For Young India, For a new India

For Young India, For a new India

Publisher’s Note: This is a collection of Comrade Vinod Mishra’s articles on youth and students that we could gather for the time being. ************************************************* “India of my dreams is essentially an integral India where a Pakistani Muslim won’t have to procure a visa in search of the roots of his evolution; where, likewise, for an Indian the great Indus Valley Civilization shall not fall in a foreign country; and where a Bengali Hindu refugee will finally shed away the bitter memories of Dacca and a Bangladeshi Muslim will not be hounded as a foreign national in India.” “This India will rank among the first five countries of the world in economic prowess as well es in Olympic tallies.” “In India of my dreams, glorification of pariahs as harijans will end and dalits will cease to be a category. Castes shall dissolve into classes with each of their members having their individualized expression.” “India of my dreams is built upon the fundamental processes at work within the Indian society and for whose realization many like we art committed to the last drop of their...

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Vinod is Hero of the New Nation

Vinod Mishra is no more among us. Against the forces of national subjugation and all sorts of reaction, VM was the commander-in-chief of Indian people’s battle for a genuine national liberation and consistent democracy. In an otherwise dark and confused atmosphere prevailing in the wake of saffron offensive, real danger of Congress revival, degeneration of centrist politics and left opportunism, CPI(ML) led by VM emerged as a centre of hope for nation’s life, aspirations of the toiling and oppressed masses and expectations of democratic and patriotic intelligentsia. He was the greatest Marxist thinker of our times. He was the unparalleled theoretician of the Indian path of revolution in the 75 year history of Indian communist movement. Under his leadership the CPI(ML) was emerging as the conscience keeper of the Indian communist movement. Then he was a shrewd tactician, excellent organiser and an exceptionally popular mass leader too. It was his resolve to establish the Indian left, otherwise limited to the periphery of the national map, at the centrestage of Indian politics by rooting it in the strategic Hindi-Urdu belt. He was heading for making communist movement a real contender for power freeing it from the course of tailing behind the ruling class parties. Along with the revolutionary peasant movement, he regarded student youth movement as a particular feature of CPI(ML) movement. In the wake of extreme opportunism, impotence and...

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India of My Dreams Motherland Gets Liberated

Other than politics, which to me means the medium revealing the intricacies of society, I take a great deal of interest in cosmology where the universe unfolds itself in infinite space and time; where galaxies fast recede into the ever-disappearing frontiers of universe away from each other; where stars emerge, glow and explode to death; and where, quite apparently, motion is the mode of existence of matter. Motion, i.e., change and transformation – always from a lower to a higher order – also, incidentally, forms the mode of existence of human society. No idea is absolute, no society is perfect. Whenever a society has been conceived as the embodiment of the absolute idea, shock waves emerging from deep within have shaken the very foundations. And then amidst the despair all around new dreams arise. Some dreams never come true as they are wild fantasies of human mind, the ‘mind-in-itself’. The few which are realized are essentially abstract creations of human mind, the ‘mind-for-it-self. Nonetheless, dreams, whether wild or plausible, have remained the source of human endeavour since perhaps the origin of humanity itself. India of my dreams is essentially an integral India where a Pakistani Muslim won’t have to procure a visa in search of the roots of his evolution; where, likewise, for an Indian the great Indus Valley Civilization shall not fall in a foreign country; and where...

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The Life and Struggle in Regional Engineering College, Durgapur (1966 to 1970)

I came to Bengal as a student in RE College, Durgapur, in the middle of 1966 at the age of 19 years. The College had a system of enrolling upto 50% of students from among those who had qualified in IIT entrance exams, and thus there was a fair share of non-Bengali students from different corners of India. My father was a clerical employee in a defence enterprise and we lived in a labour colony of Kanpur. Ours was a lower middle class family having no connections with landed property. Beginning from a rationalist-theist position at a tender age, I had a short stint with Sarvodaya movement in the early ’60s, and by the middle of ’60s under the influence of workers’ struggles and by nature of living contacts with them, was drawn towards communism. Kanpur then had a communist MP in S M Bannerjee and MLA of our area too was a communist trade unionist, Sant Singh Yusuf. The college atmosphere was quite oppressive and students were forced to live a regimented barrack life. No political or student union activities were allowed. Once when the authorities came to know that a student was reading Marx’s book in his hostel room, a thorough search was conducted and the student was threatened with rustication. Only once in 1965 some students had tried to organise a strike and it had simply...

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Bhagat Singh, The Light House of Revolutionary Mindset of Youth

(Excerpts from Vinod Mishra’s introduction to the booklet containing Bhagat Singh’s article “Why am I an atheist”) Fifty years have passed since we achieved our freedom. Casting a glance over our surroundings, we find a putrefying scene around. Particularly the all-round degeneration of Congress party, that claims to have led the country in the freedom struggle, raises some basic questions. During the freedom struggle the revolutionaries had put up certain questions regarding Gandhi and Congress ideology. They even vent out an apprehension that the independence might mean transfer of power from white sahibs to the hands of black sahibs. Today that apprehension has come true. The most resolute representative of this revolutionary stream was Bhagat Singh, whose ideals and ideology have become quite relevant even in the present phase. Ruthless British rulers thought it better to silence this brilliant brain whose popularity those days was touching the skies. And history stands testimony to the fact that rejecting the public opinion, Gandhi refused to pose cancellation of death sentence to Bhagat Singh as a precondition to Gandhi-Irwin Pact. Bhagat Singh’s popularity was one of the greatest challenges to Gandhi’s leadership…. Still more important was the phenomenon of Bhagat Singh’s transformation from revolutionary terrorist to a Marxist. This was the main foundation of the silent agreement between the British and the Congress leadership on hanging Bhagat Singh. According to Gandhi’s own...

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Chandrashekhar’s Challenge Must Be Kept Alive

In the thirty years of my political life, I have witnessed a good number of close comrades embracing martyrdom. My tears had dried up braving the martyrdom of those innumerable comrades. Still when I reached Siwan on that fateful day, and the mother wailing beside the corpse of her son Chandrashekhar grabbed my hand and said, “Mishraji, my son Chandu has left us”, I could not check my tears. In our movement we have, on the one hand, youth belonging to dalit, poor peasant families marginalised by the society playing the vanguard role and, on the other, the creamy section of students in established universities of the country marching ahead breaking the barrier of career, getting integrated with people in the lowest rung of the society. Chandrashekhar is a link in that chain of that legacy and probably the first left student leader from Jawaharlal Nehru University who, instead of getting submerged in the limelights of Delhi, preferred to sacrifice his life in the land of Siwan, where he himself was born. There have been leftist presidents in the JNU who have hardly spent a single night in the huts of peasants and workers, and still they adorn the polit bureau of some party, often to be seen on the television screen roaming in the corridors of power. Chandrashekhar was quite different from all these guys and he shattered...

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Proper Combination of the Revolutionary Spirit of the 70s with Today’s Reality is Key to Your Advance

(Inaugural Speech by Comrade Vinod Mishra at Delhi conference of AISA in February 1994) AISA is the name of the star that has fast emerged on the horizon of student politics in recent years. On this historic occasion I salute this red star. At the fag end of 20th century we are witness to a strange spectacle. Historic times seem to be moving back as if history itself is taking two steps backwards. While socialism changes to capitalism, Third world is facing the threat of neo-colonialism. Old definitions too are changing. Conservatives of yesteryears are now called reformers and the radicals of yesteryears are branded as conservatives today. In this period of historical eclipse you represent a body of students which dares to swim against the tide preparing the ground for the next forward step of history. Great is the responsibility and hence the challenge too. There will be times when you will find many a friend but there will also be times when you will have to go it alone. Victory belongs only to those who march ahead in the most difficult conditions. In 70’s we have seen the great student upsurge. For the first time in the independent India, inspired by revolutionary ideals and imbued with soaring revolutionary spirits – in Rabindranath Tagore’s words: Jiban-mrityuke payer bhritya baniye (bringing life and death under one’s command) – thousands...

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“Liberation of Humanity is Possible” : Keep this Declaration of Marxism Alive

On the question of education and employment, this national convention of AISA is certainly a very well-timed step. Few days back I read in the newspapers that on this very question another national convention attended by about 1500 participants belonging to 14 student-youth organisations could only decide that the Prime Minister Mr. Deve Gowda should be given a memorandum. The newspaper headlines read Student Convention displeased with the government. There was no announcement to launch a movement or give an ultimatum to the government. Such a big student-youth force could have put enormous pressure on the government through its movements but from somewhere or the other their hands were tied. And the biggest reason for this is that the parties to which these organisations are attached to, are either part of or are supporters to the government. This CMP that the student-youth organisation have criticised has been jointly framed by these parties and so it would have been better if these organisations instead of giving Deve Gowda a memorandum had submitted the same to their own parties. As against this, you have come up with a movemental programme by adding that the students would be forced to go into direct action if the government fails to respond to the student-youths’ demands within a given time. This is a welcome step and I feel extremely glad inaugurating this convention. You...

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Bhagat Singh and Charu Majumdar : Pathfinder for the Youth

(The Speech delivered by Vinod Mishra at the National Conference of Revolutionary Youth Association) You have raised the slogan of patriotism. You know, the 50th anniversary of our independence is being celebrated nowadays. However, despite our being free, the dream of independence still remains to be realised. Bhagat Singh didn’t stop at the slogan of independence, side by side he also raised the question: independent India for whom? The British hanged him precisely because he was attracted towards Communism. I must tell you, if you are looking for and ideal of patriotism, it is Bhagat Singh. If there has been one great hero during the whole course of independence movement, he is Bhagat Singh and none else. Hence, we have to learn a lot from Bhagat Singh. His revolutionary fervour, his concern about the country at a quite early age, his kissing gallows with a smile on his face for the freedom of our motherland, all this will continue to remain an ideal for the youth of our country. What is particularly to be learnt from Bhagat Singh is that he studied so many things in a very short span of time, read literature of different countries and pondered over various problems of his country and society. And a few days before his mounting the gallows, he was studying Lenin’s ‘State and revolution’. By studying this book he had...

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A Song : Motherland Gets Liberated

(Produced in the high tide of Naxalbari uprising, this song was Com. Vinod Mishra’s favourite one) The day is not far off when Motherland gets liberated Look, horizon in the east Starts sparkling in red sun Fanning out in four corners Glare sweep off the gloom Bathing in crimson downpour Motherland dances in joy Toilers oppressed for ages Chant the liberation chorus Fluttering in azure sky Red flag glares in glory That day we must usher in Comrades, pour all your might The day is not far off when Motherland gets liberated India’s great, we’re great Indians India belongs to...

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“Combine the revolutionary spirit of the 70’s with the realism of the day…”

(Text of the speech delivered by Vinod Mishra at the Third National Conference of AISA. As I rise here to speak and look at your bright faces, faces shining with determination, I visualise the beaming image of the young hero, Chandrashekhar that overwhelms this auditorium. Chandrashekhar became a martyr, far away from the glamour of Delhi, in the street of an obscure town of Siwan. He had a promising career before him but he preferred to live and die as a revolutionary. His decision didn’t come out of any spontaneity, or as an emotional response. It emerged out of his deep faith on the revolutionary ideology of Marxism, on the revolutionary party and his deep commitment to the cause of people. Once in discussions with me he appeared quite concerned about lack of emphasis on the study of Marxism, on ideological orientation in JNU AISA. So he wasn’t a romantic revolutionary but a vanguard conscious of his mission. Comrade Chandrashekhar is no longer with us but his killer the notorious Shahabuddin is sitting in parliament. CBI enquiry that was instituted to investigate Chandrashekhar’s killing has been abruptly stopped and Sahabuddin is moving scot-free. BJP government at the centre doesn’t seem to be interested in pursuing the investigations and one doubts whether some kind of clandestine deal has been struck at the high levels! It is, therefore, an important task...

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