Summary of Part II of Political-Organisational Report of CPI(M) 18th Congress

The crux of this part of the report has been explained in the following words: “The struggle for an alternative socialist order has to be based on the revolutionary transformation of the existing order. This, in turn, needs an engagement (i.e., joining issues) of the revolutionary forces with the existing world realities with the sole objective of changing the correlation of forces in favour of socialism. This process of revolutionary transformation has to be based on such an engagement and not on the wishful thinking of escaping from the existing realities. The entire history of the revolutionary movement led by the working class is the history of such an engagement with the existing realities in order to shape the material force required to establish the alternative in socialism.”

As regards the Party’s stand towards the flow of foreign capital into the country, the report states: “Under such circumstances, the flow of foreign capital into our country, in the present conditions, must be regulated by stipulating the following conditions: a) such capital should augment the existing productive capacities in our economy; b) such foreign capital must upgrade the Indian economy technologically; and c) such capital must lead to employment generation. While foreign capital will seek to exploit our natural resources and labour to garner superprofits, the struggle for imposition of these conditions will, apart from making the resistance to the task of eroding national sovereignty more effective, render some benefit to the Indian economy and the people.”

Against this background, after underlining the crucial importance of the CPI(M)-led Left Front governments of West Bengal and Tripura, the report states: “Under globalisation, the neo-liberal policies reduce state governments to extreme penury, by reducing central transfers to them, by charging usurious interest rates on loans given to them (including even on small savings loans raised within the states themselves at much lower rates of interest), and by precipitating recessionary conditions and peasant distress. On the other hand, the imperialist agencies come with “aid packages” to these very governments to “help them out” of their fiscal predicament. If the Communist-led governments accept these packages or other “special packages” prepared by the Central government, then they are projected by the media (largely controlled by the globalisation agenda) as compromisers or in charitable terms as “pragmatists”. On the other hand, remaining bogged down within fiscal constraints (which the Indian Constitution does not allow state governments to overcome on their own) and reducing expenditures on the people’s welfare jeopardizes the existence of these governments.”

Suggesting the guidelines regarding these funds, the report states: “These governments, therefore, may accept aid for developmental projects but the important criteria that needs to be adhered is that there should be no conditionalities which are against our basic interests and policies. In no case should we go in for loans which involve structural adjustment programmes. Such programmes entail conditionalities like privatisation of certain sectors, downsizing staff, cutting subsidies and fiscal conditionalities.

“The CPI(M)-led state governments have to function under constraints, including those imposed by imperialist-dictated policies at the Centre, which the Party fights to overcome. The Party’s fight against such policies, therefore, is simultaneously a defence of the interests of our state governments. Whenever our governments hard-pressed for funds but duty-bound to provide relief to the people are offered loans by imperialist agencies and western governments, the Party should consent to such loans only if it does not weaken its fight against the imperialist-dictated policies. In all cases, where the Party agrees to such loans from international agencies like World Bank, ADB, DFID, JBIC etc, it must take the people into confidence and explain to them the justification for taking such loans.”

Finally, noting that globalisation, by its very nature, implies the rapid withdrawal of the State from meeting its social obligations to the people, a trend that the CPI(M) strongly opposes, the report says that all opportunities for popular intervention must be utilized. It then lays down guidelines to be adopted as regards foreign funding or governmental funding to Party-led organizations carrying out such intervention. Two other sections of the report throw light on the Party’s attitude to the Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) and to Self Help Groups (SHGs).