February 14, 2021

Bihar: Homage and Pledge in the memory of Ganesh Da

Arun Kumar Mishra

TRIBUTES were paid to the oldest and one of the tallest leaders of the Communist movement in Bihar, Comrade Ganesh Shankar Vidyarthi in a memorial cum pledge taking ceremony organised by CPI(M), Bihar state committee in Patna. Comrade Vidyarthi was the last living link in Bihar between the national movement for liberation and the movement for democratic revolution in the country.

While addressing the leaders and cadres drawn from different districts of Bihar, general secretary of CPI(M), Sitaram Yechury, went into his memory lane and recounted his long association with Comrade Vidyarthi as a comrade in Central Committee and as an observer of Bihar Party during Ganesh da’s tenure as state secretary. He particularly emphasised Comrade Vidyarthi’s love for books and the ideological commitment to the cause of the revolution. In this connection, he spoke about his recent meeting before Corona when Comrade Vidyarthi presented him a book, which was based on a debate between two Italian Communist giants; Togliatti and Gramsci during the rise of fascism and nazism in Italy and  Germany.

Drawing the parallel between the second world war and the present national political scenario, Yechury said that fascism is not imposed through any resolution sitting in a meeting room but it takes shape by appropriating the democratic space and subverting the democratic institutions from within. So, it is our duty to fight this menace by drawing all such forces who can join the struggle to safeguard the Constitution and the independence of the institutions built on that basis. He lamented that the constitutional bodies such as CBI, ED, election commission and even the judiciary are being utilised to serve the interests of the ruling party at the centre.

He underlined that the all-round crisis is the outcome of neo-liberal economic policies being pursued world over. The systemic crisis of capitalism has created worldwide inequality, unemployment and the race for maximisation of profit at the cost of common people, working-class and other labouring masses. The most brutal face of the neo-liberal era came to the fore during Corona pandemic. It is strange that when the economic activity came to a grinding halt, the few billionaires accumulated 35 per cent more profit. Our handful billionaires profited with 13 lakh crore rupees when 14 crore workers, employees lost their jobs.

The attitude shown towards the struggling peasants who have been sitting on dharna around Delhi for the last 70 days is simply inhuman and tyrannical; peasants along with working-class and other democratic forces are determined to carry on the struggle till the three black agricultural-laws is repealed. He called upon the people of Bihar to join massively in the ongoing battle launched by the peasants which will be the only true tribute to Comrade Ganesh Shankar Vidyarthi who was influenced by the great peasant leader Swami Sahjanand Saraswati in the formative days of his political journey.

CPI state secretary, Ram Naresh Pandey described Ganesh da not only the leader of CPI(M) but the leader of the communist movement as a whole. He was always available to all the streams of Communist movement and used to exhort to work unitedly not only to stem the tide of landlord bourgeois onslaught but to usher in a revolutionary change of the society.

CPI(ML) leader, Kunal recalled the political alertness of Ganesh da even when he was in the hospital. The best tribute to him is to carry on the revolutionary legacy bequeathed to us.

SUCI leader Arun Singh, Forward Block leader, America Mahto also paid tributes on behalf of their party.

RJD leader and ex-assembly speaker, Udai Narayan Chowdhary, all India general secretary, Shyam Rajak and Alok  Mehta, current MLA, spoke eloquently recalling Comrade Vidyarthi’s contribution as a peoples representative and an outspoken leader of oppressed and marginalised.

The great revolutionary poet and the patron of Bihar State Janwadi Lekhak Sangh, Alok Dhanwa while recounting his long association with Ganesh da, spoke about his acquaintance with Comrade Ganesh and said that he was always eager to read literary works of Gorky, Premchand, Rahul Sanskrityan et al. He underlined the need of the unity of the secular and democratic masses as was seen during the rise of fascism in Europe.

The meeting started by garlanding the photograph, placed near the podium by Sitaram Yechury, followed by each and every leader of Left and RJD and by all who had gathered on the occasion.

Awadhesh Kumar, state secretary while presiding over the meeting read out the life-sketch of Comrade Vidyarthi and his 80 years long tumultuous and revolutionary political life.

The meeting ended by observing one-minute silence in the memory of veteran departed leader.

Arun Kumar Mishra, Central Committee member, secretariat members Ramashray Singh, Sarvodaya Sharma, Lalan Chowdhary, Ajay Kumar, Shyam Bharti, Ganesh Shankar Singh, Prabhuraj Narayan Rao, Rajendra Singh and many state committee members were present.