Week-long Janadhikar Padyatra and Mahasammelan with slogan of ‘BJP Bhagao, Bihar Bachaao’ Concludes in Patna
The CPI(ML)’s Janadhikar Padyatra calling for people’s rights, a riot-free Bihar, and for saving the Constitution and the country with the slogan ‘Oust BJP, Save Bihar’ was flagged off on 25 April 2018 from the historic Polo Maidan in Laheriyaserai, Darbhanga. The Yatra proceeded via Madhopur, Bochahan, Muzaffarpur, Kudhni, Sarai and Hajipur and reached Gandhi Maidan in Patna on 1 May (International Workers’ Day) for the Jan Adhikar Mahasammelan after covering more than 160 km. Five such Yatras were organised simultaneously from different corners of Bihar. CPI(ML) General Secretary Dipankar Bhattacharya, Bihar state secretary Kunal, Dhirendra Jha and other leaders participated in these marches. Hundreds of activists and leaders from Kisan Mahasabha, AIARLA, AIPWA, AICCTU, AISA, RYA and Rasoiya Sangh participated in the Jan Adhikar Padyatra with spirited slogans and banners and flags. Com Dipankar and other speakers addressing the occasion said that the BJP and Modi government have put the country in dire straits and the people now have no option other than driving out the BJP and saving the country. The poor are being denied rations in the name of Aadhaar, unemployment is at its highest and the PM advises the youth to sell pakodas, farmers across the country are committing suicide, banks are in near collapse and Nirav Modi, Mallya and company have fled the country with lakhs of crores of the common people’s money. The country is being divided by communal and casteist poison. Women and children are being raped and BJP leaders are holding rallies in defence of the rapists.
In the afternoon the Yatra reached Madhopur where they were joined by Bhim Army leader Rajesh Kumar and All India Muslim Bedari Carvan President Nazr-e-Alam who were among the leaders addressing the meeting organized there. On 26 April the Yatra proceeded via Muzaffarpur where a meeting was addressed by Com Dhirendra Jha, Com Meena Tiwari and other leaders.
Simultaneously on 25 April a Padyatra was also flagged off from Vikramganj and proceeded to Ara. Workers, farmers, students, youth, and women marched in large numbers raising slogans for peace and harmony and against the anti-Constitution, anti-justice Modi government, calling on people to evict the BJP and save India and Bihar. Another such Jan Adhikar Padyatra was also started from Siwan in which hundreds of people participated and which was addressed by ML leaders Naeemuddin Ansari, MLA Satyadev Ram, Amarnath Yadav, Sohila Gupta and others. The participants in the march were welcomed at various places by ASHA workers and people from the villages. When the Padyatra reached Hasan Bazaar they were welcomed by hundreds of enthusiastic people. Late in the evening they reached Piro where a meeting was addressed by CPI(ML) Central Committee member Jawahar Lal Singh and Arun Singh, MLA Sudama Prasad, and others who pointed out the economic, social and agrarian crises the BJP government has foisted on the country. On 26 April the Yatra reached Garhahani via Piro, Charpokhri and Simraon. Nukkad Sabhas were organized at Charpokhri and Gadhani. Speakers pointed out how the BJP and RSS have become a danger to democracy and the Constitution and are destroying all institutions including the Judiciary. They also pointed out the role played by Nitish Kumar in assisting the BJP in their evil designs.
Another Jan Adhikar Padyatra was flagged off from Gaya on 25 April, led by Com Rajaram Singh, Niranjan Prasad, Rita Varnawal, and Janardan Prasad Singh. On 26 April the Yatra reached Arwal where Com Dipankar Bhattacharya garlanded the Martyrs’ Memorial at Laxmanpur Bathe where on 1 December 1997 the Ranveer Sena patronized by the RSS-BJP had ruthlessly massacred 59 men, women, children and infants in a brutal caste carnage. The incident was termed ‘a national shame’ by the then President K.R. Narayanan; the lower court convicted and sentenced the killers including the main accused. But a second massacre, this time of justice, was perpetrated in the Nitish regime when the Patna High Court acquitted all the accused who roam free today. The same travesty of justice was carried out in the Bathani, Nagri, Shankarbigha, Narayanpur, Miyanpur and other carnages. At Madhuban Com Dipankar garlanded the statue of Dr Ambedkar. Later at village Tetariya he welcomed the Yatra which arrived from Vikramganj.
On 27 April Jan Adhikar Padyatra started from Nawada and Nalanda districts. Braving the scorching heat, padyatris in large numbers marched enthusiastically. Speakers addressing the Yatra spoke about the distress of farmer and workers, students and youth, and scheme workers such as ASHA, rasoiya, Anganwadi workers. The Yatra from Gaya reached Jehanabad on 27 April via Tehta, Sarthua, May Halt and garlanded the statues of Dr Ambedkar and Shaheed Bhagat Singh.
The Yatra contingent that started from Bihar Shareif was welcomed by Comrade Dipankar at Hilsa in Nalanda district on 29 April. He called upon the participants to work hard to oust the BJP in order to defend the rights, democracy and the Constitution. He criticized the central government’s decision to hand over the Lal Quila to the Dalmia group and reminded the audience that this same business group is involved in looting Bihar’s resources and labour power. He said that our national heritages can never be allowed to be auctioned to the business interests. He called upon to reject BJP which is now a party of rapists and killers and whose leaders are openly defending rapists. Comrade Dipankar also garlanded the statue of CPI(ML) leader martyr Sakaldev Thakur and the memorial for 1942 movement’s martyrs in Hilsa. This contingent of Yatra was led by comrades Shashi Yadav, Surendra Ram, Narendra Singh, Manmohan Kumar, Bhola Manjhi and Savitri Devi.
On 29th April the contingent from Darbhanga had reached Vaishali, Yatra from Rahtas had reached Bihta, and Yatris who had begun from Gaya and Arwal had crossed Masaurhi. The Padyatris were enthusiastically welcomed by masses and different organisations on the way.
In spite of the extreme hot weather conditions the participants on all routes exhibited unprecedented enthusiasm. Many of them wearing only thin slippers covered hundreds of kilometers unmindful of sores developed in their feet. Many women carried their children along with the red flag in one hand. Agrarian workers, peasants, women and youth marched hand in hand braving sun, hunger and even scarcity of drinking water. The number of participants kept swelling with each passing day till 1 May when all five contingents of Yatra converged in Gandhi Maidan, Patna into a Jan Adhikar Maha Sammelan (Conference of Peoples’ Rights).
Jan Adhikar Mahasammelan
The Jan Adhikar Mahasammelan was attended by large number of people from different walks of life along with the participants of the Yatra. In spite of heavy rain they listened to the speakers and pledged to oust BJP from every part of Bihar. They also resolved to observe Karl Marx Bicentenary on May 5 at village level.
Thousands of people continued chanting slogans amidst heavy rain when they entered Gandhi Maidan in the morning of May 1. Bihar state secretary of CPI(ML) Kunal welcomed the participants and congratulated them for the successful Yatra. He also welcomed representatives of left parties and other organisations. The Mahasammelan began with the revolutionary tributes to the May Day Martyrs followed by a presentation of a martyrs’ song and Faiz’s poem ‘Hum mehnatkash jagwalon se..’ by cultural team Hirawal.
CPI(ML) General Secretary Dipankar Bhattacharya said that the slogan ‘Oust BJP, Save Bihar’ appropriately reflects prevailing sentiment of the masses in face of atrocious governments run by BJP. Peasants are deprived of their lands and livelihoods in Bihar, while thousands of acres of land is still in possession of feudal elements like erstwhile rulers of Betia. The rate of unemployment has doubled in less than one year, the Red Fort which epitomise freedom of our nation has been sold off to Dalmia who is not an ordinary capitalist but an office bearer of Vishwa Hindu Parishad and an accused of Babri Masjid demolition. The BJP must be ousted to save the country from the politics of hatred and frenzy. The BJP also deserve this treatment in Bihar for capturing power defying the anti-BJP people’s mandate in the state.
Women’s rights, safety and dignity are being attacked by BJP leaders on daily basis to the extent that they dare to insult even the tricolor by taking it in rally in support of the rapists of 8 year old girl in Kathua. It’s a shame that there are no dearth of such leaders in the BJP who openly support rapists. Attacks on dalits are on the rise on an unprecedented level. On the one hand Supreme Court talks of misusing the SC/ST Atrocities Act while the reality remains that a dalit groom is not allowed to ride on a ghori (horse) in his own marriage in Rajasthan and UP, and dalits not allowed to keep mustaches in many places. BJP opposes reservation policy for dalits and wants to amend SC/ST Act but it’s governments are discriminating against dalits, writes SC/ST on the bodies of dalit job seekers in MP Police, and repress dalit activists for participating in Bharat Bandh on 2 April.
The leaders of movements are being persecuted in BJP rule even as communal rioters and killers are being freed with impunity and honest judges are even got killed. Criminal cases are withdrawn from Adityanath and many other BJP leaders including one rape accused Baba. BJP rule has rendered words like Constitution, Law &Order, humanity, freedom etc. meaningless.
He said that left parties decision to abstain from any alliance with Nitish in last Assembly elections has been vindicated by the fact that Nitish has now fully surrendered to the BJP. This also tells that any effective alliance in Bihar will have left parties and red flag in center and the struggles of workers, peasants, minorities, women, students and youth will be the guiding force behind it. He condemned RSS and BJP for attacking statues of Lenin and telling Marx and Lenin’s ideology as ‘foreign’ while it’s not only Lenin’s but also statues of Ambedkar and Periyar which are being demolished everywhere. It’s not about ideology as foreign or indigenous, actually it’s the very idea of RSS which is against the society and democracy, against the struggles for social transformation and equality, and the ideas of Marx are a quintessential weapon in those struggles. RSS and BJP are trying to replace Bhagat Singh with Savarkar, Godse with Gandhi, Golwalkar with Ambedkar. They hypocritically celebrate victory of Kunwar Singh, a hero of 1857, but at the same time auctions the Red Fort which is the symbol of the freedom movement!
The Mahasammelan was addressed by AIARLA General Secretary Dhirendra Jha, AIPWA leader Mina Tiwary, Kisan Mahasabha leader Rajaram Singh, CPI(M) State Secretary Awadhesh Kumar, AIFB state Secretary TN Azad, SUCI(C) state secretariat member Suryakar Jitendra, RSP leader Mahesh Narayan Singh, CPI(ML) CC member Manoj Manzil, AISA leader Sandip Saurav, and others.
Many of the participants of the Yatra also shared their experiences with the audience. The Yatra were received and welcomed in Patna at different places before they reached Gandhi Maidan. AICCTU and Employees’ Federation (Gope) leaders received them at Hartali Mor in the morning, many cultural activists and intellectuals welcomed them near Radio Station, Patna CPI(ML) city committee organised a reception at Gaay Ghat for the Yatra contingent from Darbhanga, they were also received at Mahendru by Bhim Army members and various dalit students’ organisations. AISA activists organised a reception at Patna University, while at Chiraiyatand hundreds of people welcomed contingents which reached from Gaya and Bihar Sharief.