Vol. XLIII No. 08 February 24, 2019
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JHARKHAND: Karl Marx’s Bicentennial Birth Anniversary Celebration

Prakash Viplav

A STATE-level event to mark the bicentennial birth anniversary of Karl Marx was organised in the steel city of Jamshedpur on January 21. CPI(M) Polit Bureau member Prakash Karat was the main speaker. The Michel John Auditorium packed to its capacity with hundreds of industrial workers, peasants, employees, students, youth, women and intellectuals. Addressing the gathering, Karat said the capitalist system cannot redress the problems of human society, therefore, intensification of struggle against exploitation is the only correct path for emancipation and Marxism is the scientific ideology to decisively fight out the capitalist exploitation.

Prior to Marx, philosophers interpreted the world but it was Marx who laid the principles to change the world order to an exploitation free society. Marx made an in-depth study of capitalism and derived that exploitation is inbuilt in capitalist mode of production. Karat emphasised that exploitation cannot be eliminated till capitalists are the owners of means of production. This is the reason Marx in the nineteenth century told about the elimination of exploitation through class struggle. We know that one per cent of the people are owners of 53 per cent of global wealth and in our country, only nine billionaires have captured half of the wealth of India, because the lion’s share of wealth generated in the society is captured by a few monopoly capitalists.

Marxist theory is based on scientific study of historical, material development of human society. Marx and Engels in 1848 said in “The Communist Manifesto” that with the end of feudal system, capitalist system will come into existence in which a new class ie, working class will emerge which will come out as victorious in the class struggle between labour and capital and, as a result, socialism will develop under the leadership of working class. In this protracted process, international movement of working class will defeat the global capitalism. Marx’s vision of future society proved to be correct as envisaged in “The Communist Manifesto”, with the socialist revolution in Soviet Russia and East European countries. Dismantling of socialism in USSR cannot be dubbed as defeat of socialism as a system.

In the 21st century, capitalism in its lust for unfettered profiteering has plundered nature and environment, resulting in crisis of environment and global climate change.  Today, the international finance capital, which does not contribute to production and operates only in share market, has become so powerful that it controls the governmental policies. Due to this, poverty, unemployment and inequalities are increasing rapidly.

Concluding his speech, Karat said that at the close of 20th century, due to setback to socialism in some of the countries, capitalist intellectuals started challenging the validity of Marxism. But the global capitalist crisis in 2008 has shaken their roots. In spite of bailout packages to private capitalists, the USA and European countries are yet to touch back the production levels of 2008. Curtailment in welfare schemes has deepened the crisis and inequality. Food banks run by the donations of the rich are not able to eliminate food and hunger crisis in Europe. Capitalism is a cruel system based on profit motive which must be defeated to establish exploitation-free socialist system. Marxism is the torch bearer of this revolutionary class struggle for establishment of socialism and working class must forge rock-solid unity for this revolutionary task.

Karat was greeted by Vikas Mukherjee, chief patron of the commemoration committee. The programme was chaired by K K Tripathy and Arun Pal. CPI(M) Jharkhand state secretary G K Baksi and other Party leaders were also present on this occasion.