Vol. XLII No. 12 March 25, 2018

CPI(M) Haryana State Conference Held

Virendra Malik

THE 15th Haryana state conference of the CPI(M) was held in Tohana in Fatehabad from March 11 to March 13. The conference gave a call for waging fierce struggles on various people’s issues and strengthen the party organissation.

Public Meeting

The conference began with a public meeting, Jan Adhikar Rally, at Tohana Grain Market. It was presided over by CPI(M) state secretariat members Inderjit Singh and Shakuntala Jakhar. The stage was named after Prithvi Singh, the popular Communist leader of Haryana from Gorakhpur village in Fatehabad district. The stage also carried the photographs of V I Lenin, Bhagat Singh, B R Ambedkar and Periyar E V Ramasamy. CPI(M) Polit Bureau member Mohammad Salim and Central Secretariat member Nilotpal Basu were the main speakers. CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury was to address the rally. But he could not attend as he had rush to Tripura in view of widespread post-poll violence and attacks on party workers in the northeastern state.

Addressing the rally, Salim referred to the farmers’ Long March from Nashik to Mumbai. The Red Flag has the legacy of extreme sacrifices in favour of the downtrodden, peasants, workers and other toiling masses, he said. He criticised Narendra Modi for failing to meet the tall promises he had made in the run-up to the 2014 parliamentary election -- giving jobs to millions of youths, doubling farmers’ income, and empowering women and Dalits in the country. On the contrary, peasants are committing suicides, agriculture crisis has accentuated and farmers are not getting remunerative prices for their crops. The scheme workers had to come out on the streets for getting their legitimate rights, he said.

Nilotpal Basu and CPI(M) Haryana state secretary Surender Singh accused the BJP of dividing people and creating animosity based on caste, religion and region. It has created such an environment in which the soldiers are getting killed on the borders and even internal security of the country is at stakes. Instead of giving relief to the people, this government is enabling the corporate to plunder natural resources of the country. It is waiving loans of lakhs of crores of rupees of the corporate, whereas farmers and labourers are committing suicides due to indebtedness. But the government is unperturbed. They said that the people have realised the BJP’s cunningness and policies favoring the corporate and will teach them a lesson in the 2019 general election.

The rally was also addressed by former MLA Harpal Singh, Inderjit Singh, Satvir Singh, Shakuntala Jakhar and Jagtar Singh. The leaders asserted that the Red Flag is guiding and leading the peasants, workers, women, petty traders and businessmen, students and the youth. The ruling class of the day is highly aggressive and attacking the democratic forces in every nook and corner of the country. We are ready to counter the challenges posed by the rightwing forces.

Delegate Session

The delegate session started with the unfurling of the Party flag by veteran Communist leader Kundan Lal. The venue of the conference was named after Sukomal Sen. The stage of the conference hall was named after former party state secretary Radhbir Singh Hooda. A six-member presidium comprising Inderjit Singh, S N Solanki, Prakash Chander, Savita, Suresh Kumar and Jagtar Singh presided the conference. Surender Singh, Shakuntala Jakhar, Satyapal Siwach, Pradeep Singh, Dayanand Poonia and Harpal Singh were part of the steering committee.

Nilotpal Basu inaugurated the conference. He said the BJP had promised “achhe din” four years ago but the people today are facing worst days. Agriculture and employment crisis are being faced in rural areas continuously. People are organising under the Red Flag for the issues of their livelihood and social security. Peasants’ struggles in Maharashtra and Rajasthan and scheme workers’ agitations of Haryana make it amply clear that the Red Flag is fighting the battle on real issues of the people. The people are boldly facing attacks after our defeat in Tripura. Attack on statues of V I Lenin, B R Ambedkar and Periyar E V Ramasamy are designs of the RSS ideology. We have to wage fierce struggles against these by raising the consciousness of the masses.

Surender Singh placed the draft of political-organisational report before the delegates. It had four sections -- political scene, report of activities, party organisation and mass fronts. The political situation notes that the BJP governments at the Centre and in the state have aggressively implemented neo-liberal policies which have resulted in serious attacks on the livelihood, education, health and social welfare schemes of the government. A parallel structure for control of the RSS is being created through formation of monitoring committees at every level and by illegally appointing ‘Sushasan Sahayogis’ who monitor the bureaucracy at district level and give direct feedback to the chief minister only. RSS members have been appointed as heads of boards, corporations, commissions and vice chancellors of various universities in the state.

Stare machinery and exchequer are being used for communal propaganda and creating violence. Caste polarisation is being created for petty political interests. Attacks on Dalits, women and minorities have increased and the anti-social elements feel emboldened. All forms of dogmatic, chauvinistic, zingoist and obscurantist ideology are being propagated while the progressive, scientific thought and freedom of expression are under attack. Labour laws and panchayati raj and local self-governance laws have been retrogressively amended, which expose the undemocratic character of the BJP.

As per our assessment in the last state party conference, all these developments have resulted in anger and anguish among various sections of the society and disenchantment from the BJP. The people are coming out in spontaneous agitations especially the peasants, scheme workers, non-regular employees and workers.

The review of the party’s and mass organisations’ activities underlines that there have been lot many activities in the interim period which include planned struggles and interventions in the spontaneous agitations. The struggles have mainly been by farmer and trade union fronts. The party’s prestige has enhanced in Mewat, especially owing to interventions in attacks on Muslims by the RSS affiliates. The central and state leadership of the party and mass organisations has played significant role there. But the lapse of consolidation of the masses coming in struggles into mass fronts and enrolling them into the party continues.

The organisational part consists of review of the organisation in the background of decisions taken by national and state plenum. The work on building a revolutionary party with a mass line has just been started and much could not be expected in just one year. Though some steps have been taken to strengthen the state centre of the party, training of branch secretaries, this will have to be continued in the coming period. The task of increasing party membership from women and youth remains to be fulfilled. Though the party membership from basic classes constitutes 51 per cent of the total party membership but it is not reflected in the leadership. In all 40 delegates participated in the discussion after which the report was unanimously adopted.

Two hundred delegates and 18 observers attended the conference, of whom 21 were women. Twenty-three delegates were less than 40 years of age.

The conference adopted six resolutions on remunerative prices for farm produce, eradicating pollution of Ghaggar river  in  Ratia area of Fatehabad district, control on stray animals for saving the crops and for safety of citizens, on problems related to education and employment and for regular recruitment in government departments, for ensuring constitutional rights of women, Dalits and Muslims in the background of increasing attacks on them, and in favour of struggle of scheme workers in the state.

A 30-member new state committee was elected. Surender Singh wasre-elected the state secretary. Nine State Secretariat members include Inderjit Singh, Satyapal Siwach, Shakuntala Jakhar, Pradeep Singh, Dayaynad Poonia, Jai Bhagwan, Jagtar Singh and Prem Chand. Three members have been elected for the first time in the secretariat and six members have been elected for the first time in the state committee. R C Jagga has been elected the chairman of the three-member Control Commission.

The conference has given a call for a campaign from March 23 to March 31 for the purchase of mustard and other crops at minimum support price (MSP). Party workers will visit grain markets for monitoring the situation. Dharnas and demonstrations will be held wherever necessary. It is important in the background of agriculture crisis and the government’s apathy towards farmers and a nexus of state purchase agencies with private traders as a result of which farmers are forced to sell their produce at price lower than the MSP.