On National Unity

[From the Political-Organisational Report adopted at the Fifth Party Congress, 1992.]

As communists of a country which earned its nationhood in the course of struggle against colonial rule and which still faces neo-colonial threats from imperialism, we do cherish national unity. Since its inception, CPI(ML) has declared the unification of India as its principled goal. We even envisage a confederation of India, Pakistan and Bangladesh to undo the partition of our great country. We have never supported the demands for a Khalistan or for an independent Assam.

National unity is surely a matter of concern for all major political streams, be it the ruling Congress, the BJP, the opportunist Left or revolutionary communists. The point is to draw sharp lines of demarcation among the various stands.

India is looked upon as a regional hegemonic power and a threat by almost all our small neighbours and this is not without basis. The entire official media project neighbouring countries, particularly Pakistan, as always conspiring against India. The CPI and CPI(M)’s propaganda, too, runs along similar lines. We must understand that any imperialist conspiracy against India can only operate through our neighbours’ perception of the Indian threat.

Proletarian internationalism demands that communists oppose the national chauvinism of their own bourgeoisie. Devoid of this principled position, all the concern about destabilisation threats is bound to make communists subservient to bourgeois ideology and bourgeois interests.

Then again, in particular cases where the movements for separation enjoy popular support and have a whole history behind them they need prudent handling and special solutions.

Under the pretext of enforcing national unity from above, the Indian state has only been strengthening its reactionary apparatus, enacting draconian laws and legitimising fake encounters and mass killings. We strongly oppose this Bismarckian way of building national unity from above. We stand for building national unity from below where broadest possible autonomy shall be ensured for all national groups and national minorities. National unification of India on a democratic basis remains an important task of India’s democratic revolution.