Demonetisation Fiasco

THE Modi “surgical strike” on black money and corruption has turned out to be a fiasco coupled with a scam on an industrial scale. 36 days after the withdrawal of the 500 and 1,000 rupee notes, ie, 86 percent of the currency in circulation, ordinary people are struggling to get meager amounts of cash from their own bank accounts or ATMs.  Long queues and endless wait outside banks and ATMs continue.  There is no cash available for those who need it the most – the casual labourer, the vegetable vendor, the domestic worker and the whole workforce involved in the informal economy.

Assault on Judicial Independence

THE stand-off between the higher judiciary represented by the Supreme Court and the Modi government has escalated in the past few weeks.  The Supreme Court was informed by the attorney general last month that out of the 77 names proposed by the collegium for appointment as judges in the High Courts, the government had accepted the appointment of 34 judges while 43 names were sent back to the collegium. This unprecedented step by the government has raised the pitch of the confrontation with the Supreme Court.

Strengthen Resolve to Fight Communal Danger

DECEMBER 6 marks the anniversary of the dark deed of the demolition of the Babri Masjid. Thirty four years ago the RSS-Hindutva hordes struck a severe blow at the secular-democratic character of the Indian republic by bringing down the Babri Masjid. By this single act they challenged the constitution and declared their intention to dismantle the democratic and secular framework put in place by the constitution.

Make Railways Safe

THE railway accident involving the Indore-Patna Express at Pukhrayan, near Kanpur, has taken a terrible toll.  146 passengers perished and over 250 were injured, some of them maimed for the rest of their lives. Accidents of this type in the Indian Railways are not an aberration but are becoming alarmingly frequent.   There have been 80 major railway accidents this year against 69 in the previous year.  Thousands of minor railway accidents take place every year. 

End this Unrelenting Attack on People

THE withdrawal of 500 and 1000 rupee notes is unfolding as a war on the common people instead of a war on black money.

The media has been focusing on the long queues of people outside banks, ATMs and post offices waiting to exchange the withdrawn notes for fresh notes upto a paltry amount of Rs 4,000 (now Rs 4,500).  But this is only one feature of the problems faced by the people. 

Unadulterated Authoritarian Rule

THE last few days have thrown up some disturbing portents of authoritarianism. It coincided, ironically, with the prime minister speaking at the Ramnath Goenka awards function in Delhi wherein he declared that every generation should reflect on the emergency so that no political leader in future can think of committing the sin of emergency. 

October Revolution: Harbinger of a New World

NOVEMBER 7 this year marks the beginning of the centenary of the October Revolution in Russia (by the old Russian calendar, it took place on October 25). October 1917 marked a new epoch in human history – the transition from capitalism to socialism.  This was the first revolution in the world made by the working people and led by the working class.  All earlier revolutions before this in the 18th and 19th centuries were bourgeois revolutions to overthrow the feudal monarchies.  The 1789 French Revolution being the classic bourgeois democratic revolution. 

Jobless in Modi Raj

INDIA is facing a deepening crisis on the employment front.  According to a new Employment-Unemployment (EU) Survey conducted by the Labour Bureau, unemployment in India is running at a five year high of 5 percent of the workforce who are fifteen years and above.  Over a third of the people at work are employed for less than a year. Based on the Census 2011 figures, 5 percent of those above fifteen years would work out to 2.3 crore persons;  further, 35 percent underemployed would mean nearly 16 crore persons.

Oppose this Authoritarian Onslaught

WHAT has been happening in the National Capital Territory of Delhi is truly scandalous. Ever since the AAP government was formed after the February 2015 assembly election, there has been brazen and calculated attack by the central government to hamper the elected state government. The naked use of central power through the Lt. Governor and the Delhi police (which is under central jurisdiction) has more or less sidelined the state government and the elected legislature.


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