Encouraging Expansion in Party Organisation and Activities in Andhra
The AIALA National Conference is being held at Rajahmundry in Andhra Pradesh. This state has witnessed considerable expansion of the CPI(ML). A report.
-- N. Murthy
In the run-up to the forthcoming Second National Conference of the All India Agricultural Labour Association, the Party organization in Andhra Pradesh is passing through a befitting and encouraging phase of expansion. Confined for long to the coastal districts of East Godavari and Krishna and the Andhra-Orissa border region, the Party has recently expanded into the Rayalseema and Telengana regions as well. Expansion is also on in the coastal region, in new districts like West Godavari as also within and around our old areas of work in East Godavari, Krishna and Visakhapatnam districts. Party offices have recently been opened in Anantpur and Hyderabad and branches of mass organizations like AIALA, AICCTU, AIPWA and RYA have also started functioning in Anantpur, Nalgonda and Adilabad districts.
The expansion of our Party coincides with a major disintegration in several major Andhra-based ML organizations and a concurrent realignment within the Left camp in the state. The erstwhile PWG and Janshakti groups that had begun negotiating with the state government have once again been trapped into a war of attrition with the state and are unable to retrieve any kind of mass political initiative. The New Democracy group which had inherited the biggest mass base and organizational network has suffered a major division in its biggest base in Khammam district with many leaders and activists joining the CPI(M). The newly formed CPI(ML) organization led by Comrade Kanu Sanyal, which was the upshot of a series of eclectic and opportunist mergers of different streams like the UCCRI(ML), fragments of the old PCC and a section of the Kerala-based Red Flag group led by Comrade KN Ramchandran, seems to be already breaking apart. Most of its Telengana district units have dissociated themselves with this organization and many comrades have now joined our Party.
A Telengana Regional Leading Team of our Party has already been formed comprising leading comrades from Adilabad, Nalgonda and Hyderabad. Pockets of work are being reorganized among the rural poor and among beedi and construction workers. Agitations have begun on the issue of house sites and rehabilitation of people displaced by the Singareni coalfields and other big projects. On December 21-22 a workshop of leading comrades from Telengana was held in Hyderabad and it was attended by Party leaders like Comrades Dipankar Bhattacharya, DP Buxi, N Murthy and Malleshwar Rao.
The workshop discussed the development of our Party line and our experience of work on various fronts. Comrades from Telengana gave a brief account of the development of the ML movement in the region and of their own experiences. Instead of nurturing the glorious tradition and enormous current potentials of the revolutionary movement in the region, the dominant ML currents remain badly mired in economism and militarism. Consequently, the ML movement has failed to give any major blow to the opportunist politics and practice of the CPI and CPI(M) and unleash any serious mass political initiative with a distinct revolutionary identity. Comrades all felt that our Party should accept this challenge and develop serious mass political work in the region.
Elaborating on the development of our Party line, Comrade Dipankar drew special attention to the consistent emphasis on class line and the spirit of independent political assertion that define the strategic essence of our developing tactics. Starting from the period of Comrade CM and the undivided CPI(ML), it is the cardinal emphasis on the class mobilization and assertion of the landless poor peasant which has led us to develop an integral approach to different issues and aspects of the revolutionary movement while our constant study of Marxism-Leninism and Mao’s thought has helped us grasp the dialectical inter-relations among various forms of struggle and organization and fronts of work. If our Party is today appreciated for its ‘sensitivity’ towards issues of caste and gender oppression and the aspirations of small tribes and movements for autonomy and statehood, the secret lies in our absolute and consistent commitment and dialectical approach to class struggle.
The workshop also discussed a primary action plan for the development of our work in Telengana. While reiterating our principled support to the aspirations of the Telengana people for a separate state, comrades felt that we should expose and challenge the opportunist politics of the Congress, TRS and other political forces on the question of Telengana. What prevents the TRS from moving a resolution in support of separate Telengana state in the Andhra Assembly and force the UPA government on this issue? Why is the Congress now backtracking after winning elections in alliance with the TRS and making so much of noise about Telengana? While exposing and challenging the bourgeois parties that are taking the people for a ride, we should articulate our own vision for the development of the Telengana region and step up our movement in that direction.
On December 23-24, the East Godavari district committee of our Party held its seventh conference at Jaggampeta. The conference was preceded by an impressive march and mass meeting. The conference resolved to unleash an all-out campaign and surpass all previous records so as to make the forthcoming Rajahmundry conference of the AIALA a resounding success. Addressing the conference, Comrade Dipankar commended East Godavari comrades for having developed their district as a ‘motor district’ to power our Party’s development in the entire state. The undivided communist party had some good pockets of work, but in recent decades neither the CPI-CPI(M) nor any other ML organization has succeeded in making any significant progress in the district. While the district remains a powerful bastion of the neo-rich and kulak forces, we have emerged as the biggest Left party in the district with an impressive record of land struggle and some powerful pockets of assertion of the rural poor. Comrade Dipankar exhorted the newly elected committee to go in for both extensive and intensive development, further raise the profile of the Party in the district and relentlessly expand our political role and initiative.
All India Agricultural Labour Association (AIALA) and All India Progressive Women’s Association (AIPWA) organised nationwide protests on January 10 to oppose the central government’s decision of cut in food subsidy for the most poor by decreasing monthly foodgrain quota for the BPL and Antyodaya ration card holders. The Government was eventually forced to roll back the move in view of the widespread protests by agrarian poor.
In New Delhi, All India Central Council of Trade Unions (AICCTU) held a protest at Jantar Mantar. The protest was led by AICCTU General Secretary Swapan Mukherjee and AIPWA General Secretary Kumudini Pati. Addressing the protesters, speakers condemned the central government’s attempt to cut the subsidy in Public Distribution System and increasing the issue price of food grains for APL families. At a time when an agrarian crisis of very serious kind has engulfed the rural India, and crores of rural and urban poor are reeling under the spectre of starvation, this move was resisted as another attack by the UPA Govt. on the most productive and largest section of country’s population – the toiling workers and the poor peasants.
Similar protests were organised by AIALA in various state capitals and district headquarters in Bihar, West Bengal, Assam, Tripura, Orissa, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Rajasthan and Punjab.
In Bihar, protest demonstrations were witnessed in almost all district headquarters and important centres. In Patna, the protest was led by K.D. Yadav and Saroj Chaube. Protests were also held at many places in Arwal, Jahanabad, Buxar, Biharsharif, Ara and Begusarai. AIPWA units held protest marches and mass meeting at many places.
In Uttar Pradesh, AIALA observed a protest day on 8 January where Manmohan Govt.’s effigy were burnt in various districts including Sonbhadra, Sitapur and Pilibhit. Protests were also held on January 10 many places.
On December 21-22 2005, the Karbi Anglong Kisan Shramik Sabha held its Second Conference. The Conference began with a large rally of rural poor from both Karbi Anglong and North Cachar Hills, and 309 delegates representing both districts participated in the Conference.
The delegates participated in the discussion on the agrarian situation in the era of globalization and unanimouosly accepted the political-organisational document. The Conference observed a minute of silence for the victims of Congress-sponsored ethnic clashes in Karbi Anglong, sharply criticized the Gogoi Government for failing to control the situation and deliver justice, and demanded a package of Rs. 500 crores for the victims.
The KANKIS resolved to enroll 125,000 members by January 13, 2006, and elected its leadership with the resolve to turn the KANKIS into the leading organization in both districts.