On the Movement Against CAA-NPR
Since the last CC meeting, the country has been rocked by sharp protests against Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), National Register of Citizens (NRC) and National Population Register (NPR). These mass protests have attracted the attention of the people throughout the country.
In the last CC meeting we had adopted a resolution on the present situation and decided on certain tasks. (ND, September 2019) In this resolution CC gave its estimation of the present situation particularly the status of the RSS-BJP drive towards imposing fascism in the country and formulated its approach to the joint movement with other forces. CC formulated that on the issues of fascist offensive we should not hesitate to have joint action where-ever necessary with other forces including those of the ruling classes who oppose that offensive.
The previous CC meeting was held after abrogation of Article 370 and lockdown in J&K. In December 2019 the Govt. piloted amendment to the Citizenship Act which was passed by the Parliament. This amendment provides for granting citizenship to Hindus, Sikhs, Christians, Jains, Bodhs and Parsis from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan who have come to India prior to December 31, 2014. This is in conjunction with Central Govt. declaration on preparing a National Register of Citizens (NRC) and in preparation of that, to prepare a National Population Register (NPR). After protests erupted all over India with its epicentre in the BJP ruled states particularly capital Delhi, UP and Karnataka, Prime Minister announced that there has been no discussion in the Govt. on preparing NRC. However, the Govt. is moving ahead with NPR with its modified questionnaire. The questionnaire that RSS-BJP Govt. has prepared is for using the NPR as a precursor to NRC, in fact that is the very purpose of preparing NPR according to the amendments to the Citizenship Act done by the then NDA Govt. in 2003.
This mass upsurge against the CAA-NRC-NPR has drawn several sections of people into struggle. The foremost among them are Muslims who are convinced of an existential threat from the measures of this Govt. Faced with this existential danger Muslim masses have overcome their inhibitions and hesitations, in brief a defensive attitude since the partition of the country in 1947. Asserting their roots in the country, they are upturning the long held ideas about the community and its place in the country. They are finally turning a page on the isolation that community has suffered; at least politically they are challenging the ghettoization. They have been fully mobilized including politically the most backward among them. Muslim women are at the front of this struggle – educated among them leading the way. They are articulating their opinions well and are heralding not only a mass upsurge in India but also a radical challenge to the leadership from among their own community. They are eager to identify with the problems of the people at large owning them up and visualizing themselves as a part of struggle against them. This has been one of the most important aspects of the present upsurge among the people. Muslim masses constitute a large part of the gatherings of the people on this issue.
Second important section coming out in protest against CAA-NRC-NPR is the intelligentsia from all walks of life, with institutions of higher learning becoming important centres of these protests. No university has been left untouched and even the most otherwise politically inactive centres have become centres of these protests. Scientific community, academicians and film industry knowns have joined these protests. This section has been spurred into activity as they do not identify themselves with the India which RSS-BJP want to make this country. For this section, idea of India has become a focal point. They are using advanced means of communication, are not defensive in the face of repression and intimidation. They feel that RSS-BJP are taking away India from them. Though many among these sections are socio-economic status quoists, two factors are important to note here. The upsurge in the universities and institutions of higher learning has to be seen in the backdrop of rising attacks on higher education both in terms of declining allocation to these institutions and sectors including scientific research as well as attempts to control them and direct them into most unscientific and obscurantist channels. Both these aspects combined are pushing those in these institutions into movement. JNU students’ struggle against the fee hike has been the precursor of the present upswing in this movement.
The activity of this section from all communities and regions has popularized new tools of disseminating information, organizing protests and building links throughout the country. The immediate response throughout the country from one corner to another in these institutions to any repression on these sections highlights the importance of these tools of dissemination as well as organization which is bringing these sections in their thousands and lakhs onto streets.
This upswing in the movement against fascist offensive has brought all sections of progressives, communist revolutionaries, parliamentary left as well as democrats into this movement. They are displaying energy, initiative and imagination in supporting this movement. All hues of left participated in the movement. However, participation in this movement by any political organization does not mean any change in their basic class position and their political strategy i.e. of revisionists of channelizing this anger into parliamentary channels. Nor does it show their steadfastness in the protests and agitation. Rather such differences are out in the open with waning of the interests of revisionists and progressives aligned to ruling class parties in these protests of late.
From what has been stated above, the tasks before the communist revolutionaries and progressives can be deduced i.e. of drawing the broad masses of workers and peasants into this movement, those sections which have not yet come into the movement. Concrete plans should be drawn to draw such sections into this movement.
Fascist offensive attacks the existing democratic rights. Fascism is not a change in the ruling classes but a change in the mode of ruling classes’ system of governance. Hence it tramples under feet the rights which the people have snatched from the ruling classes through their struggles or the rights that the ruling classes were forced to concede for their accession to power or retention of power. Secondly this change in the mode of ruling is backed by a chauvinist mobilization of people in favour of such a change with jingoist, hyper-nationalist and social chauvinist slogans renting the air and diverting the people from the real causes of their growing distress. It digs deep into long held backward chauvinist attitudes and marshals them into a strong movement against the existing system of government thus forging unity between the oppressed and oppressors for opposite reasons covered under the hyper-nationalist frenzy. Fascism is the response of the ruling classes to a crisis situation pregnant with the possibilities of the growth of revolutionary movement, a sort of pre-revolutionary situation. The anti-system feelings of the exploited and oppressed are misguided to annihilate whatever progress was made in the past in terms of their rights, the exact opposite of what moved the people. Fascism is the most naked terroristic method of rule and its form is dependent on the socio-economic condition of a given country as well as on the place it occupies internationally. This is all well known. Also known is the fact that fascism is embraced by the ruling classes when they are not able to rule in the old way i.e. with the existing methods of rule. This necessity may come about when their rule is threatened by a rise in the struggle of working people which they cannot put down within the existing ruling framework. This is the existential threat that capitalism faced in several European countries after the First World War; after the Victory of Great October Socialist Revolution challenged Capitalism in European countries. Fascism arose there to combat that challenge and save Capitalism. However, such necessity may also arise when the ruling classes need to intensify their exploitation and this intensification cannot be accomplished within the existing framework i.e. when they themselves need to do away with the existing framework. Such is the challenge Finance capital is facing today with the growing accumulation of capital in the conditions of stagnant or relatively stagnant markets, it needing to do away the existing rights of the people to maximize its profits, the very drive of Capital. Rise of fascist forces in developed capitalist countries and even backward countries where imperialist and comprador capital plays a leading role in the economy like in India should be seen in this backdrop. Other reactionary sections like landlords any way oppose democratic rights of the people. We have analyzed the socio-economic crisis underlying the rise of fascism in India in CC Resolution adopted in September 2019. Sometimes, fascism becomes the need of the ruling classes due to a mixture of both the factors operating to a varying degree.
In these conditions, symbols of erstwhile existing system have emerged as symbols of resistance. Contradictions in the erstwhile system are becoming a new battle ground in the period of rise of fascism. In fact rise of fascism takes place through a fierce struggle not only against the forces of the people but also against the other forces of ruling classes. Tricolour, Constitution and other symbols of the hitherto rule of the ruling classes have become symbols of resistance to fascism. Preamble of the Constitution which had been used to hoodwink the masses and expressed the contradictions of the rule of big bourgeois big landlords ruling classes, which contains declaration of promises which the ruling classes did not fulfill and had no intention of fulfilling, has emerged as a particular symbol of the resistance. This represents both status quo and change- reversion to the erstwhile state of things and yearning for the fulfillment of the promises made by the ruling classes. In this way these symbols act both as shield and sword.
In these protests indefinite Dharna at Shaheen Bagh has become a symbol. Situated near Jamia Milia Islamia University, the area has a large Muslim population. Protest has drawn a good number of Muslim women. Selection of site is suitable for its sustenance. It is located in the very area where local participants live. They do their household work and participate in Dharna. A whole lot of initiatives have sprung here. There is a library named after Savitribai Phule and Fatima Sheikh, the earliest women teachers who taught at the all Girls school in Maharashtra. It has become a rallying point for all types of progressive forces, all anti-fascist forces. Shaheen Bagh has been replicated at over 150 sites and many more unreported and the trend of starting Shaheen Bagh type of protests has been continuing. CC had underscored importance of Shaheen Bagh protest in inspiring similar protests in the country. While all sorts of forces are active and playing different roles, none of them does or can control it. Such attempts made at several places have come a cropper. It does not mean that political situation or changes in it have no influence, in fact they do exercise a lot of influence, in fact the ruling class media too exercises a lot of influence but in more general terms i.e. no single political force controls it or can control it. This is a good situation for people’s forces including communist revolutionaries to work in. It is pregnant with the possibilities to work among big multitude of people.
The real content of this protest is not being understood by a variety of forces, particularly those who are long used to working with a small band of loyalists. They are at sea in this vast multitude. They are in a hurry to exercise their influence and getting frustrated. This protest is also a lesson for a variety of revisionists and ruling class politicians who want to quickly fashion it into their electoral tool. That they see Muslim masses mainly through the prism of electoral gains is substantiated by their waning interest in this protest after elections in Delhi. Protesters are aware that this is a long drawn struggle and they are braced for it. Those who talk of immediate flare up or adopting means to lead early showdown, have failed to comprehend the nature of the protest which the women of Shaheen Bagh have imbibed. They are at the head of this protest displaying perseverance and patience required, not complaining against those doing less rather appreciating them for what they are doing. More and more ShaheenBaghs are coming up and people are moving to assert their democratic right to protest and braving all repression to assert their right.
Muslim masses are participating in these protests. At most of places they constitute the bulk of participants. They too are aware of it and it has important bearing on the emerging situation. It has led to increasing activity of the Islamic forces and the political forces having mainly the base among Muslims. In our last CC resolution, we had dealt with joint action with revisionist parties and civil society organizations which are active against fascist forces. We have also in the past mentioned organizations of minorities to be part of effort against fascist offensive. However, we have not dealt concretely with such organizations with the result that our comrades do not have clarity on this. Here are aspects which have bearing on this, the most important being communal outlook of some of them and ties of most of them with the ruling classes. When we are facing the offensive of RSS fascist offensive of Hindutva, the question of the role of minority religious organizations needs to be tackled. Which organizations or at least, what would be thecrieriafor judging which ones we can work with and to what extent, if any, we can cooperate with them, needs to be worked out. There are some important streams among them which have many differences between them. The picture of uniformity projected by the ruling classes in the country about Muslims is an artificial construct. While the Jamat-e-Ulema-e-Hindi (JUI) is known for its staunch opposition to Pakistan and for espousing the cause of composite nationalism, parts of the Jamait-e-Islami (JI) did not support Pakistan from the angle of Muslim interests. Here reference to Pakistan is only to show their attitude to the relation between nationalism and religion. While JUI has been close to Congress, JI has worked among Muslim masses and intelligentsia. The latter’s cadres have been behind some militant Muslim organizations which have been banned by the Govt. They are operating in many outfits. JI has sometimes been drawn into opposition framework, one such being in protests against Emergency when some leaders of JI were also behind bars. The huge Muslim participation in the ongoing protests and influence of these organizations has made this discussion very necessary and urgent. Support extended by these organizations to some organizations particularly at a time when masses are active has contributed to their strength and relevance. However, we must be vigilant to ensure that organizations adhere to the common framework about the movement. This is not easy to ensure and hence careful attitude is necessary. However, we should not hesitate to be part of protests irrespective of what organizations are also taking part; we may interact with them for and in course of such protests.
It is also important to assess the role being played by the communist revolutionary organizations. CRs were the first to warn against the danger of fascism and moved against fascist offensive. However, despite this, CRs were slow to intervene in the emerging situation. CRs had led the effort for a platform against fascist offensive uniting revolutionary forces and forces struggling against social oppression i.e. against social oppressions including caste oppression and religious persecution. To play due role in the emerging situation, gaps in theoretical understanding have to be overcome. We have to overcome the understanding that Indian ruling classes’ rule itself is fascist and hence, as such, there can be no danger of fascism in the country from any section of the ruling classes. Such debates were there during Emergency also. According to this opinion, fascist offensive needs no special effort at mobilization, revolutionary movement need be developed without regard to this aspect. They ignore the political situation faced by the revolutionary movement. This is all strategy and no tactics, a sure recipe to inaction and passivity, swinging between ignorance and irrelevance. This stand is often couched in revolutionary phrases.
There is another understanding which recognizes the danger of fascism but is not clear about the nature of struggle against it or rather does not embrace logical consequence of such recognition of building broad based people’s resistance against fascism and its offensive. It is easier to come to theoretical agreement with this understanding, but on the practical aspects there is a deep seated sectarianism ranging from half-baked prescriptions to treating such effort only as some sort of cover for their revolutionary work. At the root of their approach is their failure to work out definite policies suited to a given situation which they concede to be different. Though this understanding is different from the former in theoretical recognition, but it is not helpful in moving ahead in practice.
There is also an important fact of the small strength of CR forces particularly in their divided state. We should work out approach in the concrete conditions, not withdrawing into our shell, content with local existence. We should not float in the sea of irrelevance with the help of balloons of revolutionary phrases, nor we should remain content with or confined to participating in the forums floated by the ruling class and revisionist combines. This underlines the localism which drags down many of us. In this respect, it is not very different from the trend which advocate following revisionist parties’ lead on all such matters, reducing revolutionary movement to local struggles, most of them are very much in the legal framework. The fact is that even these revisionist Left parties are not able to play any central role in these protests though like others they are there.
Any joint move among CRs should not take much time. We should not attempt to settle all outstanding issues facing the revolutionary movement. There is a distinction between unity efforts and joint actions though they facilitate each other. We should all appreciate the need to project before the people a revolutionary line on immediate issues. Persistent efforts are required for that. Though it may be time consuming, this effort should be pursued with clarity of purpose that such effort is very much necessary in the interest of revolutionary movement for which unity is very necessary. Moreover, the challenge posed by the situation is much bigger but the revolutionary forces can act as a catalytic core. We should overcome inertia in our joint effort which makes timely intervention difficult. This becomes particularly important in the fast moving situation. For example in a very short time, such initiatives crystallized in different states with different forces including communist revolutionaries.
Two important issues have come to the fore, both are also interconnected. First there is need to play active role at the Central level. The importance of all India intervention is increasing along with the increasing network among the activists and rise of social media as effective tool of dissemination of information as well as nature of the issues on which movement has come up. Most of these e.g. attack on higher education or more importantly CAA, NRC, NPR are by the very nature all India.
Another important aspect is the need to link this intervention with the tasks of growth of revolutionary movement i.e. class struggle. In particular, the emphasis on developing areas of resistance struggle and on developing militant movements of peasantry and working class needs to be reinforced. Obviously political situation in the country has much influence over our tasks in different states and regions, but development of these struggles alone can help revolutionary forces play an important role. An important direction of our efforts should be to take up building of class and mass organizations and draw the masses that have become active in these protests into such organizations. While taking up such steps we should keep in mind the interest of the ongoing movement.
An important task pertains to the field of culture. With intelligentsia and cultural activists actively participating in the protests, the need to develop cultural tools of protest, particularly against the growing fascism and in defense of people’s rights has emerged an important task.
This movement has come to the fore in the situation of deepening economic crisis. We have repeatedly analyzed this crisis and its root causes- its primary cause being declining purchasing power of the people. This is related to the worsening conditions of working class in urban areas and peasantry and agricultural labourers in rural India. This declining purchase power is leading to decline in growth of domestic demand and with stagnant and decline in demand in the foreign markets, the economy of India has suffered sharp decline in growth. The economic growth in the year 2019-20 has dipped below 5% despite changes in the method of computing economic growth. All sectors are suffering from this decline. Manufacturing has been in decline while some sectors have been stagnant. The banking sector crisis has further deepened. The extent of NPAs continues to be high over 9% of the entire lending of the PSBs. This is in addition to waiving of nearly 8 lakh crores of NPAs over the last five years i.e. Modi Govt. came to power in 2014. Further the crisis in NBFCs which have been promoted by the Govt. to spur growth has further deepened the banking crisis as much of NBFCs’ tainted assets are on the balance sheets of PSBs. This has been a favourite method of squeezing the PSBs besides directly siphoning off their money like robbing the reserves of Reserve Bank. Now the govt. is embarking on selling its stake in the PSBs and in the biggest state insurer, LIC. This shows the dire strait in which the economy finds itself besides their drive to siphon off this money to help their corporate friends. On the other hand, foreign debt has scaled new heights. It has crossed 550 billion $ mark. The Govt. remains silent on this while parading its foreign currency reserves.
While stranglehold of imperialism and fetters of semi-feudal agrarian relations are the root cause of worsening economic crisis, the handling of the economy by the present Govt., its policies of loot and plunder of the public finances by the corporate has played a role in precipitating the present crisis. Its demonetization, GST imposition and waiving of loans of the corporate have all contributed to depressing the demand.
The Govt. attempt to increase share in the foreign markets has been unsuccessful. In fact there is growth in protectionism in western imperialist countries particularly USA. Trump Admn. is not willing to grant Indian products any increase in access to US markets. In fact, Trump Admn. has removed India from MFN status for concession in taxes. Trump has also asserted that India should be considered a developed country and not a developing country. Trump, who is on visit to India, has not brought US Trade Representative as a part of his delegation. Rather, he has made it clear that his emphasis is on increasing sale of military equipments to India.
In the conditions of this growing crisis, RSS-BJP govt. is embarking on the failed policies of encouraging foreign and domestic corporate and helping the landlords. In the recent Budget, while there were no measures to spur growth, there was increasing attack on the peasant masses and workers. While MSP was not increased nor its coverage improved, there was increase in the prices of fertilizers and diesel which make agricultural operations costlier, further squeezing the peasantry. With cut in the allocation of MGNREGS and decline in industrial employment, this is bound to result and is resulting in decline in agricultural wages and generally in lowering the consumption in rural areas, a key factor in declining growth, noted even by the IMF. There has been cut in the allocation for agriculture, irrigation and rural development except for agricultural credit, a bane of Indian peasantry.
The attack on the workers in the form of changes in labour laws has continued with govt. encouraging further contractualization of employment. While this has not led to any increase in the employment it has led to further depressing the wages, benefits, working and living conditions of the workers. Working class condition is worsening while TUs linked to ruling class parties have neither the willingness nor the ability to arrest this trend as their political organizations support the policies which are responsible for this state.
Despite very high level of unemployment reaching 7.3% according to CMIE (highest over last five decades) not taking into account gross under-employment rampant in the country, RSS-BJP Govt. has not taken any measures to address the same. Number of hungry has increased with India dipping several places in the World Hunger Index. The response of RSS-BJP Govt. has been to make drastic cut in the allocation for Food Security which shows the priorities of this Govt. The allocation for Health and Education have suffered real time decline i.e. allocations taking into account inflation while allocations for these sectors have traditionally been abysmally low.
With deepening economic crisis and pressure of their corporate- foreign and domestic- mentors, the RSS-BJP Govt. is shamelessly attacking the people. They have further sharpened their communal conspiracies and move towards Hindu Rashtra. But the worsening conditions of people are hampering their efforts to further deepen communal polarization with people increasingly seeing designs of RSS-BJP behind these conspiracies and real content of their Hindu Rashtra. Communalism is a vote catching device perfected by the ruling classes but it delivers only when couched in the cloak of nationalism. Before the Lok Sabha elections in 2019, RSS-BJP could use Pulwama-Balakot with the help of corporate media and by keeping the news of economic decline under wraps giving hope to the people that though they were feeling the pinch the situation is not so bad. Since those elections, economic downturn has become the main story of the day as this could no longer be hidden. With the growth declining and people’s conditions worsening, BJP has lost all the state elections. It lost majority in Haryana and could cling to power only after conceding some space to JJP. It also declined in Maharashtra. Though its alliance with Shiv Sena secured a majority, the alliance broke down on sharing power and Shiv Sena formed state govt with NCP-Congress. These electoral setbacks came even when the opposition Congress has been in disarray after 2019 Lok Sabha defeat. Loss of power in Maharashtra, wherein lies the financial capital Mumbai, has been a blow to RSS-BJP. Pakistan bashing, which worked in Lok Sabha elections, was not so effective for state elections, a fact proved over and over again in the elections to other state assemblies as well.
RSS-BJP suffered a big setback in Jharkhand elections in which JMM-Congress-RJD alliance got clear majority though BJP had got 11 out of 12 Lok Sabha seats from the state in 2019 parliamentary elections defeating the same alliance. Tribal anger, which was seething due to changes in the tenancy laws, led to defeat of RSS-BJP while worsening conditions of the people hampered their efforts at communal polarization.
With protests against CAA-NRC-NPR growing and Shaheen Bagh emerging as the focal point, RSS-BJP fought assembly elections in Delhi on the plank of communal polarization. Modi-Shah-Yogi led campaign gave up any talk of development and resorted to thorough communal polarization. New records of hate speeches were set with EC turning into only a spectator, even facilitator. AAP, ruling in Delhi, totally sidelined this issue and instead focused on its waiving off charges on household power consumption up to 200 units, water charges waiver for common people and free bus ride for women. They also propagated their claim on what they had done on govt. schools and mohalla clinics. In view of the fact that RSS-BJP having not made any issue about people’s lives; AAP could make it an election on people’s issues. It was helped by the fact that Congress, which had emergedh second to RSS-BJP in recent Lok Sabha elections, did not take any energetic campaign giving rise to common belief among people including Congress leaders even prior to elections, that Congress had outsourced the task of defeating RSS-BJP to AAP. It was also being talked that Congress has given up local for national. In general terms, BJP could increase its vote share by 5.5% while Congress declined by roughly the similar margin but the transfer was not direct to the BJP. AAP held onto its vote share (53.5%) suffering only a marginal decline of 0.8% as compared to 2015 elections. In broad terms the middle classes which had supported BJP fully in the Lok Sabha elections split in assembly elections with lower middle classes, the larger part, going to AAP. It appears that votes lost by AAP to BJP were made good from the Congress which got only 4.27% vote share.
RSS-BJP defeat in Delhi punctured their claim that CAA-NRC-NPR enjoy a lot of support among the people.Though it does not mean any dilutionof their communal conspiracies, rather these will only be intensified. They have nothing else to offer. But this defeat has kept up the energy of anti-CAA-NPR protests.
UP has seen worst repression in the course of these protests. 23 people have been killed. Women and children have been brutally beaten up besides men. The whole state saw internet blockade for days, making it the largest area covered in the world. Even post mortem reports have not been given to outsiders. While activists were arrested on a large scale, the worst treatment was given to Muslims to further the communal campaign of RSS BJP. Despite such repression, protests have continued at several centres. RSS-BJP has conducted a number of rallies but could not mobilize the common people for their campaign. However, RSS-BJP are drawing some strength in the states ruled by opposition parties.
On Violence Unleashed in Northeast Delhi
For last two days, parts of North East Delhi have witnessed large scale attacks on Muslims in which more than nearly twenty persons have been reportedly killed. Violence is still continuing in some localities and also reportedly extending to the nearby localities. Full scale of deaths, injuries, destruction and loss of life, property and livelihood is not known and may grow due to continuing attacks. These attacks on Muslims were preceded by open calls by BJP leaders for violent attacks on Muslims, their hate speeches backed by mobilization from outside the colonies for the attacks. This is a familiar pattern as well as the fact of participation of police personnel in such attacks, their remaining spectators when minorities are attacked and coming down heavily where minorities resist the attacks. A large majority of those arrested for the violence or so-called conspiracy behind it belong to minority community while they themselves are the victims of attack.
This spate of violence has shown some bright side of the situation. Gurudwaras of the area made open announcements on the very first day of violence that their doors are open to the victims of violence for food and shelter. So was done by some temples particularly those belonging to oppressed castes. There have been several reports of the people of different communities guarding people and religious places of other communities. Such humane and daring efforts in face of Govt. orchestrated violence have been there but their open and organized nature is a welcome development.
Revolutionary forces must intervene to mobilize the people against these attacks, expose the perpetrators of this violence and organize relief to the people, particularly forcing the Delhi Govt. to provide relief. These efforts must be undertaken without delay and unitedly with other forces willing to come forward.
Some Other Issues
Two acts of the Govt. of transferring cases to NIA have attracted the attention of the people. One related to arrest of DSP Davinder Pal who was caught with a leader of Hizbul Mujahedeen. He has been one of the main conduits of Central Govt. in using surrendered militants to commit acts which were used by the Party in power. Afzal Guru, himself a surrendered militant, had stated that it was this DSP who had asked him to arrange accommodation in Delhi for those allegedly involved in attack on Parliament in 2001. His plea had fallen on deaf ears, not even enquired into and he was hanged to satisfy the “conscience of the nation”. It is being alleged that the Hizbul leader was being asked to plan a big attack in Delhi prior to elections. While he was arrested by J&K police and there was no case in NIA against him, his case was transferred to NIA to prevent any disclosures inconvenient to the Govt.
More important has been transfer of Bhima Koregaon case to NIA. This is a case which was being handled by Maharashtra Police. In this case a large number of democratic rights activists have been arrested. With the change of the Govt. in Maharashtra the case is once again in focus with NCP demanding judicial enquiry into it. When the Central Govt. learnt of the deliberations in Maharashtra cabinet on this issue, they immediately transferred the case (Elgaar Parishad case) to NIA. It has been one of the biggest fraudulent cases in India. The judiciary has been pliant in suppressing the democratic rights activists. It has been the test case of what is known as Urban Naxals, a term coined by RSS to suppress all the progressive and democratic intellectuals and activists. Transfer to NIA is to prevent unraveling of this case which does not have any basis in law or facts. Besides saving the real organizers of the violent attacks on Dalits in Bhima Koregaon who were linked to RSS, this is a crude and cruel attack on the democratic rights of the people.
This period has demonstrated surrender of the state organs before the RSS. Central Election Commission has been a mute spectator to the most flagrant violations by RSS-BJP leaders. Most importantly the Supreme Court has endorsed the RSS Hindu Rashtra with a series of Judgements. Its judgement on Babri Masjid has been a clear case of endorsing majoritarian outlook. It is not based on any law or Constitution and lacks basis in principles of jurisprudence. It has been widely criticized by legal experts besides political leaders. Supreme Court has also abandoned the people of Kashmir when it refused to lift lock down in J&K where internet shutdown has set the record of longest shut down in the world. Supreme Court has passed a number of orders beginning with Judge Loya case which show that Supreme Court should not be expected to stand for the democratic rights, even those guaranteed in the Constitution. What is termed as judicial activism was a product of the era of minority/coalition govts. May be with the decline of RSS-BJP some of these institutions may find their voice again.
North East is seeing large scale mobilization against CAA. RSS-BJP govt. is facing increasing isolation among the people. To stem the tide of the people’s unrest Central Govt. signed third Bodo Accord which is being termed as the final accord which has allegedly settled the problem of Bodos finally. But a number of Bodo leaders have come out against this. Moreover, the Accord is being opposed by majority of the people of the region. Assam is a complex mix of ethnic, linguistic and religious groups and requires multi-layered autonomy to address the concerns of the people. But the successive govts. have only played one people against other and have not tried to solve the people’s problems in democratic framework ensuring autonomy and democratic rights to diverse groups. Bodo Accord will not solve the problem in the region rather it will further aggravate the same. This will also not help the RSS-BJP in the North East where it is getting increasingly isolated and people’s protests are growing.
(Central Committee of CPI(ML)-New Democracy
February 25, 2020)