January 12, 2020

AIPSO National Conference Resolves to Fight CAA, NRC

S Vinay Kumar

THE national conference of the All India Peace and Solidarity Organisation (AIPSO), held at Raipur in Chhattisgarh, has given a call to resist the attack on the fundamental values of the Indian constitution launched through the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA), National Population Register (NPR) and the National Register of Citizens (NRC). About 280 representatives from 20 states have attended the three-day meet, held between January 3 and 5.
The conference noted that the preamble of the Indian constitution defines the country as a sovereign, socialist, secular and democratic republic and condemned the central government for attempting to destroy these values. It said that every citizen of the country has the right for social, economic and political justice and that the constitution guarantees citizens the right to expression, dissent, the right to religious freedom, equal status, equal opportunities. However, the government is attacking these fundamental values of the constitution, the conference opined.
AIPSO resolved to educate the public about such attacks on the constitution and called upon the public to unite against the government through mass struggles. 
AIPSO stressed that the secular and democratic values formed the basis of the struggle for Indian independence against the imperialist British and reposed confidence that the peace-loving, democratic, secular and patriotic Indians would not allow such values to be destroyed in their country. It opposed the abrogation of Article 370 and the implementation of CAA and NRC. Members of the AIPSO were moved by the news of attacks on the students of various universities and educational institutions in the country, including the attack on Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), Delhi, which took place on the last day of the conference.
The conference was inaugurated by the chief minister of Chhattisgarh, Bhupesh Baghel, who declared that his government would not implement the NRC in the state. He condemned the double-standards shown by the BJP and said that the party lauds Gandhi on one hand and prays to Godse on the other. He condemned the policies of the central government and said that it is implementing fascistic policies of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS).
The conference also strongly condemned the murder of Iranian Major General Qasem Soleimani by the US army and said that there is every possibility for this attack to escalate tensions in the region and lead to another war. In another resolution adopted in the conference, it stated that the US has encouraged Saudi Arabia to attack Yemen, killing thousands, depriving lakhs of Yemen citizens of food and basic medical facilities. It also condemned the drone attacks on Libya and Syria by Israel with the support of the US. It also said that the US has abruptly revoked its agreement with Iran and is pressuring other countries to cut trade ties with Iran, posing a serious threat to global peace.
AIPSO said that the US is waging trade wars with various countries, especially with China, which is pushing the global economic system to near collapse. It said that the US is imposing sanctions on countries that are not budging to the dominance of the US and has been meddling in the internal affairs of many sovereign South American countries by conspiring against the progressive, Leftist governments in those countries. 
In the last one year, world countries have spent 1,822 billion US dollars on defense sector alone but have shied away from reaching out to the poor and destitute. The AIPSO said that such policies of the governments have led to the slowdown of the world GDP to just 3 per cent in the financial year according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) predictions. The conference has noted in its declaration that the GDP growth has never been this slow since 2008-09.
Responding to the current situation in Kashmir, the AIPSO gave a call to all its branches to fight for the restoration of normalcy in the state. It has also resolved to educate the people of the country of the BJP government’s attempts to rewrite history through distortion of facts, turning myths into facts, with a specific purpose to legitimise its divisive and communal regime. It has also resolved to seek support for the historians and academicians who are fighting such attempts. The AIPSO said that the fight is to preserve national history for future generations of the country. 
The conference also extended solidarity to the environmental protection activists and associations in the country and resolved to include environmental issues in their main activities. It had given a call to resist the implementation of NRC and National Population Register (NPR) and asked the public not to cooperate with the officials who come for data collection. 
The conference demanded that Bolivian president Evo Morales, who was ousted by a coup, should be allowed to return to his country from exile. It demanded the deactivation of nuclear weapons across the world and said that it would strive for complete disarmament, including all nuclear weapons. It demanded the lifting of US sanctions against Cuba, Venezuela, Iran and the formation of Palestine State as per the boundaries drawn in 1967 with East Jerusalem as its capital. 
AIPSO general secretaries Pallab Sengupta and R Arun Kumar introduced the organisational resolution and Raipur Declaration (political resolution) respectively. Members of the AIPSO Presidium, Nilotpal Basu, Yadav Reddy, Lalit Sujan and Braj Kumar Pandey presided over the various sessions of the conference. Iraklis Tsavdaridis, executive secretary of World Peace Council and representatives from Cuba, Vietnam, Venezuela, Nepal and Bangladesh have addressed the conference. A special message to the conference was sent by Ahed Tamimi, the young Palestinian girl who was involved in the struggle for the rights of Palestine. The conference concluded after the election of its new leadership including five general secretaries, Pallab Sengupta, R Arun Kumar, Sonia Gupta, Lakhsminarayan and D Sudhakar and a four member presidium consisting of Nilotpal Basu, Yadav Reddy, Lalit Surjan and Braj Kumar Pandey.