8th Congress of Revolutionary Workers’ Party Bangladesh

A CPI(ML) delegation attended the 8th Party Congress of the Revolutionary Workers’ Party of Bangladesh in Dhaka. The delegation of 5 comrades (CPI(ML) PB Member Swadesh Bhattacharya, senior AICCTU leader Meena Pal, CC member Abhijit Majumdar, West Bengal State Committee leader Basudeb Basu and AISA National President Sucheta De) visited Bangladesh from 24th to 30th March. Comrade Swadesh Bhattacharya addressed the inaugural session on the first day of the Party Congress. He expressed solidarity on behalf of Indian people to the struggles of the people of Bangladesh against fundamentalist forces in Bangladesh and anti-people policies subservient to imperialist interest followed by the ruling party Awami League. The left and democratic forces in Bangladesh have shown unprecedented unity in resisting the destructive Rampal power plant project and related Reliance and Adani power and energy MOUs in the Sunderbans area. The Rampal project if materialised will cause irreversible damage to the livelihood of local communities and ecosystem of the mangrove forest zone. In the month of January, the united resistance of left and democratic forces faced brutal crackdown from Bangladesh police. The inaugural session was also addressed by leaders of other communist parties and platforms of struggles against loot and sell out of natural resources of Bangladesh.

The CPI(ML) delegation was also invited to address the session of the Party Congress the next day. On 27th March, a press conference and discussion on the threats of communalism, fundamentalism and imperialist on democracy and people’s rights in the subcontinent was held. Members of the CPI(ML) delegation as well as leaders of left parties and democratic platforms of movements addressed the press conference jointly. CPI(ML) and left democratic forces of Bangladesh expressed shared concerns over displacement of people’s right to education, employment on the one hand and emergence of regressive, majoritarian fundamentalist forces on the other in the subcontinent.

On 29th of March comrades of the Revolutionary Workers’ Party of Bangladesh invited the CPI(ML) team for an interaction with workers and leaders of trade union movement in Bangladesh in Narayanganj. Bangladesh is considered an export hub for garment products. In order to serve the rapacious greed of the global supply chain, garment workers of Bangladesh being at the receiving end have suffered some of the worst industrial disasters of the 21st century. From 1990 to 2015, 1807 workers have died and 5608 were injured due to such disasters. In the Rana Plaza disaster in 2013 a total 1137 people died and 2438 were injured. Narayanganj has been the centre of brave struggles by garment workers for their rights. Comrade Basudeb Basu, AICCTU leader shared experience of struggle by the Indian working class from Maruti to Bangalore.

The party congress ended on 26th march amongst great enthusiasm. Comrade Saiful Haque was reelected as the General Secretary of the RWPB. 

Atrocities on Dalits, Poor and Women in Bihar

Atrocities by dominant sections and police on dalits, poor and women have been constantly increasing in recent days in Bihar, but the Nitish government is oblivious to this and is busy singing the prohibition tune instead. On the one hand, the poor and dalits are being attacked in the name of liquor ban while on the other hand the administration was nowhere to be seen when during Holi people from dominant castes got drunk and oppressed mahadalits, poor and women.

During Holi when Satish Ram and other mahadalit youths complained about the sale of illicit liquor they were brutally beaten by the liquor traders. In Ichipur, Dulhinbazaar (Patna district) the thana in-charge thrashed mahadalit women on the trivial issue of ‘goitha’ (cow dung cake for fuel) at the behest of dominant sections and severely injured several women including 70 year old Sushmi Devi, Manorama Devi and Balkeshwari Devi. CPI(ML) has demanded that the Dulhinbazaar thana in-charge should be removed without delay. A protest was organised by CPI(ML) in Paliganj on 14 March 2017 where the SSP was gheraoed against the brutal thrashing of dalit women by the Dulhinbazaar (Patna) police station In-charge.

In Chamartoli, Musepur Panchayat (Bihata) dominant sections beat up mahadalits, causing head injuries to a dozen families when they opposed the molestation of women in the tola. In Newana village, Karpi (Arwal district) drunk RJD backed goons attacked the Musahar tola on 14 March and broke several homes, set fire to Satish Manjhi’s home and injured 10 people seriously including Satish Manjhi who is admitted in PMCH. Hand pumps and vessels were broken during this attack and 4 women were also seriously injured.

Continuing the struggle for justice to her killed daughter, Dika Kumari’s mother sat on a two-day hunger strike from 31 March 2017. She was joined in the hunger strike by AIPWA district Secretary Shanti and many other women including victims of oppression. 

Badlav Rally in Jamua, Jharkhand

The CPI(ML) held a Badlav Rally (Rally for Change) in Jamua attended by thousands of supporters and addressed by General Secretary Dipankar Bhattacharya. It is to be noted that in spite of an ongoing two month long agitation, the killers of Reetlal Verma (killed in Jamua Hospital), Sudama Yadav (murdered in Sardiha village) and rapists of a minor girl Meena Hansda (raped and murdered over a year ago) have not been arrested. To protest against governmental inaction in these cases as well as the issues of MLA fund loot, amendments to the CNT- SPT Act, and a domicile policy that goes against the rights of original tribal people of the state, the Party held a rally on 25 March which culminated in a meeting at the Jamua Circus Maidan.

The rally was also addressed by former MLA Vinod Singh, MLA Rajkumar Yadav and other leaders. The speakers said that only a concerted and united fight against these corrupt and repressive powers can bring about the desired change and better times for Jharkhand.