Friday, September 30, 2011
The Polit Bureau of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) met in New Delhi on September 29 & 30, 2011. It has issued the following statement:
At the outset the Polit Bureau expressed its deep grief at the loss of lives suffered due to the earthquake in Sikkim, North Bengal and Bihar. The Polit Bureau urged the Central Government to assist the state government of Sikkim to take all necessary measures for the speedy rehabilitation work in the affected areas.
UPA Government & Corruption
The recent period has once again highlighted the high level corruption which had engulfed the UPA government since its inception in 2004. Apart from the unfolding 2G spectrum scandal, the CAG reports on the KG basin contract and the Air India mismanagement have reinforced the image of a totally corrupt government in the eyes of the people.
The Polit Bureau also discussed the latest exposure of the role played by the then Finance Minister, P Chidambaram, in the 2G Spectrum licence allotment. The note forwarded by the Finance Ministry to the Prime Minister’s Office has clearly delineated the role played by the Finance Minister at that time in going along with the policy and the implementation of it by the then Telecom Minister, A Raja. Despite the obfuscation by the Government, the issue is that P Chidambaram had given the green signal for a policy which led to a massive loss to the State exchequer. This is despite his ministry earlier objecting to the first come – first serve policy and the entry fee being retained at the 2001 rate.
Chidambaram Should Resign
The explanation provided by the Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee that it is an inter-ministerial note prepared with inputs from various ministries and coordinated by the Cabinet Secretary only underlines the authoritative nature of the conclusions that have been drawn. It is not the work of any single officer or ministry. Therefore, P Chidambaram has to take responsibility for his action. The Polit Bureau demands that he resign from the Union Cabinet.
Attitude to Price Rise
The Polit Bureau strongly condemned the price hike of Rs. 3.14 per litre of petrol. This price hike has taken place when the inflation rate is hovering just below 10 per cent and there is no let up in the increase in food prices. By this act, the government has only stoked price rise and inflation.
The government’s callous attitude has also been made clear by the Planning Commission’s affidavit before the Supreme Court on the poverty line. By declaring that the poverty line for an adult is Rs. 26 in rural areas and Rs. 32 in urban areas, the government has imposed a starvation line.
The Polit Bureau demands that the cap imposed by such fraudulent basis for dividing the population into BPL and APL be abandoned. Further, the cap imposed on the number of people below the poverty line be scrapped.
The Polit Bureau demanded that the Food Security Act should be changed to ensure the universal right to food and not the targeted system.
The Polit Bureau expressed its concern at the rise in prices of DAP fertiliser and the shortage of urea in the market which is affecting the farmers.
Rath Yatra for What?
The announcement of a rath yatra against corruption by the BJP leader, L K Advani is surprising and ironical. The BJP has to answer for its record of corruption during the NDA government starting from the Tehelka tape expose of defence purchases to the sanction of petrol pumps and gas agencies.
The BJP is also accountable for the brazen corruption under its state government in Karnataka. The illegal mining and the nexus with the mining mafia which has resulted in tens of thousands of crores of rupees being looted is stark testimony to the BJP’s commitment to fight corruption. In this context, the rath yatra of the BJP leader will have no credibility whatsoever.
The 19th Congress of the Party held in 2008 had decided that the Central Committee should adopt a resolution on ideological issues. In this connection, the Polit Bureau discussed an outline for the draft resolution. On this basis, the draft resolution will be prepared for discussion in the Polit Bureau and the Central Committee and taken up at the Party Congress in April 2012.
Call for Campaign & Protests: November 1-7
The Polit Bureau decided that the Party should take up a countrywide campaign and protest movements on the following issues immediately:
i. Curb price rise and ensure universal right to food.
ii. Take firm action on all corruption cases and adopt an effective Lokpal Act.
iii. Ensure supply of fertilizer at subsidised prices to farmers and stop black marketing of urea.
iv. Steps to curb unemployment and fill up all vacancies in government posts.
v. Stop FDI in the retail sector; protect the interests of small shopkeepers and traders.
The Polit Bureau called upon all its Party units to conduct a campaign and to launch protest actions, including picketing and demonstrations on these issues from November 1 to 7. The state committees will chalk out the concrete programmes.
The Polit Bureau extended its full support to the call given by the Central trade unions and national federations for a `Jail Bharo’ movement on November 8. The Party will mobilise the working class to participate in this programme.