ML Update 13 / 2014

ML Update

A CPI(ML) Weekly News Magazine

Vol. 17

No. 13 &nb sp;&nb sp;

26 MAR – 1 APR 2014

Change Policies, Change the Regime, Ensure People’s Voice in Parliament!

CPI(ML)’s Appeal for Lok Sabha Elections 2014

Dear Citizens,

The Lok Sabha 2014 elections are being held at a time when the country is in a severe crisis. Two decades of pro-corporate, anti-people economic policies have resulted in steeply spiralling prices, hunger, joblessness, farmers’ suicides, and plunder of land and natural resources by corporations, leading to mega scams and forcible eviction of the poor. Education, health, nutritious food, housing and other necessities of a dignified life have all gone out of reach, even as Governments have washed their hands off responsibilities and left people to the mercy of the corporate-dominated market. People’s movements are faced with severe repression, communal and caste massacres go unpunished. Women are deprived of freedom, equality, and dignity. The fundamental interests and rights of the common people are being denied and truncated on every front.

The Congress-led UPA Government that has been in power for two successive terms is squarely responsible for this state of affairs. It had come to power in 2004 and again in 2009 promising to improve the lot of the common people, but did just the opposite. The people are therefore eagerly looking for an end to the corrupt rule of the Congress and the BJP is desperately trying to step into this vacuum. But going by the BJP’s track record at the Centre during 1998-2004 and in the states it has ruled, whether Gujarat and Chhattisgarh where it has been ruling for more than a decade, or Bihar and Jharkhand where it was in power till recently, choosing BJP in place of the Congress can only be like jumping from the frying pan into fire.

It is important to remember that in 2004 there were two big reasons for the BJP-led NDA’s stunning defeat. Firstly, the people were angry with the NDA Govt’s tall claims of ‘India Shining’, which was a cruel joke on farmers’ suicides, rising unemployment, steep prices and growing misery experienced by the people. And the other equally important reason was the 2002 Gujarat genocide presided over by the BJP government in the state led by none other than Narendra Modi, who is today declared as the prime ministerial nominee of the BJP.

The bid to foist Narendra Modi as India’s Prime Minister is backed not just by the Sangh parivar, but unmistakably enough also by all major corporate houses even as it enjoys the blessings of America as already indicated by several American overtures including the visit of Nancy Powell, US Ambassador in India, to Ahmedabad.

The hope for freedom from the all-pervasive crisis lies in the people’s struggles for an alternative! Clearly there is no readymade alternative; we have to build one through sustained democratic assertion of the people. In 2014, let us vote to change the economic policies that have brought us corruption and misery; let us vote to secure our rights and end repression! Let us vote to kick out the corrupt and anti-people forces, and send the forces of genuine struggle into Parliament!

CPI(ML)’s Charter for Change

CPI(ML) has a glorious record of people’s struggles for transformation, and we reiterate our commitment that every MP elected from CPI(ML) will carry forward the people’s movement for the following Charter of Change.

1. Effect a pro-people shift in economic policies:

a) Enact a new law to protect farmland and stop all private acquisition of forest land, coastal areas and traditional fishing zones

b) Increased public investment in agriculture and all kinds of institutional support including debt-waivers to the crisis-ridden peasantry

c) Greater emphasis on small and medium enterprises to strengthen domestic manufacturing

d) No FDI in retail and strategic sectors, protection of all labour-intensive sectors from adverse foreign competition

e) Stop privatisation of key infrastructure and financial sectors and bring key resources like oil and gas and minerals under public control

f) Increase tax revenue by strengthening the system of corporate taxes and levying inheritance tax on the rich

g) Increased public investment and health, education and scientific research

2. Curbing price rise and improving the conditions of the toiling masses

a) Prices of essential commodities and services must not be allowed to escalate beyond the reach of the common people

b) Food Security Act must be strengthened to ensure monthly supply of at least 50 kg foodgrains for a family of five along with sugar, milk, pulses and edible oil

c) Provisions of MNREGA must be expanded to guarantee at least 200 days of work at a minimum daily wage of Rs 300, municipal areas must also be brought within the purview of the Act

d) BPL irregularities must be stopped – non tax-payers and landowners owning less than 5 acres of land must all be considered BPL for benefits meant for the poor

e) Land ceiling should be lowered and standardised and land, tenancy and other pro-peasant agrarian reforms must be accomplished on war-footing and homestead land should be guaranteed for the labouring people in agriculture and plantation sectors

3. Reorient Development Strategy to Guarantee People’s Rights and Protect Environment

a) Reorient the strategy of development, making distributive justice, people’s rights and environmental sustainability its three core principles

b) Stop forcible acquisition of land and return all acquired land that is lying unused to the original owners

c) Stop all projects that violate environmental norms

d) Stop nuclear projects and GM crops that pose a threat to public health and safety

e) Ensure 24×7 supply of electricity at subsidised rates for rural and urban poor and for small enterprises, shops and agriculture

f) Rural electrification

g) Ensure quality education and healthcare for all, education up to 12th standard must be free and imparted through the common school system

4. Equal pay for equal work, regularisation of contract labour and increase in minimum wages

a) Workers employed in work of perennial nature must be regularised, the principle of equal pay for equal work must be upheld in every field, women workers must get equal wages as their male counterparts,

b) ASHA, Anganwadi, mid-day meal workers must be treated as regular employees with proper pay scales

c) Minimum wages must be raised to Rs 15000 per month

5. Guarantee People’s Rights in Every Sphere

a) Right to food, shelter, health, education and work must all be incorporated into the Constitution as fundamental rights

b) Educated unemployed youth must be given a minimum monthly allowance of Rs 5000 till they get proper employment

c) Implement the recommendations of Sachar Committee and Ranganath Misra Commission to improve the conditions of Muslims and other minority communities

6. Repeal of draconian, archaic and anti-people laws and Justice for all

a) UAPA, AFSPA, Sedition Law and Section 377 must be revoked

b) Operation Green Hunt and Salwa Judum must be stopped and all issues related to adivasi rights and development must be sorted out expeditiously

c) SEZ Act 2005 and Electricity Act 2003 must be repealed

d) Special Tribunals must be set up to make sure that the guilty of all caste massacres, communal riots, ethnic killings and extra-judicial killings are brought to book

e) Prevention of SC/ST Atrocities Act must be strengthened and law enacted to stop racism and attacks on minorities and migrant workers

f) Witch-hunt of Muslim and Adivasi youth must be stopped, trials must be expedited and those languishing in jail for years without conviction must be released and compensated for the damage caused to their life and reputation

7. Women’s Rights and Freedom

a) Secure, dignified, remunerative employment must be ensured for women

b) Access to clean toilets for all women, in homes as well as in public spaces, and access to regular, safe public transport must be ensured

c) One-stop, 24-hour crisis centres and safe shelters must be instituted in each police district for women survivors of violence

d) Compensation and rehabilitation be ensured for survivors of rape and acid attacks

e) Gender-sensitive police and prosecutorial procedures must be strictly followed, and the number of judges and courts expanded to ensure speedy justice in every case

f) Women’s Reservation Bill in the Lok Sabha be enacted

g) Code of Conduct be adopted to disqualify electoral candidates who have committed offences of gender-related violence, end misogynist comments and behaviour in the Lok Sabha, and ensure zero tolerance of moral policing by State/non-State actors

h) Special Tribunals be set up to ensure justice in long-pending cases of custodial rapes

8. Federal Restructuring and Reorganisation of States

a) Backward states and regions must be granted special status and provided with all kinds of institutional support to end regional disparity

b) Set up Second States Reorganisation Commission for sympathetic and holistic consideration of various statehood demands

c) Implement Article 244 A to ensure Autonomous State status for Karbi Anglong and Dima Hasao districts

9. Electoral, Legal and Police Reforms

a) Introduce proportional representation in elections, stop corporate funding and ensure level playing field for all parties and contestants

b) Strengthen RTI, enact Jan Lokpal legislation to provide for a powerful and autonomous anti-corruption watchdog, bringing all levels of the state including ministers, bureaucrats, the armed forces and the judiciary, corporate houses, media organisations and NGOs within its ambit

c) Withdraw the controversial ‘Aadhar’ scheme and ‘cash transfer’ plans

d) Policing must be thoroughly overhauled to stop human rights violations and atrocities on peaceful democratic activities and struggles

e) The NIA and IB must be made accountable to Parliament and the operation of all kinds of security forces and intelligence agencies must follow the letter and spirit of the Constitution and the tenets of the rule of law

f) The jail manual must be updated and strictly enforced, bails should be made the norm to stop overcrowding in jails and make sure that people do not spend years in jail without conviction

g) Death penalty should be done away with, and life imprisonment declared as the highest degree of punishment

10. Reorient India’s Foreign Policy Ensuring Independence and Friendly Relations

a) Indian foreign policy must be freed from the interests and priorities of US foreign policy

b) India must have friendly relations and close cooperation with all neighbouring countries, big or small

c) India must play a pro-active role to bring all perpetrators of war crimes to justice

d) India must work relentlessly for removal of all foreign military bases in the world

Friends,

We appeal to you to vote for CPI(ML) candidates in the 2014 LS polls, to ensure that the voices of people’s resistance can resound in Parliament, and challenge the regime of plunder and corruption. Resist the devious design of the forces of corporate and communal fascism, and strengthen the democratic unity and struggles of the people by all means for a better tomorrow.

– CPI(ML) Liberation

Fix Prices, Ensure Work, Ensure Full Wages for Work!

Change the Regime and Rule of Corruption and Plunder!

Down With Communal Poison, Ensure Peace and Justice!

Save Farmland, Agriculture, Farmers, End the Regime of Corporate Loot!

Half the Population Demands – Safety, Dignity, and Freedom!

We Want Employment and Electricity, Rations and Housing, Not Liquor!

CPI(ML) Lok Sabha Candidates
PC Name and No. Name of Candidate PC Name and No. Name of Candidate
ANDHRA PRADESH 44 8-Koppal Bharadwaj
1 19-Srikakulam B Vasudev Rao 45 9-Bellary

(ST)

Doddamani

Prasad

2 23-Kakinada Y Arjun Rao ODISHA
ASSAM 46 11-Kalahandi Balaram

Hota

3 11-Kaliabor Arup

Mahanta

47 21-Koraput

(ST)

Meghanada

Sabar

4 13-Dibrugarh Subhash

Sen

48 17-Puri Ashok

Pradhan

5 14-Lakhimpur Tanis

Orang

PUNJAB
6 9-Tezpur Lakhi

Kanta Kurmi

49 10-Sangrur Gurpreet

Singh

7 3-Autonomous

District(ST)

Pratima

Ingheepi

50 11-Bhatinda(SC) Bhagawant

Singh

BIHAR 51 1-Gurdaspur Gurmeet

Singh

8 34-Sasaram

(SC)

Tetara

Devi

RAJASTHAN
9 35-Karakat Rajaram

Singh

52 19-Udaipur(ST) Gautamlal

Meena

10 38-Gaya

(SC)

Niranjan

Kumar

53 21-Chittorgarh Shantilal

Trivedi

11 40-Jamui

(SC)

Jaiprakash

Das

54 4-Jhunjhunu Omprakash

Jharoda

12 29-Nalanda Shashi

Yadav

55 TAMILNADU
13 31-Pataliputra Rameshwar

Prasad

55 13-Viluppuram(SC) M Venkatesan
14 32-Ara Raju

Yadav

56 20-Coimbatore D Chandran
15 33-Buxar Indu

Devi

57 24-Tiruchirappalli P Asaithambi
16 36-Jahanabad Ramadhar

Singh

58 39-Kanniyakumari SM

Anthonimuthu

17 11-Katihar Mahbub

Alam

59 5-Sriperumbudur K Bharati
18 12-Purnia Pankaj

Singh

TRIPURA
19 26-Bhagalpur Rinki

Kumari

60 1-Tripura

West.

Partha

Karmakar

20 8-Supaul Jainarayan

Yadav

61 2-Tripura

East (ST)

Falguni

Tripura

21 9-Araria Sanjay

Rishidev

UTTAR PRADESH
22 14-Darbhanga Retd.

Col. Laxmeshwar Mishra

62 26-Pilibhit Ram

Autar Verma

23 23-Samastipur

(SC)

Lalbahadur

Sada

63 28-Kheri Krishna

Adhikari

24 6-Madhubani Dhruvnarayan

Karn

64 29-Dhaurahra Gaya

Prasad

25 15-Muzaffarpur Shatrughan

Sahni

65 45-Jalaun(SC) Ram

Singh

26 22-Ujiarpur Phool

Babu Singh

66 55-Ambedkar

Nagar

Balmukund

Dhuriya

27 17-Gopalganj

(SC)

Jitendra

Paswan

67 64-Gorakhpur Rajesh

Sahani

28 18-Siwan Amarnath

Yadav

68 71-Salempur Sriram

Chaudhary

29 1-Valmiki

Nagar

Virendra

Prasad Gupta

69 75-Ghazipur Ishwari

Prasad Kushawaha

30 2-Paschim

Champaran

Sunil

Kumar Rao

70 76-Chandauli Ram

Dular Bind

CHHATISGARH 71 79-Mirzapur Jeera

Bharati

31 7-Durg Jai

Prakash Nair

72 80-Robertsganj

(SC)

Shankar

Kol

32 8-Raipur Bishat

Kurre

UTTARAKHAND
GUJARAT 73 2-Garhwal Indresh

Maikhury

33 26-Valsad

(ST)

Laxman

Bhai Chhagan Bhai Varia

74 3-Almora(SC) Vijay

Kumar

JHARKHAND 75 4-Nainital-Udhamsingh

Nagar

Kailash

Pandey

34 13-Palamu(SC) Sushma

Mehta

WEST BENGAL
35 14-Hazaribagh Javed

Islam

76 28-Hooghly Sajal

Adhikari

36 4-Chatra RN

Singh

77 38-Bardhaman

Purba(SC)

Pijus

Sahana

37 5-Kodarma Rajkumar

Yadav

78 36-Bankura Sudhir

Murmu

38 8-Ranchi Bahadur

Oraon

79 12-Krishnanagar Subimal

Sengupta

39 2-Dumka(ST) Bitiya

Manjhi

80 15-Barrackpur Omprakash

Rajbhar

40 12-Lohardagga Lalsay

Bhagat

UNION TERRITORIES
41 3-Godda Geeta

Mandal

81 Andaman

& Nicobar Islands

NKP

Nair

KARNATAKA 82 Chandigarh Kanwaljit

Singh

42 13-Davanagere Parasuraamappa 83 Puducherry G.

Palani

43 22-Chamrajanagar(SC) Choudahalli

Javaraiah

The Political Murder of Comrade Budhram Paswan in Bhojpur

In the early hours of Bhagat Singh’s martyrdom day (23rd March) this year, villagers of Repura (in the Ara Lok Sabha constituency in Bihar) found the dead body of Comrade Budhram Paswan, Secretary of the CPIML’s Charpokhri block committee. He had been killed the previous night, as he was returning to the village for a meeting in preparation for the filing of Lok Sabha nominations by CPIML candidate. His body displayed signs of torture, indicating he had been tied up and dragged on the ground, and that assailants had stamped on his chest before shooting him dead. The FIR has named several well known feudal lumpen elements of the neighbouring village, including three men accused in the Ranveer Sena’s 1998 Nagari Bazaar massacre.

Comrade Budhram was one of the key activists who helped ensure that witnesses withstood feudal terror and intimidation, and testified in court resulting in the conviction of the massacre accused in the Sessions Court in 2010. The conviction was overturned by the Bihar High Court in 2013– part of a series of such verdicts discrediting testimonies of survivors and eyewitnesses, and overturning lower court convictions in Ranveer Sena massacre cases. Comrade Budhram also helped the survivors find courage and determination to appeal against the acquittal in the Supreme Court. On 23rd March, Ranveer Sena supporters celebrated Comrade Budhram’s assassination, gleefully firing shots in the air. Such celebrations underline the fact that the murder is a political one, intended to terrorise CPI(ML) supporters with a show of feudal muscle on the eve of an election in which the CPI(ML) is a strong contender from the Ara seat.

Comrade Budhram was born in Repura, and was 45 years old at the time of his murder. He is survived by his wife, son and two daughters. He was a graduate, and a dedicated party worker for very long. He was first associated with the Party in the 80’s, and for the last 15 years he had been the CPI(ML) Charpokhri Block secretary and a member of the Bhojpur District Committee. He had led many struggles on the issues of land struggles for the poor and landless, sharecroppers’ and farmers’ struggles, fair wages, MNREGA, prohibition, electricity, and other issues.

Ideologues of the Bihar Chief Minister have liked to claim that feudal violence is a thing of the past in today’s Bihar thanks to the ‘sushasan’ (good governance) provided in the past nine years. Is this true? In the 80s, the feudal forces who unleashed terror to stop dalits from casting their vote had to contend with successful struggles by oppressed and landless poor under the banner of CPI(ML), to actually avail of their right to vote. The same forces, faced with CPI(ML) victories in Lok Sabha and Vidhan Sabha seats in Bhojpur in the late 80s and early 90s, formed the Ranveer Sena and conducted a spate of massacres with the express purpose of terrorising the poor and checking their social and political assertion. And now, their strategy is to eliminate leaders and cadres, like the CPI(ML)’s Rohtas Secretary Bhaiyyaram Yadav in 2012 and Budhram Paswan in 2014. On Independence Day last year, the dalits of Baddi were subjected to organised feudal violence that claimed a life, injured several and destroyed a temple of the poet-saint Ravidas revered by the dalits.

The news of Com. Budhram Paswan’s murder which came in the morning sparked off great anger among the poor, the workers, and peasants. Angry activists blocked the roads in Nanaur (Agiaon), Akhgaon (Koilvar), Andhari (Sahar), Hasvadih (Piro), Jethwar and Fatehpur (Tarari), Dasarhi and Nayka Tola (Jagdishpur), Sandesh Bazar (Sandesh Block), and many other places. At Ara, students, youth, and cultural activists cancelled the scheduled seminar on the occasion of Bhagat Singh’s martyrdom and took out a protest march against the killing of Com. Paswan. During the march Janmat Editor Sudhir Suman and AISA State secretary Ajit Kushwaha garlanded the statue of Bhagat Singh and said that Com. Paswan sacrificed his life upholding the legacy of Shaheed-e-Azam Bhagat Singh. At Gopali Chowk the protest march took the form of a meeting which was addressed by Dilraj Pritam, Qayamuddin and Sudhir Suman. The speakers said that Comrade Budhram carried forward the tradition of fighting for true democracy established by Comrades Jagdish Master, Rameshwar Ahir and Ramnaresh Ram. Just as in the 70s and 80s the ruling class could not suppress the fight for rights in spite of killing people’s leaders, so also the killers of Com. Paswan will not achieve their unholy ends through this dastardly murder.

CPI(ML) State Committee member Sudama Prasad, former MLAs Chandradeep Singh and Arun Singh, RYA Vice President Aslam, CPI-ML District secretary Jawaharlal Singh, Party candidate Raju Yadav, AIALA leader Kamta Prasad Singh, Raghuvar Prasad and Bindeshwari Ji visited the site of the incident and met the grieving family members of Com. Paswan, after which the body of Com. Budhram Paswan was brought to CPI-ML District office, Ara. The funeral procession took place on 24th March. All over the country, while commemorating Bhagat Singh’s martyrdom day on 23rd March, CPI(ML) members also paid tribute to Comrade Budhram Paswan.

Comrade SK Bharti

The district committee member of Purnia Com. SK Bharti breathed his last on March 14. Born in a poor peasant family Comrade Bharti was active till his last time in the struggles of CPI(ML). He was popularly known as Netaji among people. He was born in Nankara village of Bihapur block in Bhagalpur district. The whole rural area of the district was dominated by feudal forces resulting in severe repression of different kinds and humiliation for dalits and backward caste people, this led Com. Bharti to rebel in his student years itself which got strengthened by his association with struggles led by Party in later years. The price of furthering the struggle of rural poors and challenging the domination of feudal forces has to be borne by family of Com. Bharti as they were forced to leave village many times, but such incidents only hardened up his urge for revolutionary change. In the series of struggles Com. Bharti was imprisoned for around One and half years.

He was a member of Zonal Committee of East Bihar and worked in several districts including Bhagalpur, Arariya and Purnia. Com. Bharti was amongst the first comrades who initiatd party work in these districts. Presently he was member of Standing Committee of Purnia. While being dedicated political activist he also understood importance of work in cultural sphere. He penned down several folk and revolutionary songs and constituted several cultural teams. He was also a member of National Council of Jan Sanaskriti Manch. In funeral march of Com. Bharti Central Committee member of Party Saroj Chaube, AICCTU Vice President SK Sharma, District Secretary Pankaj Singh, Mahesh Yadav, Bhagalpur District Committee member and members of Purnea district committee along with leaders and cadres from nearby districts participated with large number of supporters and common people from the whole area to pay homage to him.

ML Update A CPI(ML) Weekly News Magazine U-90 Shakarpur Delhi – 110092 INDIA PHONE: 91 11 22521067 FAX: 91 11 22442790 Web: http://cpiml.org

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