Press Communiqué

The Polit Bureau of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) met in New Delhi on May 18 and 19, 2002. It has issued the following statement:

Gujarat: Unending Violence

The Polit Bureau expressed grave concern at the continuing violence and intimidation of minorities in different parts of Gujarat. The situation even in Ahmedabad city has not returned to normal. Daily reports are being received of some incident or the other which shows that the administration has failed to provide security and conditions for the return of the refugees to their homes. The administration is making efforts to get the camps wound up and to pressurise the inmates to return to their homes, which in most cases have been destroyed. In some cases those running the camps are being threatened to close down the camps.

The way the secondary school examinations have been conducted without taking into consideration the safety of Muslim students regarding the location of the examination centres, shows how callous the state administration has been. No student would like to miss a year of study but they are compelled to do so because of fear to their life.

In many cases of mass killings, not a single person has been arrested. One gruesome example being the killings of the residents of village Kidyad in Malpur Taluka or Sabarkhanta district on March 2. These villagers who had to flee in tempos were waylaid and killed but not a single person who committed the crime, though identified, has been arrested.

Lok Sahba: Voting Resolution Essential

In such an unprecedented situation, it is shameful that the BJP continues to defend Narendra Modi and the Vajpayee government refuses to allow a discussion under rule 184 in the Lok Sabha.

The Polit Bureau of the CPI(M) reiterated the stand of the entire opposition that parliament should be allowed to discuss the Gujarat situation under the relevant provisions with voting so that the representatives of the people can freely and categorically express their opinion on this harmful event in the country’s history. The Polit Bureau appealed to all secular parties to take a firm stand on this vital question.

Modi Must Go

The Polit Bureau welcomed the decision of the People’s Front to send a team of leaders to Ahmedabad on 24th April to get an on the spot assessment of the situation. It resolved to carry on the struggle in cooperation with other secular and democratic forces to ensure the removal of Narendra Modi as the Chief Minister and for steps to bring all those guilty of the carnage to book.

Israeli Aggression Condemned

The Polit Bureau severely condemned the continuing Israeli aggression and military attacks on the Palestinian people in the West Bank area. Despite international calls for the withdrawal of the military occupation, the Israeli defence forces are withdrawing and reentering the towns in the West Bank with impunity. The worst atrocity has taken place in the Jenin refugee camp which houses 13,000 people. After four days of intensive bombardment and military operations, a large number of people have been killed, mostly civilians. The Israeli authorities refused to allow humanitarian help or medical staff entry to attend the wounded and the hungry population. The United Nations Security Council has now decided to send a team to investigate and to ascertain the actual situation.

The US government is adopting the dubious stand of fully backing the Israeli aggression while strike a position that it is striving for a settlement. The recent visit of US Secretary of State, Colin Powell, exposed this contradictory stance.

The Polit Bureau deplored the Vajpayee government’s continuing silence at the shocking atrocities against the Palestinian people perpetrated by the Israeli government. The Polit Bureau reiterated its demand that the Israeli Ambassador be asked to return to Israel and the Indian Ambassador from Tel Aviv be recalled immediately.