Polit Bureau Communique

Monday, March 27, 2023

The Polit Bureau of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) met in New Delhi on March 25-26. It has issued the following statement:

Persecution of Opposition Leaders

The Polit Bureau condemned BJP’s usage of the criminal defamation route to target opposition leaders and disqualify them as MPs. The sentencing of Rahul Gandhi and the haste with which he was disqualified is a blatant display of the levels of intolerance to criticism and reflects the abhorrent authoritarian character of the BJP.

This comes on top of the already brazen misusing of the Central agencies to target leaders of the opposition parties. The RSS/BJP has also lodged FIRs and filed cases in several states against political opponents on the flimsiest of grounds. AAP leader and Delhi Dy. CM Manish Sisodia was arrested and is in jail. Among others lately being targeted and harassed by the ED/CBI are Lalu Prasad Yadav, Tejashwi Yadav and family (RJD), Ms. Kavitha (BRS) and many others.

Put Adani in the Dock

The Hindenburg Report exposed the nefarious manner in which the corporate–communal nexus that has come to rule India since 2014 has been operating. When Modi government assumed office in 2014, the Adani group had a market capitalization of $7.1 billion according to Forbes. This zoomed to a $ 200 billion by 2022. In the international ranking, Adani was at 609 in 2014, astronomically growing to become the world’s second richest person in 2022.

The BJP government is shamelessly defending the Adani group’s acts of brazen misdeeds, acts of omission and commission. It is its nexus with crony capitalists that has facilitated the looting of thousands of crores of rupees of people’s hard-earned savings from nationalized financial institutions like the State Bank of India and the Life Insurance Corporation. Its blatant refusal to hold any sort of enquiry into the Adani saga is exposing it to the core.

The Polit Bureau reiterates its demand for a probe by a Joint Parliamentary Committee into the Adani group’s acts of misdeeds. The Adani group should be proceeded against as per provisions of the law.

BJP Paralyzing Parliament

Unable to face questions on its ties with the business conglomerate that has seen a meteoric rise during its tenure in office, the BJP is adamant in its refusal to have a discussion in parliament or concede to a demand for a JPC.

It is unprecedented that the Lok Sabha was stalled by members of the ruling party for days together using the ruse of a statement made by Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on the state of Indian democracy. This also led to the guillotining of the Union Budget without any discussion.

Undermining Constitutional Authorities

Apart from paralyzing Parliament, the attacks on the judiciary continue to be mounted with repeated statements made by the Union Law Minister and the Constitutional authorities like the Vice President. The efforts to impose an executive control over the judiciary must be defeated.

Governors continue to play the role of furthering the BJP’s political objectives in non-BJP ruled states.

Sharpening Communal Polarization

The Polit Bureau noted with grave concern the rising incidents of orchestrated attacks against members of the minority communities. Killings of Muslim youth by cow vigilantes continues unabated. Attacks on churches and members of the Christian community, particularly Christian Tribals, are reported from several states.  Various new false narratives and histories are being created, especially in poll bound states to heighten communal polarization.

The Karnataka BJP government decided to scrap reservations for Muslims under the OBC quota. This comes at a time when the state is on the eve of the assembly elections. Widespread attacks and harassment of the Muslim minority is intensifying in the state. 

Growing Economic Burdens

The Polit Bureau condemns the passage of the Union Budget 2023-24 without any discussion. The budget miserably fails to address the issues of the economic slowdown, job generation or increasing the purchasing power of the common people.  On the contrary, it squeezes the government expenditures to reduce the fiscal deficit while giving further tax concessions to the rich. This comes at a time when the Oxfam report shows that the richest 1 per cent in India have cornered 40.5 per cent of the wealth generated in the last 2 years. It is, thus, a contractionary budget which will only aggravate the economic crisis. 

Further burdens are being imposed on the people with yet another hike in the LPG prices. Unemployment and hunger continue to mount while inequalities are widening to obscene levels.

Decimating the MGNREGS

The Polit Bureau demanded the immediate scrapping of the National Mobile Monitoring System APP made mandatory by the government for the MGNREGS. Reports suggest that workers have lost at least half of their wages owing to technical glitches in the APP. Women workers who constitute bulk of MGNREGS work force are forced to take loans to buy smartphones to use the APP. Along with the slashing of budgetary allocation and long pendency of wage payments the introduction of the APP is rendering the MGNREGS ineffective.

Recent Assembly Elections

The Modi government with its control over the media ecosystem is projecting itself electorally invincible. This is totally misleading. In the earlier round of assembly elections while BJP retained Gujarat, it lost its sitting government in Himachal Pradesh and also the Delhi Municipal Corporation which it had controlled for the last 15 years.

In the recent elections in 3 North Eastern states of Tripura, Nagaland and Meghalaya the BJP won only 46 seats out of 180. In Tripura its MLAs declined from 46 to 32. In Nagaland, it was a distant number 2 winning 12 seats. In Meghalaya it could win only 2 seats losing deposits in all the other 58 seats. In terms of votes polled, BJP secured 38.97 per cent in Tripura; 18.81 per cent in Nagaland and 9.33 per cent in Meghalaya. However, with the local regional parties it is in government in all three states.

In the assembly by-election at Kasba Peth in Pune district, BJP’s sitting seat which it had won continuously for two decades was wrested by the Congress candidate of MVA.

In the assembly by-election at Sagardighi, West Bengal, a seat TMC has been winning since 2011 it lost to the Congress. In 2021 the TMC had won this seat by a margin of over 50,000 votes over the BJP. The Congress-Left candidate won by nearly 23,000 votes pushing the BJP to a distant third position.

Tripura Assembly Elections

The Polit Bureau made a preliminary analysis of the results of the elections held to the Tripura Assembly. It noted that the elections were held under an extraordinary situation where the opposition parties were not allowed to function and were under continuous attack and sought to be terrorized during the course of the last five years. It thanked all the voters who had come out to vote in favour of the opposition parties braving terror and physical attacks.

The failure of the BJP to perform as it had expected has led to its unleashing of a horrendous attack targeting the opposition after the declaration of the results.  The Polit Bureau condemned the continuing attacks in which the CPI(M) is the main target. Over a thousand incidents of terror, intimidation, loot and setting of offices and homes on fire, destroying properties and livelihood instruments like rickshaws and three-wheelers etc., destroying crops, particularly rubber plantations, poisoning fish ponds etc. etc. have occurred.

That even the seven-member parliamentary team of MPs from CPI(M), CPI and Congress which visited Tripura to take stock of the situation was attacked by the BJP-RSS in the presence of the police speaks volumes of the extremely dangerous situation existing under the BJP government in the state.

Denounce the Targeting of Kerala LDF

The Polit Bureau strongly denounced the targeting of the LDF government and the Chief Minister of Kerala who is subjected to personal slanders and vilification. The Congress led UDF in Kerala indulges in similar activities playing in tandem with the BJP. The people of Kerala will give a fitting rebuff to such efforts.  

Growing People’s Struggle

The PB noted the growing people’s struggles amongst various sections.

The Samyukta Kisan Morcha (SKM) successfully held a largely attended Kisan Maha Panchayat at Delhi Ramlila Maidan on March 20 and gave a call for nationwide protests against growing corporate control over agriculture.

The Maharashtra Kisan Sabha launched the third long march on March 12 from Nasik to Mumbai. Well before the march reached Mumbai, the Shinde-BJP state government was forced to accept all demands including a subsidy of Rs. 350 per quintal for onions; waiver of loans of over 88,000 farmers etc.

In several states the electricity workers embarked on strikes forcing the BJP government to bow before the united and determined trade union actions. The state governments employees, the Anganwadi workers and Scheme workers went on strike actions in many parts of the country.

The PB reiterated the Party’s solidarity and support to the April 5 Mazdoor-Kisan March to Parliament.

Central Committee meeting

The Central Committee will meet on 27, 28 and 29th of April at New Delhi.