Lalgarh

Where injustice prevails, Rebellion is justice!

Posts Tagged ‘Maoist’

Kerala: Chengara stir will be spread if not solved, landless tribals’ stir enters third year

Posted by Admin on August 4, 2009

chengara12A protest by nearly 5,000 tribals demanding land at a rubber estate near here completes two years Tuesday. The group heading the strike has slammed the Left-led Kerala government for not resolving the issue.

The landless tribals have been staying in tents pitched in the Kumbazha rubber estate of Harrisons Malayalam Ltd (HML) in Chengara, about 120 km from Thiruvananthapuram, since Aug 4, 2007 to mark their protest.

Led by the Sadhu Jana Vimocha Samyukta Vedi (SJVSV) headed by Laha Gopalan, the protesters have been demanding land from the government. Gopalan lashed out at the Left government, especially the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M), which he termed as a party that had no regard for the poor.

‘The CPI-M has proved beyond doubt that they have no concern for the downtrodden. Otherwise, would they have allowed this genuine strike to enter the third year. They have let us down very badly,’ said Gopalan.

On the other hand, around 170 families of plantation workers, who have lost their livelihood due to the tribals occupying the estate, are opposing them and staging another protest at the entry point of the estate. Read the rest of this entry »

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Gravest displacement, Bravest resistance: The struggle of adivasis of Bastar, Chhattisgarh against imperialist corporate landgrab

Posted by Admin on July 26, 2009

By Sudha Bharadwaj. Columnist, Sanhati

gandhi_ashram_demolish_illus_20090608The rule of law does not do away with the unequal distribution of wealth and power but reinforces that inequality with the authority of law. It allocates wealth and poverty in such complicated and indirect ways as to leave the victim bewildered.

– Howard Zinn

Dedicated to the memory of Tapasi Malik,, Dula Mandal, Lakhiram Tuddu, Satyabhama
Whose names we know,
And the hundreds of adivasis of Bastar
Whose names will remain unknown till we claim them.

Why this essay?

I don’t live in Bastar, and I am not an adivasi.

But I have been active in the working class movement of Chhattisgarh for the past 22 years, a movement which became legendary under the charismatic leadership of Comrade Shankar Guha Niyogi. And I strongly feel that understanding what is happening in Bastar today is of the greatest significance not only to us in Chhattisgarh, but to all those who want to understand imperialist onslaught and corporate land grab, particularly in the resource-rich adivasi areas; for all of us involved nationwide in the anti-displacement movement which is day on day becoming a fierce life-and-death struggle against all odds; and in fact for all of us in the peoples’ movements who are faced with the abysmally criminal failure of democratic institutions and shrinking democratic spaces on the one hand, and growing repression on the other.

Salwa Judum CampJustice Krishna Iyer, in a speech delivered in the memory of Com. Niyogi said that “he tried boldly and bravely to bring the Constitution to life for lakhs of miners and contract labourers”. Com Niyogi was murdered on 28th September 1991 within a fortnight of his petitioning the highest authority of this land – the President of India. The industrialists convicted for his murder by the Sessions Court of Durg were acquitted by the High Court and Supreme Court. The thousands of workers of Bhilai, for whose cause he laid down his life, are still out of work, their cases pending in the High Court. The last essay he wrote, with an uncharacteristic urgency, was “Rajeev Gandhi Ki Hatya Kyon?” (”Why was Rajiv Gandhi murdered?”) in which he forcefully argued that Rajiv Gandhi, though himself of the “liberalization” paradigm, was considered to be moving too slowly and was eliminated to allow “those who wanted the dollar to move in fast” to have their way. Com. Niyogi predicted that unless there was a widespread debate and churning among the patriotic and democratic sections of the people, our country would become the “grazing ground of the multinationals”, for now “only those persons will occupy the seats of power, whom the multinationals favour”. At that time, in May 1991, his article seemed to many, to be exaggerated or the usual leftist conspiracy theory. Now we know, it was prophetic.

Salwa judam atrocities The ravaged remains of Gothi Koya lives, after forest rangers burnt down their houses.This essay is part of that debate.

Salwa judam atrocities The ravaged remains of Gothi Koya lives, after forest rangers burnt down their houses.

In the numerous industrial areas across Chhattisgarh today, the very blood of young contract labourers is being sucked as they labour for 12-14 hours, for far less than minimum wages, without weekly holidays, and without safety or medical facility to generate the enormous wealth of “Chhattisgarh Shining!” Unionizing them today doesn’t only mean facing the goondas of the industrialists, risking the loss of precarious jobs, sustaining an uncompromising struggle against great odds, and developing a mature and bold leadership that can withstand both carrot and stick – though this is a tall enough order. It also means struggling against the serious imperialist onslaught against the people of Chhattisgarh.

An onslaught where gigantic corporations like Holcim and Lafarge are gobbling up the cement sector, they have already acquired ACC, Ambuja, and Raymond Cements. Taking advantage of rich limestone deposits, they are manufacturing the cheapest cement in the world, earning superprofits and planning to set up new capacities. Between them and the big cement manufacturers like Aditya Birla they have formed the “Chhattisgarh Cement Manufacturers Association” a cartel that has its office at a stones throw from Chief Minister Raman Singh’s residence – a proximity symbolic of their stranglehold influence over the state administration. Read the rest of this entry »

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CPI-M and Politics of Governance

Posted by Admin on July 12, 2009

West Bengal CPI-M leader Subhas Chakraborty praying at a Kali Temple

West Bengal CPI-M leader Subhas Chakraborty praying at a Kali Temple

In a seminal lecture (2005), the eminent political theorist, Partha Chatterjee, argued that upto the end of the 1970s ideology played an important role in Indian politics. The popularity of a political leader depended on the sacrifices she/he made. But, a new paradigm has emerged in Indian politics in the last three decades. The present-day political leaders seem to be self-centred, opportunist, greedy and consumerist persons. Ordinary people are forced to negotiate with such local leaders in everyday life. Violence and the threat of violence have become an organic part of this new “politics of governance“, argued Chatterjee. Read the rest of this entry »

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CPI-M’s Downhill Journey in Bengal

Posted by Admin on July 12, 2009

Saturday 11 July 2009, by Barun Das Gupta on Mainstream Weekly

First the panchayat elections last year, then the Lok Sabha elections this May, and now the municipal polls. The CPI-M’s downhill journey to defeat, disgrace, despair and eventual dislodgement from power continues. One need not be an astrologer or a psephologist to predict that the curtains on the party’s 34 years of uninterrupted rule in West Bengal will be finally rung down in the State Assembly elections in 2011.

The civic election results are significant because they reflect the mood of the urban electorate. And it is among the urban voters that the CPI-M mounted a shrill propaganda campaign against Mamata Banerjee, the leader of the Trinamul Congress-SUC-Congress alliance, portraying her as the embodiment of forces opposing Bengal’s industrialisation and consequent generation of jobs for the educated unemployed middle class youth. She was conspiring to keep Bengal permanently backward—so ran the CPI-M propaganda. Read the rest of this entry »

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Lalgarh: Intellectuals, Maoists and the State

Posted by Admin on July 12, 2009

Saturday 11 July 2009, by Ambrose Pinto

Intellectuals concerned with issues of people have been under attack in recent years in different states. The Karnataka Government had prepared a list of teachers of colleges, editors of newspapers and some NGOs alleging them to be close to the Naxals in the State because of their involvement in the anti-communal struggle. A group of them including Girish Karnad, Professor Govind Rao, Dr Sridhar and a host others were arrested in 2003 when they had gone to participate in a rally in support of the Supreme Court decision to maintain neutrality at the Bababudan Giri shrine in Chikmagalur when the saffron forces were attempting to communalise the Sufi shrine. In fact, it was the Congress Government headed by S.M. Krishna, the present Foreign Minister of the country, that was in power then. The allegation against Binayak Sen was similar. He was dubbed as a sympathiser of the Naxalites and kept in jail for more than a year without trail. Now you have the West Bengal Government. Days after some members of civil society went to Lalgarh to broker peace, the police have lodged a general complaint against film-maker Aparna Sen, dramatist Shaonli Mitra, poet Joy Goswami and others with breaking Section 144 while entering the villages. Gopal Menon, the documentary film producer from Karnataka, was put behind bars for filming police and Army atrocities. Read the rest of this entry »

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A Million Mutinies Within

Posted by Admin on July 10, 2009

image

Thehalka

NOW THAT the central government’s security forces have entered Lalgarh, we can safely assume that we have one more long-term insurgency on our hands. To the series of Jammu and Kashmir, Manipur, Nagaland, Chhattisgarh, we can now add Lalgarh. Nowhere has a military solution to an insurgency worked and there is no reason why it will now. It was once believed that the Naxalite movement had been crushed and defeated by sheer repression, and just when the powers that be thought it was over, it has appeared with ever greater force. Read the rest of this entry »

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