Monday, March 19, 2012
The Central Committee of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) met in New Delhi from March 17 to 19, 2012. It has issued the following statement:
The Central Committee strongly criticized the Union Budget of 2012-13. The proposals contained in the Budget will result in all-round price rise and the imposition of greater burdens on the working people. The increase in excise duties and service taxes across the board will impose an additional burden of Rs. 45,940 crores.
The cut in fuel subsidy of Rs. 25,000 crore will lead to further hikes in fuel prices. The cut in subsidies to fertilisers by Rs. 6,000 crores will add to the already high prices of fertilisers and affect the livelihood of millions of farmers.
In the Railway Budget, there is a hike in passenger fares for all classes. The rise in fares of second class and sleeper class is particularly onerous. The Central Committee called for the reversal of this decision.
The Central Committee called upon all its Party units to protest against these new burdens imposed by the budget and to mobilise the people to demand that such provisions be scrapped.
Resignation of Railway Minister
The drama of the resignation of Dinesh Trivedi as Railway Minister after the presentation of the Railway Budget reflects badly on the Trinamul Congress and the functioning of the UPA government. What is of least concern for the TMC leader, who was herself the railway minister ten months ago, is the perilous state of the railways which is in a financial mess and where safety aspects are being neglected.
Foreign Policy Slide
The Central Committee strongly criticized the UPA government’s vote in the UN Security Council against Syria in February. This resolution which would have opened the way for intervention like in Libya was vetoed by Russia and China. The US and its allies are actively working to destabilize the Syrian government utilising the pretext of internal disturbances. India should not line up with the United States and Israel in their gameplan.
The US administration is mounting pressure on India to cut back its oil purchases from Iran and to stop trade with that country. Notwithstanding the official stance of the government that it will continue to buy oil from Iran, there has been substantial reduction in oil imports from that country in the current year. The US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton has stated before the Congressional Committee that the US has been putting pressure on India to stop oil imports from Iran and she acknowledged that India has been responding to the US demand.
The UPA government should maintain its trade relations with Iran and resist American pressures which are against the vital interests of the country.
The Central Committee expressed its concern at the lack of progress in investigating the killings of civilians and serious human rights violations in the last phase of the conflict in Sri Lanka. Neither has the Sri Lankan government taken any substantive steps towards arriving at a political settlement for devolution of powers and autonomy to the Tamil-speaking areas. In this connection, the government of India should demand that the Sri Lankan government take up the implementation of the recommendations of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission in the UNHRC. It is necessary to have a credible and independent investigation into the charges of atrocities and all those responsible should be held accountable.
The Central Committee finalised the Political-Organisational Report to be presented at the Party Congress which reviews the political and organisational work of the Party since the 19th Congress.