Editorial

Prevent Cynical Manipulation of Parliament

THE last session of the parliament before the forthcoming 15th general elections to the country has begun as we go to press. The manner in which this session has been conceived and structured, created apprehensions at the outset about the government's intentions to use this session more as a launch pad for its election campaign, rather than to transact business to implement important, long-standing, pending legislations, particularly those aimed at providing relief to the already beleaguered vast mass of the people.

For Stability and Prosperity : A Coalition of Secular Democratic Alternative

ADDRESSING the nation on the eve of the Republic Day, President Pranab Mukherjee articulated the almost universal concern in the country over the failure to meet people’s aspirations. Hailing the establishment and evolution of Indian democracy, he said, “I am not a cynic because I know that democracy has this marvellous ability to self-correct. It is the physician that heals itself, and 2014 must become a year of healing after the fractured and contentious politics of the last few years”.

NaMo-RaGa Cacophony: Subverting the Parliamentary Form of Democracy

AS we go to press, sections of supporters of the Congress party, appear to be eagerly awaiting the decision of the forthcoming Congress party session on January 17, 2014 to officially confirm its current vice president as their future prime ministerial prospect. Thus, they are waiting to complete the composition of a new political Raga for the 2014 general elections. However, whether the Congress party so decides or otherwise is their internal decision.

Stop Private Loot of Public Resources

READERS will recall that during the Rajya Sabha discussions when it finally adopted the Lokpal legislation, the CPI(M) had moved a concrete amendment to bring into the ambit of the Lokpal investigation those private companies, particularly in public-private-partnership (PPP) projects, that use public resources or have a financial arrangement with the government. Though there were eleven Left parties’ MPs present at the time of voting, this received 19 votes, meaning that some other well-meaning MPs supported this amendment.

2014: Forge an Alternative Trajectory

People’s Democracy wishes its readers a very happy new year as we move into 2014.Such greetings are usually accompanied by the hopes that the new year will turn out to be better than what we all had to go through in 2013. We have often in these columns invoked Lord Tennyson’s famous line “Ringing out the old, ringing in the new.” Such hopes continue to remain and “the new,” we expect, will be for the better. Experience, however, teaches us that life is, more often than not, a continuum.

Message of the Assembly Elections

THE elections to the five state assemblies have given a clear verdict. The unambiguous message is the outright rejection of the Congress in four states. Only the small state of Mizoram in the North East is an exception where the Congress retained its majority.

In Rajasthan and Delhi, where there were Congress governments, they have been routed in a manner never before. In Rajasthan, the Congress managed to get only 21 seats which is just over 10 per cent of the total seats. In Delhi, it has got an abysmal eight seats which translated into only 11 per cent of the total seats.

Defeat the Communal Challenge

WE are going to press on the eve of the 21st anniversary of the wanton destruction of the Babri Masjid.This destruction was not merely the demolition of one building, or, an Islamic religious structure alone.It symbolised the efforts to destroy the edifice of the modern secular democratic republic of India that emerged over a century-long epic struggle for India’s freedom and modernity.While shedding crocodile tears, the RSS/BJP have all along claimed that this destruction was the result of a spontaneous `anger’ of the kar sevaks assembled there.

Geneva Accord: A Breakthrough

THE agreement reached at in Geneva between the P5+1 powers and Iran on the nuclear issue represents a diplomatic breakthrough.This interim agreement for six months has the potential for a comprehensive settlement to be worked out. The agreement has come after repeated rounds of negotiations between the five permanent members of the UN Security Council: United States, Russia, China, France and Britain, plus Germany on the one hand and Iran on the other.

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