CPI-ML New Democracy

On 9th November : In Memory of Com. C.P. Reddy

P. Suryam

‘Naxalbari’, prior to 1967 was a remote unknown place in West Bengal. But the spring thunder of 1967 made it a part of Indian history. It is a symbol and pathfinder for the oppressed in India.

‘Srikakulam, in North Coastal region of Andhra Pradesh was known as a backward district plagued by recurring droughts. But the 1967-68 events made it a synonym with revolution.

Godavari valley, was known as one of the most scenic places in Andhra prior to 1968-69, now it has become the centre of resistance struggles in India.

Naxalbari, Srikakulam and Godavari Valley resonate the anti-feudal and anti-imperialist ideologies. They hail Marxism-Leninism-Mao Zedong Thought and proclaim the need of People’s War as the path to liberate the Indian masses. They have been the centres of revolutionary movements. They gave birth to many more areas of struggle.

The other name for Godavari Valley movement is Com. Chandra Pulla Reddy. It might be the name of an individual at one time, but today it symbolizes peoples resistance struggles. Building more and more such areas of sustained resistance is the way to march towards armed struggle for the final liberation of Indian masses.

Areas of sustained resistance have been built with unswerving commitment and sacrifices. Com CP as he is affectionately called sacrificed his life in the jungles of Godavari Valley to clear this path for Indian revolution.

Com CP was of the view that it is the subjective element i.e. the weakness of the revolutionary organizations that is delaying the Indian revolution. He was of the view that the revolutionary situation prevailing in the country is conducive for the onward march of Indian revolution but it is the disunity and splits in the ranks of revolutionaries which is delaying the revolution. He was always emphasizing the need for the revolutionary organizations with similar views to unite and thus boost the morale of the people. Throughout his life he strived for this unity. He passed away in the midst of these efforts. He wanted to initiate unity discussions with Com Satya Narain Singh again and started for Calcutta in the first week of October, 1984. He suffered a heart attack in the train journey. By the time he reached Calcutta it became severe. He was travelling alone. He was admitted to hospital. Com SNS and others were waiting for him at another place, there was no chance to inform them. They left after two days. Com CP’s condition deteriorated and he died on November 9, 1984.

Com CP was born in Velugodu village in Kurnool district in 1917. He completed his high school studies in Kurnool and did his F.A. in Madras. He started participating in student movement while in Madras. He joined Guindy engineering college in Madras. In his first year itself he objected strongly when the principal of the college ordered a scheduled caste student to sit in the last row. He mobilized students against this caste discrimination.

He was rusticated from the college by the angry principal. Later CP’s father took him to the principal who demanded an apology from him. He refused to apologize even though his father pleaded for it. The principal had to backtrack in the face of the student movement and admit him into the college without any apology.

It was the period when the anti-British Colonial struggle was surging ahead in India, when the Russian masses having overthrown Czar were consolidating socialist revolution under the leadership of the Bolsheviks, when revolutionary struggles were upsetting the feudal establishments in China and other countries. It was at this time anti-colonial movement in India was gaining momentum. Com CP was active in this movement. He left his studies and became an active organizer in this struggle. He was arrested and sent to Alipur jail by the British. He spent six months in jail. His father brought pressure on him to go back to college but he was already taking interest in the peoples movement under the leadership of the communists. He became a part of the communist movement. The communist movement in Andhra at that time was very young. Communist party was formed in Andhra during 1933. In 1944 Com. CP became the Kurnool district secretary of the CPI.

He organized many mass struggles in Kurnool district. In Nandikotkur taluq people occupied thousands of acres of land under his leadership. In 1947 he was elected to the State Committee of the party. He was also given the responsibilities of some of the mass organizations in the state.

He was the candidate for the Nandyal assembly constituency, he lost because of severe repression. He was arrested in 1949 and released only after the announcement of the 1952 elections. He contested from Nandikotkur assembly constituency and won against the Congress. He spoke for 6 hours on the problems of Rayalaseema people in the Madras Assembly which stunned the entire assembly. Later his speech was brought out as a book.

While the national movement sowed the seeds, it was the Great Heroic Telangana Peasant Armed struggle that inspired him. As part of the plan to extend this movement he toured Nallamala forests and made plans for the extension of this struggle. He became a part of this movement by working in the neighbouring Mahabubnagar district in Telangana region. The revisionist leadership tried to suppress him as he staunchly opposed the withdrawal of Telangana armed struggle.

It was in this period that revisionists in the international communist movement under the leadership of Khruschev, Tito and Suslov were confusing and misleading the international proletariat. Chinese Communist Party under the leadership of Com. Mao waged a principled struggle against these forces. Nine Comments were released by the CPC in the course of this struggle. As a result of this struggle the Indian Communist movement faced a serious political and organizational crisis. This crisis led to the split in the communist party in 1964.

The major issues in that crisis were;

1) Whether to support the revisionist theories of Russian leaders or to support the revolutionary theory of the CPC.

2) On how to characterize the 1947 transfer of power.

3) Whether to support a section of the ruling classes or not.

4) On the question of Telangana armed struggle.

5) On the issue of Indo-China war.

The present day CPI leadership at that time was one with the ruling classes. It became a lackey of Russian revisionism. It opposed China blindly. It supported the withdrawal  of Telangana armed struggle after Nehru’s army marched (1948 September) into Telangana. It supported  national chauvinism of the ruling classes. It opposed the protracted people’s war path which alone could bring about the National Democratic Revolution. It hailed India’s ruling class as an independent class that is anti-imperialist. Com CP was one of those who staunchly and resolutely opposed these policies.

The Central govt jailed those leaders who were opposed to India’s war against China with American support. Com CP wrote ‘International Communist Movement and Developments’ while in jail with the assistance of M. Subbarao another Communist leader in jail. It was hailed as an original work by many leaders including Sundaraiah. He requested CP to write the history of Indian communist movement.

Com CP was a prolific writer. He wrote many articles, booklets, books in accordance with the needs of the movement. He wrote ‘The Russia China debate’ while he was in CPM to clarify the position of these two parties on  important ideological issues. This book was of great help to the cadres to understand the issues involved in the debate. Till now seven volumes have been released and there are several other writings.

Com CP was aware of the danger posed by the revisionist leadership in China after the demise of Com. Mao. He wrote a book ‘Defend Mao and Mao Tse Tung’s thought analyzing CPCs 1981 resolution ‘On some problems of history’. It was a clear warning of things to come.

Later he wrote two articles on the “creative Marxism of CPC’. He explained how the CPC is following a pro- ruling class line in relation to India, how it is following a revisionist line in its internal affairs as well as external relations. He exposed CPC’s deviation from Mao’s path. China became a capitalist country as CP has warned at that time. Taking the present developments, the recently concluded All India Party Congress of CPI (ML) New Democracy characterized China as a social imperialist state. It is exporting finance capital and is competing with other imperialist powers, mainly US imperialism.

After the split with CPI, CPM also started following the policies of CPI. It became inevitable that another ideological, political struggle has to be conducted against the neo-revisionist policies of the CPM leadership as they have agreement on all the important policies of CPI. Thus, within four years another struggle  came up in CPM.

In April 1967, CPM leadership released ‘New tasks for the party in the changed conditions’, a draft document.  Com. CP immediately submitted his criticism to the politburo in May, 1967. He criticized the pro- Russian policies as also on some other national and international policies of the party. CPM leadership released another three documents in 1967 August. 1) On some ideological issues 2) Programme 3) On left sectarianism (this was an attack on the revolutionaries in Bengal). These were draft documents. It decided that there will be no discussion on programme and path. Thus, it exhibited an unheard of dictatorial attitude. It gave up communist organizational practices to resolve differences. Com. DV presented his alternative in the CC itself but the leadership decided not to circulate it among the delegates. These dictatorial organizational practice led to revolts in the party.

The Andhra Plenum of CPM was held in Palakollu in February, 1968. The Central leaders of the party Sundaraiah and Basava Punnaiah attended to explain the CC policies. They could not give convincing replies to the questions put forth by the delegates. Instead they started admonishing the delegates. Com. CP explained the document prepared by CP and TN. It was an alternative to the CC line. Out of the 231 delegates who attended the plenum 158 supported CP–TN document. Only 52 supported the CC document. 8 members remained neutral.

In the alternative Com. CP explained about the ideological issues in the international movement, about the August 15th transfer of power, about the comprador nature of the bourgeoisie, about the contradictions in the national plane, about the united front, about the right of self-determination to the nationalities and the path of Indian revolution. Thus, Com CP was one of the important leaders who defeated the neo-revisionist line of CPM in AP.

In April 1968, CPM held the All India Plenum of the party at Burdwan. In this plenum Com CP explained the alternative document to the CC document for about seven hours. He exposed the neo-revisionist policies of the leadership. He condemned the repression against the Naxalbari movement by the Bengal Government. CPM leadership nominated many of the CC followers to the committees in Andhra to gain majority for the CC. The state leadership had ‘to oppose this openly’. Com DV, TN, CP, Kolla Venkaiah were removed from the state secretariat. These four comrades wrote an open letter to all party members exposing the leadership’s revisionist policies and announcing the revolutionary view point. This letter was written by Com CP.

The struggle against the neo-revisionist policies of the CPM leadership was not a co-ordinated one at all India level. No leader of All India stature was on the side of the revolutionaries to lead or to coordinate this struggle. Comrades in some states felt the situation in their state as the general situation and this led to certain deviations in the struggle against the CPM policies. In Andhra this internal debate helped to mobilize most of the rank and file to the side of the revolutionary movement. Andhra comrades decided to stay within CPM till Burdwan plenum to polarize as many as possible with the revolutionary line. But their continuation in CPM for about 2 months after the Burdwan plenum led to many doubts about their intentions. Com. DV, TN and CP are responsible for this. Com CP announced his self-criticism about this in 1973 state conference. However, participation in state and central plenums helped to take the revolutionary line and politics into wider sections and mobilize them. It helped to mobilize the majority section in the party against  neo-revisionism in Andhra.

The revolutionaries in Bengal felt that to stay and struggle within CPM is meaningless as Naxalbari movement had already  started  and the  Bengal Government  was  bent on suppressing the revolutionary movement. They felt that it will work to increase illusions about neo-revisionists. Communist revolutionaries in most of the states felt likewise that Naxalbari struggle had drawn a line of demarcation between revisionism and neorevisionism and revolutionary Marxism and that it was no longer a matter of inner debate but of struggle between those who were conducting revolutionary struggle and those suppressing them.

Com. CP realized about the failure to advance the mass movement on the peoples war path while conducting the ideological-political struggle. He realized our failures in formulating tasks for the movement. But by this time there were good number of losses as many who took the side of the revolutionaries left their camp as they were not integrated into the movement. It gave the neo- revisionists a chance to mobilize some of them.

The state committee released a circular ‘Build areas of struggle’ to give direction to building the movement at village level and area level. This gave a direction to our cadres and we achieved good results wherever it was implemented. Com CP strived hard to implement it in the area for which he was responsible.

The new state committee gave a call in 1968 October to hold week long programmes to commemorate Telangana armed struggle. This call was given to give a direction to the peoples movement that it should follow its path. Com CP wrote “The Great Heroic Telangana Armed Struggle’ to draw lessons from that struggle and enlighten both the ranks of the party and the masses. Com DV praised it as an inspiring book. Till that time no one wrote on Telangana armed struggle. Com DV and Sundaraih wrote later.

Com. CP was working legally till this time. He rallied thousands in Hunger Marches. He led people in land struggles. In Nalgonda two of our comrades Com. Pullaiah and Com. Ramulu were killed by landlords when the people raided the house of a landlord during the hunger marches. Com. CP attended their memorial meeting and spoke with anger and detailed the tasks before the people. This was to be the last public meeting attended by Com. CP.

Congress Government wanted to arrest CP by foisting false cases. Com CP went underground. The state committee decided to send CP to work in strategic areas in 1968 November. Com. CP went to work in Godavari Valley on November 9th. It was on the same day, 16 years later, that Com CP died.

In his 16 years of underground life he used to talk about his desires. He did not want police to even get hold of his ashes.

Com. CP who went into forests in 1968 November did not come out except for the 1969 state convention. It shows his determination to build the revolutionary struggles in Godavari valley. He again came out of the forests in 1974 when revolutionary organizations from different states wanted to discuss unity with him. He toured Maharashtra, West Bengal and Kerala. He discussed the unity of revolutionaries with them and they were totally convinced with his explanations. They wanted to work under his leadership. Com. Neelam Ramachandraiah was instrumental in bringing about these different organizations to sit together. Com. CP discussed with Maharashtra Comrades for three days and nights in small hut in a paddy field. They were taken by surprise.

Com. CP felt strongly that we have come out of CPM not simply because of political differences but as we felt that it has sold itself to the bourgeoisie and gave up the path of armed struggle. He formulated a perspective and the tasks necessary to implement Peoples War path in India. He selected strategic areas and allotted cadre to work in these areas. As part of this he concentrated in Godavary valley to build revolutionary movement.

Com. CP was a theoretician. He was a good speaker. He was a man who integrated theory with practice. He was one who could not only impress intellectuals but also the most backward and illiterate tribals. He conducted wide ranging surveys in Godavari valley to understand the socio-economic conditions of the people. He believed that we have to learn more in the beginning. However tired he might be he always listened to radio, read papers and took down notes.

He mobilized the tribals on their issues. He conducted wide political propaganda among the tribals to make clear the real issues behind their problems. Many youth came forward to join the movement. As struggles sharpened, the enemy targeted the party and its leadership to suppress the movement.

In 1969 April the State convention was held. Com. CP was given the task of writing the political organizational report. Com. DV prepared “Immediate programme”, “Srikakulam tribal movement – some problems”. These three drafts where agreed upon unanimously with certain amendments. The convention elected a new state committee, new secretariat and a new secretary. Com. CP was in charge of the forest movement from the secretariat.

New situation emerged in the forest areas. People in large numbers came forward to struggle on their issues. Enemy attacks increased .and the issue of self – defence of the cadres came to the fore. It became necessary to move in teams. Com DV Rao sent two big weapons with the party to the forest region. In Manthani our comrades seized two weapons from an American hunter. On the other hand our comrades were also being influenced by the activities of the CPI(ML) then led by Com. Charu Mazumdar.

In 1969 April our comrades attacked the landlords in Pagideru and seized weapons from them. This incident led to political and organizational crisis within the organization. Com. CP made his self criticism on this incident in the 1969 July State committee meeting. He said that though there were many reasons for this incident he was mainly responsible for it.

He said, “This attack is against the essence of the documents of 1969 convention. In them we emphasized on the need to mobilize people for the agrarian revolutionary struggle and on formulating tactics suitable to the consciousness of the people. There is only one reason behind all these mistakes. I was swayed by left adventurism while integrating peoples mobilization with peoples resistance”.

Com. CP emphasized the need “To coordinate properly armed struggle, peoples movement and self-defence” and criticized failure to do so and conducting “raids unrelated to the demands of the people.” Reviewing the Forest Movement in Godavari Valley Com. CP described it as a success in the face of severe suppression of the movement by the Govt. “Thus inspite of intensified repression, the squads not only defended themselves, but are able to carry on the political programme of the Party and lead peoples struggles.”

Well before Pagideru happened two armed squads of our party were conducting political propaganda in the forest regions. We lost some initiative with Pagideru attack. This incident led to some misunderstandings in the comrades.

A short while after Pagideru we lost Com. Bathula Venkateswara Rao, an important young state committee member of our party and the first martyr in Telangana in this movement.

Police repression was let loose on the militant struggles of the people in the forest areas. The movement had to develop new forms and tactics to face this repression. Special measures had to be taken to defend our cadres.  Defense forms based on the local conditions had to be evolved and practised safeguarding against left adventurism.

Practice cannot be perfect like a written document  There will be problems in implementation. Leftist, Rightist mistakes may crop up. One should advance the revolutionary movement overcoming these mistakes. Mistakes should not be used to victimize comrades. Our discussions should help the comrades to rectify the mistakes but not to corner them. Mistakes are bound to happen when we go into practice. We should learn from them. But we cannot help those who do not go into practice and do not commit any mistakes.

Com. CP strived hard to implement the tasks in the face of many odds. He read about the revolutionary movements in different countries and their experiences. He read extensively the works of the founders of Marxism, Leninism and Mao Zedong Thought. He was reading them not only for acquiring knowledge but to put them into practice in the concrete conditions of our country.

In this period he wrote “Lessons of Chinese revolution – Peoples War path”, “Lessons of the struggle against right and left deviations in C.P.C. – Mao”, “Hunan Peasant Struggle and its lessons” etc.

During this period in 1969 December most of the state leadership attending the state committee meeting were arrested. Com CP and Com Ramanarasaiah could not attend the meeting as they did not get the information in time. Hence, they were not arrested. These arrests were a severe setback to the movement.

On the advice of the leadership in jail a new state committee was elected in July 1970. Com. Rama Narasaiah was elected as the secretary of this committee which included Com. CP and Com. Rama Chandraiah. This new state committee wanted to constitute regional committees for the forest area and the plains.

Com. CP was saddled with the additional burden of regrouping the organization and formulating policies and tasks.

The new PC prepared a document titled “The advancing revolutionary movement in Khammam, Warangal and Karimnagar districts”.  It detailed our work in the forest areas.

The new PC prepared another document, “Some problems of peoples war path” and distributed it. It clarified our differences with Charu Mazumdar on strategy and tactics. It upheld our work in strategic areas and opposed Charu’s views on this. It also detailed how Com. Charu Mazumdar’s views were mistaken on the issues of Mass organizations, Peoples issues, Economic struggles and Peoples movements on partial issues.

Both these documents were prepared by Com. CP. After a long time all the squads of Khammam and Warangal districts met at Bandala Gutta. They approved the formation of the three member PC and the two documents.

This meeting also discussed the issues facing the forest movement and reviewed the activities and finalized the four tasks for the forest movement.

1) Propagation of Peoples War politics

2) Mobilization of masses on Peoples issues.

3) Necessary actions on the enemies of the people.

4) Self defense from the enemies.

Based on these four tasks we could develop our movement both in the forest  region as well as the plains. During the period Leftism surfaced in the forest areas and right deviation developed in the plains.

Our legal newspaper Janasakti could not be printed because of repression since 1969 August. Com CP used to write regularly for this paper.

It was decided in the Bandalagutta meeting to bring out Janasakti secretely. This decision was implemented.

Our leadership in jail sent a document “Present situation – our tasks” in September, 1970. While there were some positive directions for the movement in this document, at the same time this document expressed some wrong political views.

The gap between the jail leadership and outside state committee increased since April 1971. State Committee Meeting took place in Surampadu hillocks in July 1971. A meeting of all the squads of Khammam, Warangal districts also took place. It reviewed the movement.

A document titled “Left deviation in the party” written by Jail leadership reached this meeting. Some new political formulations were announced in this document. Within a few months the jail leadership released another document titled “Right deviation in the party”. It is strange to note that both allegations were made against the same comrades.

The party split in July, 1971. It split on the lines of those who supported the jail leadership and those who supported the outside leadership. The split was also a result of the situation in which differences could not be discussed properly. The differences that resulted in this split could have been resolved. This split should have been avoided based on the principles of democratic centralism. It resulted in setback to the movement.

During this period, Com. CP did not confine himself to ideological, political debate, he formulated tasks for the movement and actively worked for the consolidation and expansion of the movement. He worked untiringly to give confidence to the cadre and to overcome the demoralizing effect of the split in the party.

The state conference of the party was held during September 24-27 1973. Com CP was mainly instrumental in preparing party programme, people’s war path and political organizational review.    The state conference adopted them after discussions. It also elected a five member new state committee. Com MNS and Com Y. Malla Reddy were the new members elected to the committee along with old members. Com PR was elected as the secretary of this PC. The conference decided to form organizations of Tribals.

The state conference  expanded the four point programme of Bandalagutta joint meeting of the squads to a six point programme.

1 ) Political propaganda 2) To build anti-feudal and anti-government struggles 3) To build mass organizations 4) To build village volunteer forces 5) To resist the enemy attacks 6) To build People’s Committees in the villages.

After this conference, our movement extended to the other side of the Godavari. Two squads went to work in the East Godavari forest areas. Appropriate forms of resistance were formulated for the movement in the forest areas. Vast tracts of forest land were occupied by the people. Squads got military and political training. Our movement extended to plains.

Com CP worked relentlessly for the unification of revolutionaries and for the emergence of a strong CPI [ML].

Andhra State Committee held unity discussions with the CPI [ML] under the leadership of Com SNSingh. They could resolve their differences on programme, path and several other political issues. Com CP was taken into the Central Committee.

Andhra was the strong base for the unified party. Andhra movement which was isolated so far from the other movements could gain from the experiences of the rest of the country. CC put the responsibility of implementing the experiences of Andhra movement in other parts of the country on Com. CP. It was during this period that congress government declared emergency [1975, June, 25 ] and ruled through fascist repression. Many important leaders of Andhra movement like Com. Neelam Ramachandraiah, Com. Ram Narsaiah and Com. Prasad were killed in fake encounters resulting in a setback for the party. Com. CP was greatly moved by these losses, but he never lost his confidence. It became most urgent to safeguard the party from the enemy attacks.

Emergency was lifted in March, 1977. CC discussed the election boycott policy being pursued till them. The programme of election boycott throughout the period of NDR was amended based on the experience in Russia and the writings of Com. Lenin.

This issue of elections was seen as a question of tactics to be decided based on the level of the revolutionary movement. Com. CP worked hard to re-organize the party which had suffered severe losses. He worked towards expanding the movement and intensifying the people’s movement. Differences cropped up while the movement was expanding. CC decided to discuss with the central government. Right deviation came to the fore in the period after lifting of Emergency and manifested in the course of these discussions also. Com. CP made his self-criticism about attending the discussions while continuing in the underground.

Com. CP concentrated on defeating the right deviation in the party. It was during this time that Com CP was elected as the General Secretary replacing Com. SNS. It was decided to resolve the differences in the party platforms through debate. Documents were released. But those with differing views could not continue till the party conference. Com CP worked tirelessly to consolidate the party after this split. As part of this, party congress was held in 1980. A plenum was held in 1981. Party programme, people’s war path, National-International situation, Party constitution, Review of 13 years of All India Revolutionary Movement were prepared by Com. CP and released for discussions in the party.

In the All India Congress of the party a nine member CC was elected. Com. CP was elected its General Secretary. This congress inspired our rank and file to a great extent. Revolutionary movement in various states made advances. In Andhra our movement was making progress in 18 districts. Our movement had its presence in all the nine districts on either side of Godavari river. Militant struggles of the masses, resistance to the attacks on our movement were developing. Our party came to be recognized as a strong revolutionary organization both in AP and the rest of the country.

But the party received a jolt in the form of a split in 1984. Sharp political and organizational differences came to the fore. The party split vertically as a result of inability to resolve these differences. Forest movement also split and the split caused serious loss to the movement.

Com. CP was very much affected though outwardly he appeared confident. The split in the forest movement hurt him deeply. He was in the last leg of his life. We have to learn lessons from these splits.

A party that works in the light of people’s war path has to select strategic areas for its work from the very beginning.  Com. CP built revolutionary movement in the forest areas with this perspective. He developed it as a fallback area.

Development of the resistance struggle into armed struggle cannot be unconnected with the developments in the rest of the country. Hence, we have to safeguard these areas of resistance as well as develop other such areas till the people’s war is launched. It is very difficult for the resistance struggles in one area to develop into armed struggle without powerful movements emerging in the surrounding areas and without creating many areas of resistance.

Areas of resistance struggle will emerge in strategic areas and the plains. It is easier for the enemy to suppress the movement in plains. The experience of Telangana armed struggle substantiates this. During that struggle we suffered severe losses as we had no forest cover to defend ourselves against a powerful enemy though we had a very strong people’s movement to support us. We have not seen such movement since then. We had to send our squads into forest areas to protect them. Taking all these experiences into consideration, it is necessary to concentrate in strategic areas. This does not mean that we look down on work in plain areas.

Whatever may be the number of reasons for our inability to develop resistance struggle into armed struggle, the chief reason is what is stated above. Splits are sabotaging our movement. Till we are able to launch people’s war, we should not only defend our areas of resistance, but also expand them. We must intensify our struggles in the areas adjoining our resistance struggle. We must select strategic areas in other states and implement these tasks there also. We must build powerful solidarity movements in plains and cities.

Lessons of history should be useful to the present movement. The continuing phenomenon of splits, and the hasty conclusions drawn during the time of splits will become a hindrance to the future unity. Everything should be objective, we can discuss all the issues, but it cannot be a precondition that we must have agreement on all issues to unite. Some issues cannot be solved immediately. Lessons of history should be broad and agreement on the basic issues is necessary. Some issues may be left for future. Some may be resolved only after the successful conclusion of the revolution.

Relations between communist revolutionaries struggling for a common goal are sometimes becoming antagonistic. Even within an organization also sometimes relations are becoming antagonistic. We can not achieve anything if we are not able to overcome this. Com. Mao called upon the communists to follow unity-struggle-unity process. Instead struggle–unity-struggle is followed many a time in our party internal life and also between revolutionary organizations. We should redouble our efforts to overcome this.

There are those who are criticizing Com. CP from right and ‘left’ angles. Some are saying that the movement under his leadership could not move ahead because of ‘rightist mistakes’, while some others are saying that the losses suffered are due to ‘left’ mistakes. Revolutionaries should not make Com. CP the culprit for all the losses suffered by the movement. Right and left deviations invariably affect the movement and the leadership should be able to rectify them and move ahead.

Under difficult conditions, leadership cannot be infallible and sometimes mistakes are committed. Lenin criticised those who stay aloof from work and proclaim themselves as infallible. In this connection he quoted Bernard Shaw, “It is honourable to have a life with mistakes in practice than a life that goes on without doing anything”. (Retranslated from Telugu)

To make the mistakes that occurred during the course of the movement under the leadership of Com. CP as the ‘main’ is a negative trend in assessing CP. This trend is a product of the negative attitude towards the political policies and views formulated by him. The reason for such an attitude is that they themselves are mired in left & right deviations. The real issue is of following and practising the revolutionary orientation evolved and practised by Com. CP and not just claiming to be following it. CPI (ML) New Democracy recognizes Com. CP along with Com. Charu Mazumdar and Com. Satyanarayan Singh as the national leaders of CPI (ML). It owns up Com. CP. Com. CP is considered as the main leader and architect of the policies that are being pursued by CPI (ML) New Democracy.

Com. CP is one of the most important leaders of the revolutionary movement in India. He was an exceptional leader who integrated both theory and practice. Com. CP was never hesitant to admit his mistakes and make self-criticism. He was very eager not only to sit in meetings and take political classes but also to visit areas of struggle and discuss with the grass root level workers. When the young comrades pressurized him to concentrate on writing, he started to write the history of the Indian Communist movement. But he died soon after. It is nearly three decades since he died.

We have inherited the movement initiated by him. We have inherited his formulations to develop the movement. The real homage we can pay to this comrade is through re-dedicating ourselves to the cause of Indian revolution and lead it to its logical conclusion.

He was our General Secretary. He was also a guiding light to all the Communist revolutionaries, though he was the main architect of our policies, he was the charioteer of the entire Indian revolution.

He used to say that it is inevitable for all communist revolutionaries to unite into a single organization which will overthrow this system and lead the New Democratic Revolution to its successful culmination. Let us take a pledge that we shall realize this.

(Reproduced from ND November 2013)