
significance of the Soviets as an instrument in the proletarian struggle and bourgeoisie that made very considerable contributions to world-historical
as a form of the proletarian state. But the “leaders”, corrupted by development. Leadership in the International of the working-class movement
opportunism, still continue to worship bourgeois democracy, which they then passed to Germany; that was in the seventies of the nineteenth century,
call “democracy” in general. when she lagged economically behind Britain and France. But when Germany
Is it surprising that the establishment of the dictatorship of the proletariat had outstripped these two countries economically, i.e., by the second decade
has brought out primarily the “contradiction” between the backwardness of of the twentieth century, the Marxist workers’ party of Germany, that model
Russia and her “leap” over bourgeois democracy? It would have been for the whole world, found itself headed by a handful of utter scoundrels,
surprising had history granted us the establishment of a new form of the most filthy blackguards—from Scheidemann and Noske to David and
democracy without a number of contradictions. Legien—loathsome hangmen drawn from the workers’ ranks who had sold
themselves to the capitalists, who were in the service of the monarchy and
If any Marxist, or any person, indeed, who has a general knowledge of the counter-revolutionary bourgeoisie.
modern science, were asked whether it is likely that the transition of the
different capitalist countries to the dictatorship of the proletariat will take World history is leading unswervingly towards the dictatorship of the
place in an identical or harmoniously proportionate way, his answer would proletariat, but is doing so by paths that are anything but smooth, simple
undoubtedly be in the negative. There never has been and never could be and straight.
even, harmonious, or proportionate development in the capitalist world.
When Karl Kautsky was still a Marxist and not the renegade from
Each country has developed more strongly first one, then another aspect
Marxism he became when he began to champion unity with the
or feature or group of features of capitalism and of the working-class
Scheidemanns and to support bourgeois democracy against Soviet, or
movement. The process of development has been uneven.
proletarian, democracy, he wrote an article—this was at the turn of the
When France was carrying out her great bourgeois revolution and rousing century— entitled “The Slavs and Revolution”. In this article he traced the
the whole European continent to a historically new life, Britain proved to be historical conditions that pointed to the possibility of leadership in the world
at the head of the counter-revolutionary coalition, although at the same revolutionary movement passing to the Slavs.
time she was much more developed capitalistically than France. The British
working-class movement of that period, however, brilliantly anticipated much And so it has. Leadership in the revolutionary proletarian International
that was contained in the future Marxism. has passed for a time—for a short time, it goes without saying—to the
Russians, just as at various periods of the nineteenth century it was in the
When Britain gave the world Chartism, the first broad, truly mass and hands of the British, then of the French, then of the Germans.
politically organised proletarian revolutionary movement, bourgeois
revolutions, most of them weak, were taking place on the European I have had occasion more than once to say that it was easier for the
continent, and the first great civil war between the proletariat and the Russians than for the advanced countries to begin the great proletarian
bourgeoisie had broken out in France. The bourgeoisie defeated the various revolution, but that it will be more difficult for them to continue it and carry
national contingents of the proletariat one by one, in different ways in it to final victory, in the sense of the complete organisation of a socialist
different countries. society.

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It was easier for us to begin, firstly, because the unusual—for twentieth- of the proletariat.
century Europe—political backwardness of the tsarist monarchy gave
unusual strength to the revolutionary onslaught of the masses. Secondly, The bankrupt Second International is now dying and rotting alive.
Russia’s backwardness merged in a peculiar way the proletarian revolution Actually, it is playing the role of lackey to the world bourgeoisie. It is a
against the bourgeoisie with the peasant revolution against the landowners. truly yellow International. Its foremost ideological leaders, such as Kautsky,
That is what we started from in October 1917, and we would not have laud bourgeois democracy and call it “democracy” in general, or—what is
achieved victory so easily then if we had not. As long ago as 1856, Marx still more stupid and still more crude—”pure democracy”.
spoke, in reference to Prussia; of the possibility of a peculiar combination Bourgeois democracy has outlived its day, just as the Second
of proletarian revolution and peasant war.54 From the beginning of 1905 International has, though the International performed historically necessary
the Bolsheviks advocated the idea of a revolutionary-democratic dictatorship and useful work when the task of the moment was to train the working-
of the proletariat and the peasantry. Thirdly, the 1905 revolution contributed class masses within the framework of this bourgeois democracy.
enormously to the political education of the worker and peasant masses,
because it familiarised their vanguard with “the last word” of socialism in No bourgeois republic, however democratic, ever was or could have
the West and also because of the revolutionary action of the masses. been anything but a machine for the suppression of the working people by
Without such a “dress rehearsal” as we had in 1905, the revolutions of capital, an instrument of the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie, the political
1917—both the bourgeois, February revolution, and the proletarian, October rule of capital. The democratic bourgeois republic promised and proclaimed
revolution—would have been impossible. Fourthly, Russia’s geographical majority rule, but it could never put this into effect as long as private
conditions permitted her to hold out longer than other countries could have ownership of the land and other means of production existed.
done against the superior military strength of the capitalist, advanced “Freedom” in the bourgeois-democratic republic was actually freedom
countries. Fifthly, the specific attitude of the proletariat towards the for the rich. The proletarians and working peasants could and should have
peasantry facilitated the transition from the bourgeois revolution to the utilised it for the purpose of preparing their forces to overthrow capital, to
socialist revolution, made it easier for the urban proletarians to influence overcome bourgeois democracy, but in fact the working masses were, as
the semi-proletarian, poorer sections of the rural working people. Sixthly, a general rule, unable to enjoy democracy under capitalism.
long schooling in strike action and the experience of the European mass
working-class movement facilitated the emergence—in a profound and Soviet, or proletarian, democracy has for the first time in the world
rapidly intensifying revolutionary situation— of such a unique form of created democracy for the masses, for the working people, for the factory
proletarian revolutionary organisation as the Soviets. workers and small peasants.
This list, of course, is incomplete; but it will suffice for the time being. Never yet has the world seen political power wielded by the majority of
the population, power actually wielded by this majority, as it is in the
Soviet, or proletarian, democracy was born in Russia. Following the case of Soviet rule.
Paris Commune a second epoch-making step was taken. The proletarian
and peasant Soviet Republic has proved to be the first stable socialist It suppresses the “freedom” of the exploiters and their accomplices; it
republic in the world. As a new type of state it cannot die. It no longer deprives them of “freedom” to exploit, “freedom” to batten on starvation,
stands alone. “freedom” to fight for the restoration of the rule of capital, “freedom” to
compact with the foreign bourgeoisie against the workers and peasants of
For the continuance and completion of the work of building socialism, their own country.
much, very much is still required. Soviet republics in more developed
countries, where the proletariat has greater weight and influence, have every Let the Kautskys champion such freedom. Only a renegade from
chance of surpassing Russia once they take the path of the dictatorship Marxism, a renegade from socialism can do so.

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In nothing is the bankruptcy of the ideological leaders of the Second
International, people like Hilferding and Kautsky, so strikingly expressed
Memorial meeting, Rally,
as in their utter inability to understand the significance of Soviet, or
proletarian, democracy, its relation to the Paris Commune, its place in
Convention on occasion of 25th
history, its necessity as a form of the dictatorship of the proletariat. years of Nellimarla Martyrdom
The newspaper Die Freiheit, organ of the “Independent” (alias middle-
class, philistine, petty-bourgeois) German Social-Democratic Party, in its The heroic working class struggle of Nellimarla Jute Mill is a memorable
issue No. 74 of February 11, 1919, published a manifesto “To the chapter in the history of India's working class. The state brutally suppressed
Revolutionary Proletariat of Germany”. it, resulting in police firing which occurred on 29 Jan 1994. Five workers
were killed in that police firing, when they were doing rail roko demanding
This manifesto is signed by the Party executive and by all its members lifting of lockout of Nellimarla Jute Mill. It was 25 years ago. IFTU National
in the National Assembly, the German variety of our Constituent General Council held in August 2018 at Tata Nagar passed a resolution to
Assembly. observe memorial day on 29 th Jan 2019, on the occasion of completion of
25 years of martyrdom of Nellimarla workers in that heroic struggle. In this
This manifesto accuses the Scheidemanns of wanting to abolish the
background, the AP IFTU State Committee had given a call to observe a
Workers’ Councils, and proposes—don’t laugh!— that the Councils be
memorial week from 23 rd January 2019 to 29th January 2019. Moreover, it
combined with the Assembly, that the Councils be granted certain political
decided to hold 3 memorial programmes on 29th Jan 2019 at Nellimarla, i.e.
rights, a certain place in the Constitution.
I – Memorial Convention, II – Rally, III – Public meeting.
To reconcile, to unite the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie and the
dictatorship of the proletariat! How simple! What a brilliantly philistine Convention
idea! The memorial Convention was held in Nellimarla IFTU Union Office on
The only pity is that it was tried in Russia, under Kerensky, by the 29th January 2019. The Convention was attended by more than 150 delegates
united Mensheviks and Socialist-Revolutionaries, those petty-bourgeois from various districts and unions. Com P. Prasad (PP) presided over the
democrats who imagine themselves socialists. Convention. Com PP briefly narrated the significance of the Nellimarla
struggle. This convention was inaugurated by Com. Hara Gopal, retired
Anyone who has read Marx and failed to understand that in capitalist professor, a well known revolutionary democrat and also popular Marxist
society, at every acute moment, in every serious class conflict, the intellectual.
alternative is either the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie or the dictatorship
of the proletariat, has understood nothing of either the economic or the Com. Hara Gopal hailed the memory of martyrdom of Nellimarla workers.
political doctrines of Marx. He said that the rebuilding of Nellimarla Model struggles is an urgent task
now, mainly in the background of growing fascist offensive. He hoped that
But the brilliantly philistine idea of Hilferding, Kautsky and Co. of heroic working class struggles can stop the road to Fascism in a better
peacefully combining the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie and the dictatorship way. Further, he reminded that then Nellimarla struggle was not only built
of the proletariat requires special examination, if exhaustive treatment is by workers, their families were also involved - wives and children of workers-
to be given to the economic and political absurdities with which this most in an exemplary manner. The women who were not workers, but house
remarkable and comical manifesto of February 11 is packed. That will wives participated in thousands in struggles then and stood bravely against
have to be put off for another article. repression by the state. The role of women is now memorable and ideal.
Com. Hara Gopal emphasized mainly the growing dangerous trends of

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)

IFTU President Com. Aparna addressing the Convention. Also

seen (from left) Dr. Hara Gopal, Com. P. Prasad, Com. M.
Venkateshwarulu and Com. J. Venkateshwarulu
Hindutva Fascism at present in his inaugural speech. He said that Fascist
forces are penetrating into each and every field, even they are ready to
dissolve the present constitution. He said that some progressive culture
and democratic traditions are prevalent in our society due to the heroic
Freedom struggle, but now those were being buried in a systematic way by
Hindutva Fascist forces, which is very dangerous for democratic struggles.
The revolutionary intellectuals and democrats like Com. Varavara Rao,
Sudha Bhardwaj and Gautam Navalakha, etc. were foisted with conspiracy
cases. It was a sign of the growing fascist danger. He concludied his
(Above) Com. P.Prasad addressing the Public meeting and
inaugural speech saying that the task of building of heroic struggles by
mobilizing the people belonging to all walks of life, in the way of Nellimarla (Below) A view of the Public Meeting
struggle, is the need of the hour now. strugglein West Bengal which experimented with the cooperative form by
workers. At the time of Nellimarla struggle IFTU units throughout the country
Hailing the Nelimarla martyrs, the main speaker at the Convention, IFTU
propagated the struggle and hailed the martyrdoms. She recountred some
President Com. Aparna said that that struggle showed an important method
creative aspects of that struggle which had enthused IFTU ranks.
to fight lockouts and closures. Nellimarla was the significant movement in
the jute industry and took the route to force open the Mill, while the other Com. Aparna drew attention to the current attacks on the working class
significant struggle on a similar issue around that time was the Kanoria and also said January 2019 will go down as a black month for the workers

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)
in India. 8th & 9th January while workers all over India were on strike, 17 Com. Hara Gopal speaking as Guest Speaker said that Dalits, Tribals
workers in a rat hole mine in Meghalaya were lying drowned in the mine Minorities and Women were being attacked and exploitated more and more
due to colllusion of contractors & state govt, in illegal mining facilitated by in India. He reminded that the nation is now in danger, due to growth of
the Supreme Court. TU Centres which had called for the strike failed to Fascist forces. He further said that democratic, revolutionary and secular
focus on these workers and on the issue of industrial mishaps which are forces must wage struggles together.
on the rise as expenditure on workers' safety has further declined. In
January there were deaths of workers in an industrial accident in Delhi, oe Com. PP narrated the then heroic events and incidents of Nellimarla
year afer similar deaths in the Capital for the same reasons. She called on struggle. Com. Laxmi, POW AP General Secretary praised the role of women
IFTU leaders and cadres to build militant broad based movements on in the Nellimarla struggle. Com. K. Suryam, the IFTU State General
workers' issues. She also stressed that IFTU NC was planning to take Secretary of Telangana spoke about the political importance of Nellimarla
systematic struggle for getting jute industry declared as a national industry struggle. Com. K Polari, (AP IFTU General Secretary), K. Rama Mohan
and that would be our true homage to Nellimarla martyrs. (AP PDSU General Secretary), Sreenivas (Arunodaya AP General
Secretary), Tandar Prakash (AIKMS State Joint Secretary), K. Sanyasi
IFTU All India General Secretary Com. Pradeep also spoke in the Rao (IFTU leader, and advocate), P. Mullick (IFTU leader Vizainagaram
Convention. He shared his memories of Nellimarla struggle, which had District), J. Venkateshwarlu (JV) IFTU, AP Vice President, U. Venkateshwar
inspired and impressed the masses and also rank and file of all democratic Rao (UV) IFTU State treasurer and Hari Krishna (IFTU State Joint Secretary)
and revolutionary organizations, irrespective of their lines. He said that were also on the dias.
fascist forces are making attempts through govts to curtail the hard won
rights of working class. He appealed to workers to build heroic struggles in In the meeting the families of five martyrs participated. The significant
light of the memory of martyrdom of Nellimarla workers. event is that Shiva, son of K. Appala Satya Narayana, one of the martyrs
and D. Narsing Rao, son of D. Chinna, another martyr, also spoke. Their
Memorial Rally speeches impressed the audience. They said that their families would
always stand with IFTU. They assured the people emphatically. They
The memorial rally began at 3 pm from Railway gate where the police expressed their opinions with heart-touching tearful voices which attracted
firing had occurred. Com PP showed the firing spot and narrated the scenes the participants. All families of five martyr were on the dais.
and incidants to participants. Then rally started. Nearly 2000 people including
nearly 40% of women participated in the rally, holding the placards with Before beginning the Convention, all delegates and local comrades went
photos of martyrs, giving slogans in memory of martyrs. It reached IFTU to Jarajapu peta village (Nearby village) belonging to 3 martyrs, and
Union office. condolence programe was done there at memorial statue, which had been
then constructed by people. The IFTU flag was hoisted there by Com
Public Meeting Aparna, IFTU All India President. One minute Silence was observed.
The public meeting was presided over by Com M. Venketeshwarlu (MV), At Nellimarla IFTU union office, the IFTU flag was hoisted by Com
IFTU State Vice-president. First Com. MV brought to the notice of the Pradeep, IFTU All India GS.
audience the significance of memorial programmes. Com. Pradeep, the
main speaker, spoke about the present political situation in the country. The cultural programmes were performed by Arunodaya in all above 3
He said that the struggles of the working class and all other sections of programmes, led by Arunoday Rama Rao and Sreenivas, President and
toiling masses were being suppressed by Modi Govt in a brutal way. So he GS of AP state unit. One play also was performed which was written
appealed to the people to come forward ‘to fight bravely in the spirit of including the firing scene. Before these programmes, propaganda campaign
Nellimarla struggle’. was conducted in villages of working class.

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Launch Vigorous Struggle states. Madhya Pradesh has the highest number of rejected claims, which
approximately come to 3.5 lakhs, followed by Odisha with nearly 1.5 lakh.

to Defend the Lands and

The states of Goa, Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh are yet to adjudicate on
the filed claims and they have been directed to complete the exercise by

Livelihood of Tribals
the next date of hearing. If their numbers are added than it will rise to
several million households. Once this order is implemented, it will uproot
millions of tribals and other traditional forest dwellers from their land and
livilihood and cause unprecedented hardship to them.
(A serious attack has been launched against the land and livelihood of
the tribals of the country. Supreme Court has ordered eviction of nearly 11 The court order which came as an outcome of a case filed by some
lakh families of tribals and other traditional forest dwellers. This attack is some wildlife groups challenging the validity of the Forest Rights Act (FRA),
estimated to take more than 23 lakh tribal families in its ambit. RSS-BJP is a major blow to the struggle of tribals and other traditional forest dwellers
Govt. has repeatedly failed to even appear before the Supreme Court to seeking justice and to establish their rights. AIKMS has the opinion that
defend Forest Rights Act 2006. This Act was a result of struggles of tribals Modi led Union government has been trying to weaken this law as it gives
and other poor traditional forest dwellers. A statement issued by AIKMS some rights to forest community over forest land and is a hindrance to
on February 23 is being published here. Corporate interests. That is why the Govt. has calculatedly failed to present
its lawyers on February 13 to defend this law before the Supreme Court,
We should launch a vigorous and broad campaign against this attack
leading a three-judge bench to pass orders giving states till July 27 to
and mobilize tribals and other traditional forest dwellers in this campaign.
evict tribals whose claims had been rejected and submit a report on it to
We should try to coordinate this effort in different parts of the country and
the Supreme Court.
try to develop a country wide movement against this attack.)
AIKMS has been saying that the orders on the claims claims filed by
The Central Executive Committee of All India Kisan Mazdoor Sabha tribals and traditional non tribal forest dwellers which have been rejected in
(AIKMS) has strongly opposed the Supreme Court’s recent order for the some states, need to be reviewed. In several states there have been reports
eviction of more than one million tribals and other traditional forest dwellers on administration going particularly slow on even accepting community-
from the forest lands across 16 states. These are the people whose claim level claims. The rejections in many cases are faulty, need to be reviewed
applications for forest right under the Forests Rights Act – 2006 are already under new regulations that the Tribal Affairs ministry brought in mid-way to
rejected. Once this court order is implemented, more than one million tribals reform the process. The law does not lead to automatic evictions and in
and other traditional forest-dwellers will be evicted from their respective some cases the claimants are anyway not in possession of lands they had
forest lands where they have been living and which they have been sought as their ancestral forests.
cultivating for decades. The last time country-wide evictions took place
was in 2002-2004, then also triggered by a Supreme Court order, which led Rejection does not always mean that the applicant’s case lacks merit.
to many cases of violence, deaths and protests in the vast forest areas For most forest dwelling communities, the process of applying for an
and uprooting of around three lakh tribal and non tribal forest dweller abstract notion like rights is daunting. At the same time, states are wary
households. of vesting forest rights to the tribals as this could, among other things,
complicate their ability to divert forest land for industrial and mining
The total number of rejected claims from 16 states that have reported activities. States have devised several strategies to reject claim applications
rejection rates so far to the apex court, add up to 11,27,446 tribal and to serve the interest of corporate houses. States like Jharkhand and
other forest-dwelling households. But according to the petitioners Himachal Pradesh have refused to accept applications by Other Traditional
approximately 20.5 lakh claims were rejected out of 44 lakh claims across Forest Dwellers. Gujarat told applicants to submit, along with other evidence,

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NEW DEMOCRACY Organ of the Central Committee, CPI(ML)
satellite images of the land to which they were staking claim! While most of just evict a million tribals. Third, the process of recognising rights has
the tribal people do not have two coins to rub together, the Govt wants been poorly implemented. Out of 41 lakh claims filed so far, only 18 lakh
them to get satellite images? Instead of ensuring the rights of the tribal have been approved, 3 lakh are still being processed and the remaining 20
people, there is a deliberate attempt to deny them rights. The very process lakh have been rejected. But on all three fronts, the Ministry’s lawyers
of deciding the claims is manipulated and they are arbitarily rejected by stayed completely quiet.
the Govt officials. So, all the rejected FRA claims need to be re-evaluated,
as Maharashtra Govt has agreed to do, and the concerned applicants need This order can become a pretext for forest officials to attack millions of
to be informed with a right to appeal against these rejections. forest dwellers across the country who are alredy facing the inhuman
eviction from the forest land. The order short-circuited the process laid
The Government of India, for the fourth time in a row, has chosen not down in the Act for those whose appeals have been rejected. Already lakhs
to argue at all in the Court. The fact is that numerous official and independent of acres of forest land is diverted for non forestry purposes like mining and
reports have confirmed that huge numbers of claims have been wrongly setting up industries without settling the forest rights of the local people.
rejected and that forest officials, in particular, have a track record of illegally Even the Green Tribunals have cleared these diversions arbitarily which
preventing people’s rights from being recognized. Both State and Central favoured the interest of corporate houses only.
governments have repeatedly recognised this – but the Central government
chose not to inform the Court of this basic fact. The Forest Rights Act was enacted in order to remedy the historical
injustice committed by the British and post 1947 Governments, who seized
Earlier this year, many tribal organizations had grown anxious about forest lands without respecting people’s rights. Two thirds of this country’s
the survival of the very Act. In a joint letter in February 2019, they appealed forests are in areas that constitutionally belong to tribals under the Fifth
to Union Tribal Affairs Minister Jual Oram that in the previous three hearings Schedule of the Constitution. It requires the government to hand back
in the Supreme Court on petitions seeking to have the Act struck down, traditional forest lands to tribals and other traditional forest-dwellers
the Centre’s counsel did not say anything to defend the law. As the legal according to the laid down criteria. The Act, since its inception in 2006,
defence was weak, the nature of the hearings changed. Gradually, a case has seen opposition from within ranks of forest officials as well as some
against the constitutional validity of the Forest Rights Act turned into one wildlife groups and Naturalists. This combined with the fact that at the
seeking the eviction of tribals and other traditional forest dwellers. This is ground level it is the forest bureaucracy that has to administer the law has
a huge setback in terms of interpretation of the Act. made the implementation difficult and tardy.
There were at least three grounds on which the Ministry could have AIKMS demands an immediate halt to any eviction and the Central
challenged petitioners’ demand that forest claims be rejected and residents Govt should appeal for a review of the order in the Supreme Court and if
evicted. First, the petitioners ignored that the fact that Forest Rights Act required it should bring an Ordinance. The AIKMS will also carry out a
says that no one should be evicted while the process of recording their campaign exposing the Modi led Central government’s collusion with big
rights is underway. companies against forest dwellers which is another historic injustice to the
poorest of the poor people of our country. It also vows to resist any eviction
Secondly, the Act contains no clause for eviction of rejected claimants of tribals and poor forest dwellers from the forest land in the country.
and in fact section 4(5) specifically prohibits eviction until the process of
implementation is fully complete in an area. Under the legisation, the
Government has to inform applicants why their claims have been rejected
so that they can appeal against the decision. Subsequently, evictions have
to be carried out under the process defined by India’s forest laws. The
Govt. first has to serve them a notice and then they can appeal. It cannot

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State Claims filed Category Extent of Claims Evicted State Claims filed Category Extent of Claims Evicted
land Rejected land Rejected

AP ST 114400 66351 Maharashtra 254042 ST 13712

105681 OTFD 8797
Assam 74,364 ST 10128 ha 22398
19,966 OTFD 561.4 ha 5136 Odisha 573867 ST 122250
31687 OTFD 26620
Bihar 4696 (Total) 4354(Total)
2976 ST 2666 Rajasthan 73578 ST 36492

1720 OTFD 1688 597 OTFD 577

Chhattisgarh ST & OTFD 20095 4830 Tamil Nadu 31 821 ST 7148

2481 OTFD 1881
Goa 6094 ST
4036 OTFD Telangana 183252 ST 82075

Gujarat 168899 ST Tripura 166584 ST 34483

13970 OTFD 33774 OTFD 33774

Himachal 2131 ST Uttarakhand 90 ST 35

Pradesh 92 OTFD 119 OTFD 16

Jharkhand 107187 ST 27809 Uttar Pradesh 31846 ST 20494

3569 OTFD 298 50442 OTFD 38167

Karnataka 48432 ST 35521 West Bengal 95958 ST 50288

227014 OTFD 141019 36004 OTFD 35856

Kerala 39999 ST 894 (This Table is according to the submissions made by the state govts.
before the Supreme Court. Extent of Land in case of AP pertains to the
land of the claims rejected. Note that only in Chhattisgarh eviction from
Madhya 426105 ST 204123
the forest land has been undertaken.)
Pradesh 153306 OTFD 150664

February,, 2019 63 64 February, 2019