War in Syria escalated with Turkey downing a Russian military plane on the Syria-Turkey border. The incident has brought into focus the turmoil in the Middle-East which has become the most troubled region in the world. The incident shows the intensification of contradiction among imperialist powers and the regional powers aligned to them. All these powers claiming to fight the Islamic State are pursuing their own agenda. Turkey which had initially refused to join the US led coalition against IS, later joined it bombing the Syrian Kurds which were holding their own against the IS and had carved out an area of self-rule. Western imperialist powers support anti-Assad Jihadis while Russia is bombing all anti-Assad militant groups including the Islamic State. Iran is supporting Basher Assad regime while Saudi Arabia and Kuwait are financing and supporting their own groups of Jihadis. The scramble to secure their influence in Syria is resulting in high casualties mainly of civilians. More than half of the population of Syria (20 million) has been forced to leave their homes and take shelter elsewhere, half of these inside Syria and another half outside Syria. Every imperialist power and regional power aligned to them is trying to secure its foothold in Syria through militant groups to be stakeholder in the negotiations on Syria’s future.… Read More
Month: November 2015
Demand Punishment to Guilty of 1984 Sikh Genocide, 2002 Gujarat Pogrom and other murderous attacks on minorities
Mobilize the people for secularism of shared aspirations based on unity of workers, peasants and all sections of people
6th December, the day RSS-BJP hordes in connivance with the then Congress Govt. had demolished Babri Masjid in Ayodhya, has come to be marked as the day of struggle of aggressive Hindu communalism. Over the years protests against communalism have been held on this day. This year it is all the more important to observe this day as communal attacks on minorities, particularly Muslims, have grown along with attacks on rationalists and intellectuals opposed to communalism. Besides Modi led BJP Govt. has packed all the Govt. bodies dealing with education, art & culture including cinema, historical research and history writing, and even science with nominees of RSS. While there were more than 600 incidents of communal violence targeting minorities in the first year of power, there have been more than 300 such incidents over the past three months alone. These incidents have exposed the hand of hydra headed RSS in such incidents and shocking statements of ruling party leaders to justify these attacks. These incidents have once again brought to fore deep penetration of majority communalism in police and administration which facilitates such attacks, rewards the culprits and hounds the victims.… Read More
Holding of elections in Myanmar (earlier called Burma) and defeat of the Army controlled party in the elections are significant political developments in our neighbouring country Myanmar. These elections resulted in the massive victory of NLD (National League for Democracy). Even in the earlier election held in 1990 after massive struggle of the people, the NLD had won a resounding victory. However, Military rulers of Myanmar had refused to transfer power to civilian leadership.
These elections were held after the Army had amended the Constitution and allotted one fourth of the seats to nominees of the armed forces in both chambers of Parliament. Moreover, many other restrictions on the rights of elected representatives have been built into the Constitution.
This election and the victory of the NLD also mark a compromise between NLD leader Aung San Suu Kyi and military rulers. This outcome of the longstanding struggle of the people of Myanmar for democracy is to safeguard against struggles of different nationalities and different sections of the people over a long period of time. At best this is a reformist outcome of these struggles.
Myanmar has seen rise in the violence against Rohingya Muslims, a minority inhabiting south western region of Myanmar.… Read More
The IFTU National Committee holds that the Seventh Pay Commission Report released recently by the Central Govt. is a severe let down for the major sections of the 47 lakh govt employees it will cover. Setting a minimum wage of Rs.18,000 per month at the lower end marks a increase of a mere 14.33 % over the earlier wage. This, when at the other end of the spectrum, Secretaries will be entitled to Rs.2.25 lakhs per month (Rs. 2.5 lakh for Cabinet Secretary) where as they were earlier below the one lakh mark. This increase of 14.33% is less than half of what was given in the earlier two pay panels. This is also a very low increase in the context of the sharpest price rise witnessed over the last ten years. Secondly, the employees at the lower end of the spectrum have got a very small increase where as the upper bracket has got a much higher increase, resulting in greater disparity with the increase of the huge gap between the minimum and the maximum.
The overall increase of 23.55% in pay and pension of the Govt. employees and the 52 lakh retirees compared to the 35% increase in the last Pay Commission was to be expected given that the terms of reference of the 7th Commission itself directed that the fiscal situation should be kept in mind – to conform to ‘fiscal prudence’.… Read More
While Bihar assembly elections held recently have delivered a massive defeat to Narendra Modi led RSS-BJP at the Centre, they also showed that the basic issues facing the people did not become the main issues in the elections. It shows the success of the ruling classes and the big media controlled by them in allowing only certain issues to reach the people at large. Despite big increase in the role of corporate media, a large number of people (nearly 24%) did not vote for the candidates fielded by the claimants to power i.e. Grand Alliance of RJD, JD-U and Congress and NDA of BJP, LJP, RLSP and HAM-S. Over 2.5% rejected all the candidates by stamping NOTA and 9.4 percent voted for independent candidates. This shows that disillusion with main claimants to power runs deep despite massive dose of propaganda to make it a direct contest and polarize the voters between main contestants for power.
Bihar assembly election results have given a big blow to the murderous attacks by the RSS-BJP against minorities, particularly Muslims and the murders and intimidation of rationalists and intellectuals opposing the fascist trends by little known fanatical organizations linked to RSS. A large number of intellectuals have come forward to condemn these attacks and their return of awards has focused attention on this danger.… Read More
On the night of 13th November 2015, in six attacks in Paris, more than 150 people have been killed and over 200 have been injured. These coordinated attacks have shaken France. A concert hall was the main scene of these killings. The attackers are said to be holding French bombing of Syria as the reason for their attack.
While targeting of innocent civilians deserves to be condemned, the attack has however thrown up a large number of questions. Killing of innocents whether it is by spraying bullets or throwing/planting bombs is as dastardly and heinous a crime as killing of innocents by raining bombs from the sky or carpet bombing of the whole regions which is so routinely done by imperialist countries including France in the countries of Asia and Africa. Targeting of civilians everywhere is condemnable. While in case of imperialists it represents their arrogance and could not care less attitude towards the lives of people of backward countries, also their relative strength; in case of those resorting to such attacks in urban centres it represents asymmetrical war, in fact their relative weakness rather than their strength. In recent years France has increased its participation in bombing campaigns in Africa and Middle-East under ‘socialist’ president Hollande.… Read More
This time in Punjab, especially in Malwa Pati, cotton crops have been destroyed. According to a survey, during the crop season in Narma Pati districts this year, 4.35 lakh hectares of cotton was planted in Malwa area in Punjab. In this, Bathinda had 1.4 Lakh hectares, Barnala had 9000 hectares, Faridkot had 13,000 hectares, Fazilka had 99,000 hectares, Mansa had 85,000 hectares, Mukhtsar had 72,000 hectares, and Moga had 15,000 hectares of cotton planted.
Till now 70,000 hectares of cotton has been destroyed because of attacks of flies. Either the white flies have destroyed the rest of the cotton as well or there has been very little yield. Most of the cotton is diseased due to the attacks of the insects.
The main reason for the destruction of the crops is duplicate seeds. This was unearthed through two reports which revealed the scandal of gunda taxbeing taken on behalf of the Agriculture Minister of Punjab. However, due to the “orbit incident” the scandal wasn’t talked about much in Punjab’s newspapers. Then a seed company was caught giving the Agriculture Minister, Tota Singh, 50 lakh rupees out of the seed profits but this news was also stifled. The other reason is fake insecticides.… Read More
Arrest of Com. Kovan, a folk artist of the People’s Arts and Literary Association (PALA) of Tamilnadu, on charges of sedition has evoked widespread condemnation in Tamilnadu and all over the country. Com. Kovan (Sivadas), a popular artist, was participating in a campaign against Govt. liquor shops in Tamilnadu. Through his art he has exposed Jayalalitha Govt. for fooling the people of Tamilnadu, contrasting distribution of freebies with opening of more liquor vends in the state.
Arrest of Com. Kovan under this trumped up charge shows the manner of Jayalalitha’s rule which does not tolerate any criticism. Ruling AIADMK has charged Com. Kovan with insulting Ms. Jayalalitha for which he has been charged with sedition. Com. Kovan’s arrest also demonstrates the deep insecurity of the ruling establishment, facing rising anger of the people. It also shows their misplaced sense of importance whence they term their criticism as sedition. A few days back the RSS mouthpiece Organizer had termed JNU as a hotbed of anti-nationals.
Anti-sedition law enacted by British colonialists after their suppression of Indian war of independence of 1857, has been continued by the comprador rulers after transfer of power in 1947. It only shows the real character of independence achieved by India in 1947 where the rulers continued with anti-people policies and repressive methods of rule.… Read More