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নিউ ট্রেড ইউনিয়ন ইনিশিয়্যাটিভ (নয়া দিল্লি)’র পক্ষে অসম মজুরি শ্রমিক ইউনিয়নের ২ সেপ্টেম্বর ‘সর্বভারতীয় ধর্মঘট’ সফল করার আহ্বান

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প্রেসবিজ্ঞপ্তি


   
         কেন্দ্রীয় সরকার একের পর এক জনবিরোধী নীতি গ্রহণ করে চলেছে। নির্বাচনী প্রতিশ্রুতি বেমালুম ভুলে গিয়ে খুচরো ব্যবসায়ে একশ শতাংশ বিদেশি বিনিয়োগের ছাড় দিয়ে ও অপ্রত্যক্ষ করের (ভ্যাট) বোঝা বাড়িয়ে ভারতীয় ক্ষুদ্র খুচরো ব্যবসায়ীদের ধ্বংসের দিকে ঠেলে দিচ্ছে। এর ফলে এমনকি উৎপাদক কৃষকরাও বিপদের সম্মুখীন হবেন। নিত্য-প্রয়োজনীয় সামগ্রীর দাম বৃদ্ধির ফলে সাধারণ মানুষ নাজেহাল। সকল ক্ষেত্রে সরকারি মালিকানা উঠিয়ে দিয়ে দেশের শ্রম ও সম্পদের অবাধ লুঠের জন্য দেশি-বিদেশি বৃহৎ ব্যক্তি-মালিকদের হাতে তুলে দেওয়া হচ্ছে। আসামের তৈল ক্ষেত্রের অকশন বিক্রির সিদ্ধান্ত এর সাম্প্রতিক উদাহরণ। প্রতিরক্ষা খাতে একশ শতাংশ বিদেশি বিনিয়োগের ছাড় জাতীয় স্বার্থের পরিপন্থী।
নির্বাচনের আগে আসামের চা-শিল্পে কর্মরত বিশাল শ্রমিকশ্রেণির মজুরি বৃদ্ধির কথা বললেও, আসামে ক্ষমতায় আসীন হয়েই নির্বাচনী প্রতিশ্রুতি ভুলে বসে আছে বিজেপি দল। এই বিশাল জনগোষ্ঠীর জীবন জীবিকা সুনিশ্চিত করার বদলে বাগান মালিকদেরই স্বার্থ দেখছে সরকার। বাগান শ্রম আইনের বিধান অনুযায়ী শ্রমিকদের যেসব সুযোগ সুবিধা দেওয়ার কথা তার কোনো কিছুই বাগান মালিকরা দেয় না, শ্রমিকের পিএফ-এর অর্থ জমা না দেওয়ার অভিযোগ রয়েছে বিস্তর, কিন্তু কেন্দ্র-রাজ্য কোনো সরকারই আইন না মানার জন্য বাগান মালিকদের বিরুদ্ধে কোনো শাস্তিমূলক ব্যবস্থা নেয় না। শ্রম আইনকে সংশোধন করে শ্রমিক স্বার্থের উপর আঘাত করা হচ্ছে।তপসিলি জাতি/জনজাতি হিসেবে স্বীকৃতির দীর্ঘদিনের দাবি উপেক্ষা করে কেন্দ্র-রাজ্য সরকার এই জনগোষ্ঠীকে তাদের ন্যায্য অধিকার থেকে বঞ্চিত করে চলেছে।তাদের মাতৃভাষার ও জাতির স্বীকৃতি না দিয়ে এই জনগোষ্ঠীকে অপমান করে চলেছে সব দল ও সরকার।
        
             এই পরিপ্রেক্ষিতে নিম্নলিখিত দাবির ভিত্তিতে ২ সেপ্টেম্বর সর্বভারতীয় ধর্মঘটকে সফল করে তোলার জন্য মেহনতি মানুষ ও আমজনতার প্রতি আহ্বান জানাচ্ছে অসম মজুরি শ্রমিক ইউনিয়ন।

(১) খুচরো ব্যবসা ও প্রতিরক্ষা খাতে বিদেশি বিনিয়োগের ছাড় দেওয়া চলবে না।
(২) সরকারি খণ্ডকে ব্যক্তিগত মালিকদের হাতে তুলে দেওয়া চলবে না ও আসামের তৈল ক্ষেত্রের অকশন বিক্রির সিদ্ধান্ত বাতিল করতে হবে।
(৩) বিগত রাজ্য সরকারের জারি করা নোটিফিকেশন অনুযায়ী চা-শ্রমিকদের ন্যূনতম মোট মজুরি ১৭৭ টাকা ও নগদ মজুরি ১৪৩ টাকা দিতে হবে। দক্ষিণ ভারতের রাজ্যের মত লেবার কনফারেন্স ও সুপ্রিম কোর্টের বিধান অনুযায়ী ও নিত্যপ্রয়োজনীয় সামগ্রীর বর্তমান বাজার দরের ভিত্তিতে চা-শ্রমিকদের ন্যূনতম মজুরি ৪২০ টাকা ধার্য করতে হবে।
(৪) বাগান শ্রম আইনের সুষ্ঠু রূপায়ণ করতে হবে।
(৫) চা ও প্রাক্তন চা-শ্রমিকদের তপসিলি জাতি/জনজাতির স্বীকৃতি প্রদান করতে হবে।
(৬) চা-বাগানের জনগোষ্ঠীদের মাতৃভাষায় পঠন-পাঠনের ব্যবস্থা করতে হবে।
সংগ্রামী অভিনন্দন সহ-
ইনক্লাব জিন্দাবাদ!
অসম মজুরি শ্রমিক ইউনিয়নের পক্ষে
 শিশির দে, নুমান আহমেদ, ধরিত্রী শর্মা ও পারভেজ খসরু লস্কর কর্তৃক প্রচারিত

অরুণোদয় ঃ এপ্রিল-জুন, ২০১৬ সংখ্যা।

Posted by স্বাভিমান













Naxalite movement and the peasant question

Posted by স্বাভিমান

Naxalite movement and the peasant question
Arup  Baisya
After a long period, the agrarian question or the peasant question has once again come to the fore. The agrarian crisis and the left decline in rural areas make it imperative to have a look on agrarian relations. In the great Indian academic debate on peasant question in the 1960s and 1970s which is known as ‘mode of production debate’, there was no unanimity of opinions. The Naxalbari peasant upsurge vindicated the stand of the section of left who severed ties with mainstream left and formed CPIML declaring the Indian state character as semi-feudal and semi-colonial. This characterization was in consonance with the Mao’s formulation of ‘erosion and retention’ of feudal relation in the era of imperialism and semi-colonial settings. The Naxalbari upsurge actually happened in the backdrop of a phase of class struggle that was unleashed during that period in the Indian agricultural sector. The question arises what happened to the agrarian relations of production after this phase of class struggle. Did this phase mark the beginning of gradual transition of feudalism to capitalism from below as it happened in France? The question also arises whether the continuation of same strategy followed by the CPIML groups in the rural areas post-Naxalbari upsurge has any bearing on the shrinking mass base. 
There was a dichotomy in political culture of a section of congress leadership who having emerged from landed gentry inherited the feudal interest, but at the same time imbibed modern outlook through freedom struggle and also through the process of post-independence constitutional republican state formations
Indian state tried to introduce capitalism from above through half-hearted attempt of Land reform in the period of planned economy. K Venkatasubramanian, fromer member of planning commission, referred Joshi’s following observation in his article “Land reforms remained an unfinished business”.
“Land reforms in India have not assumed the form of gigantic revolutionary upheaval as in China, or that of a dramatic change brought about from above as in Japan. But from this to jump to the conclusion that the land reform programme has been a hoax or total fiasco is to substitute assertion for a detailed empirical examination. India has also witnessed important changes in the agrarian structure, which have gone unnoticed because of the absence of down-to-earth approach in assessing these changes.”  
Land reforms were given a top priority in policy agenda to ensure social justice and augment agricultural growth by optimum utilization of small holdings. From 1960s green revolution technology backed by subsidized credit, fertilizer was introduced. Later, other inputs were introduced in the water-rich regions for food crops from the 1980s. After the phase of intense agrarian class struggle which culminated into Naxalbari upheaval, national guidelines were issued in 1972, which specified the land ceiling limit.
As per the observation of Daniel Thorner, the American Historian, who initiated the Indian mode of production debate, the big business in India in late 1960s and early 1970s was campaigning for an open door policy of free entry into agricultural production. The house of Birlas took the lead in demanding a shift in Government policy away from cooperative farming, which failed to make any headway worth noting, towards corporate farming. The former Prime Minister, Indira Gandhi, emphasized “Land reform is the most crucial test which our political system must pass in order to survive”. (LAND REFORMS REMAIN AN UNFINISHED BUSINESS'K. Venkatasubramanian Planning commission, GoI, Site).
This shift of political balance within the congress to serve the corporate interest as against the feudal interest was visible in the early seventies. It is worth-mentioning here that the global capitalism also entered into systemic crisis just before the advent of that period of intense agrarian class struggle and was desperately searching for profitable destination for investment. The interest of corporate capital for making further deep inroads into the Indian agricultural sector was drawn by the presence of wage labourers along with a reserve army of labourers and the commodity production for market as the dominant features in the agricultural sector instead of subsistence cultivation. The forces for rapid transition to agrarian capitalist relations had taken the driving seat both politically and economically from that period.
After more than three decades of neoliberal globalization of capital, the corporate food regime dispossesses peasants as a condition of corporate agriculture, what Harvey terms as ‘accumulation by dispossession’. Massive acquisition of agricultural land by multinational corporations for non-agricultural purposes and increasing privatization of natural resources introduced new patterns of urbanization and industrialization. The increasing control of agribusiness over input and output flows of agriculture indicated a massive debouching of workforce from the farm sector.  
When the agrarian question is revisited after three decades of neoliberal policy drive, the convergence of opinion among the academicians on the broad canvass of delineating the Indian agrarian relation as capitalist has been emerging. The penetration of corporate capital and accumulation of surplus thereof by global corporate giant through the value chain restrained the re-investment of capital by both landlord capitalist and peasant capitalist in the agricultural sectors and thus delinking of the peasant economy from global corporate control is essential to serve the interest of these agrarian classes. From the point of view of labour, there are regional and community variants. The formal, real and hybrid forms of subsumption of labour to capital fit to these unevenness of capitalist development.
The nature of agrarian relations in India is bound to reflect the external neoliberal influences as much as the internal historical specificities. The diversities in the agrarian relation of production ingrained in the labour process can be conceived from formal, real and hybrid forms of subsumption of labour to capital.
The primitive accumulation drive of the global corporate capital and the distress situation in agricultural economy are continuously converting the displaced peasants into wage labourers for their subsistence with wages below the value of labour-power and getting engaged in informal sectors which is being expanded due to neoliberal urbanization, and thus the agricultural labourers are coming under the purview of formal subsumption to capital. The technological inputs in the agriculturally and industrially developed Indian states are drawing the rural wage labourers under the real subsumption to capital. There is also a third category of large number of small peasants. Marx, in his letters to Vera Zasulich, pointed out the hybrid form of subsumption of labour to capital in the case of pre-revolutionary Russian peasant communes and observed that the survival of these communes were dependent on the occurrence of Russian revolution. The Indian small peasants are largely engaged in commodity production and send their products to the market through marketing chain which is rapidly being brought under the control of global corporate giants entering the retail market and agribusiness. The small peasants engaged in commodity production are actually paying their own wages from the small portion of surplus they can be able to accumulate. The survival of these small peasants is also dependent on Indian revolution that will usher in delinking of agricultural economy from the clasp of the global corporate and their Indian compradors. Due to the dominance of global corporate capital, the landlord capitalists in the agriculturally developed states and the peasant capitalists in the industrially developed states can also garner little control over production process to accumulate surplus to reinvest. Thus all the rural classes have a score to settle with the global corporate capital and their Indian compradors, be it the question of wages, delinking of economy from the control of global corporate capital for capital accumulation and re-investment or preservation of natural resources and ecological balances from the onslaught of primitive accumulation. The changing dynamics of rural class relations has also put the institution of patriarchy into intense questioning. A programme that encompasses all these factors to build a mass struggle against corporate plunder may rejuvenate the Naxalite movement once again.
References :
(1)   Late Marx and the Russian Road, Marx and ‘the Peripheries of capitalism’ – Theodor Shanin, 2009.
(2)   Land, Labour & Rights, Daniel Thorner Memorial lectures – edited by Alice Thorner, 2001.
(3)   Critical perspectives on agrarian transition – Edited by B. B. Mahanty. 2016. 



      





Naxalite movement and the peasant question

Posted by স্বাভিমান

Naxalite movement and the peasant question
Arup  Baisya
After a long period, the agrarian question or the peasant question has once again come to the fore. The agrarian crisis and the left decline in rural areas make it imperative to have a look on agrarian relations. In the great Indian academic debate on peasant question in the 1960s and 1970s which is known as ‘mode of production debate’, there was no unanimity of opinions. The Naxalbari peasant upsurge vindicated the stand of the section of left who severed ties with mainstream left and formed CPIML declaring the Indian state character as semi-feudal and semi-colonial. This characterization was in consonance with the Mao’s formulation of ‘erosion and retention’ of feudal relation in the era of imperialism and semi-colonial settings. The Naxalbari upsurge actually happened in the backdrop of a phase of class struggle that was unleashed during that period in the Indian agricultural sector. The question arises what happened to the agrarian relations of production after this phase of class struggle. Did this phase mark the beginning of gradual transition of feudalism to capitalism from below as it happened in France? The question also arises whether the continuation of same strategy followed by the CPIML groups in the rural areas post-Naxalbari upsurge has any bearing on the shrinking mass base. 
There was a dichotomy in political culture of a section of congress leadership who having emerged from landed gentry inherited the feudal interest, but at the same time imbibed modern outlook through freedom struggle and also through the process of post-independence constitutional republican state formations
Indian state tried to introduce capitalism from above through half-hearted attempt of Land reform in the period of planned economy. K Venkatasubramanian, fromer member of planning commission, referred Joshi’s following observation in his article “Land reforms remained an unfinished business”.
“Land reforms in India have not assumed the form of gigantic revolutionary upheaval as in China, or that of a dramatic change brought about from above as in Japan. But from this to jump to the conclusion that the land reform programme has been a hoax or total fiasco is to substitute assertion for a detailed empirical examination. India has also witnessed important changes in the agrarian structure, which have gone unnoticed because of the absence of down-to-earth approach in assessing these changes.”  
Land reforms were given a top priority in policy agenda to ensure social justice and augment agricultural growth by optimum utilization of small holdings. From 1960s green revolution technology backed by subsidized credit, fertilizer was introduced. Later, other inputs were introduced in the water-rich regions for food crops from the 1980s. After the phase of intense agrarian class struggle which culminated into Naxalbari upheaval, national guidelines were issued in 1972, which specified the land ceiling limit.
As per the observation of Daniel Thorner, the American Historian, who initiated the Indian mode of production debate, the big business in India in late 1960s and early 1970s was campaigning for an open door policy of free entry into agricultural production. The house of Birlas took the lead in demanding a shift in Government policy away from cooperative farming, which failed to make any headway worth noting, towards corporate farming. The former Prime Minister, Indira Gandhi, emphasized “Land reform is the most crucial test which our political system must pass in order to survive”. (LAND REFORMS REMAIN AN UNFINISHED BUSINESS'K. Venkatasubramanian Planning commission, GoI, Site).
This shift of political balance within the congress to serve the corporate interest as against the feudal interest was visible in the early seventies. It is worth-mentioning here that the global capitalism also entered into systemic crisis just before the advent of that period of intense agrarian class struggle and was desperately searching for profitable destination for investment. The interest of corporate capital for making further deep inroads into the Indian agricultural sector was drawn by the presence of wage labourers along with a reserve army of labourers and the commodity production for market as the dominant features in the agricultural sector instead of subsistence cultivation. The forces for rapid transition to agrarian capitalist relations had taken the driving seat both politically and economically from that period.
After more than three decades of neoliberal globalization of capital, the corporate food regime dispossesses peasants as a condition of corporate agriculture, what Harvey terms as ‘accumulation by dispossession’. Massive acquisition of agricultural land by multinational corporations for non-agricultural purposes and increasing privatization of natural resources introduced new patterns of urbanization and industrialization. The increasing control of agribusiness over input and output flows of agriculture indicated a massive debouching of workforce from the farm sector.  
When the agrarian question is revisited after three decades of neoliberal policy drive, the convergence of opinion among the academicians on the broad canvass of delineating the Indian agrarian relation as capitalist has been emerging. The penetration of corporate capital and accumulation of surplus thereof by global corporate giant through the value chain restrained the re-investment of capital by both landlord capitalist and peasant capitalist in the agricultural sectors and thus delinking of the peasant economy from global corporate control is essential to serve the interest of these agrarian classes. From the point of view of labour, there are regional and community variants. The formal, real and hybrid forms of subsumption of labour to capital fit to these unevenness of capitalist development.
The nature of agrarian relations in India is bound to reflect the external neoliberal influences as much as the internal historical specificities. The diversities in the agrarian relation of production ingrained in the labour process can be conceived from formal, real and hybrid forms of subsumption of labour to capital.
The primitive accumulation drive of the global corporate capital and the distress situation in agricultural economy are continuously converting the displaced peasants into wage labourers for their subsistence with wages below the value of labour-power and getting engaged in informal sectors which is being expanded due to neoliberal urbanization, and thus the agricultural labourers are coming under the purview of formal subsumption to capital. The technological inputs in the agriculturally and industrially developed Indian states are drawing the rural wage labourers under the real subsumption to capital. There is also a third category of large number of small peasants. Marx, in his letters to Vera Zasulich, pointed out the hybrid form of subsumption of labour to capital in the case of pre-revolutionary Russian peasant communes and observed that the survival of these communes were dependent on the occurrence of Russian revolution. The Indian small peasants are largely engaged in commodity production and send their products to the market through marketing chain which is rapidly being brought under the control of global corporate giants entering the retail market and agribusiness. The small peasants engaged in commodity production are actually paying their own wages from the small portion of surplus they can be able to accumulate. The survival of these small peasants is also dependent on Indian revolution that will usher in delinking of agricultural economy from the clasp of the global corporate and their Indian compradors. Due to the dominance of global corporate capital, the landlord capitalists in the agriculturally developed states and the peasant capitalists in the industrially developed states can also garner little control over production process to accumulate surplus to reinvest. Thus all the rural classes have a score to settle with the global corporate capital and their Indian compradors, be it the question of wages, delinking of economy from the control of global corporate capital for capital accumulation and re-investment or preservation of natural resources and ecological balances from the onslaught of primitive accumulation. The changing dynamics of rural class relations has also put the institution of patriarchy into intense questioning. A programme that encompasses all these factors to build a mass struggle against corporate plunder may rejuvenate the Naxalite movement once again.
References :
(1)   Late Marx and the Russian Road, Marx and ‘the Peripheries of capitalism’ – Theodor Shanin, 2009.
(2)   Land, Labour & Rights, Daniel Thorner Memorial lectures – edited by Alice Thorner, 2001.
(3)   Critical perspectives on agrarian transition – Edited by B. B. Mahanty. 2016. 



      





আসাম নির্বাচন ঃ এক ভিন্ন দৃষ্টিকোণ (খসড়া)

Posted by স্বাভিমান

আসাম নির্বাচন ঃ এক ভিন্ন দৃষ্টিকোণ (খসড়া)
(অরুণোদয়ের জন্য, প্রুফ দেখা বাকী)   
অরূপা মহাজন
ইতিমধ্যে আসাম নির্বাচনের দলগত ভোটপ্রাপ্তির পরিসংখ্যান পত্রপত্রিকায় বহুল প্রচারিত হয়েছে। এই পরিসংখ্যান থেকে এব্যাপারটি স্পষ্ট যে দল হিসেবে বিজেপি তার গ্রহণযোগ্যতা বিগত বিধানসভার তূলনায় বহুপরিমাণে বৃদ্ধি ঘটিয়েছে। অন্যদিকে কংগ্রেস মুষ্ঠিমেয় ক’টি আসন বাদ দিয়ে প্রায় সবকটি আসনে প্রতিদ্বন্দ্বিতা করে শতাংসের হিসেবে যে ভোট লাভ করেছে, তাতে নির্বাচনী রাজনীতির বিচারে কংগ্রেসের ভরাডুবিই বলা যেতে পারে। বিগত বিধানসভা নির্বাচনে ইউডিএফ যে কটি আসনে প্রতিদ্বন্দ্বিতা করেছে সেই আসনগুলির বিচারে এবারের নির্বাচনে ইউডিএফ-এর প্রাপ্ত ভোট বেশ ভারী মাত্রায় কমেছে। গতবারের তূলনায় কম আসন ও ভোট প্রাপ্তি ঘটায় এবং ইউডিএফ সুপ্রিমো বদরুদ্দিন আজমল নিজেই পরাজিত হওয়ায় রাজনৈতিক দল হিসেবে ইউডিএফ তার জীবনী শক্তি নিঃশেষ হওয়ার দিকে পা বাড়িয়ে দিয়েছে। বামপন্থী দলগুলির শুকিয়ে যাওয়া এমন স্তরে পৌঁছে গেছে যে নতুন শেকড়ের সন্ধান ছাড়া বামপন্থার পুনরুজ্জীবন কল্পনাতীত। এই পরিপ্রেক্ষিতে রাজনীতিতে ভাজপা’র উত্থান শধুমাত্র সরকারি ক্ষমতা দখলকেই সূচীত করে না, এক বিরোধী রাজনীতির শূন্যতাকেও সূচীত করে। সংঘীয় মতাদর্শ আগামী দিনে এই  শূন্যতাকে যদি পুরোপুরি ভরাট করে নিতে পারে তাহলে আসামবাসীর জন্য অপেক্ষা করে আছে এক ভয়ঙ্কর দিন। আসামে ভাজপা’র উত্থান জাতীয় সংঘীয় রাজনীতিতে যে সার-পানী জুগিয়েছে তাতে তাদের সর্বভারতীয় নেতৃত্বের উৎফুল্লিত হওয়ারই  কথা।
আসামে ভাজপা’র উত্থান দু’টি কঠোর ও আত্মঘাতী সত্যকে সামনে এনেছে। প্রথমত এই নির্বাচনে অসমীয়া শিক্ষিত মধ্যশ্রেণি তাদের আত্মসমর্পণ ও পরাজয়কে নির্লজ্জের মত মেনে নিয়ে উগ্রজাতিয়তাবাদকে পুনরুজ্জীবিত করেছে। দীর্ঘ উগ্রজাতিয়তাবাদী  রাজনীতি জাতি হিসেবে অসমীয়াদের যে প্রভুত ক্ষতি সাধন করেছে, একে একে  বিভিন্ন জনগোষ্ঠী এমনকি জনজাতীয়রাও যখন অসমীয়া পরিচয়ের বাইরে চলে যাওয়ার প্রবণতা দেখাচ্ছে, তখন এই অভিজ্ঞতা হিন্দু শিক্ষিত মধ্যশ্রেণিকে জাতীয় আঞ্চলিকতাবাদের এক গণতান্ত্রিক উন্মেষের কথা ভাবতে বাধ্য করছিল। কিন্তু এই উষালগ্নে অসমীয়া হিন্দু শিক্ষিত মধ্যশ্রেণি উগ্রজাতিয়াতাবাদের পুনরুজ্জীবনের জন্য জাতীয় আঙিনায় এক সহজ আশ্রয় খুঁজে পেয়ে শ্রমজীবী মানুষের দৃষ্টিকোণ থেকে গণতান্ত্রিক জাতিয়বাদী উন্মেষের কঠিন পথ পরিহার করল। অসমীয়া হিন্দু শিক্ষিত মধ্যশ্রেণির এই জাতিধ্বংসী পথ গোটা আসামের জনজীবনে অন্ধকার নামিয়ে আনতে সাহায্য করবে। উল্টোদিকে মানসিকভাবে বিধ্বস্ত ও পরাজিত বাঙালি হিন্দু শিক্ষিত  মধ্যশ্রেণি শুরু থেকেই প্রতিক্রিয়াশীল রাজনীতির কাছে আত্মসমর্পণ করে বসেছিল, বহিরাগত ও বিদেশী এই দ্বৈত বয়ানে বিভাজিত বাঙালি সমাজে তারা এক নমনীয় হিন্দুত্বের পথ শুরু থেকেই বেছে নিয়েছিল। অসমীয়া খিলঞ্জিয়া রাজনীতির বিরোধিতা ও পূর্ববঙ্গ থেকে বিতাড়িত হওয়ার দায় মুসলিমদের উপর চাপিয়ে দেওয়ার প্রবণতা থেকে মুসলিম বিরোধিতা –এই দু’য়ের টানাপড়েনে জাতীয় ছত্রচ্ছায়ায় খিলঞ্জিয়া শিবিরে আশ্রয় নেওয়াকেই তারা শ্রেয় মনে করল। হিন্দু বহিরাগতদের আশ্রয় দেওয়ার একগুচ্ছ নাটক করে বিজেপি তাদেরকে মানসিকভাবে কাছে টেনে নিল। অনুরূপভাবে অসমীয়া মধ্যশ্রেণিও কৌশলগতভাবে বাঙালি হিন্দু বহিরাগতের অধিকারের প্রশ্নকে মেনে নিয়ে বিজেপি শিবিরে আশ্রয় নেয়। গণতান্ত্রিক বয়ান ও গণতান্ত্রিক শক্তির অভাবে ভাজপা’র এই বিদেশি বিরোধিতা ও খিলঞ্জিয়া অধিকারের আড়ালে মুসলিম বিদ্বেষী রাজনীতিকেই মানসিকভাবে মেনে নিতে বাধ্য হলো পরস্পর বিবদমান দুই ভাষিক জনগোষ্ঠীর শিক্ষিত মধ্যশ্রেণি। মানসিক এই আত্মসমর্পণের পেছনে রসদ জুগিয়েছিলেন ২০১১-এর নির্বাচনের আগে তৎকালীন মুখ্যমন্ত্রী স্বয়ং তরুণ গগৈ তাঁর ‘হু ইজ আজমল’ ডায়লগের মধ্য দিয়ে। অভিবাসী মুসলিমরা আসামের ক্ষমতা দখল করে নেবে, এই জুজুর ভয়কে কাজে লাগিয়ে কংগ্রেস উজান আসামের বহু আসন জিতে আসে ২০১১ সালে। এবার এই একই জুজুর ভয় অতি সুকৌশলে কাজে লাগিয়েছে ভাজপা, কেন্দ্রে ক্ষমতায় থাকায় এবং মতাদর্শত কারণে ভাজপাই মুসলমানদের রোখার ক্ষেত্রে বেশি গ্রহণযোগ্য হিসেবে বিবেচিত হয়েছে। এজিপি’র  অনেকগুলো আসনে বিজয় ও ভোটবৃদ্ধিকে অনেকে আঞ্চলিকতাবাদের অস্তিত্বকে বড় করে দেখেন, কিন্তু আমার মনে হয় বিজেপি-এজিপি আসন সমঝোতা ও হিন্দুত্ববাদী ভোটবেসকে আশ্রয় করেই এজিপি এতগুলো আসন জিততে পেরেছে এবং আঞ্চলিকতাবাদকে জাতীয় হিন্দুত্ববাদী রাজনীতিতে আত্মস্থ করে নেওয়ার এ এক অন্তর্বর্তীকালীন পর্যায়। এরজন্যই প্রশ্ন জাগা স্বাভাবিক যে হিন্দু শিক্ষিত মধ্যশ্রেণি কংগ্রেস শিবির ত্যাগ করে ভাজপা শিবিরে চলে যাওয়ার পেছনে বস্তুগত ভিত্তি কি ছিল?
পাঠকের নিশ্চয়ই স্মরণে আছে ডিমাপুরের মিথ্যা অভিযোগে এক মুসলিম শ্রমিককে গণপিটুনিতে মেরে ফেলার ঘটনা। এই ঘটনা সম্পর্কে এক নিবন্ধে আমি লিখেছিলাম যে এই ঘটনার পেছনে উজান আসামে সক্রিয় সর্বক্ষণের আরএসএস কর্মীদের দীর্ঘ হিন্দুত্ববাদী মতাদর্শগত প্রচারের এক গভীর ভূমিকা রয়েছে। এই মতাদর্শগত প্রচার এতোই বিস্তৃত ও সর্বগ্রাসী যে অ-খৃষ্টান নাগা, আদিবাসী্দের মত সম্প্রদায়কেও এই মতাদর্শের ছত্রছায়ায় নিয়ে যেতে সক্ষম হয়েছে, কারণ হিন্দু জাগরণের প্রচারকে গ্রহণযোগ্য করে তোলার জন্য এর সাথে ব্যাপক জনসেবামূলক কাজও সংঘ পরিবারের রয়েছে। উজান আসামের জনজাতীয়দের মধ্যেও আরএসএস অনুপ্রবেশ খাটো করে দেখার কোনো কারণ নেই। বরাক উপত্যকার ময়নাগড় চা-বাগানে মুসলিম গাড়ী চালককে আদিবাসী যুবকদের পিটিয়ে হত্যা করা, করিমগঞ্জ শহরের জনৈক মুসলিম অধ্যাপককে মারপিট করা, অ্যাম্বুলেন্স থেকে নামিয়ে মুসলিম লোকদের উপর আক্রমণ, শিলচর মেহেরপুরের মন্দিরে গরুর মাংসের মিথ্যা রটনার মাধ্যমে সাম্প্রদায়িক উত্তেজনা, শিলচর রংপুরের অনুরূপ ঘটনা এই সবগুলিই ছিল নির্বাচনী মহড়া। এই মহড়াকে কেন্দ্র করে তৃণমূল স্তরে তপসিলি জাতি, জনজাতি, অবিসিদের মধ্যে হিন্দুত্ববাদী প্রচারে আকৃষ্ট করার জন্য রয়েছে আরএসএস-এর তৃণমূল শাখা ও সংগঠক। কিন্তু এই প্রচারকে জোরের সাথে খণ্ডন করার জন্য ছিল না কোন কংগ্রেসী বা বামপন্থীদের বলিষ্ঠ নেতৃত্ব, এরা সবাই হিন্দু ভোট খোয়ানোর ভয়ে  তোষামোদের রাজনীতি করছিলেন। উপরন্তু কংগ্রেসীরাও হিন্দু-মুসলিম বিভাজনের অঙ্কে নির্বাচনী বৈতরণী পার হওয়ার স্বপ্ন দেখছিলেন এবং দুর্নীতিগ্রস্ত কংগ্রেসী র‍্যাঙ্ক এণ্ড ফাইলের উগ্র-হিন্দুত্ববাদের মতাদর্শগত বিরোধিতা করার মানসিক শক্তিও ছিল না। কংগ্রেসি এই র‍্যাঙ্ক এণ্ড ফাইলের হাতে এক মোক্ষম অস্ত্র তুলে দিয়েছিলেন মুখ্যমন্ত্রী তরুণ গগৈ তার শাসনের শেষ বছরে, যখন তার ডানহাত বলে পরিচিত হিমন্ত বিশ্ব শর্মা তাঁকে ত্যাগ করে চলে যান। হিমন্ত বিশ্ব শর্মা চতুর রাজনীতিবিদ হিসেবে কংগ্রেসের বিরুদ্ধে ও বিজেপি’র পক্ষে জনমতের আঁচ আগেই করতে  পেরেছিলেন এবং সেজন্যই তাঁর শিবির ত্যাগ, কংগ্রেসের সাথে মতবিরোধের প্রশ্ন ছিল গৌণ। শেষ বছরে তরুণ গগৈ বেশ কিছু জনকল্যাণমূলক প্রকল্প ঘোষণা করেন, কিন্তু  দুর্নীতিগ্রস্ত কংগ্রেসি স্থানীয় নেতৃত্ব ও র‍্যাঙ্ক এণ্ড ফাইল এগুলি রূপায়ণ হতে দেয়নি, আর কিছু প্রকল্প ভাজপা’র মদতপুষ্ট এক সংগঠন মামলা দায়ের করে স্থগিতাদেশ দিয়ে আটকে দেয়। এগুলি রূপায়ণ করতে পারলেও কংগ্রেসিরা কিছুটা মাথা তুলে দাঁড়াতে পারতেন।
উন্নয়নের প্রশ্ন এবারের নির্বাচনে এক গুরুত্ত্বপূর্ণ বিষয় ছিল, বিশেষ করে নবপ্রজন্মের মধ্যে। উন্নয়নের প্রশ্নে কংগ্রেস বিরোধী ক্ষোভ ছিল এবং বিজেপি নিজেকে উন্নয়নের রাজনীতির প্রতিভূ হিসেবে নিজেকে জাহির করছিল। জনজাতীয় মুখ্যমন্ত্রী প্রার্থী, জনজাতীয় সংগঠনগুলির সাথে রফা ইত্যাদি জনজাতীয় ভোটকে সমাবেশিত করার ক্ষেত্রে বিজেপি’র পক্ষে কাজে লেগেছে। কিন্তু আমার মনে হয় উন্নয়ন সহ  বাকি প্রশ্নগুলি ছিল মূলত হিন্দুত্ববাদী রাজনীতির অধীন। ভাজপা’র পক্ষে নির্বাচনী আবেগ তৈরির তুরূপের তাস ছিল হিন্দুত্ববাদ ও বিদেশি মুক্ত আসাম গড়ার শ্লোগানের আড়ালে মুসলিম বিরোধিতা। ভাষিক জাতিয়তাবাদকে যারা বহন করবে সেই নীচুতলার সব জনগোষ্ঠী যখন হিন্দুত্ববাদী শিবিরের দিকে সরে গেছে, তখন শিক্ষিত হিন্দু মধ্যশ্রেণির সর্বভারতীয় প্রভুর কাছে আত্মসমর্পণ করা ছাড়া আর কোনো গত্যন্তর থাকে না। নতুন কোনো গণতান্ত্রিক বয়ান তৈরির বৌদ্ধিক ও মানসিক শক্তি হারিয়ে এই শিক্ষিত হিন্দু মধ্যশ্রেণিটি ইতিমধ্যে  দেউলিয়া হয়ে উঠেছে।

এটা পরিতাপের বিষয় যে বুদ্ধি দিয়ে যাদের বোঝার কথা তাদেরকে অভিজ্ঞতা থেকে শিখতে হচ্ছে। ভাজপা’র রাজনীতির মোহভঙ্গ ঘটা স্বাভাবিক, কারণ অপরকে ঘৃণা করার হাতিয়ার দিয়ে মানুষ বেঁচে থাকতে পারে না। মানুষের চাই রুজি-রুটি-রোজগার, উন্নয়ন। ভাজপার উদারবাদী অর্থনীতি মানুষের এই সমস্যার সমাধান করতে পারে না। রাজনৈতিক প্রশ্নেও ভাজপাকে মোকাবিলা করতে হবে অনেক জটিলতা। বাঙালি হিন্দু বহিরাগতদের নাগরিকত্ব, ছয় জনগোষ্ঠীর জনজাতীয়করণ ও চা-শ্রমিকদের মজুরির প্রশ্নে ভাজপাকে মোকাবিলা করতে হবে অভ্যন্তরিণ বিরোধিতা। আসামের রাজনীতি যে অচিরেই আবার অস্থির হয়ে উঠবে সে কথা জোর দিয়ে বলা যায়। কিন্তু শিক্ষিত মধ্যশ্রেণি যদি নতুন করে ভাবতে না শেখে ও দ্রুত বিকল্প রাজনৈতিক বিকল্প গড়ে না উঠে, তাহলে এই শূন্যতা এক অন্ধকারময় অমানবিক পরিস্থিতির জন্ম দেবে।


         

West Bengal Election and the left

Posted by স্বাভিমান

West Bengal Election and the left
Arup Baisya
Both the resounding victory of TMC and the electoral drubbing of the left in West Bengal have baffled many left leaning pollsters. The much talked about popular discontent against TMC due to the syndicate raj and the terror tactics of the TMC goons have not favoured the left combine (left plus congress). But the left has a copybook answer which is in consonance with the allegation they have been propagating since long. Immediately after the announcement of the result, the CPIM general secretary wasted no time to blow the bugle of TMC-BJP clandestine alliance behind TMC’s success. The rest of the Bengal leaders of CPM party beat the musical chord in unison to synthesise the same tune. The level of arrogance has reached to such a high that the necessity of introspection to analyse social dynamics is killed at the altar of rhetorical politics, the avatar of which rules the roost at national level now-a-days.  
The only agenda the left combine has placed before the Bengal electorate was ‘to dislodge TMC to save democracy’. The Bengal voters saw no reason to prefer institutionalised terror of Left rule to unruly violence of lumpen precariat elements backed by TMC.  In the entire campaign of the left combine, the main constituent, the CPIM, has neither apologised to the masses for the terror they have institutionalised during their rule, nor divulged the form of democracy they intend to offer to the Bengal people. People felt no urgency to make any comparison between the present TMC rule and the left rule in recent past on the basis of their role to patronise the political culture of attack on dissenters or merciless annihilation of political opponents. Rather, how the people were terrorised to be docile and servile to the party apparatchiks who were at the helm of affairs of all the institutions especially in rural life are still vivid in the people’s mind. The concept of people’s direct participation in Panchayat system through Gram-Sansad for promoting grass root democracy was introduced by the left who, in turn, destroyed this democratic essence by forcible subsumption of social opinion to the party opinion of select few through institutionalisation of terror.  How People’s work space, social space and even family space were put under scanner and control of CPM party committees are not yet the bygone and forgotten days for Bengal electorates. Left could have made a humble start of the poll campaign by seeking apology to the people for their wanton mistake. But they did not do so. In such a scenario, so long as TMC does not develop a party structure and emulate the later part of the left rule of institutionalised terror, people will not consider the left as an alternative option. If such thing happens, during this transitional time period, CPM may get itself withered away in Bengal, because the large Shark like BJP has opened its mouth wide open to gobble up all the swirling small fishes. Though BJP’s vote share compared to 2014 election has come down from 17% to 10.2%, around 4.5% has depleted in Darjeeling Hill district, and it implies that there is no significant decline in Bengal proper, though Modi wave has subsided significantly. The Left-congress combine instead of increasing their vote share shed 1% of their votes compared to 2014. On the other hand, TMC has increased their margin by hefty 5%. This indicates that there was an overall trend of the common voters to swing towards TMC, and that was arrested to a little extent through media blitzkrieg against TMC. The left is pretending to pay deaf ear to the trend of decline that may lead to their decimation, because they have no clue for the trend-reversal beyond dwelling on the premise whether electoral relation with congress was right or not. Why?     
The welfarism and deficit budget is anathema to the neo-liberal policy of which BJP is now the champion. It was very much amusing to note that the lefts have been criticising the TMC for their populist welfarist measures as doles distribution and syndicate corruption. The implementation of welfare schemes cannot be absolutely corruption free so long as the vibrant people’s movement does not build a mechanism of check and balance. Left could have played a role in building such movement to instil the sense that the welfare measures are the rights of the people, but instead they preferred to criticise the concept of welfarism itself. It is now amply clear that the TMC government could implement the various welfare schemes successfully at least in the eyes of the beneficiaries who voted for TMC which is now obliged to continue such measures. The part of the left agenda has been snatched away by TMC, and left has been found to be crying foul in vain going against this basic policy frame.
How TMC will sustain this welfarism with mounting deficit budget, TMC itself does not know, because TMC does not have any alternative policy of industrialisation that can challenge neo-liberalism. But on this count also, TMC has positioned itself in the left-of-centre by citing the opposition to land acquisition for Singur consistently as its principled stand. On the contrary, left instead of being repentant for what they did in Singur and Nandigram to follow industrialisation neo-liberal model, they arrogantly expressed vainglory for the industrial policy they followed and attacked TMC for Singur mess. This is a ridiculous stand of a party that waves red flag. The cadres who carry this red flag will not hesitate to change the hand to raise the saffron flag aloft, seeking refuse to a secured place from TMC attack will be their best excuse.
One of the best indicators to judge the secular democratic credential of ruling dispensation is to see how they treat the minorities in their state. Sachar Committee revealed volumes about the left negligence towards the Muslim Minority of Bengal. How Mamata has not only retained but also extended her base within minority is yet to be explored. But those who opine that the only through pecuniary support to Mullah/Moulavis Mamata could play this magic are missing the whole canvass of minority social milieu.

Finally, the main apprehension of TMC’s switch over to BJP’s camp that was aired by a section of left in the pre-election political discourse can be shelved at least for the time being for two important structural obligations of TMC. To establish the political clout at national level, Mamata has to retain her huge minority base by projecting her secular image, and she has to continue her welfare measures to retain her base in rural and semi-urban Bengal despite neo-liberal pressure. The alternative left politics may re-emerge in future through the framing of a people-oriented development model, extension of democracy and sustained mass struggle provided strong political opposition is built to combat fascism which is looming large. 
                
http://www.frontierweekly.com/views/jun-16/1-6-16-West%20Bengal%20Election%20and%20the%20left.html

JNU episode and the popular discourse on history (Draft)

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JNU episode and the popular discourse on history (Draft) 
Arup Baisya
The meaning of the present
The recent debate revolving around the programme of JNU students leading to the arrest of JNUSU president Kanhaiya Kumar and other student leaders on sedition charges raises many questions than answers. Though the central theme of this debate is the constitutional right to speak, the moot question is how the future of India rooted in the present articulates the past. Thus the discourse on Indian historical past in popular political parlance gets constantly constructed and reconstructed with a vision to the future. This is bound to happen because of the fact that history of the Indian past like the socio-historical past of mankind is not fixed, one-dimensional and completely knowable once for all.
The aggressive state intervention to scuttle the effort of the JUN student to open a space for multiple voices and the highhanded approach of the RSS bandwagon to muzzle the voice alternative to their Hindutwbadi nationalist narrative have generated the much-awaited vibrant debate within the educated class. But the reasoned debate which is very much essential for safeguarding and promoting democracy cannot be sustainable without linking it to our Indian past with a view to formulate a future project. In this framework, the participation of the left in this debate appear to be failing to catch the imagination of the popular psyche and leaving space open for obscurantist forces to grab. Whether the progressive or regressive characteristics of the Indian past will be reconstructed is squarely dependent on the future project envisioned in the present. “The meaning of the present is used as a key to unlock the meaning of the past leading to the present, which in its turn unlocks formerly unidentified dimensions of the present leading to the future not in the form of rigid mechanical determinations but as anticipation of aims linked to a set of inner motivations. Thus we are involved in a dialectic movement which leads from the present to the past and from the past to the future. In this movement the past is not somewhere there, in its remote finality and ‘closure’, but right “here”, “open” and situated between the present and the future.....” (Istvan Meszaros : 2013: 68)
  People are disillusioned with present state of affairs. But there cannot be any change without a radical break from the present, without a structural discontinuity. Without a conscious desire for change, a discontinuity within the framework of structural continuity may be projected as a change to misguide the collective unconscious. On this count RSS has a project of change of the state character based on religious nationalism within the crisis-ridden capitalist structure. Mutatis mutandis, left appears to be playing within the same arena without having any alternative project. When the left takes pride from their commitment to secure the idea of “Akhand Bharat”, selectively oppose the neoliberal reform agenda, do not spell out any alternative vision for the future, people find no substance in the project of secular India which is not qualitatively different than old UPA variety about which people are so disillusioned. Participating in the JNU debate, when the CPIM leader Sitaram Yechuri expressed vainglory in his Rajyasabha speech for upholding the concept of ‘Akhand Bharat’ in his JNU days, it becomes difficult to asses whether it’s their deffensive stance or a principled stand. 
The future that articulates the past
The popular perception of our past is always based on a derivative discourse. One always looks back to his past to envision a future.  It was the British who introduced communal historiography in India; this historiography is a way of looking at the historical phenomenon through the lens of religion. The RSS mastered the art of propagating our past that has been derived with the instrument of religious doctrine for a future project of a authoritarian state. Their concept of authoritarian state is projected as mythical “Ramrajya”, a change based on the Hindu Yuga division of time for popular acceptance. This historiography catches the imagination of collective unconscious when the system itself is in deep crisis in absence of a popular discourse on historiography that envisions a future from working class perspective. “It needs to be emphasised that today, for state-of-the-art historical understanding anywhere in the world where South Asia is being studied, the assumption of Savarkar or Golwlajar would appear so absurd as hardly worth refutation or debate. Irrespective of their other differences, historians of all trends, liberal, nationalist, the erstwhile ‘Cambridge’ school, Marxist of diverse kinds, late-subalterns, feminist, post-or anti-modernists --- would all agree that the essentialised assumptions of Hindus and Muslims being homogeneous, continuous blocs across time and subcontinental space, with Muslims as a community ruling Hindus in the medieval centuries, are totally unacceptabe” (Sumit Sarkar : 2004 : 254). Despite this being the fact, the RSS variant of historical interpretation are catching the imagination of the people in this neo-liberal phase of capitalism. Here we have a coincidence in time in the ideologies of ‘globalisation’ and ‘liberalisation’ with the spectacular advance of Hindutwa which requires much further explication. The spectacular advance of Hindutwa is inevitable if the assertion of oppressed caste/class and for that matter the working classs assertion against neo-liberal capitalism is not articulated with a future project. Based on this assertion of the under-previleged in the present milieu of neo-liberal policy regime, our historical past can only be articulated with a vision for future. There lies the real process for the development of ideological and material force to combat the religious bigotry and authoritarian rule. The mainstream left with a doctrinaire mindset believe that the working class is a tabula rasa and they only internalise the content in verbatim what left ideologue preaches. This mindset makes them defensive and compells them to gesticulate within the dominant world view to suppress the future. “As early as the Bernstein Debate it was clear that the opportunists had to take their stand ‘firmly on the facts’ so as to be able to ignore the general trends or else to reduce them to the status of a subjective, ethical imperative.”             (George Lukacs : 1993 : 182). Facts are to be judged in a social context, the static representation of the past in the Hindutwbadi discourse must be contested with a future project that does not invent the past but articulates it.
Democracy and Justice
One of the reason behind the rise of Aam Admi Party to power in Delhi with an overwheming majority in the midst of a countrwide Hindutwbadi wave was the popular perceived notion that the citizens would have the opportunity to participate in the governance and decision making process. On the other hand, the vote base of a section of the oppressed castes/communities adhered to their mentor Lalu Prasad Yadav despite all misdeeds because of his politics of instilling a sense of self respect and empowerment in the real life of daily mundane affairs. But this perceived notion is not sustainable if it is not transcended and institutionalised. The rapidly changing canvass of discontent in the backdrop of neo-liberal onslaought from power-that-be makes the terrain of political discourse complicated. The discourse on comparative advantage of dirigiste Nehruvian model and notional participatory democracy and justice cannot match the changing mental wavelength of the vertically and horzintally disintegrated working class and structurally remoduled castes-communities in the present phase of neo-liberal capitalism. In the context of the present, the past needs to be reconstructed as a project for the future. “B.R. Ambedkar, who chaired the drafting committee that wrote up the new Indian constitution for adoption by the Constituent Assembly shortly after Indian independence in 1947, wrote fairly extensively on the relevance, if any, of India’s ancient experiences in local democracy for the design of a large democracy for the whole of India.” (Amartya Sen 2010 : 330)
But bourgeoisie has no democratic project of its own to ensure justice and participation of all citizens in policy making, because the sole driving force and the motive of capitalism rest on ensuring profit and accumulation. The concept of bourgeois democracy is an offshoot of a compromise between bourgeoisie and working class to guarantee the capitalist hegemonic structure. As the constitutional democracy was articulated in the situation after Indian independence in 1947, it needs to be transcended in the backdrop of the here and the now.  Because the determination from the past and the anticipation of the future converging on the present, all come to life in the synthetic unity of a dialectical totalisation in which subjectivity and objectivity are inextricably fused.
A totalitarian state is a state that suppressed the interplay of state and society, extending the sphere of its exercise to the totality of collective life. This necessitates a vision of history that abuses and hates dissent. On the contrary demand for democracy is carried or concealed by the idea of new society, the elements of which are being formed in the very heart of contemporary society. The Hindutwbadi forces intends to transmit the historical facts taken out of its context with a view to stereotype the name ‘Muslim’ and for that purpose, the education needs to be confined to the deductive logic of Brahminical texts. This self destructive tendency being born in society can be combated only by the process of transmitting the universality of knowledge. It’s not a conflict between your Hindutwbadi ‘Akhand Bharat’ versus our secular ‘Akhand Bharat’. Amartya Sen in his book ‘The Idea of Justice’ emphasized that the excellent record of Athenian democracy of electoral governance had no immediate impact in the countries to the west of Greece and Rome, rather Indian    vis-à-vis the Asian cities had incorporated this democratic practice. He further opined, while Athens certainly had an excellent record in public discussion, open deliberations also flourished in several other civilisations like India. This civilisational trait of democracy finds its resonance in the post independence constitutional democracy. This constitutional democracy was formulated by the bourgeois class to accommodate all diverse interests that were unleashed during the long drawn out freedom struggle. But now in the backdrop of a deep structural crisis of global capitalism, this bourgeois class is trying to roll back the provisions of constitutional democracy which has become anathema to the neo-liberal policy drive. So, content of democracy needs to be reconstructed with a linkage to the past from a working class perspective. That demands inclusion of absolute right to dissent including the right to secede, decentralization of power to the fullest extent so that people can participate in decision making process. Furthermore, the neo-liberal policy doctrine should be opposed in letter and spirit along with an alternative economic policy framework.
German experience and Indian fascism
After careful discussion of social origin, educational background, income differentials, organizational experience, and status consciousness, J. Kocka concludes that American white-collar workers showed a much lower propensity to see themselves as a distinct class or status group superior and hostile to the working class. So while the white-collar workers turned to the Nazis in large numbers, their American counterparts joined with manual workers in support of the New Deal. (Michael N. Dobokowski & Isidor Walliman : 2003 : 75).  In addition to that, the fragmentation of petty bourgeoisie and workers were influenced by religious and ethnic differences in Germany, interventionist state emphasised the collar line and legally cemented the lines of differentiation, and stratified educational system was put in place to restrict the mobility between manual and non-manual jobs. In Germany, the political culture was in deficit in some essential ingredients of a modern bourgeois or civil society that was closely but inversely related to the strength of Germany’s pre-industrial, and pre-bourgeois traditions. In the case of white-collar workers this created much ready support for the fascists. Both Germany and Italy were societies experiencing accelerated capitalist transformation, through which entire regions were being visibly converted from predominantly rural into predominantly urban environment. The pace of social change outstripped the adaptive capabilities of the existing political institutions. In a situation of widespread political uncertainty, the existing political bloc of industrial, agrarian, and military-bureaucratic class took recourse to a new kind of radical nationalism, which stressed the primacy of national allegiances and priorities normally with heavily imperialist or social-imperialist inflection over everything else. The attraction of radical nationalism may be grasped partly from the ideology itself, which was self-confidence, optimistic, and reaffirming. It contained an aggressive belief in the authenticity of German national mission, in the unifying potential of nationalist panacea, and in the popular resonance of the national idea for the struggle against the left. Radical nationalism was a vision of the future, not of the past. The dramatic conjuncture of war and revolution between 1914 and 1923 produced a crisis, and in this time of crisis, which brought the domestic unity, foreign mission, and territorial integrity of the nation all into question, it could achieve popular appeal.
Though in many ways the present India resembles the German phenomena, there are new criteria too. The capitalism is in deep crisis, the neo-liberal policy drive has also failed to mitigate this crisis situation. After the post--independence period of uneven and combined development process and especially after the neo-liberal policy drive post eighties, the relation of production has undergone a drastic change. The pressure group of organised labour in the public sector has been dismantled to a large extent due to privatisation and contracualisation. The rapid urbanisation and conversion of the rural masses into wage labour has also reconstructed the caste/class dynamics. Now the unorganised urban and rural labour constitutes the largest chunk of workforce. The unemployment rate is growing day by day in pursuit of a neoliberal jobless growth model. In absence of a left project to address the contested terrain of popular-democratic aspirations, this working class is amenable to fall prey to the most telling political intervention of fascist right.
The alternative
The proponents of liberal secular democracy are advocating Keynesian economy, but they are confining themselves only within the demand management instead of dwelling on the most radical aspect of Keynesian economy. Keynes foresaw a stage when fiscal and monetary stimuli alone would not suffice to increase investment sufficiently. “Then a somewhat comprehensive socialization of investment will prove the only means of securing an approximation to full employment; though this need not exclude all manners of compromises and of devices by which public authority will co-operate with private initiative.” (Radhika Desai : 2013 : 60).
When the legitimacy of left politics is at its nadir, a new institutional democracy reconstructing the civilisational democratic practices and an alternative economy challenging the neo-liberal policy in to-to need to be projected from a working class perspective to address the popular-democratic aspirations. The rise of fascism can only be stalled on an oppositional unity based on this premise. The UPA variant of rainbow coalition of all oppositional forces conceptualized within the framework of neoliberal policy cannot stop the fascist juggernaut once for all.
References

  1. Istvan, Meszaros (2013): The Work of Satre, Search for Freedom and the Challenge of History, Delhi : Aakar Books.
  2. Sarkar, Sumit (2004): Beyond Nationalist Frames, Relocating Postmodernism, Hindutwa, History, New Delhi: Permanent Black.
  3. Lukacs, George (1993): History and Class Consciousness, Delhi : Rupa  Co.
  4. Sen Amartya (2010): The Idea of Justice, New Delhi : Penguin Books.
  5. Dobkowski, Michael N & Wallimann, Isidor, Kolkata : Cornerstone Publications.
  6. Desai, Radhika (2013): Geopolitical Economy, After US Hegemony, Globalisation and Empire, London : Pluto Press. 

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