Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Protest Against Arest of Chhatradhar Mahato

Several press bodies have condemned the arrest of Mr. Mahato by police officials posing as journalists. Intellectuals also demanded unconditional release of Mr. Mahato. A rally demanding unconditional release of Mr. Mahato was organized from College Square to Metro Channel in Kolkataby various mass organizations on 27 September.

Since 28 September a sit-in demonstration has been started by various mass organizations and progressive-democratic people at Metro Channel, Kolkata to protest the arrest.

A mass-rally will be held on 8 October 2009 in Kolkata to protest the arrest of Mr. Mahato.

Monday, September 28, 2009

We demand the unconditional release of Chatradhar Mahato, the leader of People's Movement

We demand the unconditional release of Chatradhar Mahato, the leader of People's Movement
We, the undersigned individuals and various oraganisations register our strong protest against the arrest of Sri Chatradhar Mahato, the spokesperson of PCAPA by the C.I.D. sleuths on 26-09-'09. We demand the immediate the unconditional release of Chatradhar Mahato, the leader of people's movement. We all condemn in no uncertain terms the tactics and the ways that the police arrested him. Because, first, this mode of arrest is absolutely illegal. According to the instruction of the honourable Supreme Court (In D. K. Basu Case), the police is required to wear uniform and put up identity at the time of arrest, to prepare memo of arrest to be duly signed by the arrestee, to give a copy of inspection memo to the arrestee, to inform about grounds of the arrest etc. The last one is also a constitutional right of the arrestee (Article 22). Not only that, the police had consciously violated the newly amended scetion 50A of Criminal Procedure code. Secondly, there is , therefore, no sanction in Indian law to project themselves by the police as belonging to another profession, such as Journalists and raided the area and arrest the citizen, Rather, this act should attract the relevant provision of Indian Penal Code pertaining to the offence of "imposter"
Thirdly, as the media reports, Chatradhar Mahato is accused in 20-22 criminal cases. We have strong reasons to believe that he has been falsely implicated in criminal cases as because he is a man of peoples' struggle and has had no record of such activities . Till June 13, this year, the Election Commissioner of the state and the state government had held a number of discussions with him; during this period, at no point of time, he has been informed, let alone arrest, of existence of such cases against him. As a matter of fact, from 19 June onwards, immediately after the beginning of operation of the joint forces in Lalgarh area, the government had launched this campaign that he is wanted for a number of offences.
It is easily understood that this act of the police at behest of the state government is a clear proof of act of vengeance on the part of the government .In order to punish the leaders of the peoples' movement in Lalgarh, the cases have falsely been framed .
We reiterate our demand that the government instead of pursuing repressive measures, must open up dialogue with PCAPA and before that, must release Chatradhar Mahato unconditionally.
We all also appeal to all journalists as well as all the forums of journalists to stand unite against such unprecedented nefarious misuse jrf and of attempt to assault over the sanctity of media profession and take appropriate legal action against the police.
Mahasweta Devi, Shankha Ghosh, Bibhash ,Tarun Sanyal Kaushik Sen, Joy Goswami, Jaya Mitra, Tarun Naskar, Dilip Chakraborty, Arpita Ghosh, Sukhendu Bhattacharya, Prasun Bhowmik, Abhi Dutta Majumdar, Sujato Bhadra & Others
Saha Nagarikder Muktamancha
Total Theatre
Birhbum Adibasi Gaota
Brihi - Bankura
Loknadi Resource Centre
Mandra Lions Club
Shilpi Sanskritik Karmi Buhijibi Mancha
Sangrami Sramik Sangathan (Struggling Workers' Organisation)
Majdur Kranti Parishad
S.E.Z. Birodhi Prachar Mancha
West Bengal Govt. Employees Union (Naba Parjay)
Lalgarh Mancha

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Let Us Raise Our Voice for Unconditional Release of Chhatradhar Mahato

Today police has arrested Chhatradhar Mahato, the popular leader of People's Committee Against Police Atrocities (PCAPA) of Lalgarh. Police conducted an operation in disguise of journalists of Singapore TV. Shortly after engaging Mr. Mahato in a so called 'phone in' at Singapore TV, they arrested Mr. Mahato.

Chhatradhar Mahato has been leading the popular movement against state repression in Lalgarh since November last year. Their democratic demands attracted many people of different strata of the society and enjoyed mass-support. Actually it is the movement which has drawn in the mainstream media the issue of severe inhuman condition where people of Junglemahal including Lalgarh have to live. Condition of the people of Lalgarh after three decades of 'leftist rule' in West Bengal has opened the eye of the people. Arrest of Mr. Mahato can not make the end of the movement led by PCAPA.

Leading a democratic movement is not a crime in a civilized society. Rather ignoring the democratic and justified demands of the people of Lalgarh and PCAPA, the government has proved its anti-people and undemocratic character. Today, arresting Mr. Mahato, a leader of mass-movement it has once again showed its fascist face. His arrest shows that not a single progressive-democratic movement will be spared.

Let us raise our voice demanding unconditional release of Mr. Mahato.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Harbhajan Singh Sohi-A Tribute

Harsh Thakor

The revered Comrade was an outstanding architect in the development of the massline. The Political line formulated by Com. Harbhajan Singh Sohi displayed outstanding polemical understanding on the International Line, the handling of mass organizations and it’s relationship with the party,. the nationality question and the correct work method within the trade Union Movement..I am not a member or supporter of any organisation that Com. Harbhajan Singh Sohi belonged to,but an admirer as a Maoist Historian.
I do not uphold the Communist Party Re-organisation Centre of India(Marxist –Leninist)( C.P.R.C.I.(M.L), Centre of Communist Revolutionaries of India(C.C R.I.) or the earlier Unity Centre of Communist Revolutionaries of India(U.C.C.R.I.(M.L) )as necessary proponents of the mass revolutionary line or implementing mass line in totality. One can question whether armed struggle could have been developed in areas like Bihar, Andhra Pradesh, Dandkaranya. Orissa Etc. However even if not totally agreeing with the deferring of armed Struggle,the author sees a very valid contribution and theoretical point made by organizations following The Nagi Reddy Line .
Com. Harbhajan Sohi waged his first struggle by leaving the Charu Mazumdar l;ed C.P.I.(M.L) to form the Fereozepur Bhatinda Committee in 1969 that came to be known as the Punjab Communist Revolutionaries Committee (P.C.R.C.),which demarcated from the left Adventurist line of Com.Charu Mazumdar. Nagi Reddy’ s line was followed in Punjab by the Ferozepur Bhatinda Committee led by Comrade Harbhajan Sohi that revived the mass organisation the Punjab Students Union and built the Naujavan Bharat Sabha ,a popular Youth Organisation.These organizations represented the broad masses of Punjab. The famous Moga Sangram Rally constituting the Naujavan Bharat Sabha,the Punjab Students Union, the Mould and Steel Workers Union and the Wahikar Union was led by the Punjab C-ordination Committee of Communist Revolutionaries.(P.C.R.C) On October 22nd 1974.An armed demonstarion of 20,000 people took place. It is of significance that Comrade Harbhajan Sohi was earlier a member of the C.P.I.M.L led by Comrade Charu Mazumdar.On June 20th, 1969 a meeting of Communist revolutionaries was held to discuss the issue of the formation of the party. The 2 questions to be discussed were whether it was justified to form it, and were appropriate methods used? The meeting concluded that the present circumstances were wrong. The party organisation was to be formed from the leadership that emerged from the struggles.
Later he played an instrumental role as a leader of the U.C.C.R.I.(M.L) in leading the Movement of the Punjab Students Union and Naujavan Bharat Sabhja (1974-1979). In fact it was only in 1976 that the P,C.R.C .merged into the U.C C R.I. led by T. Nagi Reddy. In 1979 he split the U.C.C.R.I on grounds of the leadership upholding the Revisionist 3 Worlds theory. In the special Conference I 1982 he upheld his own International line which opposed Deng Xiapoing’s theory of 3 Worlds. He valiantly led a huge mass resistance Movement to combat Khalistan and State terrorism (As a leader of the U.C.C R.I and the C.C.R.I. from 1986-1993)) both on the polemic and practical plane..In 1988 his faction of the U.C.C.R.I(M.L) merged with 4 other groups into the C.C R.I. Harbhajan Singh Sohi played a major role in the formation of the Centre of Comunist Revolutionaries of India in August 1988.This had historical significance, as since the formation of U.C.C.R.I.M.L in 1975 there were so may splits. This organization made a major contribution in the revolutionary democratic movement in the Khalistani period with the Central Team of the C.P.I.M.L and developed cores of mass revolutionary resistance against the Khalistani Terrorism. Major mass resistance rallies were led by a mass resistance front formed by them at Moga in 1987 and at Sewawla in 1991 and 1992.(Memorial conference in memory of the Sewewala Martyrs).It also played a major role in the building of mass agarian revolutionary line of the Adivasi movement in Malkangiri in Orissa.In Andhra Pradesh it’s forces attempted to consolidate the Srikakulam Girijan movement In West Bengal trade Union movement was consolidated and major trade Union struggles were led capturing the Unions. It also had revolutionary peasant Movement work in Bihar which later was absorbed by the Party Unity Section. For some time some struggles carrying the torch of the mass line were implemented, particulary against the Bhagalpur riots in 1989.

Com.Harbhajan Singh played a major role as a leader of the C.C. R .I on an All-India Plane ansd his valiant efforts were crucial in the unity of revolutionary groups into the Communist Party Re-Organisation Centre of India(Marxist–Leninist)(C.P.R.C.I.(M.L) His leadership laid the theoretical base of the later C.P.R.C.I.(M.L) ( Communist Party Re-Organisation Centre of India(Marxist Leninist) ) which was formed in August 1994
Quoting the 1st Issue of their publication, ‘The comrade’, “This Unification brought the Party Question into Sharp Focus. The organisation’s insistence on the distinct political identity while seeking to build the party as the leading political core of the revolutionary mass movement of the Indian People, has not only general orientational validity but also particular relevance to the Particular situation.” .After a continuous process of bilateral transactions this unity took place. The fact that it took such a long, protracted process reflects the principled approach of the. It has not only emphasized the pressing need and crucial significance of the Party Re-Organisation for bringing about a new high tide in the Revolutionary Movement but also projected the line based approach to party re-organization. This highlighted the other facet of the party question, namely the impermissibility of diluting the distinct ideological political identity of the political party.
Theoretically its greatest contribution is that of making a sound theoretical ground for the need of preparation of mass movements and mass resistance to lay the seeds for carrying out peasant armed struggle and protracted Peoples War. There was also a most sound International line demarcating from the Revolutionary Internationalist Movement and deferring the premature formation of a Communist International from the Russian and Chinese Experience. (Remember Stalin’s Comintern was dissolved in 1943 while Mao never called for a Communist International) In Punjab today the organization has adopted a mass revolutionary approach and has made the greatest revolutionary progress. The most significant aspect is maintaining the correct relationship between the mass organization and the political party. A movement of landless Agricultural labourers as well as that of middle and landed peasants has been built demarcating from deviationist tendencies. A Mass Based revolutionary democratic Organisation has been built to give solidarity and sharpen the anti-feudal Struggle which held ralliesof historic significance especially during the elections. The Agricultural and landless peasants organization) has made painstaking efforts to give a mass revolutionary approach by educating the peasantry, similar to the Red Army during the Chinese revolution. However still the resistance is still at the level of pockets in Punjab and a stage has to be reached when agrarian revolutionary struggles are launched at village, district and state level. Stlll, the movement has not reached one where land seizures or direct struggles for land are taking place. The method the struggles have been conducted on all fronts display the efforts to painstakingly educate the peasants in the need for self-organisation to assert their rights and the relationship of their struggles with the agrarian revolution. Peasants in Balahr Vinju district led by the P.M.K.U gave a classical display of mass line approach when hoisting the Red Flag and thwarting the police efforts of preventing them from holding their conference. Historic democratic protests were held. The way the peasant organisation functioned helped spread peasant struggles to other areas quickly.(pocket level)State level agitations have yet to be launched and this being a class peasant mass organization it will have to play amajor role. The graetset achievement of the organization is it's ability to organize the Dalit or backward caste labourers. Toady in the Maxist -Leninist Movement it is a major challenge to organize the Dalit caste agricultural labourers on class lines. (Appraisal from Correspondent in Frontline)The organization has also given solidarity to the struggles of the landed peasantry had participated in revolutionary Election Campaigns. What is significant is that the agricultural labour organisatin has built amovement in various districts Punjab ranging from Bhatinda to Jalandhar,to Ludhiana to Amritsar.
The B.K.U (Ekta-represnting correct trend ) has taken historically correct steps to build a peasant movement of the landed peasantry combating wrong trends and has given a classic example of carrying out mass revolutionary work within a single large body. They have led state-wide agitations and are creating a base for district-level and State wide movements of the landed peasantry. It has been one of the most revolutionary democratic approaches ever displayed where no party politics has been imposed on the mass organization. However still it is only a base for building a revolutionary peasant Movement and is not a class organisation of the landless peasantry revolutionary peasant classes. It has yet to lead or encourage the lower sections of the peasantry. Today a mass agrarian revolutionary peasant armed struggle has yet to be built to lay the seeds for guerilla warfare. There have been historic statewide agitations which is significant.

Avenues have been created for militant peasant struggles of landless labourers in pockets in the State and for miltant district or statewide peasant struggles amongst the landed peasantry. A revolutionary alternative has been projected through the Party Organisation and the manner of projection(especially as projected by the Rajjeana Campaign and the Election campaign) displays strong theoretical correctness. A trade Union movement has also been built in the towns and major cities giving solidarity with the agrarian struggle which is of great significance. Revolutionary movements of the youth and students are taking place and in many areas village youth have displayed enormous revolutionary enthusiasm. In 1998 and 1999 the Organisation carried out election campaigns in Punjab which created a major impact where the tactics of active political campaign in contrast to Active Boycott or Participation were implemented. Other groups could hardly make any effect. The content of the party leaflet encouraged the party ranks and followers to distribute it wide for mass consumption. The wide range of issues were explained in simple language. The immediate practical alternative was projected in the leaflet so that people could easily grasp its contents.
In Orissa in the Malkangiri district an outstanding tribal Movement and Organisation has been built. It has been an example of an organisation with mass character and practicing democratic functioning. It has fought for immediate ,partial demands as well as political demands. It has instilled in the tribals that through their struggles and through the medium of their mass organizations, they can become the alternative centers of power and authority. The Malkangiri Adivasi Sangh has also shown the importance of assistance from the class allies ,particularly the working class. The Sangh has shown that people when organized can govern their own affairs and collectively assert their authority. The tribals were thought to place faith only in their own organized strength. An important activity to achieve this end has been the steadfast exposure of although ruling class institutions and propoganda. The Sangh has also been an effective answer to the Left Sectarian line of Armed Squads of a major revolutionary Group. Who though function with the utmost sincerity and best intentions, do not take the path of involving the people and forming genuine organizations with a genuine mass character. The revolutionary forces working within the Sangh have done their utmost to maintain the balance between de-centralization of Committee Activities (to promote democracy and give the lower mass sections more opportunity to assert their authority), and maintaining proletarian revolutionary leadership (so that the mass organization is prevented from ultra-democratic. In Orissa however peasant seizures of captured land have already started taking place and laying base for armed peasnt struggle. Mao advanced the theory of inseperable link between the agrarian revolution and the guerilla war to establish base areas. A thorough going agrarian revolution which includes the distributoin of landlords land to the poor peasants and agricultural labourers, to develop and consolidate base areas –Mao implemented such a programme,in the period of agrarian revolutionary war. The Red army led by the C.P.C implemented it. Unique forms of struggle have been devised applying the politics of the Chinese Revolution or Mao Tse Tong Thought. It is one of the greatest movements of its kind in revolutionary struggle world over. Most innovative methods of work were innovated and Mao Tse Tung Thought was brilliantly applied.
The correct preparatory mass line application is a necessary perquisite for launching a revolutionary armed struggle .The armed struggle must be linked to the agrarian revolutionary struggle and based on it. A mass revolutionary peasant uprising may not have taken place but there have been demonstrations of peasants in Orissa and Punjab defending their rights or offering mass resistance against enemy forces carrying traditional armed weapons. The party election programmes in 1998 and 1999 in Punjab were striking examples of creating a base for a mass revolutionary political movement, particularly the peasantry...One significant factor as though democratic revolutionary struggles have been launched by the peasantry in Punjab,a stage has not yet been reached when land re-distribution seizures are taking place or land re-distributed. ) I still cannot evaluate the Communist Party Reorganisation Centre of India(Marxist Leninist) as the total protagonists of the mass line.. This is because although in their major mass struggles in Punjab and Orissa they have displayed the correct method of mass preparation for political programmes and the correct concept of the relationship of the party and the mass organization(how a party must democratically function within mass organizations and not impose politics and implemented the mass line in certain struggles),they have still not developed a mass revolutionary military line in practice.,to create condition s on par of the Naxalbari and Sriakakulam Movements. No doubt their mass fronts have led struggles reflecting features of the mass line but do not necceseraily reflect creating conditions for mass revolutionary armed peasant struggle or creation of a Red Army. On Question of guerila Warfare a military line has still to be developed in light of the era of globalisation and changes in the urban and rural areas.The enemy forces in the Urban areas have become much more stronger than before and it is possible now that a form of revolutionary armed struggle would have to be developed in the Urban areas in later stages,even if the main areas of armed combat in the cities.
There is also a weakness regarding the projection of mass political platforms of the party Organisation. An All India level co-ordinating mass political platform is lacking. True the party organisation has to be kept undeground but ultra-secretism can turn a revolutionary party inwards.Adequate mass –political platform s to project the image of the party have not been developed. ’

Many of their mass organization struggles like in Punjab and particularly in Orissa in the agrarian revolutionary Front are creating the grounds for peasant’s eventual armed struggle or uprising or people. However mass peasant revolutionary struggles have not been led which could lead to the formation of a peoples Guerilla Army. This was the stage at which mass armed struggle was built up in Telanagana and for a short period in Srikakulam and Naxalbari (before left adventurism came in). In the author’s opinion the organisation in certain states has made major inroads and is basically correct in it’s view on elections(opposes active boycott and participation as a legal form of struggle) and that the launching of armed struggle is premature. in the majority of areas. It is also correct that in Punjab and Orissa it is still premature to carry out armed struggle. The correct preparatory mass line application is a necessary perquisite for launching a revolutionary armed struggle .The armed struggle must be linked to the agrarian revolutionary struggle and based on it. A mass revolutionary peasant uprising may not have taken place but there have been demonstrations of peasants in Orissa and Punjab defending their rights or offering mass resistance against enemy forces carrying traditional armed weapons. The launching of mass armed demonstrations is of great significance and was predominamt by the mass revolutionary democratic Front in Punjab during the Khalistani period.The struggles have had an effect on surrounding villages and areas and the method by which they have defended their right to hold their own conferences and meetings reflects the mass approach. The same trend took place by the Punjab Students Union and the Naujavan Bharat Sabha in the mass movement they led in the 1970’s.The party election programmes in 1998 and 1999 were striking examples of creating a base for a mass revolutionary political movement,particularly the peasantry.Significantly teams of workers headed the propaganda campaignsOne other significant trend is the self –defence and aggression displayed by the Punjab peasantry in asserting their right to stage conferences or mass protests.In Jethuke by the landed peasantry in 2000, in Chandigarh by the landed peasantry and in Balahr Vinju in 1994 by landless peasants the peasantry displayed heroic defiance against the police forces who attempted to thwart their efforts to organize. One significant factor as though democratic revolutionary struggles have been launched by the peasantry in Punjab, a stage has not yet been reached when land re-distribution seizures are taking place or land re-distributed. In Orissa however peasant seizures of captured land have already started taking place and laying base foe armed peasant struggle. Mao advanced the theory of inseperable link between the agrarian revolution and the guerilla war to establish base areas.A thorough going agrarian revolution which includes the distribution of landlords land to the poor peasants and agricultural labourers, to develop and consolidate base areas –Mao implemented such a programme, in the period of agrarian revolutionary war. The Red army led by the C.P.C implemented it. However the most important historical question is that if one studies the history of revolution no country has taken so long a period to develop revolutionary armed struggle In 1927 after the Nanchang Uprising. China launched it’s struggle only 9 years after formation of their their party (in 1921) and six years of preparatory stage. Columbia,Phillipines,Nepal, Peru,or our very own Telengana Armed Struggle may have taken longer time.Even Peru launched it in 1980 after 16 years of party-re-organsation) but in a far shorter period accomplished the task.- than the preset Indian revolutionary movement has taken to do. It is arguable that today there may have been areas in India where mass armed struggle could have been carried out in certain areas if the mass line was correctly implemented., particularly in Bihar and Andhra Pradesh which had strong revolutionary peasant movements.

Overall Theoretically Com Harbhajan Singh Sohi was sounder than any comrade in the last 3 decades, being an outstanding polemicst. On the International level his trend rejected the erroneous trend of ‘Maoism ‘ in place of Mao Tse Tung Thought and at the internal level struggles in developing a mass agrarian revolutionary line, even if it has not yet developed a mass line yet. He will be remembered for ever in the annals of the Indian Communist Movement.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Malkangiri on rebel alert

Bhubaneswar, Sept. 20: Police top brass based in Koraput, Rayagada, Gajapati and Malkangiri have been put on alert while security has been beefed up at Malkangiri border today after an anti-Maoist operation went awry in Chhattisgarh.
Malkangiri is situated 40km from the site where Green Hunt, an anti-Maoist operation being conducted by the Chattisgarh Cobra force, was being conducted.
Apprehending that rebels attacked by the elite group of Cobra may sneak into Orissa to hide during the combing operation, the Orissa government issued an alert right after the Chhattisgarh operation was started.
In a high-level review meeting held to assess the state’s preparedness, chief minister Naveen Patnaik asked superintendent of polices (SPs) based in Maoist-prone districts to intensify patrolling, especially around border areas.
Director of state intelligence department Prakash Mishra said that security was tightened at the borders immediately afterwards.
“According to Union government plan, most states are jointly operating to end the Maoist problem. According to the Centre’s directive the BSF, the CRPF and the states’ police forces will take steps to jointly combat the problem,” he said.
Currently Orissa has four battalions of Central forces to tackle rebels’ activities in 17 districts.
The chief minister in a letter to the Union home minister P. Chidambaram yesterday asked for seven more battalions of paramilitary forces.
A fierce gun-battle is still going on between security forces and rebels in Dantewada of Chhattisgarh in what is being touted as the biggest confrontation between rebels and jawans so far, with nearly 800 jawans involved in the Green Hunt.
As many as 50 Maoists and 20 jawans are feared to have been killed in the fight.

Source: http://www.telegraphindia.com/1090921/jsp/nation/story_11520422.jsp

Monday, September 14, 2009

Another bailout for Vedic Modi

[It all started with a dispute over a penalty of a football match on 23 August 2009 in Rajarhat, West Bengal. Angry mob then chased a gang of goons who backed a particular team in that match and played foul. The goons took shelter in Vedic Vilage—a complex which has been built up on illegally acquired land from farmers.
No. State, political leaders, police and officials were all aware of this incident—and moreover, it was not a stray case—thousands of acres of land have been grabbed by the government and land-mafias in Rajarhat, West Bengal in last one decade. Some people of Rajarhat tried to build resistance, but were not much successful.
But, that football match has done the job. After people blazed Vedic Village, apparently as outcome of their anger against the Vedic Village and their pet goons, it has been turned out how the Vedic authority has acquired land from farmers forcefully with a bare minimum price. The state Land Reformation minister Rezzak Mollah, Housing minister Gautam Deb who are all busy to prove themselves how clean they were, were all aware of the incident, but kept mum. Today (14 Sept 2009) a report has been published in the Telegraph showing the nexus between promoter-land mafia and top officials. It is also interesting how the court-order went in favour of the promoter-land mafia. Red Barricade]

Calcutta, Sept. 13: The Bengal government approved overnight a residential complex being built by the Vedic Village promoter on protected wetlands after pursuing till the Supreme Court a case against the same project, documents with The Telegraph reveal.
The approval for Sanjeeva Town, a residential complex of bungalows and apartments on the East Calcutta Wetlands, was given within a year of the land department reaching an out-of-court settlement on handing over vested land to the same promoter for building Vedic Village.
The promoter in both cases was Raj K. Modi, now in judicial custody on charges of links with criminals following the Vedic Village flare-up.
The clearance was given despite the state government objecting to Sanjeeva Town before a single bench and a division bench of Calcutta High Court. (See chart)

The government’s opposition was based on two points: the land was part of East Calcutta Wetlands on which conversion and construction are prohibited by a Calcutta High Court order of 1993; the residential project had applied for — and been refused — permission to convert and construct on the wetland. East Calcutta Wetlands is designated a Ramsar site, which grants international environmental status.
However, on October 23, 2006, the authority meant to protect the wetlands held a meeting chaired by then chief secretary Amit Kiran Deb and gave “post-facto” (after the event) sanction that reversed the government’s earlier position in the courts. A condition of creating “compensatory water body” was included.
With the state no longer opposed to the construction, the apex court, which had sought the Bengal government’s opinion, cleared the project. Sanjeeva Town’s Phase I is complete with the first few residents having moved in while the second leg is under construction. As many as 160 bungalows and 224 three- and four-bedroom duplex apartments are scheduled to be built.
Asked what made the government change its position, a pollution control board official said: “The project area of Sanjeeva Town was first shown (in official records) as urban/rural settlement. Later, it was changed to ‘substantial water bodies’. We considered the original status and gave the clearance.”
The official could not explain why the old entry was chosen when the project continues to be in an area designated “substantial water bodies”.
Modi and his legal counsel were present at the meeting of the East Calcutta Wetland Management Authority — set up to save the ecologically sensitive wetlands — that gave the approval. Then chief secretary Deb had chaired the meeting as the chairman of the authority. Other senior officials of the government and the state pollution control board, too, attended the meeting.
Deb, now retired from government service, declined to comment on the meeting he had chaired. “I will not be able to say anything on that matter now,” he said on Sunday evening.
Land and land reforms minister Abdur Rezzak Mollah, whose department had filed the FIR that led to the case, washed his hands of the issue.
“I was never consulted when the East Calcutta Wetland Management Authority gave the approval to the project. In fact, I came to know about the development after the project was cleared by the Supreme Court. It was a completely wrong thing. It is clear that somewhere corruption played a role but I do not know exactly who to blame,” Mollah told The Telegraph.
But the secretary of the land and land reforms department is a member of the East Calcutta Wetland Management Authority. For some reason, he was not present at the October 23 meeting.
Modi had approached a single bench of Calcutta High Court first when the land department filed an FIR alleging construction was being carried out without permission. The FIR had termed a panchayat clearance illegal and specified that the character of the land had been classified “a wetland with fishery” where construction would imply change of land use.
Modi received a favourable verdict from the single bench, following which the state government moved a division bench and got the sanction quashed. The promoters then moved the Supreme Court.
However, like the forgotten “smallest detail” that led Hercule Poirot to many a breakthrough, the original FIR had survived the twists and turns. It kicked back to life on Friday when Modi’s wife and son — part of the Sanjeeva board — sought and obtained bail.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Lalgarh: Women Plan For Nude Protest

Women's wing of People's Committee Against Police Atrocities (PCAPA) have planed for nude protests of thousands of women before police camps in Lalgarh to shame the fascist government. The fascist combined armed forces have started indiscriminate arrest of villagers and rape of women of Lalgarh. Yesterday Shibu Pratihar, a supporter of PCAPA found dead in police custody. PCAPA maintained that it he was murdered after brutal torture by police.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Stand With the Struggling Masses of Lalgarh

[We have received a statement on Lalgarh from Central Committee of the Communist Party Reorganization Centre of India (Marxist-Leninist), [CPRCI(ML)] through email. We publish it bellow.]

Stand With the Struggling Masses of Lalgarh

The purpose of the current much-trumpeted operation by the paramilitary forces in Lalgarh region of West Midnapore (West Bengal), is to suppress the democratic upsurge of the tribals and to send out a warning to all oppressed sections against any attempt to similarly challenge the State authority and establish people’s authority. It is also part of the ruling classes’ systematic long-planned attack on the communist revolutionaries nationwide who are challenging the entire system of exploitation and oppression. For these reasons it is incumbent on all communist revolutionaries and revolutionary democrats to stand steadfast by the tribals of Lalgarh, oppose the State’s campaign of suppression, and uphold the right of the masses to rebel against the existing oppressive social, economic and political order and set up their own popular authority. Whatever the differences of tactical line among the communist revolutionaries, they stand united and with the revolutionary masses against the enemy onslaught.

The sparking point for the current rebellion was the atrocities committed by the police on the ordinary tribals to exact vengeance for a CPI (Maoist) land-mine attack on the West Bengal Chief Minister. These vengeful acts by the police ignited a great store of popular wrath built up over years of autocratic, exploitative, and terroristic treatment of the tribals at the hands of the police and the CPI (M) machinery. There followed an extraordinary and inspiring democratic assertion by the tribals, drawing on their traditions of collective struggle and management of their own affairs. The tribal masses seized control of the area, blocked off entry points, gheraoed the local police station, formed the People’s Committee Against Police Atrocities, drove the police and administration out of the area, and declared their democratic demands. No doubt these demands were of a limited nature (i.e., not relating to a change in production relation). Rather, these demands focused on punishment of the guilty police officers by the traditional tribal method of public humiliation, compensation to the victims of police atrocities and an end to all such police repression. More important than the individual demands was the fact that the struggle amounted to a political contest between the will of the oppressed masses and the will of the reactionary ruling classes and their State authorities.

The State authorities were well aware that any real concession to even the most obviously justified demands would only further strengthen the organization, consciousness, and fighting spirit of the tribals. Moreover, the ruling CPI (M) beset by agitations and rebellions in Nandigram, Singur, and elsewhere, and facing general elections in May 2009, needed time to maneuver and re-group. Initial attempts by a private army of CPI (M) hoodlums to terrorise the tribals had proved unsuccessful. Hence the CPI (M) and the State machinery decided to play a waiting game.

The tribal rebellion achieved several important political gains. It thoroughly exposed the pretensions of the CPI (M) regarding its record among the rural poor. It exposed the acute backwardness actually prevailing, the absence of even minimum welfare facilities (such as healthcare and employment generation), and the corruption of the CPI (M) party.

At the same time, the upsurge showed what the tribal masses were capable of, on the basis of their self-organisation and unleashed initiative. Because of its evidently mass democratic character, the tribal upsurge also awakened a sense of identification among the broad tribal masses of the region not only in contiguous areas but even at distant places, beginning a political process among them as well.

The State machinery (at the central and provincial levels) and the CPI (M) lost no time in portraying the tribals as puppets of the CPI (Maoist). The communist revolutionaries themselves are being portrayed in the State and corporate media propaganda as fearsome and sinister terrorists. In this fashion the State has for some time now been preparing the ground for a much more intense and no-holds-barred military assault nationwide on the communist revolutionaries and the masses under their influence. However, the tribals of Lalgarh, seeing the whole-hearted manner in which the comrades of the CPI (Maoist) threw in their lot with them, and contrasting them with the ruling pseudo-communists, refused to be swayed or cowed down by the State propaganda. Rather, they have openly expressed their support for the CPI (Maoist) comrades working among them.

The obstacle to the State armed forces re-entering Lalgarh was not principally military but political: the CPI (M) feared having to pay a heavy political price. Ultimately, once the elections were over, the Central and state governments, headed by the Congress and CPI (M) respectively, set aside their rivalries in order to crush the Lalgarh people’s movement. Care was taken to ensure that the Trinamool Congress which otherwise has been using various popular issues in order to hit at the rural CPI (M), remained mum throughout the “cleansing operations”.

No doubt, a successful armed blockade altogether preventing the entry of the State forces was not possible, given the actual balance of forces prevailing at the time and the level of the people’s movement. The police-paramilitary operations appear to have regained control over part of the Lalgarh region, and the coming days will be full of trials and sufferings for the people of the region as the combing and “cleansing” operations continue. Yet the masses and the CPI (Maoist) forces are continuing their resistance.

However, the ultimate consequences of the State’s operation will be intensified alienation and simmering anger among the tribal masses, which offer fertile grounds for an even more powerful organized mass revolutionary upsurge in the future.

The CPRCI (ML) supports the tribals’ demand that the police and paramilitary forces of all varieties be withdrawn from the Lalgarh region. It express solidarity with the struggling masses of Lalgarh, congratulates them for their exemplary struggle, and urges them to continue their struggle in appropriate forms through ups and downs until they attain victory as part of the revolutionary movement of the Indian people.

Secretary, CC

June 23rd 2009

Lalgarh: Security Forces Picked Up 17 Women

On 3 Sept 2009 afternoon, People's Committee Against Police Atrocities (PCAPA) organized a rally at Katapahari in Lalgarh. This was to protest killing of two people by armed forces. Security forces have picked up 17 women from this rally, Lalgarh Mancha (Lalgarh Forum) reported. These women can be the victims of severe sexual assault in their custody. We demand immediate and unconditional release of these women.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Brutal Killing of Two in Lalgarh by Armed Forces

Yesterday (2 Sept 2009) police officials reported encounter death of two Maoists in Lalgarh. It has been revealed that in reality there was no gun-battle with Moaists. Security forces fired on a rally of 12,000 people who were protesting sexual assault on women during combing operation and killed two, Lalgarh Mancha (Lalgarh Forum) reported.

The people of Lalgarh have been deprived from minimum democratic rights, like right to protest, right to assemble in public places because of the imposition of section 144 of Indian penal code. We express solidarity to the struggling people of Lalgarh.

This blog condemns brutal killing of innocent people of Lalgarh by armed forces and demands immediate withdrawal of combined armed forces from Lalgarh and end of state repression.