Central Committee Communique
The Central Committee of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) met in New Delhi on April 27-29, 2023. It has issued the following statement:
Grim Economic Situation
According to IMF, India’s GDP growth was the fastest amongst world’s large economies. While the Modi government is on a propaganda overdrive projecting this, it conceals the well-known fact that the growth of 9.1 per cent in FY 2021 was against a -5.8 in 2020 - base effect phenomenon. When the compounded annual growth rate from 2019, a normal pre-covid year is taken, then India’s annual growth stands at 3.8 per cent. Over FY 2022 and FY 2023 India added $ 350 billion to its economy while USA added $1390 billion and China $1274 billion. India has the lowest per capita income among all the large economies. In per capita income terms USA is 31 times higher, China 5 times, Brazil 4 times, UK 18 times, Germany 20 and so on. Thus, even with the 5th largest GDP in the world our per capita income is lower than Angola, Ivory Coast etc.
Manufacturing and Industrial sectors are, at best, stagnant, if not declining. Growth of 8 crore infrastructure sectors halved to 3.6 per cent in March from 7.2 per cent in February.
Consequently, unemployment rate continues to remain at a record high of around 8 per cent. The number of employed has remained almost stagnant – 41.1 crore in pre-pandemic January 2020 and 40.9 crore in January 2023. Rural wages remained virtually stagnant during the last 8 years. When MGNREGS was most needed, budgetary allocations are cut by 1/3rd and unpaid wages are pending for longtime.
Under these circumstances, the Central Committee demanded greater public expenditures in job creating works by the Union government which will increase employment, people’s purchasing power and boost demand in the economy.
With the government clearly refusing to probe allegations of fraud against the Adani group, the SEBI filed a plea for extension of the May 2 deadline of the Supreme Court to file a status report on the probe, by six months.
For the truth to be established about these allegations, it is necessary that a JPC to be constituted to investigate.
The Wrestlers Protest
The Central Committee extended full support to India’s medal winning wrestlers’ protest demanding justice against allegations of sexual harassment. Despite the initial reluctance, the Delhi police had to file an FIR against the Wrestling Federation of India president, BJP MP Brij Bhushan Saran Singh.
The Central Committee demanded the WFI President must be removed from holding this office and police should immediately act on the FIR followed by stringent punishment.
Jammu and Kashmir
J&K has remained without an elected assembly since 2018. The Union government had laid down three conditions to be fulfilled before the holding of elections – completion of the delimitation process; upgradation of electoral rolls and a peaceful atmosphere for holding elections. All three of them, as per the government’s own admission, have been fulfilled. Yet the refusal to hold the elections clearly shows that the ruling dispensation is not sure about forming a government of its choice. This is a blatant infringement of the basic Constitutional and democratic rights of the people.
The Central Committee demanded the immediate holding of elections.
Forest Conservation Act Amendment
This amendment introduced in the din in the wasted budget session of the Parliament is disastrous, worsening the challenges of climate changes and its impact already being felt in various ways in the country. These amendments eliminate the Constitutional and legal rights of Gram Sabhas to give or withhold consent for any project in their areas; liberalizes norms for diversion of forest lands; promote privatization of forests and give more powers to the Union government to dilute the rights of state governments over forest governance. This is a further assault for the rights of the Adivasis and traditional forest dwellers and is a direct violation of the existing Forest Rights Act.
This amendment must be withdrawn.
The Central committee strongly condemned the continuing post assembly elections violence unleashed by the ruling BJP. Apart from physical attacks, large scale extortion is taking place and people are threatened that their properties, shops, means of livelihood like auto rickshaws etc. will be destroyed if they don’t pay the demanded money. This is ruining the lives and livelihoods of lakhs of people.
The Central Committee demanded an immediate stop to this violence and the strict adherence to rule of the Constitution; identify and take action against the culprits.
The Central Committee reiterated that the main task before the country and the people is to isolate and defeat the BJP. To achieve this, the CPI(M) will cooperate and work together with secular opposition parties.
On issues of national importance like sharpening of communal polarization; poisonous campaigns of hate and violence; the Adani scam; misuse of central agencies; conducting a caste census; assaulting Federalism; the maximum unity of secular opposition parties must be forged to highlight such issues. Further, forge unity of all secular opposition forces in protest actions against the attacks on peoples livelihood and in every state, depending on the concrete situation obtaining there, the secular opposition must work out tactics to maximize the pooling of anti-BJP votes in the elections. As the situation varies from state to state these arrangements will necessarily be state specific.
The Central Committee decided to consult the left parties to launch nationwide united actions, on issues of immediate concern for the country and people’s livelihood
In consultation with other secular opposition parties to raise issues of national importance through demonstrable public actions and manifestations.
The Central Committee decided to fill up the vacancy in Central Committee by inducting Vikram Singh, a leader of the agricultural workers movement as a CC member.