[Concluding speech at the Sixth Party Congress. From Liberation, November 1997.]
Our Sixth Party Congress is coming to a successful conclusion. First of all, I would like to say that the presence of the foreign guests here has indeed boosted our confidence. The communist movement is always an international movement. It gives me great pleasure to say that our foreign guests here represent the various forms of experiments of the Marxist-Leninist ideology worldwide. Their presence in our Congress signifies the growing international relations of our Party. It also indicates the fact that inspite of numerous differences that may exist between communist parties, they should keep interacting and learning from each other.
So, I once again, on behalf of the newly elected Party’s Central Committee welcome our foreign guests.
Over the last five days we have debated over many a thing. Differences surfaced on several issues. Sometimes the debates were quite sharp. Elections took place and comrades participated in it. While some comrades won, others lost. But I would like to say that it has been a tradition of our Party to debate and discuss quite openly and frankly in our Party conferences and congresses. In this process, it could well be the case that some grievances crop up, some comrades feel hurt, but still we are all comrades of the same Party. We have the same goal and the same principles. If need be, we are committed to sacrifice everything for this goal, even our lives. Where such a communist bond is there, I think, any such conflict or bitterness cannot be permanent. Hence, I have the full confidence that when we step out of this hall we will once again, shoulder to shoulder, march alongside each other in the struggle to change the future of the country with the same warm camaraderie, with the same rock-like unity. This has been our Party’s tradition and shall remain so in the days to come.
You know that our Party had split in the ’70s. Many factions emerged. In the last 25 years we have seen the disintegration of these groups, witnessed the continued process of splits within them. In contrast, since 1974, with the Party’s reorganisation, our Party, the CPI(ML) Liberation, has never faced any split in its organisation. Our unity continuously kept on strengthening. This stands as a puzzle for many. While all the other Naxalite groups have been continuously dogged by splits, what miracle has enabled CPI(ML) Liberation to maintain its unity? And specially in the present times we see that the crisis is deepening within CPI(M), the social democratic party, with which we have the primary contention for the leadership of the Indian communist movement. Their leadership is seriously divided over the party’s tactical line. In this context our Party assumes special importance.
The fundamental reason behind our strong unity is that we have always held high the glorious traditions of the communist movement of our country. From the Naxalbari movement of 1967 to the movement of the ’70s, inspite of all the deviations and mistakes, we have never negated them. We have always given due regard to our legacy. We have neither rejected the great struggles and sacrifices of our communist revolutionaries nor the leadership of Com.Charu Majumdar. We always held high the dignity of our martyrs and of our great leaders. But at the same time we have always learnt from our mistakes. We have openly criticised our mistakes and incorporated new experiences in our Party line. Holding high our legacy and making necessary readjustments in Party line in consonance with the demands of the present — I think our Party has combined these two tasks in the correct way and this has been the foremost secret of our unity.
At the same time, since the time of reorganisation of our Party, we have striven to develop a full-fledged Party system. From top to bottom, from the Central Committee to the lower-level committees, we have built up a complete Party system. We have developed a collective leadership at all levels and have regularly organised our Party congresses. Whenever required we have organised all-India Party conferences. And this system ensures that the Party is not dependent on any single individual. It doesn’t function on the whims and charisma of any individual. In the course of our long practice, many experienced comrades have come up and a strong unity exists between them. Our Party’s Central Committee is not a collection of several factions but it is an integral body. No faction of any type exists in it. Our Party leadership consists of experienced comrades who have in a long process gained confidence of the Party ranks and of the masses as well. They constitute our Politburo and our collective leadership. I think, these are the reasons, the essential secrets that have for the past 25 years maintained and strengthened our unity. I do believe that the new Central Committee will keep alive this tradition of ours. The confidence that more than 700 delegates coming from all the parts of the country have reposed in the new Central Committee and the new responsibility that you have entrusted to us — I promise you that the new CC will fulfil these responsibilities with all the dedication and skill at its command and the members of the CC will always stand in the front ranks of all the struggles of the people and of the Party.
We are aware that there lie great challenges before us. We face attacks from various quarters. In this Congress we have resolved to face all these challenges. But this is also the time when a lot of opportunities have come our way. This is a period of challenges as well as opportunities. We have to face all the challenges and make full use of the opportunities. This Congress has given us the responsibility to dislodge the social democrats from the driving seat of the left movement in India and establish the leadership of the revolutionary Left over the same. Our entire Party has to accomplish this mission and the present times are the best times because the social democrats nowhere stand at the forefront of mass struggles as they have become part and parcel of the ruling establishment. That is why making full use of this opportunity, we have to move with full force to fulfil this responsibility which has been our historic mission since the Naxalbari movement.
Apart from this, comrades, the challenge posed by the feudal armies, be it Ranvir Sena or other such feudal armies, who think that they can wipe out our Party with the might of guns, by killings and massacres, has come up as a big challenge for us. We have to tackle this challenge with full self-confidence. We must understand that their frenzied attacks do not symbolise their future, their strength. Rather they are the last-ditch attempts of the dying feudal forces.
This Congress has resolved to forcefully take up the armed challenge of feudal forces like Ranvir Sena. The congress has repeatedly emphasised its resolve that the Party will mobilise all its forces to give a crushing blow to such forces. It has resolved that the Party will not hesitate to adopt all means that are necessary to crush these forces. We have accepted this challenge and we must ensure their defeat on the battlefield. In the past too, many private armies had come up but in face of people’s resistance none could survive. We must have complete confidence that these newly emerged Senas too have no future and CPI(ML)-led mass struggles and people’s wrath will ensure the end of these Senas. This is the second challenge before us.
Thirdly, the Congress has resolved to bring all progressive and democratic forces, the forces fighting for human rights to a common platform on an all-India scale. We have to establish at an all-India level, a genuine democratic front. Such a democratic front that can, in a true sense, become a magic wand for the Indian revolution. Except CPI(ML) no one else has the necessary moral authority and political vision to accomplish this task.
The Congress has placed before us three tasks, viz. to establish the leadership of the revolutionary communists in the Indian left movement, to boldly face the challenge of the feudal armies and wipe them out, and thirdly, to unite in a common thread various struggles of progressive and democratic forces, the forces struggling for human rights, for regional autonomy of national minorities and Adivasis and for democratic rights of various dalit and backward communities, forming a broadbased democratic front. I am confident that this congress will inspire the entire Party to fulfil these tasks. Lastly, we must not forget that hundreds of our comrades have sacrificed their valuable lives for the advance of the Party and the revolution.
This Congress is the occasion to transform our grief into strength. Let us resolve that the unfulfilled dreams of our martyrs will remain alive in our eyes. And we shall not rest content till these dreams materialise.
Long live the memory of our martyrs!
Long live revolution!