The Central Committee of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) met in New Delhi on December 15 & 16, 2018. It has issued the following statement:
For Lok Sabha Elections
The Central Committee reiterated the electoral tactics adopted at its last meeting held in October for the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. The main tasks that it had set before the Party was to defeat the BJP alliance; to increase the strength of the CPI(M) and the Left in the Lok Sabha and to ensure that an alternative secular government is formed at the Centre.
The Central Committee has asked the state units of the Party to make preparations in consonance with this tactical line.
Recent Assembly Elections
The Central Committee made a preliminary assessment of the results of the recently held elections to the assemblies of five states.
The Central Committee congratulated the Rajasthan unit of the Party for the victory of its candidates from Shri Dungargarh and Bhadra.
The Central Committee noted that the defeat of the BJP in the elections to the state assemblies of Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh, is a clear indication of the people’s discontent and anger at the policies followed by the Modi government and the BJP state governments that have imposed unbearable burdens on the people. These results have shattered the myth of the BJP’s electoral invincibility.
Instead of addressing the people’s issues, the BJP governments’ policies had only deepened people’s misery and tried to divert their attention into issues aimed at sharpening communal polarization. The attacks on Muslims and Dalits and the atmosphere of hatred and violence fostered to divide the people have also not succeeded to the extent they had hoped for.
In Telangana, the TRS has won a sweeping victory while the BJP’s tally of seats has come down. In Mizoram, the MNF has won a decisive victory ousting the Congress government.
The Central Committee felt that new governments that will be formed in the former BJP-ruled states must respect the people’s verdict and adopt policies aimed at improving people’s livelihood and reducing their miseries. These governments must also ensure that the unity of the people and the integrity of the country are not further damaged by the BJP’s politics of communal polarization.
The Central Committee discussed the performance of the Party in Telangana and Rajasthan. Once the state committees conduct a detailed review, necessary steps would be taken.
Increasing Burdens on the People
The Central Committee expressed its serious concern at the ever-increasing burdens on the people. The RBI’s Consumer Confidence Survey of November 2018 shows that there is growing pessimism over the general economic situation and the employment scenario. The fall in the spending levels of the people indicates the shrinking of domestic demand which will continue to have a negative effect on the overall growth of economic fundamentals.
Taking note of the continuing agrarian crisis the Central Committee felt that the deepening rural distress with slower farm output is leading to a fall in rural incomes. This in turn is constricting rural demand, adversely affecting the overall growth. The fraud committed with the announcement of a higher MSP by the Modi government is exposed by the fact that farmers’ incomes continue to fall and remain much below the cost of production. This is deepening people’s misery in rural India.
It also expressed its concern at the alarming rise in unemployment across the country.
Crisis in the Banking Sector
Taking note of the crisis that has engulfed the banking sector, the Central Committee felt that the unprecedented measure of invoking Section 7 of the RBI Act taken by the Modi government strikes at the very root of the independence of the RBI as the financial regulator. Tensions between the RBI’s independent positions like on demonetization, handling of bad loans, the taking of 99 per cent of the profits of RBI every year during the present government and the recent attempt to force the RBI to part with Rs. 3.5 lakh crores from its reserves to contain the fiscal deficit are some of the issues under dispute leading to the undermining the independence of the central bank. These pressures on the RBI are clearly the result of protecting crony capitalist interests by the Modi government.
Rafale Scam: Institute JPC
The Central Committee observed that the Modi Government had misled the Supreme Court on the Rafale deal. It is crystal clear that neither was the CAG report placed in parliament as required by the Constitution nor could the PAC, examine it.
The Central Committee reiterated the demand for the constitution of a Joint Parliamentary Committee to probe the matter in its entirety.
The Central Committee felt that its position on electoral bonds is vindicated. Electoral bonds have become new tax havens. The BJP’s audit and income tax report submitted to the Election Commission discloses a voluntary contribution of Rs. 210 crores plus through electoral bonds for the year 2017-18. The total value of electoral bonds issued in the first tranche in March this year was Rs. 222 crores. Thus, the BJP received 94.5 per cent of this entire tranche. The total money received by the BJP during 2017-18 was a whopping Rs. 1027 crores.
It is clear that the BJP and the Modi government are facilitating through such crony capitalism corporate funding for its electoral benefit.
Deepening Communal Polarisation
The Central Committee noted with serious concern the attempts to build up communal frenzy by an assortment of Hindutva outfits in the run up to the General Elections. With its waning electoral popularity, the RSS-BJP sees the sharpening of communal polarization as the only way to consolidate its Hindutva communal vote bank. This is the worst expression of vote bank politics in India.
The call by the RSS-BJP leaders for a legislation/ordinance to construct the Ram temple at Ayodhya and the various rallies that have been held in this connection clearly point out this nefarious design.
The patronization of private armies in the name of cow protection, moral policing etc, resulted in vigilantism growing to the extent of incidents of mob lynching. The Supreme Court directions to crack down on incidents of mob violence and lynching is being defied. Instead 54 people have been arrested on charges of cow smuggling in UP’s Meerut range alone. The brutal killing of a police inspector in this district was in the course of violent protests over the pretext of cow slaughter due to carcasses found under dubious circumstances. Even in this specific incident, the UP CM has first ordered a probe into the allegations of cow slaughter and proclaimed that only subsequently the enquiry into the death of the police inspector would be conducted.
In Kerala, the RSS-BJP’s attempts to exploit the sentiments of believers over the Sabarimala temple verdict and creating communal tensions is being determinedly countered by the CPI(M) and the LDF government. The Central Committee denounced the Congress party for following the line of the BJP.
The CC noted that though both these parties initially welcomed the verdict, they sought to exploit the apprehension among believers and pit them against the Party and the government. The CC appealed to the people of Kerala to participate in the campaigns being conducted by the Party and the LDF exposing the false propaganda being launched by the BJP and the Congress.
Jammu & Kashmir
The Central Committee expressed its serious concern over the deteriorating conditions in the Kashmir valley. It is unfortunate that seven civilians have been killed in the firing by security forces on unarmed protesters. This is unacceptable. The Modi govt is simply not interested in starting a political dialogue it promised four years ago.
Over three hundred civilians have died in the last three years. Unfortunately, no enquiry has been conducted into these deaths and no one responsible has been held accountable. This situation will only lead to further alienation of the people.
The BJP is interested in the continuation of the situation to aid its larger political agenda of communal polarization in view of the general elections.
No political accountability, no responsibility for the mess it has created. Its gross mishandling of these issues is hurting India.
The Central Committee demanded that steps should be initiated to start the process of dialogue with all stakeholders, a promise made by the Modi government earlier, immediately.
Growing People’s Struggles
The Central Committee took note of the growing people’s struggles in the recent period. The CPI(M) and the Left will continue to further strengthen people’s struggles against the mounting distress being imposed by the Modi government.
The Central Committee extended its full support to the two-day national strike on January 8 & 9, 2019 called by the central trade unions. It also extended its support to the 19th February march on the slogan of “Save Campus, Save Education, Save Nation” being organized by a broad platform of students, teachers, university employees and other civil society organisations.
The Central Committee also decided to organize protest actions focusing on the issue of growing unemployment and to intensify the struggles against agrarian distress.
In the wake of rising number of crimes against women the Central Committee decided to call for protests throughout the country. The Central Committee reiterated its demand for the passage of the Women’s Reservation Bill in this session of parliament.
The Central Committee decided that all states must organize protest actions against the continuing attacks on Dalits and Muslim minorities.
It also decided to conduct a campaign all across the country exposing the linkage between electoral bonds and the Modi government’s corruption.