Acid Attack by Feudals-CPI(M)

The feudal lords with the help of local CPI(M) leaders carried out an acid attack on two local CPI(ML) leaders in Hunaman Nagar Tola of Singhwada Block of Darbhanga district in Bihar. On October 9, notorious armed goons led by feudal lord and the village Mukhia, Lakshmeshwar Tiwari and CPI(M) block secretary Mahesh Dube kidnapped Mahendra Ram and Vipin Paswan, both important leaders and working full-time for CPI(ML). Resisting the villagers' protest by gunfire they dragged the two leaders to the village Mukhia's house. Once there, the two were beaten up black and blue and then acid was mercilessly poured into their eyes. And what was their fault? In the very words of the perpetrators, this was the result of the politics against the Brahmins which the two, sons of Chamar-Dusadh, had been engaged in, and that from now on no Harijan would muster courage to speak against them.

It was only after other CPI(ML) leaders were informed by the villagers and the police station was gheraoed, that the police became active. The police recovered Mahendra Ram and Vipin Paswan, both unconscious and blinded, from the Mukhia's house. But all through the policemen failed to even touch the Mukhia. Some timely medical relief was provided to the victims and sight was restored though partially.

The incident sent shock waves through all social-political sections in the whole district. The very same night, the District Magistrate's residence was gheraoed by the Party. The police replied with a brutal lathicharge. The traffic in the Darbhanga-Muzzaffarpur section of the national highway was blocked for hours. Soon, a plethora of protests with mass participation sprung up in all parts of the district. Under mounting public pressure the administration was forced to issue non-bailable warrant against the Mukhia. AISA-RYA activists shouted down the former Bihar State President of JD and presently the Rural Development Minister, Ramai Ram in one of his public meetings. Bowing to the protesters he - belonging to the dalit community - condemned the incident, demanded the immediate arrest of the Mukhia and accepted the charter of demands given by the students-youth.

A broadbased social-political mobilisation was witnessed against the acid attack. JD MP, MA Fatmi, JD District President, Mishri Lal Yadav, the Presidents of Dalit Sena and Ambedekar Sena, SP-BSP leaders, along with various Dalit organisations and intellectuals have condemned the incident. CPI(M) was the only political organisation that stuck on in favour of the Mukhia. The CPI(M) party workers here not only defended the Mukhia but were also able to get the CPI(M) State Secretary Ganesh Shankar Vidyarthi to visit there in aid of their campaign. Discontent is rife among the leaders and cadres of the party belonging to the Dalit community.

Actually, CPI(M)'s Darbhanga district Committee has always patronised the feudal elements here. Shelving all communist ideals they are mired in corrupt practices and many a time have assisted some feudal elements, who otherwise constitute BJP's vote-bank, just to settle scores with ML. Resenting this, a few days back dozens of CPI(M) activists had shifted over and taken membership in ML.

The acid attack with the help of the feudal lords was planned by CPI(M) to break the confidence of the ML mass base. In turn, what is happening here in Darbhanga is a 'feudalisation' and 'BJP-isation' of CPI(M).

-Dhirendra Jha