02 March, 2013
Profile photo post
17 February, 2007
Singur Nandigram - some new questions
Much has happened in India, esp. over the land-acquisition protest movements in West Bengal. Singur- Nandigram has changed Indian politics quite a bit, and there seems to be a well orchestrated and well-planned "Anti-SEZ" movement emerging.
I will not go through the facts of the movement, they have a good blog to the Singur Movement. But there are some important facts emerging which raises many questions.
(1) The land protest movement have been led by Trinamool Congress (TMC) under Mamata Banerjee. TMC by character is largely an opportunist party and has a long history of shifting allegiances to better electoral prospects. I doubt whether it has any policy of opposing SEZ's and in my opinion it would continue to do so, so long it embarasses it's opponent - the CPI(M). So, what will be Mamata Banerjee's role if her party came to power in either the state or the centre? Will she be truthful to her cause? That remains to be seen.
(2) The second question is about the left radicals. Small left parties and groups of various shades -starting from the SUCI, the PDS, the CPI(ML) Liberation, CPI(ML) -Kanu Sanyal, CPI(ML) New Democracy, Mazdoor Kranti Parishad and CPI(Maoist) have played some role in this movement. Some had accepted Mamata's Leadership and some haven't? What is the outlook of these small left parties? Do they aspire something greater from this movement? Can they put forward a alternate model of industrial development. Or would their role be limited to leading sporadic protests and infighting amongst themselves as to who would want credit for the show. There are newsreports that as expected TMC has started playing these groups one against the other, individuals against other individuals and in the process re-established it's leadership over the movement. It could be a nice case study to learn how big powers want to dominate - the ruling party -CPI(M) wants to dominate the administration, without giving a damn to what the other parties in the ruling coalition -CPI, Forward Bloc, and RSP feel about its agenda. TMC wants to dominate the opposition space. Both seem to be very happy and ideological moorings have taken a backseat.
(3) The rise of Jamiat-I-Ulema-I Hind is ominous. First, it shows how fundamentalist and communal organizations have large fan following in their own hinterland. Second, the Jamiat's dominance will surely encourage the BJP as fundamentalists on both grow bolder and stronger together -citing the rise of the other as a threat to its own kin. Any organization -right or left has the liberty to participate and lead a popular struggle. But politics is all about dominance - the more the left radicals cede power to the fundamentalists-there is a possibility that the cause would be hijacked and after some period of metamorphosis will be converted into a sectarian cause. The Jamait has already started a propaganda that Muslim farmers have been victimized by the CPI(M), and it is a known fact that irrepective of how deprecated CPI(M) has become over its leftist ideology, it has not victimized any particular religious group. Farmers have been victimized -whether Hindus and Muslims, and it is a shame that Jamait is making it murky. Worse the left radicals are encouraging it and initiating dialogue with it. My poser to the left radical parties - if you wouldn't join hands with the BJP, why would you do it with the Jamait?
(4) Prakash Karat's article defending his party and government has largely been ignored by the mainstream as well as the leftist media. I would say it is an "explosive" article. Com. Karat agrees that West Bengal should have a liberalized capitalist economy, and the task of his party is to advance its economic progress (read capitalist progress). He defends his argument stating that in a quasi-federal structure like India, the state donot have much choice. Since CPI(M) claims to have a revolutionary agenda, is it not surprising that for 25 years our comrades have been advancing the liberal capital cause? I like this game of hop skip and jump - Marxism, Revisionism, Liberalism. Already to our CPI(M) comrades, Mahasweta Devi, Sumit Sarkar, Medha Patkar, Arundhati Roy have become outsiders and Mr. Ratan Tata has become an "insider"? I wouldn't be surprised if Com. Karat & Yechury hope to chair a session in the World Economic Forum. Inquilab "Murdabad", CPI(M) Zindabad!!