India: RDF Statement–‘Condemn the Murder of Maoist leader Kishanji!’

Press Statement on the cold-blooded murder of Maoist Leader, Kishanji   (25/11/2011)

We strongly condemn the cold-blooded murder and planned assassination of Kishanji alias Mallojula Koteswara Rao, Politburo Member of CPI (Maoist) in Burishol forest area, Paschim Midnapore District, Jangalmahal, West Bengal on 24 November 2011. At the time of this murder Kishanji was dealing with the process of peace talks through the interlocutors appointed by the Chief Minister of West Bengal Ms. Mamata Banerjee. Such a heinous crime should be condemned by all justice loving people.

According CPI (Maoist) statement issued to the media on today, Kishanji was arrested and tortured and then brutally killed. This murder looks much similar to that of Azad’s in July 2010, when Azad was brutally tortured and killed while he was dealing with the Union Government’s offer of peace talks through union Home Ministry appointed interlocutor.

In these circumstances, the Joint Forces’ story of a fierce gun battle in Burishol forest of Paschim Midnapore district comes out to be a concocted one. It is significant that the mother of Kishanji, Ms. Madhuramma while maintaining it is a fake encounter has also demanded a judicial enquiry. Under the circumstances, we demand: Continue reading

West Bengal, India: Maoist-interlocutor ‘talks by August 31’ — Rebels accept govt invite


Calcutta, Aug. 26: The Maoists and the state-appointed interlocutors will hold their first peace talks by Wednesday, government sources said today.

Two representatives from each side will attend the meeting, the sources said. They said the committee of interlocutors had sent a letter to CPI (Maoist) state secretary Asim Mandal alias Akash on Tuesday on behalf of the home department, inviting the rebels to the talks to start the peace process in Jungle Mahal.

The letter mentioned that the talks would be “unconditional” and that the Maoist leaders attending the meeting would be given “safe passage”, the sources said. Maoist sources told The Telegraph that they had received the letter, adding the rebels had verbally conveyed their acceptance to the government. Continue reading

India: The electoral “Marxists” in W. Bengal are slipping; what is the alternative?

The peasants have it

21 May 2011

GN Saibaba says the real alternative will come from the maoists, not the Trinamool

THE RECENT debacle of Communist Party of India (Marxist) has led to widespread speculation in the media and elsewhere that this indeed is the end of the CPI(M) in West Bengal. It is being predicted that the way they have been literally routed in the assembly poll will lead to their gradual demise. The defeat of the CPI(M) in West Bengal after its uninterrupted rule of 34 years is literally seen as the fall of the fortress. However, such a reading of the situation is misplaced.

The CPI(M) is like any other ruling class party in this country. These parties come and go in central and state legislative bodies and Parliament and take their turns in pursuing anti-people policies. They never provide an alternative to their immediate predecessor, but simply capitalise on the growing grievances of the people against the existing government. The performance of the DMK, the ruling party in Tamil Nadu, is a good example. Yet the media is not talking about the end of the DMK, despite their abysmal performance. The reason for this is the turns the AIDMK and the DMK take in routing each other in successive elections and in exploiting people in a similar manner. Continue reading

India: 27 injured in clash between Maoists and jail staff in WB

// <![CDATA[// The Hindu, PTI

Midnapore, March 22, 2011

Twenty seven people, including six jail staff, were injured during a clash with Maoists lodged in Midnapore Central Jail here today.

Six jail staff, including head warden Deepak Kumar Baidya, were injured when Maoists lodged in the prison complex clashed with them following the death of an undertrial prisoner here last night, said officials. Continue reading

West Bengal, India: Tribal group calls a 24-hour shutdown to protest atrocities


Kolkata, Dec 18 (IANS) Pro-Maoist tribal group, Peoples’ Committee Against Police Atrocities (PCAPA) Saturday called for a 24-hour shutdown Monday in West Bengal’s three rebel-dominated districts to protest ‘atrocities’ of the joint security forces.

‘The shutdown on Monday has been called in Purulia, Bankura and West Midnapore districts as the common tribal people living in the areas were facing torture and harassment from the joint forces and armed cadres of the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M),’ a PCAPA spokesman told IANS on phone from Lalgarh area of West Midnapore.

‘Police are also picking up our supporters and local people on false charges of being Maoists and carrying out inhuman torture on them. Earlier, the joint forces picked up and detained Muhammad Israieel. He was released just three days ago, but he cannot even stand as police had beaten him severely on his feet and legs,’ said the PCAPA spokesman, who wished to be anonymous. He added that two other people were also picked up by the police and beaten ‘mercilessly’.

‘We demand that the government and administration should stop atrocities on our people and urge people to support the shutdown,’ the spokesperson said.

–Indo-Asian-News Service


Mednipur Central Jail, West Bengal: 150 Political Prisoners Start Indefinite Hunger Strike, Issue Sweeping Demands


Press Release, December 10, 2010

On the Occasion of International Human Rights Day—

In Solidarity with the Political Prisoners in Medinipur Central Jail, West Bengal, India who have started their Indefinite Hunger Strike on 10th December!

Nearly 150 political prisoners—mostly under trial and incarcerated in the state of West Bengal which the Indian government calls ‘Correctional Home’—will start hunger strike from 10th December 2010 on Human Rights Day for an indefinite period, true to the long tradition of hunger strikes organized by political prisoners in Medinipur, as also other jails of West Bengal and outside in near and distant past.

Convicts working at Midinapore Central Jail, where countless freedom fighters were martyred in struggle against British colonialist rule, and where hundreds of opponents of the oppressive Indian regime are held as political prisoners today

The prisoners include those arrested on the charge of having Maoist links, or becoming members of the People’s Committee Against Police Atrocities (PCAPA) that spearheaded the Lalgarh (Jangalmahal) movement in the state of West Bengal from November 2008, or common villagers standing by the cause.

Many of these prisoners have been languishing in jail for years together in abysmal conditions virtually without trial. Some other prisoners arrested in Maoist connections will also join the hunger strike in Krishnagar Jail, Nadia, Alipur Central Jail and Presidency Jail in Kolkata. Among the prisoners spearheading the hunger strike are Chhatradhar Mahato [leader of the PCAPA until his arrest-ed], Sukhshanti Baskey, Prasun Chatterjee and Raja Sarkhel in Medinipur Central Jail, Chandi Sarkar, Sabyasachi Goswami, Zakir Hosen and Pradip Chatterjee in Krishnagar Jail, Gour Chakrabarti in Presidency Jail and Telugu Dipak in Alipur Central Jail.

Ever since its inception, it has been a constant demand of the Committee for the Release of Political Prisoners [CRPP] for the unconditional release of all political prisoners in the Indian Subcontinent. It has in this regard also stressed the need to completely do away with all draconian laws like the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA), Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA), Public Safety Act (PSA) and all similar acts meant to suppress and stifle political dissent among the most oppressed and exploited people of the subcontinent. Continue reading

Struggle of sharecroppers in West Bengal expose tall claims of land reform

Shramik Shakti, April 2010. Translated by Koel Das, Sanhati

For a long time, we have been hearing tall claims about land reforms in West Bengal. The law was passed back when Siddartha Shankar Ray was the Chief Minister. After the Left Front came to power in 1977, the sharecropper law had also been amended a few times. But the recent struggles of villagers of Sujapur in Murshidabad is evidence to the fact that real land reform does not happen by just passing the law.

Sujapur is a village in Murshidabad and almost all of its inhabitants are sharecroppers or farmers. Most of the villagers belong to the fisherman community. The land in the village is wetlands (land J L no:129). These lands cannot be cultivated if there is excess rainfall. Most people earn their living by fishing in these wetlands. When the rainfall is less, Boro rice is cultivated here. There are about 2000 Bighas of wetlands.

For about ten generations, the villagers have either been farming or fishing in this place. 150 bigha of the wetlands were declared barga land which resulted in landless sharecroppers getting patta. Poor villagers had purchased some of these lands from the landlords. Villagers knew that the land belonged to the members of Ray family or the Trivedi family like Abhaypada Ray, Shibendramohan, Shubendumohan Trivedi, Jagannath Trivedi and others.

None of these landlords stay in Sujapur; they do not know definitively which land belongs to whom. But the village sharecroppers regularly give them a portion of the produce year after year. They have requested the landlords repeatedly to sell the lands to them. Although the landlords took cash advance from them, they never registered the land. They just showed the land map but never specified the plot of land and could not even produce a legal document for the landownership. Continue reading