The Left Parties, which held a meeting on January 13, 2001 at New Delhi, have issued the following statement on the situation in West Bengal:
The rightwing forces in West Bengal and the country are actively working to destabilise the Left Front of West Bengal. They have stepped up their efforts in view of the forthcoming assembly elections to be held three months from now. The disruptive activities being promoted in the state and the orchestrated campaign being conducted in the whole country are designed to malign the Left Front and create conditions for Central intervention.
The actual issue is the resort to illegal and violent actions to try and destabilise the situation in the state. A similar pattern was seen earlier too. In December 1995, the Purulia air-dropping of arms took place. The large-scale consignment of arms was to be utilised against the Left and the state government. The CBI enquiries have pointed to a well-planned conspiracy in this regard. Yet the BJP-led government is now trying to scuttle the case when the key accused are still absconding. The animus against the Left-led government has also an international dimension. None other than the former US Ambassador to India, Daniel Patrick Moynihan has revealed in his memoirs that twice the United States funded efforts against the Communists during elections in West Bengal and Kerala.
Certain pockets of Midnapore district have been affected by the violent tactics instigated by the Trinamul Congress. The recent Garbeta incident should be seen in this context. The CID probe into the incident at Garbeta is awaited so that the true picture emerges. But utilising this single incident an NDA team visits the village and has recommended the imposition of President's rule. The Union Home Minister gives credence to such partisan moves, which are demanded by Mamata Banerjee and the Trinamul-BJP combine.
The systematic disinformation campaign, which is given currency in sections of the media, will lose all credibility when the actual facts are known. Recently four bodies in a decomposed state were recovered from Pingla. They were brought to Calcutta for forensic tests. The CPI(M) has identified them as its workers and their names are known to the police. DNA tests have been called for and this will conclusively establish who they are.
The anti-Communist attacks have now claimed as its victim, a veteran CPI(M) leader Kalipada Haldar who was a member of the District Committee of the South 24 Parganas. He was shot dead three days ago while travelling in a rickshaw.
But the Left Front will not be deterred by such terror tactics. The people of West Bengal have time and again stood firmly with the forces who defend and struggle for their rights. The Left parties warn the BJP-led government not to tamper with a popularly elected government which has been returned to office five times in succession.
The continuing attacks on the Left forces in West Bengal will be harmful to the democratic movement of the country as a whole. In a situation when the rightwing and communal forces are mounting one attack after another on secular and democratic values, the rightwing offensive against the Left Front has to be firmly fought back by all the Left, democratic and secular forces.
The Left parties have decided that in solidarity with the Left and democratic forces in West Bengal and to protest against the continuing campaign of violence and disinformation by the rightwing forces in the state they will observe 24th January as a protest day against these attacks. On that day all the units of the Left parties will mobilise the people in support of the Left Front and the working people of West Bengal who are in the forefront of the struggle for democracy and the interests of the people.
(Harkishan Singh Surjeet) --Communist Party of India (Marxist)
(A.B. Bardhan)-- Communist Party of India
(Devarajan) --Forward Bloc