Maoists in India: A Call to the People on 10 Years of Unified Party

A Call To the People of India! Shatter the shackles of imperialism and feudalism, Destroy this rotten system!

Build your future and that of the country with your own hands!

Dear people,

Warmest greetings to you from the Communist Party of India (Maoist) on the occasion of its 10th founding anniversary.

Ten years ago, we came before you to announce a joyous event – the merger of two revolutionary streams. A single Maoist party, the Communist Party of India (Maoist) was formed on the 21st of September, 2004, to shoulder the tasks of revolution. Today we place before you an account of these momentous years. It has been a decade of heroic struggle and sacrifices by the best daughters and sons of this land. Nearly two thousand and five hundred of them, from Dandakaranya (Chattisgarh), Bihar, Jharkhand, Andhra Pradesh, Telengana, Maharashtra, Odisha, Paschim Banga, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Asom, laid down their precious lives. They include hundreds of great leaders of the revolution, from the topmost level of our party to its basic levels. Scores of valiant fighters of the People’s Liberation Guerrilla Army shed their blood in battle with the oppressor’s mercenaries. Many among the masses too made the highest sacrifice. Continue reading

India: “Reds set for foundation week program”

[The bourgeois media’s coverage of events relating to the CPI(Maoist)’s public celebrations of their founding ten years ago. — Frontlines ed.]

Jaideep Deogharia, The Times of India | Sep 21, 2014

Ranchi: The historical merger of People’s War and Maoist Communist Centre (MCC) to form the Communist party of India (Maoist) in 2004 will be celebrated by the Left-wing rebels across the country on September 21. It will be a week-long programme.

The central committee of the CPI(Maoist) has released a 16-page document enumerating the history of Communist movement since the merger. The document has been prepared to highlight achievements and challenges before the movement and is being circulated across the party organization.

Maoists claim to have lost over 2,500 comrades in the past 10 years and put this figure of loss at 12,000 since the Naxalbari movement of 1967.

Hailing their strong presence in Dandakaranya in Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand, Maoists in the document ask everyone to rise against the ‘Hindi-Hindu’ theory of the Modi government at the Centre.

“National culture and religious diversities and even the formal federal structure of the country are sought to be effaced by sinister moves to impose a ‘Hindi-Hindu’ mould as supreme,” the document reads which describes Modi as a member of the “fascist RSS”. Continue reading

India: 10 Years Ago, the CPI(Maoist) Was Founded

[In 2004, the two largest revolutionary Maoist organizations in India merged to found the Communist Party of India (Maoist), after a long period of summation and struggle for unity on basic questions of ideology, politics, and revolutionary strategy.  At the time of the founding, they issued a series of documents.  The following document, “HOLD HIGH THE BRIGHT RED BANNER OF MARXISM-LENINISM-MAOISM” details much of the history leading up to this merger, what unity was developed, and the place this historic merger plays in the history not only of the Revolution in India, but the responsibility the new Party has taken toward the international communist movement and Marxism, Leninism, and Maoism worldwide.  The document, while a summary, is nonetheless quite long, but well worth reviewing.  The CPI(Maoist) has taken a leading role in the world revolution, and continues to do so today.  —  Frontlines ed].

Central Committee (P) CPI(Maoist), 21 September, 2004:  “….The present document – Hold High the Bright Red Banner of Marxism-Leninism-Maoism – is the synthesis of all the positive points in the documents of the two erstwhile parties, as well as their experiences in the course of waging the people’s war, fighting against revisionism, and right and left opportunist trends in the Indian and international communist movement, and building a stable and consistent revolutionary movement in various parts of our country…..”

INTRODUCTION

During the uproarious decade of 60s that shook the entire world, the genuine communist revolutionaries in India too began their struggle against the entrenched revisionists inspired by Marxism-Leninism-Mao Tse-tung Thought. The Great Debate, initiated and carried out by the then CPC led by Mao Tse-tung against modern revisionism in the International Communist Movement, clearly marked this new beginning in the Communist Movement in India.

It is in this context that many genuine and staunch communist revolutionary forces along with many outstanding and front-ranking leaders like comrades CM and KC started emerging on the scene in the fight against revisionism. This fight was reflected in the 7th Congress of the CPM held in 1964 in the form of two diametrically opposite roads-the road of parliamentarism and the road of protracted people’s war.

Thereafter, the earth-shaking events of the GPCR further surcharged the political atmosphere in India. The clarion call of the great Naxalbari movement led by Com. CM proved to be a “Spring Thunder over India” as graphically described by CPC. It greatly unmasked the ugly face of the revisionist leadership of the CPI, CPI (M) brand. The powerful slogans like “China’s Path is Our Path” and “Mao Tsetung Thought is Our Thought” spread to the four corners of India and even other parts of the Sub-Continent. Naxalbari thus marked a qualitative rupture with age-old revisionism in the Indian communist movement and firmly established the universal truth of MLM Thought in India. From then on, MLM-Thought had become a demarcating line between revisionists and genuine revolutionaries in India. Thus “Naxalbari path, the only path” became an ever-resounding slogan. This movement further inspired and attracted a completely new generation of revolutionary communist forces from among the masses of workers, peasants, students, youth, women and intellectuals towards the ideology of MLM Thought.

The tumultuous events of the 60s starting with the Great Debate and culminating in the GPCR brought forth a new polarisation among the ML forces all over the globe. New Marxist-Leninist parties began to emerge by taking MLM Thought as their guiding ideology.

Although later the revolutionary movement suffered a setback for the time being, the bright red banner of MLM Thought and the flames of Naxalbari continue to shine in various parts of the country. In fact the seeds of MLM Thought were sown very deep in the Indian landscape.

The history of the emergence and development of our two Parties is inseparably linked with this stormy period. During the last 30 years and more of history we not only continue to uphold the shining red banner of MLM Thought, but also continue to apply it in our revolutionary practice in the concrete conditions of India. During this practice we have forged and developed a revolutionary line by analyzing and synthesizing the positive and negative experiences of our movements no doubt on the basis of MLM Thought. In this light we have achieved many remarkable successes in continuing and developing the protracted people’s war through developing agrarian revolutionary guerilla struggle in the countryside by mobilizing and relying on the peasant masses, especially the poor and landless peasants. We continued this struggle by resisting the continuous severe repression and many suppression campaigns unleashed by the reactionary ruling classes. We have succeeded in developing several guerilla zones and guerrilla army-the PLGA- directed towards establishing full-fledged PLA and Base Areas in the vast countryside of Andhra, Jharkhand, Bihar, Dandakaranya and the adjoining parts of these states. This protracted people’s war led by our two Parties is directed towards completing the New Democratic Revolution through the strategy of encircling the cities from the countryside. The content of this revolution is agrarian revolution.

During the course of this protracted people’s war and fighting against various “Left” and Right Opportunist tendencies that emerged from within or outside apart from the revisionism of CPI and CPI (M), we have learnt that any attempt to belittle the importance of MLM Thought and its concrete application to the concrete conditions will prove to be very disastrous. All these tendencies undermined the Maoist conception that in all the backward countries dominated by imperialism and feudalism the objective condition for initiating and developing protracted people’s war from the very beginning are already mature. In the very light of our bitter experience of the last 30 years achieved at the cost of heavy bloodshed along with the experiences of the International Communist Movement, our understanding regarding our ideology has deepened further. Continue reading

Revolutionaries in India Find Greater Unity in New Merger of Maoist Parties

[Decades after the first wave of Maoist revolutionary struggle in India, often referred to as the Naxalite rebellion, was brutally suppressed by the Indian State, and the movement was splintered into many groups and parties, the struggle to unite the Maoists has taken a great step forward.  Beginning nearly 10 years ago with the merger of the People’s War Group and the Maoist Coordination Center, forming the Communist Party of India (Maoist), now, a further step merging the CPI (Maoist) with the CPI(ML)-Naxalbari has advanced the struggle to a stronger and more developed stage.  The newly unified party announced this advance on May Day, International Workers Day, with the following statement.  —  Revolutionary Frontlines]

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May 1, 2014

Merger Declaration of CPI(Maoist) and CPI(M-L)Naxalbari
Hail the Merger of the Maoist Parties in India into a Single Party!

(Released to the press by comrades Abhay and Krantipriya, spokespersons of the respective parties)

On this occasion of the International day of the world proletariat, the glorious May Day, we the Maoists of India, with a great sense of responsibility and firm conviction, announce the merger of the CPI (Maoist) and CPI(M-L) Naxalbari into a single party, to be known as CPI(Maoist). Thus strengthening the vanguard of the Indian proletariat, which is a contingent of the world proletariat, we dedicate ourselves evermore firmly to the cause of the Indian revolution and the world proletarian revolution.
The Maoist movement took form through the great Naxalbari uprising of 1967. Inspired and led by comrades Charu Mazumdar and Kanhai Chatterjee, founder leaders of our party, thousands of leaders, cadres and masses laid down their invaluable lives to advance the revolutionary movement and build a strong party.
After the setback of early 1970s and the martyrdom of comrade Charu Mazumdar, the communist revolutionary forces were divided into many groups. The genuine revolutionaries while trying to build the movement in their respective areas made serious attempts to unify all revolutionaries into a single party. In the course of this process over the last four decades the two main streams represented by the erstwhile CPI (ML) (People’s War) and the MCCI merged into a single party, the CPI (Maoist), on 21st September 2004. This marked a qualitative leap in realizing a long drawn aspiration of the workers, peasants and other oppressed masses to build a single directing centre leading the new democratic revolutionary war in India to success and marching forward to establishing socialism and then communism. Continue reading

Indian Maoists’ message to Nepal Maoists CPN-Maoist — August 31, 2012

[We have recently seen this message from the CPI (Maoist) to the new CPN-Maoist party, sent in late August of last year.  The new party in Nepal has, since this statement was issued, held its Congress early in 2013 — and while it decided not to return to the revolutionary path of Protracted People’s War, there are indications that an intense struggle continues within the new party to adopt this revolutionary course.  The content of this statement reveals some of the reasons Indian Maoists appear to be hopeful as well as cautious in in their assessment of events in Nepal as of late August, 2012. — Frontlines ed.]

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COMMUNIST PARTY OF INDIA (MAOIST) — CENTRAL COMMITTEE

Hail the formation of Communist Party of Nepal-Maoist

Message of CC, CPI (Maoist) to the CC, CPN -Maoist

 August 31, 2012

To Comrade Kiran, The Chairman, CPN-Maoist

The CC, CPI (Maoist) is sending its warmest revolutionary greetings to you and all the CC members and the entire rank and file of the CPN-Maoist on the formation of the new revolutionary party in Nepal after a prolonged internal ideological and political struggle against the opportunist and neo-revisionist leadership within the party who betrayed the Nepalese revolution and by demarcating and making a break with them.

Even while the Nepal Revolution reached the stage of strategic offense, the UCPN (Maoist) leadership assessed the national and international situation subjectively, took erroneous tactics which themselves led the party get bogged down in the quagmire of parliamentarianism with capitulationism uninterruptedly since end 2005. The opportunist faction that was dominant in the party rapidly went on taking modern revisionist positions including 12-point Agreement, 8-point Agreement and Comprehensive Peace Agreement etc thus betraying the cause of the Nepal people and causing enormous harm to the New Democratic Revolution. The revolutionary faction of the UCPN (Maoist) led by Comrade Kiran and other revolutionaries put up a fight against the neo-revisionist stands that harmed the interests of the Nepal oppressed masses and have split at various stages from the revisionist leadership. Our CC considers such splits resorted to by genuine revolutionaries demarcating from the neo-revisionist leadership and its erroneous right opportunist line as correct steps that would advance the revolution in Nepal and serve the interests of the oppressed classes and all oppressed social sections in Nepal. Continue reading

Maoist Political Prisoner, Septuagenarian Sushil Roy, politically vocal though medically impaired

source: http://www.icawpi.org/en/india-news/867-maoist-political-prisoner-septuagenarian-sushil-roy
See, below, four articles on Sushil Roy:  — an appeal for justice and humanitarian medical release;  — an interview on current CPI(Maoist) political relations; — a brief biographic note; — and a 2006 letter written soon after Sushil Roy’s arrest, challenging the CPI(M)’s parliamentary road and the WB “Left Front” repression of revolutionaries.

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Sushil Roy, Maoist political prisoner, during a medical transfer earlier this year

Septuagenarian Maoist Sushil Roy, known as Comrade Som, who is one of the two oldest political prisoners of the India at present, an inmate of Giridih Mandal Kara (district level jail), has been admitted to All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) after being brought from a ward at RIMS, a government medical hospital at Ranchi of Jharkhand. He was shifted from the jail to hospital after an inordinate delay first to RIMS in Ranchi, when he was not able to swallow any food for over 10 days and had become extremely weak and virtually crippled as a result of his medical history and cruel neglect of medical treatment for 7 years in jails. This delay was caused by the refusal of the Jharkhand police to provide him a secure mode of transport from Giridih jail to Ranchi. Had it not been for the hue and cry raised by several people’s organizations and his younger brother, Dr. Shyamal Roy, who happens to be his only close relative, about his likely death in that jail, even this belated treatment would not have been possible. Shushil Roy is considered to be the senior most leader of the CPI (Maoist) after the united Party emerged in 2004 and he inaugurated the United CPI (Maoist).

Several people’s organizations in India have been demanding:

1.      Shushil Roy should be unconditionally released forthwith.

2.      If his unconditional release is not possible forthwith, he may be allowed to remain a free citizen as long as he is still under trial, so that he can obtain the necessary medical treatment, and receive the due care and attention under the charge of his younger brother.

3.      Also, a high-level judicial committee should be constituted to probe, and give a report at the earliest, on the veracity of the charges foisted against him in the remaining cases.

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The following is the full version of the interview Shushil Roy gave to Indian Express, an English language daily recently.

Indian Express (IE): What relations do the CPI(Maoist) have with the Nepal Maoists? Is it still going strong?

Sushil Roy (SR): The CPI (Maoist) seeks, as part of its international responsibilities, to have fraternal relations with Maoists and all progressive forces struggling for the working classes all over the world. Nepal is one of them.

Specifically today in Nepal there are three Maoist parties to my knowledge. One called UCPN(Maoist) led by Prachanda and Baburam Bhattarai, the other called CPN(Maoist) led by Matrika Yadav who was the first to part with the UCPN(Maoist), and the third, also called CPN(Maoist) led by Kiran, which was formed very recently. Earlier, all the three were within a single party CPN(Maoist). The splits have taken place because Prachanda and Baburam Bhattarai’s policies of late amounted to a betrayal of the Nepalese new democratic revolution. To my knowledge, the CPI (Maoist) has had a fraternal ideological and political relationship with the Maoists of Nepal, which entails both unity and struggle on common issues. Whether the Nepal Maoists are still leading the revolution there or have betrayed it, we have common aims and objectives, common enemies in the present phase, and common friends as well. That is the essence of our unity on ideological and political issues. Where we differed on questions related to the strategy and tactics of revolution in our respective countries, we had been having internal or mutual debates, but we do not interfere in each other’s actual work, other than politically supporting mutual revolutionary causes.

Now, with the formation of three Maoist parties in Nepal, and one of them generally perceived as having betrayed their new democratic revolution, and the two others yet to emerge with effective strategy and tactics to take ahead that revolution, I would think that the CPI(Maoist) would be in the process of reshaping the forms of its ideological and political relationship with the three parties.

IE: What has been the West Bengal government’s stand towards the Maoists after Mamata Banerjee came to power?

SR: The government of West Bengal has been antagonistic and inimical towards the Maoists, both before and after Mamata came to power. While she was in the Opposition, Mamata, to begin with, tried to feign as if the Maoists had no significant present at all. Then, as the elections drew closer, and Singur, Nandigram and then the Lalgarh peoples’ resistance movements emerged as a big force, she realized that with the support-base of the Maoists widening and deepening, it would be beneficial to pose as a supporter and sympathiser of them. Then again, when she came to power, when she had the props of the state with its repressive apparatus of police, paramilitary and armed forces, and draconian laws, as well as the court, colonial bureaucracy etc. to hold her in power, she had no need any more to elicit the support of the masses rallying around the Maoists, or the support of the radicalised intelligentsia of Bengal. She, therefore, did a quick somersault on occupying the chief minister’s chair and began to show her true colours as regards the Maoists. The brutal murder of Kishenji, the beloved leader of the Indian revolutionary masses, left no doubt about her real political and military character.

IE: Is the government sympathetic towards them? Is any government sympathetic towards the Maoists?

SR: No question of that. There is not a single government in the country which could be sympathetic towards the Maoists. That is reflective of the strength of the Maoists. Only the masses are sympathetic. Continue reading

Questions of Freedom and People’s Emancipation, Parts 1 and 2, by Kobad Ghandy

[Kobad Ghandy, a member of the Politburo and Central Committee of the Communist Party of India (Maoist), was captured by Indian Intelligence Bureau on  September 17, 2009.  Initially kept in illegal detention and tortured, he remains a political prisoner in Tihar Jail, where he continues his revolutionary studies and writings, organizes Maoist classes, and joins the struggles of other prisoners against the draconian conditions they face.  The following is the first two parts of a series on freedom–its promise and the problems in its pathway. — Frontlines ed.]

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Mainstream, VOL L, No 35, August 18, 2012

[Kobad Ghandy from Tihar Jail now writes on the concept of freedom vis-à-vis present-day society as also in relation to a future just order, bringing out some causes for the failure of the erstwhile socialist states. It will comprise a series of five to six articles. —Editor]

PART I — THE CONTEXT

Communism is the return of man himself as a social, i.e. really human being, a complete and conscious return which assimilates all the wealth of previous development. Communism, as a fully developed naturalism, is humanism, and, as a fully developed humanism, is naturalism. It is the DEFINITIVE resolution of the antagonism between man and nature, and between man and man. It is the true solution of the conflict between existence and essence, between objectification and self-affirmation, between freedom and necessity, between individual and species. It is the solution of the riddle of history and knows itself to be this solution. —Karl Marx

Utopian? Maybe. Yet, it sounds like the ultimate in freedom, something toward which one could move towards, step by step. The rose of freedom in the above-mentioned garden, called by any other name, would, no doubt, smell as sweet. It may seem ironical to dream of freedom locked up in a jail within jail (the high-risk ward), with lathi-wielding cops breathing down one’s neck 24 hours a day, denied access to even the normal jail facilities. But dream one must to maintain one’s sanity under such conditions.

Yet FREEDOM… that much abused word. Freedom—around which hundreds of myths have been woven into beautiful-looking intricate webs waiting to entrap us. US, as the ultimate in freedom: free speech; free trade; free association; free thought; et al. And, if perchance we are unable to find freedom here, there is always the escape to religious illusion—moksha, to be acquired in splendid isolation. In all this are we not losing the essence of freedom?

Coming back to this jailed existence, we find some bright spots within the darkness—like the compound attached to our ward covered by a canopy of trees. I sit in silence watching the squirrels prancing around in gay abandon, and listen to the chirping of birds in the tree. Looking at them, they seem so free. But, are they really? I begin to think what really is the meaning of freedom?

My thoughts drift to the time I developed an interest in communism. It was a time in the late 1960s and early seventies when lakhs, nay millions, of youth came to a similar conclusion in their search for freedom and justice. After all, at that time one-third of the world was socialist, and, in addition, Left national liberation movements raged throughout the backward countries. One can safely say that about half the world was under the sway of communism. But today, just forty years later, when the world is going through one of its worst crisis, when the gap between the rich and the poor has never been so wide, the communist existence is insignificant. Though all the conditions exist for it, yet it is unable to captivate the minds of the youth, workers and students. The socialist countries have collapsed, the national liberation movements have been replaced, in many places, by Islamic resistance, and of the millions who have come onto the streets in the West, one can see only a sprinkling of Communists. There continue to be a few communist resistance movements, but even of these, many have collapsed, while a few continue with enormous difficulties, fighting with their backs to the wall. Sitting here in the quietude of the compound, I begin to contemplate the serious implications of what has happened. Why such a devastating reversal? What happened to our hopes and dreams of a better future? Was it to witness a mafia-type rule in the first ever socialist country, or the billionaire princelings of China, not to mention the tin-pot dictators of earlier East Europe!! Forget the autocratic rulers, why did the masses so easily choose a free market over freedom from want? If there are no clear-cut answers and also solutions, the Communists of today may continue to live ostrich-like in their make-believe worlds; but the people will go their own way. The reasons given by many an academic for the failures—lack of democracy and development of productive forces—are in no way convincing; so these have little impact on the people. If the sensitive amongst the people are unable to find answers in real life, they will once again seek solace in religion and spiritualism. As Marx put it, “Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, just as it is the spirit of an unspiritual world. It is the opium of the people.” Yes, people are seeking spiritual solace from a crass-materialist consumerist opium, far more potent than earlier religions. Do we not see such a turn not only amongst the deeply alienated middle classes, but even amongst the organised working class? Communism seems no longer an attraction for the youth, as it was for us in the 1960s and 1970s.

Tracing my way back to the cell, through two locked iron gates, I feel that I am returning from the garden of paradise to the real cruel world. My musty cell brings me back to reality—recollections of my past experiences.

Images float before my eyes, some clear, some hazy. Quite naturally the first image to come is of the person with whom I had the longest and deepest relationship—my late wife Anuradha. So lively and chirpy, like the little squirrels, she was straightforward, simple, with few complexes, and her reactions were so spontaneous and child-like (not calculated and cunning). My impression was that probably her inner feelings were very much in tune with her outward reactions; as a result she was closest to what we may call a free person.

The image passes. Then others appear—of associations experienced over forty years of social activities. I could club them into three categories:

First is the Anuradha-type. Many of these (not all) would be from tribal, women and Dalit background, but would include others as well.

The second category would be those from the other extreme. Notwithstanding their dedication, they have been unable to get out of the prevalent value system, deeply embedded in their sub-conscious, and have to resort to pretences, intrigues, subterfuges, etc. to gain acceptability. Often they may even be unconscious of this dichotomy wherein their inner feelings are in deep contradiction with their outward behaviour. They therefore get entangled in a web of comp-lexes, like caged animals in a zoo. Particularly, in India, the entrenched caste hierarchy adds to the existing feelings of class superiority, creating fertile grounds for these complexities. This may not reflect in crude casteism, but gets manifested in the form of intellectual superiority, arrogance/ego, domi-nation/authoritarianism, etc.—one could call it, in its extreme form, the Chanakya syndrome.

And between these two extremes of white and black would lie the third category—the varied shades of grey: some veering towards the white, others towards the black. I would consider the majority would lie here.

My mind then switches back to myself and the present caged existence. I look out at the guards walking up-and-down through two sets of gates. It reminds me how animals in a zoo look at us humans from their cages—only they have one set of gates, and sufficient space to pace up and down. In this caged existence it is difficult to evaluate myself in relation to freedom, in the sense outlined above. But before arrest, where would I have stood? An honest self-assessment is often the most difficult, while one easily jumps to conclusions about others. Yet, a truthful self-assessment is most important, as that and that alone would be the starting point for any positive change—given that we would all be infected, to varying degrees, with the dominant values prevalent in the system. Well, I think I would place myself in the third category. One may say that this is a convenient broad categorisation. Very true! But, the important aspect here is to remember that no one is static (this applies to all categories), we are in continuous flux; the key factor here is the direction of our movement—whether it is towards white or heading towards the morass of black. This I leave to others to assess.

NOW, before coming to the CONTEXT in which FREEDOM should be viewed, a point of clarification needs to be made. The above presentation may appear as a crude pragmatic interpretation of freedom, lacking a scientific content. But, all I have sought to present is the reality. Science seeks to understand the laws behind the reality, which I will try and do in my future articles. Continue reading