The youth were promised creation of two crore jobs every year, instead what we see is the job growth in the industrial sector is the lowest in the last eight years. As far as rural employment is concerned, the government itself has admitted that every one of these three years it has refused to release sums of Rs 20,000 crore plus under the MNREGA ie, they are denying wages for those poor people who are already suffering. In the IT sector, the international agency Mckinsey has projected that nearly 50 to 60 per cent of the current 40 lakh employees will turn redundant by the end of this year. Infosys, Wipro and Cognizant are reportedly considering the retrenchment of 60,000 workers. Infrastructural giants like L&T and others have already downsized their workforce considerably.
So far from generating additional employment of 2 crores per annum, this government’s policies are leading to an economic slowdown and rendering even those employed earlier into the ranks of the unemployed.
BJP and PM Modi had promised that the kisans of our country would be provided a new deal under their government. They were promised an MSP that would be one and half times the cost of inputs as measured by the Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices. This has not been done. As a result of its other policies like reducing the import duties on agricultural products, our farmers are increasingly finding their harvests not being able to meet both their own family’s needs and to service their debt. Succumbing to the debt burden the peasants’ suicides in the country are alarmingly rising. The government has itself admitted to the apex court that in each of the last three years 12,000 plus farmers have committed distress suicides due to debt burden, ie, more than 36,000 during these three years.
This government instead of providing relief to the farmers through loan waivers is considering providing relief to the rich corporates who have looted our nationalised banks by taking loans and not returning them. While a poor peasant is penalised with property and cattle attached, the rich corporates go away scot free. Under these circumstances of an economic slowdown, growing unemployment, rising prices and agrarian distress, there is no cause for celebration.
The Polit Bureau of the CPI(M) condemns the government pressurising the public sector units and undertakings to conduct the celebration campaign of the completion of three years of the Modi government, from their resources. The oil PSUs have been asked to cough up huge amounts of money for the construction of the prime minister’s pet project of a giant statue of Sardar Patel. This is a gross misappropriation of public resources for personal aggrandisement and represents corruption of the highest order.
The CPI(M) is in discussion with other secular opposition parties pursuing its understanding that a person with impeccable secular credentials who can discharge the responsibility as the custodian of the Indian constitution must be fielded by the opposition parties jointly for the post of the president.
For the post of vice-president, similarly, the CPI(M) will seek to field a joint candidate, on behalf of the opposition parties, who will uphold the constitutional values of our republic.
TRIPURA ASSEMBLY ELECTIONS
The Polit Bureau of the CPI(M) heard reports on the preparations being undertaken by the Tripura unit of the CPI(M) for the forthcoming elections.
The BJP is making a frantic effort to make a serious inroad into this Left bastion in the North East. It has already begun pouring in considerable resources to influence the democratic choice of the people of Tripura. Given its customary functioning, it is seeking to stoke communal and ethnic strife and seeking to make some alliances with outlawed extremist outfits for electoral dividends.
In the background of the specific targeting of the CPI(M) by the RSS/BJP in the country – its efforts to destabilise the Left and Democratic Front in Kerala through tactics of terror and violence and playing tandem with the Trinamul Congress in West Bengal stoking competitive communalism aiming to weaken the Left in the state – these elections in Tripura assume the significance of a battle between the Left and the communal forces in the country.
The CPI(M) is determined to safeguard this Left bastion and return to government by securing an emphatic victory.
The situation in the state of Jammu and Kashmir has considerably worsened. The degree of alienation of the Kashmiri people is now nearly complete. The Kashmir policy of the BJP central government has ended up in a dismal failure, the main cause for the growing alienation is the reneging on the promises made by the BJP government to the people of Jammu and Kashmir. The all party parliamentary delegation led by the union home minister had assured the people of Jammu and Kashmir and the country that the government will seek to normalise the situation by promising confidence building measures including the non-use of pellet guns and creating job opportunities for Kashmiri youth and starting the political process of a dialogue with all the stake holders in the state for arriving at a political solution.
It is clear that the state government in which the BJP is a coalition partner has miserably failed to both control the situation and to take any political initiative.
The Polit Bureau of the CPI(M) will seek the cooperation of the secular political parties for a national intervention on a theme like “Kashmir: The Way Forward”.
NON-BJP STATE GOVERNMENTS COORDINATION
The recent notification issued by the union ministry of environment, forests and climate change that bans sale of cattle for slaughter has been opposed by a large number of non-BJP state governments. The Kerala chief minister has appealed to all the non-BJP CMs to jointly oppose this move on the ground of violation of the rights of the states. This is an issue on which we shall take the initiative and hold meetings with the major non-BJP CMs.
PLATFORM FOR POPULAR STRUGGLES
The Polit Bureau heard reports on the proposed platform of various mass and class organisations of the Left parties and progressive secular people’s movements organisations to hold a national level convention in the near future and to launch massive people’s protest programmes against the all-round mounting of economic burdens and miseries on large sections of our people by this government’s policies.
ATTACKS ON MEDIA
All institutions of parliamentary democracy are coming under attack under this BJP-led NDA government. This is a dangerous authoritarian trend that is growing.
Among these attacks are the attacks on the media which seek to prevent the media from discharging its responsibility effectively. Freedom is an inviolable principle of our democracy. The law must prevail but harassment of media houses is not acceptable.