Wednesday, February 25, 2009

2% cut in excise, tax

[The crisis in imperialist-capitalist is inevitable; fresh crisis comes before the system recovers from previous one. Every time, when imperialist-capitalist system recovers from a crisis, it puts the burden over the people—imperialist plunder over the people of Asia-Africa-Latin America and exploitation of people in imperialist-capitalist countries get intensified. In order to overthrow this imperialist-capitalist system, while every communist revolutionary welcomes the crisis, also keeps an eye on the imperialist policies. Crucial is therefore the fighting against the policies which takes away the right of working class or give subsidy to MNCs and comprador bourgeoisies in expense of the unpaid hard labour of working class.

Yesterday government of India has announced a policy aiming for subsidizing MNCs and comprador bourgeoisies, which will lead to revenue loss of Rs 29100 crore (US$ ~6 billion). That means poor Indian people will manage lower calorie and have to work more hours a day, while the margin of profit for MNCs and comprador bourgeoisies will be the same or higher. Let's have a look over the policy.
The news was published in The Statesman on 25 Feb 2009.]
Statesman News Service NEW DELHI, Feb. 24: The government today slashed excise duty and service tax by two per cent each and extended the existing four per cent reduction in excise duty beyond the end of this fiscal, aiming to stimulate the economy.
The finance minister, Mr Pranab Mukherjee, announced the reduction in the general excise duty from 10 per cent to eight per cent and that of the service tax from 12 per cent to 10 per cent. Mr Mukherjee also announced cut in excise duty on bulk cement by two per cent or Rs 60 per ton, whichever is higher.
The finance minister extended the flexibility for states to deviate from fiscal consolidation targets by 0.5 per cent beyond 31 March 2009, to enable them to boost infrastructure and generate more employment.
The Lok Sabha passed the interim Budget incorporating today’s measures by voice vote, amid a walk-out staged by the Opposition BJP and Left members who remained dissatisfied with the finance minister’s reply.
Mr Mukherjee also extended exemption from customs duty given to naphtha imported for power generation beyond this fiscal-end.
The fiscal sops will be effective from midnight tonight.
The measures will lead to revenue loss of Rs 14,000 crore in service tax, Rs 8,500 crore in excise duty and Rs 6,600 crore in customs duty,” the Central Board of Excise and Customs chairman, Mr PC Jha, said. He also said the excise duty cut by two per cent will be effective in the slab of 10 per cent only.
PTI adds: Tata Motors, Ashok Leyland, Ceat, along with Apollo, today said they will cut rates of their products in order to pass on the benefit of two per cent excise duty cut.
Bengal scheme: Meanwhile, prior to the polls the Bengal labour department has announced the launch of a new scheme for self employment of unemployed but skilled youths.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Solidarity To Lalgarh Movement

Wednesday (11 Feb, 2009) Chatradhar Mahato, spokesman of Peoples Committee Against Police Atrocities (PCAPA) and other three members of the committee meet the press and representatives of different mass organizations and progressive individuals in Kolkata. PCAPA has started its struggle since November 2008 to resist state repression in Lalgarh and other villages of Janglemahal, the hilly and forest region of West Midnapur-Bankura-Purulia of West Bengal. The committee specifically demands (i) apology from Superintend of Police (SP) and other police personnel responsible for atrocities; (ii) Compensation of Rs 2,00,000 to each of the victims of state repression; (iii) Unconditional release of villagers arrested for suspected link with Salboni mine blast (iv) Cancellation of the charge-sheets filed against villagers for alleged Maoists link (v) End of indiscriminate arresting villagers without warrant etc.

Chhatradhar Mahato described how CPI(M) goons along with police force killed three people by indiscriminate firing on 3Feb, 2009. Supporters of PCAPA were gathered in a field for a public meeting and suddenly the convoy of vehicles carrying armed goons and the dead body of Nandakumar Paul, a CPM leader murdered on previous day came at the place. As PCAPA has called for police boycott they appealed to move them without police force in that area. In response, the goons and police resorted to indiscriminate firing, gunned down 3 supporters of PCAPA and couple of supporters severely injured.

PCAPA has extended its support to the families of martyrs. Gopinath Murmu, who was murdered on 3 Feb, was a daily wage labourer. Chhatrodhar Mahato said "It is our duty to fully support this family as they do not posses any land; Gopinath was the only earning member." But PCAPA and its supporters have limited financial strength. Moreover, they refused any financial support from any political party. "With financial support, political parties actually purchase the movement", Mr. Mahato said. PCAPA has decided to take support only from the people.

From Mr. Mahato, we have heard how people of Lalgarh and other forest region have been exploited by forest department. When forest department cuts the jungle, only 25% of the profit comes to the people of the village. In the whole procedure the control of villagers is limited and the whole process is not at all transparent. Finally in one year a meager Rs 500 becomes the earning of a villager. Can we imagine? Forest is being destroyed and people are loosing their livelihood in expense of Rs 500 ($10) per villagers per year.

In Lalgarh, Belpahari and other areas of West Midnapur, Bankura and Purulia PCAPA has been formed at village levels. Female represents half of the committee members. Village committees function under area committees and the highest body is the central committee of PCAPA. PCAPA has called for 'Police boycott' to protest police atrocities in the villages and it has been successful till date.

People of Junglemahal, the forest and hilly region of West Midnapur-Bankura-Purulia of West Bengal have been fighting a heroic struggle to establish their right over the forest-land-water, to abolish the root of police atrocities and state repression. The same struggle was fought by Sidhu-Kanu and other Martyrs. They have been fighting the same battle which many of us like to fight. After hearing Mr. Mahato, no wonder, it took only a few minute to form "Lalgarh Movement Solidarity Forum" with of representatives of different progressive mass organizations and individuals. Solidarity forum will build support and raise fund for Lalgarh Movement.

Support And Raise Fund For Lalgarh Movement

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Creating 50 Million Jobs

[The current crisis of imperialism is the very part of its general crisis. We know, according to Com Mao, after Second World War imperialism has entered in a phase of "total collapse", which is an integral part of the era of imperialism and proletarian revolution. As the most important feature of this phase is the ever deepening crisis of imperialism, the current crisis cannot be resolved, but has to be intensified with time. Obviously communist revolutionaries must welcome this crisis and intensify the struggle for revolutionary changes---they cannot expect a solution other than abolition of capitalism-imperialism.

However, we should remember that, the imperialist forces will try their best to overcome the crisis and in turn to save the system from being collapsed. Understanding the imperialistic strategy regarding the crisis will help world proletariat to forward their struggle.]

Douglas A. McIntyre
The US economy lost 2.4 million jobs in the last four months of 2008. At the current rate of layoffs, another one million will be lost this month. The unemployment rate may be 8.5% by the end of the first quarter. Almost no one would have forecast this.
The part of the iceberg that is not as easily seen is that 50 million jobs are at risk worldwide.
According to the FT, the International Labour Organization said the global recession would lead to a “dramatic increase” in unemployment this year, which would certainly lead to 18m-30m additional unemployed and more than 50m “if the situation continues to deteriorate”.
The fact that most of these people live outside the US means that the solution to the problem is largely beyond America's control. The financial and trade barriers among the major nations are now tissue thin. A deep recession could change that over time if protectionism becomes part of the way that nations try to shield their economies from imports. Until that day comes, the global economy is essentially borderless.
The worldwide nature of unemployment exacerbates the issue of how to stimulate growth across dozens of large countries and scores of smaller ones. The most expedient remedy to rising global unemployment is to have central banks supply capital to support business expansion around the world. This borrowing will cause national surpluses to shrink or debts to rise, depending on the condition of each country's treasury. There is an increasing need for the United States and other large nations to borrow trillions of dollars every year.
The demand for capital in order to drive up employment puts policy makers in nations, including the UK, the EU, the US, Japan, and China between Scylla and Charybdis (the original rock and hard place from "The Odyssey"). Fiscal conservatives would push for the recession to play itself out. Borrowing tremendous amounts of money, they would argue, creates unsustainable amounts of debt, even if the numbers of people out of work rises to unimaginable levels. This is a hard philosophy based on the premise that all fires, no matter how large, burn themselves out if left alone.
The leaders who believe that spending is the answer to this problem rely on an optimism that may be difficult to understand and this optimism will be impossible to sustain. If the US Treasury borrows money at the rate of $1 trillion a year, the large nations of Europe run up national debt into the hundreds of billions of dollars a year, and China releases a portion of its surplus to repair its economy, the sources of funds will disappear. China is one of the largest buyers of US Treasuries, but even the world's most populous country does not have unlimited financial resources. As sovereign nations compete for funding, interest rates will rise and the cost of creating jobs will increase, probably at a rapid pace.
While it may be unimaginable to talk about the US defaulting on its debt or deferring interest payments, the chances of that rise as the economy gets worse and global unemployment accelerates .
For decades we have operated on the assumption that financial resources were essentially limitless. We are now learning the hard truth that the world may not have enough capital to put 50 million people back to work.