Andhra Pradesh: CPI(ML) launched militant movement on drought issue
Demanding was distribution of relief to drought-stricken
people, CPI(ML) Andhra Pradesh unit organized dharnas at 18 Mandal headquarters
of East Godawari, West Godawari, Krishna and Visakhapatnam districts in which
thousands of peasants participated. When demands were not met, national highway
was blocked for three hours by hundreds of people at Yelleshwaram and Kakinada.
The police intervened and arrested our comrades. Thereafter, national highways
were blocked at one after another place.
Following the programme of indefinite Road Blockade of National Highway at Kathipudi on 20 March on the issue of drought, where the police resorted to severe lathicharge on the masses and arresting the leaders, protest rallies were held at Prathipadu, Sankhavaram and Thondangi mandals. Among others, Comrades Bangar Rao. Arjun Rao, Rajababu, M. Yesu and Thatabbai led these protest rallies at various places.
Kisan Panchayat in Patna
The Bihar Pradesh Kisan Sabha (BPKS) held a Kisan Panchayat
on April 17 against imperialist plunder of Indian agriculture highlighting the
need to strengthen peasant movement on specific issues like better irrigation
facilities, adequate prices for crops, availability of fertilizer, seeds, diesel
and electricity at cheaper rates, permanent solution to the flood problem in
the state and initiation of crop-based industries. More than one thousand farmers’
representatives participated in the panchayat including veterans of old Kisan
Sabha and many peasant leaders from other streams. The Panchayat demanded from
the government to impose monetary punishment on the American seed giant Monsanto
and compensation to the corn farmers in the state who had to face crop failure
owing to faulty seeds. It also declared to hold demonstrations at all block
headquarters on May 21 on these issues in solidarity with the nationwide call
for a general strike given jointly by seven trade union centres and supported
by the National Platform of Mass Organisations.
CPI(ML) Bihar State Secretary Comrade Ramjatan Sharma made a strong attack on BJP-led central government’s New Agriculture Policy in his inaugural speech and termed it anti-peasant and anti-poor, serving imperialist countries and multinational corporations. Big farmers get the privilege to sell their produce at support/remunerative prices at government procurement centres while small and middle peasants are compelled to distress sale. He called upon to take bigger initiatives to oust the govt. in the centre.
The three-member presidium included State President of the BPKS Rajaram Singh, State Vice-President Amar Nath Yadav and peasant leader from Kaimur Vijay Yadav. The event was attended by peasant activists and leaders from almost all districts of Bihar including veteran peasant leader Paramhans Tiwary.
Besides condemning US occupation of Iraq, speakers attacked Bihar govt for not reviving old irrigation facilities, and for inoperative tube-wells and rampant corruption and scams in Sone canal project. Various issues pertaining to growers of sugar cane, milk, potato, vegetables and other specific produce were also raised. BPKS has successfully conducted movements for sugarcane, milk and beetle producers in many districts of Bihar. As a result milk producers got higher prices and betel growers compensation against damage. It was resolved to hold a massive Kisan Rally in the coming month of October.
‘Badlo Bihar’ Campaign
“The truth of Champaran is not that zamindars would
rule this district irrespective of which government occupies seat in Patna or
Delhi. The truth of Champaran is that workers, peasants, poor dalits led by
CPI(ML) have all resolved to overthrow landlords from the soil of Champaran”,
said CPI(ML) General Secretary Comrade Dipankar Bhattacharya while addressing
Mazdoor Kisan Ekta Rally held on 2 April at Ramna Maidan, Bettiah of northwest
Bihar. Comrade Dipankar has addressed one after another district level rally
under ‘Badlo (transform) Bihar” campaign. Before this rally he had
addressed a rally in Darbhanga on 30 March, Siwan on 31 March and Gopalganj
on 1 April. Last rally in this lap was held at Town Hall Maidan of Motihari
in Champaran on 2 April.
Comrade Dipankar also visited Bindusar, the ancestral village of martyr comrade Chandrashekhar to offer tributes. He went to meet party comrades in Gopalganj prison who were on fast and expressed solidarity with their movement.
These rallies under Badlo Bihar campaign were simultaneously anti war rallies too, in which US aggression of Iraq was condemned, solidarity with fighting Iraqi people was expressed, Indian govt.’s stand was criticized and effigies of Bush and Blair were burnt. In Bettiah rally there was a hoarding in front of the procession depicting Bush as mad dog with Blair on his tail, running through the streets of burning Iraq. The hoarding attracted large number of people.