PRE-BUDGET CONSULTATION WITH FM
ON June 6, the finance minister of the government of India called all the central trade union organisations for a pre-budget consultation. At the meeting, all the central trade union organisations submitted a joint memorandum to the finance minister detailing the burning issues facing the working people of the country; the memorandum also put forward suggestions of the trade unions to address the problems in the process of the budgetary exercise.
IN the wake of the imposition of sanctions against Russia by the West, following Russia’s opposition to Western designs on Ukraine and Western support to the Ukrainian fascists for carrying out those designs, President Putin has embarked on a course that can potentially have far-reaching consequences for the world economy.
CPI(M) general secretary Prakash Karat said that the Polit Bureau and the Central Committee of the Party took the primary responsibility for the failure to expand the independent strength of the Party and for the decline in the mass base of the Party which was reflected in the recent elections.
AS we go to press, the current session of the parliament has been adjourned sine die. This first session held after the 16th general elections ended on the third day since it began with the customary rendition of the national song. This is probably the shortest parliament session in recent memory. The only agenda was the adoption of the customary motion of thanks to the president for his address to the joint session on the first day. The motion of thanks was moved in both the Houses on the second day and was adopted on the third day, thus ending the session.
WEST BENGAL witnessed another cruel version of terror, perpetrated jointly by the Trinamul Congress and the state police. The murder of CPI(M) activist Saidul Bhuian and the aftermath resembles a horror story.
Saidul Bhuian of Tildanga Aima Damodarpur in Garbeta in West Midnapore was forced to leave his home three years back when the TMC came to power in the state. Hundreds of families in Garbeta and adjoining areas faced the same fate. His family was also forced to stay in Midnapore town in a terrible situation.
HARSEV Bains, was heading back to London. In Delhi, back after a short visit to his ancestral village in Punjab, Bains, the secretary of the Indian Workers’ Association, Great Britain said “drugs” are going to be a major issue in these polls. That was much before the election campaign had actually begun in the state. Even for a casual observer of the political scene in Punjab, like this writer, the development was not surprising. The state had been plagued by this menace for long and it was high time that the issue was addressed.
THROUGH a statement issued from New Delhi on June 2, 2014, the All India Kisan Sabha (AIKS) took serious note of the media reports suggesting that the BJP government is likely to go ahead with the implementation of the recommendations of Madhav Gadgil led Western Ghats ecological expert panel (WGEEP). The AIKS cautioned the government against rushing through implementation of the said recommendations without addressing the serious concerns agitating the minds of the people in the Western Ghats region.
ON May 31, 2014, several mass organisations including the Democratic Teachers Front (DTF), Democratic Youth Federation of India (DYFI), Janwadi Lekhak Sangh (JLS), Janwadi Mahila Samiti (JMS), Jan Natya Manch (JNM) and Students Federation of India (SFI) staged a protest demonstration at the Uttar Pradesh Bhawan against the horrific gang rape and murder of two teenage girls in Badaun district. More than 100 protesters gathered near the Gyarah Murti and marched towards the UP Bhawan, raising angry slogans and demanding justice and stringent action against the culprits.
THE Indian economy is clearly afflicted by stagflation. According to the provisional estimates of GDP released recently by the Central Statistical Organisation, growth in 2013-14 was, at 4.7 per cent, not very much higher than the 4.5 per cent of 2012-13. That rate is disappointing because it includes a negative rate of growth of manufacturing. Point-on-point consumer price inflation, on the other hand, was at a higher 8.6 per cent in April relative to 8.3 per cent in March. This definitely adds up to a form of stagflation.