Vol. XLI No. 09 February 26, 2017

WEST BENGAL: ‘Big Capital has Chosen Hindutva Forces to Implement Neoliberal Policies’


THE big capital in India has extended its support to Hindutva forces to implement neoliberal policies. The coming together of big business and communal forces is a very serious threat to Indian polity.

This was said by CPI(M) Polit Bureau member Prakash Karat, while delivering Chittabrata Majumdar memorial lecture in Howrah, West Bengal. Majumdar, former Polit Bureau member of CPI(M) and general secretary of CITU led early struggles against the onslaught of neoliberalism. The topic of the lecture was ‘25 years of neoliberalism: experience and orientation’.  Karat noted that the communal political forces started to grow in strength after neoliberalism began to assert itself. During the nineties, BJP became stronger. During the freedom struggle the leadership was in the hands of secular forces. Indian capitalists too had reposed trust in secularism. It would be futile to search for secular values in the big capital today. Today, capitalism itself is ridden with crisis. Indian capitalists have opted for Hindutva forces to further their profits. There were some questions earlier that the capitalists will not allow communal forces to grow for their own interests. But today, Indian big capital has comfortably sided with Modi. They supported Modi during his chief ministership in Gujarat. They joined Vibrant Gujarat after communal carnage. They have found Modi as the protector of neoliberalism. On the other hand, Hindutva forces know that they will get the support from capitalists in their march towards Hindu Rashtra. Modi government is running on two legs: RSS and corporate support. Neoliberalism is the bond between these two forces.

Karat said, democracy is an obstacle to neoliberalism. Democratic institutions are being attacked every day. Parliament and assemblies are there but without any effective intervention in policies. West Bengal has become one of the examples of authoritarian regimes. In the entire country, anyone may be branded as anti-national.

Prakash Karat said, every aspect of life and society has been affected by neoliberalism. Individuals are trying to survive through competition in free market, abandoning collective bonds. Identity politics has spread. In places like Manipur, every ethnic group has formed its own armed groups. Market economy has transformed women into commodity. Capitalists are themselves competing in elections. Modi government’s announcements of cash donation ceiling to political parties are mere eyewash.

Karat said that we have to link attacks on livelihood, attacks from communal forces and attacks on democracy as comprehensive attacks. The struggle against it must be based on focusing struggle against neoliberalism.

The memorial lecture was organised by CPI(M) Howrah district committee. Party district secretary Biplab Majumdar presided over the function.