April 9, 2009
২) আলিপুরদুয়ার (তফঃ উপঃ) : ৯। তুফানগঞ্জ ১০। কুমারগ্রাম (তফঃ উপঃ) ১১। কালচিনি (তফঃ উপঃ) ১২। আলিপুরদুয়ার ১৩। ফালাকাটা (তফঃ) ১৪। মাদারিহাট (তফঃ উপঃ) ২১। নাগরাকাটা (তফঃ উপঃ)।
৩) জলপাইগুড়ি (তফঃ) : ১। মেখলিগঞ্জ (তফঃ) ১৫। ধূপগুড়ি (তফঃ) ১৬। ময়নাগুড়ি (তফঃ) ১৭। জলপাইগুড়ি (তফঃ) ১৮। রাজগঞ্জ (তফঃ) ১৯। ডাবগ্রাম-ফুলবাড়ি ২০। মাল (তফঃ)।
৪) দার্জিলিঙ : ২২। কালিম্পঙ ২৩। দার্জিলিঙ ২৪। কার্শিয়াঙ ২৫। মাটিগাড়া-নকশালবাড়ি (তফঃ) ২৬। শিলিগুড়ি ২৭।ফাঁসিদেওয়া (তফঃ উপঃ) ২৮। চোপরা।
৫) রায়গঞ্জ : ২৯। ইসলামপুর ৩০। গোয়ালপোখর ৩১। চাকুলিয়া ৩২। করণদিঘি ৩৩। হেমতাবাদ (তফঃ) ৩৪। কালিয়াগঞ্জ (তফঃ) ৩৫। রায়গঞ্জ।
৬) বালুরঘাট : ৩৬। ইটাহার ৩৭। কুশমাণ্ডি (তফঃ) ৩৮। কুমারগঞ্জ ৩৯। বালুরঘাট ৪০। তপন (তফঃ উপঃ) ৪১। গঙ্গারামপুর (তফঃ) ৪২। হরিরামপুর।
৭) মালদহ উত্তর : ৪৩। হবিবপুর (তফঃ উপঃ) ৪৪। গাজোল (তফঃ) ৪৫।চাঁচল ৪৬। হরিশ্চন্দ্রপুর ৪৭। মালতীপুর ৪৮। রতুয়া ৫০। মালদহ (তফঃ)।
৮) মালদহ দক্ষিণ : ৪৯। মানিকচক ৫১। ইংলিশবাজার ৫২। মোথাবাড়ি ৫৩। সুজাপুর ৫৪। বৈষ্ণবনগর ৫৫। ফরাক্কা ৫৬। সমসেরগঞ্জ।
৯) জঙ্গীপুর : ৫৭। সুতি ৫৮। জঙ্গীপুর ৫৯। রঘুনাথগঞ্জ ৬০। সাগরদিঘি ৬১। লালগোলা ৬৫। নবগ্রাম (তফঃ) ৬৬। খড়গ্রাম (তফঃ)।
১০) বহরমপুর : ৬৭। বড়ঞা (তফঃ) ৬৮। কান্দি ৬৯। ভরতপুর ৭০। রেজিনগর ৭১। বেলডাঙা ৭২। বহরমপুর ৭৪। নওদা।
১১) মুর্শিদাবাদ : ৬২। ভগবানগোলা ৬৩। রানীনগর ৬৪। মুর্শিদাবাদ ৭৩। হরিহরপাড়া ৭৫। ডোমকল ৭৬। জলঙ্গী ৭৭। করিমপুর।
১২) কৃষ্ণনগর : ৭৮। তেহট্ট ৭৯। পলাশীপাড়া ৮০। কালীগঞ্জ ৮১। নাকাশিপাড়া ৮২। চাপড়া ৮৩। কৃষ্ণনগর উত্তর ৮৪। নবদ্বীপ।
১৩) রানাঘাট (তফঃ) : ৮৫। কৃষ্ণনগর দক্ষিণ ৮৬। শান্তিপুর ৮৭। রানাঘাট উত্তর পশ্চিম ৮৮। কৃষ্ণগঞ্জ (তফঃ) ৮৯। রানাঘাট উত্তর পূর্ব (তফঃ) ৯০। রানাঘাট দক্ষিণ (তফঃ) ৯১। চাকদহ।
১৪) বনগাঁ (তফঃ) : ৯২। কল্যাণী (তফঃ) ৯৩। হরিণঘাটা (তফঃ) ৯৪। বাগদা (তফঃ) ৯৫। বনগাঁ উত্তর (তফঃ) ৯৬। বনগাঁ দক্ষিণ (তফঃ) ৯৭। গাইঘাটা (তফঃ) ৯৮। স্বরূপনগর (তফঃ) ।
১৫) বারাকপুর : ১০২। আমডাঙা ১০৩। বীজপুর ১০৪। নৈহাটি ১০৫। ভাটপাড়া ১০৬। জগদ্দল ১০৭। নোয়াপাড়া ১০৮। বারাকপুর।
১৬) দমদম : ১০৯।খড়দহ ১১০। দমদম উত্তর ১১১। পানিহাটি ১১২। কামারহাটি ১১৩। বরানগর ১১৪। দমদম ১১৭। রাজারহাট-গোপালপুর।
১৭) বারাসত : ১০০। হাবড়া ১০১। আশোকনগর ১১৫। রাজারহাট নিউ টাউন ১১৬। বিধাননগর ১১৮। মধ্যমগ্রাম ১১৯। বারাসত ১২০। দেগঙ্গা।
১৮) বসিরহাট : ৯৯। বাদুড়িয়া ১২১। হাড়োয়া ১২২। মিনাখাঁ (তফঃ) ১২৩। সন্দেশখালি (তফঃ উপঃ) ১২৪। বসিরহাট দক্ষিণ ১২৫। বসিরহাট উত্তর ১২৬। হিঙ্গলগঞ্জ (তফঃ)।
১৯) জয়নগর (তফঃ) : ১২৭। গোসাবা (তফঃ) ১২৮। বাসন্তী (তফঃ) ১২৯। কুলতলি (তফঃ) ১৩৬। জয়নগর (তফঃ) ১৩৮। ক্যানিং পশ্চিম (তফঃ) ১৩৯। ক্যানিং পূর্ব ১৪১। মগরাহাট পূর্ব (তফঃ)।
২০) মথুরাপুর (তফঃ) : ১৩০। পাথরপ্রতিমা ১৩১। কাকদ্বীপ ১৩২। সাগর ১৩৩। কুলপি ১৩৪। রায়দিঘি ১৩৫। মন্দিরবাজার (তফঃ) ১৪২। মগরাহাট পশ্চিম।
২১) ডায়মন্ডহারবার : ১৪৩। ডায়মন্ডহারবার ১৪৪। ফলতা ১৪৫। সাতগাছিয়া ১৪৬।বিষ্ণুপুর (তফঃ) ১৫৫। মহেশতলা ১৫৬। বজবজ ১৫৭। মেটিয়াবুরুজ।
২২) যাদবপুর : ১৩৭। বারুইপুর (পূর্ব) ১৪০। বারুইপুর পশ্চিম ১৪৭। সোনারপুর দক্ষিণ ১৪৮। ভাঙড় ১৫০। যাদবপুর ১৫১। সোনারপুর উত্তর ১৫২। টালিগঞ্জ
২৩) কলকাতা দক্ষিণ : ১৪৯। কসবা ১৫৩। বেহালা পূর্ব ১৫৪। বেহালা পশ্চিম ১৫৮। কলকাতা বন্দর ১৫৯। ভবানীপুর ১৬০। রাসবিহারী ১৬১। বালিগঞ্জ।
২৪) কলকাতা উত্তর : ১৬২। চৌরঙ্গী ১৬৩। এন্টালি ১৬৪। বেলেঘাটা ১৬৫। জোড়াসাঁকো ১৬৬। শ্যামপুকুর ১৬৭। মানিকতলা ১৬৮। কাশীপুর-বেলগাছিয়া।
২৫) হাওড়া : ১৬৯। বালি ১৭০। হাওড়া উত্তর ১৭১। হাওড়া মধ্য ১৭২। শিবপুর ১৭৩। হাওড়া দক্ষিণ ১৭৪। সাঁকরাইল (তফঃ) ১৭৫। পাঁচলা।
২৬) উলুবেড়েড়িয়া : ১৭৬। উলুবেড়িয়া পূর্ব ১৭৭। উলুবেড়িয়া উত্তর (তফঃ) ১৭৮। উলুবেড়িয়া দক্ষিণ ১৭৯। শ্যামপুর ১৮০। বাগনান ১৮১। আমতা ১৮২। উদয়নারায়নপুর।
২৭) শ্রীরামপুর : ১৮৩। জগৎবল্লভপুর ১৮৪। ডোমজুড় ১৮৫। উত্তরপাড়া ১৮৬। শ্রীরামপুর ১৮৭। চাঁপদানি ১৯৪। চন্ডীতলা ১৯৫। জাঙ্গীপাড়া।
২৮) হুগলী : ১৮৮। সিঙ্গুর ১৮৯। চন্দননগর ১৯০। চুঁচুড়া ১৯১। বলাগড় (তফঃ) ১৯২। পান্ডুয়া ১৯৩। সপ্তগ্রাম ১৯৭। ধনিয়াখালি (তফঃ)।
২৯) আরামবাগ (তফঃ) : ১৯৬। হরিপাল ১৯৮। তারকেশ্বর ১৯৯। পুরশুড়া ২০০। আরামবাগ (তফঃ) ২০১। গোঘাট (তফঃ) ২০২। খানাকুল ২৩২। চন্দ্রকোনা (তফঃ)।
৩০) তমলুক : ২০৩। তমলুক ২০৪। পাঁশকুড়া পূর্ব ২০৬। ময়না ২০৭। নন্দকুমার ২০৮। মহিষাদল ২০৯। হলদিয়া (তফঃ) ২১০। নন্দীগ্রাম।
৩১) কাঁথি : ২১১। চন্ডীপুর ২১২। পটাশপুর ২১৩। কাঁথি উত্তর ২১৪। ভগবানপুর ২১৫। খেজুরি (তফঃ) ২১৬। কাঁথি দক্ষিণ ২১৭। রামনগর।
৩২) ঘাটাল : ২০৫।পাঁশকুড়া পশ্চিম ২২৬। সবং ২২৭। পিংলা ২২৯। ডেবরা ২৩০। দাসপুর ২৩১। ঘাটাল (তফঃ) ২৩৫। কেশপুর (তফঃ)।
৩৩) ঝাড়গ্রাম (তফঃ উপঃ) : ২২০। নয়াগ্রাম (তফঃ উপঃ) ২২১। গোপীবল্লভপুর ২২২। ঝাড়গ্রাম ২৩৩। গড়বেতা ২৩৪। শালবনী ২৩৭। বীনপুর (তফঃ উপঃ) ২৩৮। বান্দোয়ান (তফঃ উপঃ)।
৩৪) মেদিনীপুর : ২১৮। এগরা ২১৯। দাঁতন ২২৩। কেশিয়াড়ি (তফঃ উপঃ) ২২৪। খড়্গপুর সদর ২২৫। নারায়নগড় ২২৮। খড়্গপুর ২৩৬। মেদিনীপুর।
৩৫) পুরুলিয়া : ২৩৯। বলরামপুর ২৪০। বাগমুন্ডি ২৪১। জয়পুর ২৪২। পুরুলিয়া ২৪৩। মানবাজার (তফঃ উপঃ) ২৪৪। কাশীপুর ২৪৫। পারা (তফঃ)।
৩৬) বাঁকুড়া : ২৪৬।রঘুনাথপুর (তফঃ) ২৪৭। শালতোড়া (তফঃ) ২৪৮।ছাতনা ২৪৯। রানীবাঁধ (তফঃ উপঃ) ২৫০। রাইপুর (তফঃ উপঃ) ২৫১। তালডাংরা ২৫২। বাঁকুড়া।
৩৭) বিষ্ণুপুর (তফঃ) : ২৫৩। বড়জোড়া ২৫৪। ওন্দা ২৫৫। বিষ্ণুপুর ২৫৬। কোতুলপুর (তফঃ) ২৫৭। ইন্দাস (তফঃ) ২৫৮। সোনামুখি (তফঃ) ২৫৯। খন্ডঘোষ (তফঃ)।
৩৮)বর্ধমান পূর্ব (তফঃ) : ২৬১। রায়না (তফঃ) ২৬২। জামালপুর (তফঃ) ২৬৪। কালনা (তফঃ) ২৬৫। মেমারি ২৬৮। পূর্বস্থলী দক্ষিণ ২৬৯। পূর্বস্থলী উত্তর ২৭০। কাটোয়া।
৩৯) বর্ধমান-দুর্গাপুর : ২৬০। বর্ধমান দক্ষিণ ২৬৩। মন্তেশ্বর ২৬৬। বর্ধমান উত্তর (তফঃ) ২৬৭। ভাতার ২৭৪। গলসী (তফঃ) ২৭৬। দুর্গাপুর পূর্ব ২৭৭। দুর্গাপুর পশ্চিম।
৪০) আসানসোল : ২৭৫। পান্ডবেশ্বর ২৭৮। রানীগঞ্জ ২৭৯। জামুরিয়া ২৮০। আসানসোল দক্ষিণ ২৮১। আসানসোল উত্তর ২৮২। কুলটি ২৮৩। বরাবনি।
৪১) বোলপুর (তফঃ) : ২৭১। কেতুগ্রাম ২৭২। মঙ্গলকোট ২৭৩। আউসগ্রাম (তফঃ) ২৮৬। বোলপুর ২৮৭। নানুর (তফঃ) ২৮৮। লাভপুর ২৯০। ময়ূরেশ্বর।
৪২) বীরভূম : ২৮৪। দুবরাজপুর (তফঃ) ২৮৫। সিউড়ি ২৮৯। সাঁইথিয়া (তফঃ) ২৯১। রামপুরহাট ২৯২। হাঁসন ২৯৩। নলহাটি ২৯৪।মুরারই।
Member, Polit Bureau,
Member, Central Secretariat
KOLKATA, 7th April: The Centre has given the nod to the Petrochemicals, Chemicals and Petroleum Industries Region (PCPIR) project in Nayachar in East Medinipur in West Bengal, State Industry Secretary Sabyasachi Sen said here on Monday.
Talking to journalists here, he said a separate authority would have to be set up for implementing the project. The Centre is now expected to send the draft memorandum of agreement, which will have to be entered into between the Union Chemicals and Fertilizer Ministry and the State Government.
The meeting was taken by West Bengal Chief Secretary A. M. Chakraborty and attended by the Planning Department Secretary Jaya Dasgupta and the Chairman and Deputy-Chairman of the Kolkata Port Trust and the Haldia Dock Complex (HDC).
Kolkata April 07, 2009: Venu Srinivasan, the newly appointed CII president will meet West Bengal chief minister, Buddhadeb Bhattacharya, today to discuss issues related to allowing contract farming in a state that is opposed to such a practice now.The Left Front government in West Bengal does not allow contract farming by multinationals in the state.
“We are keen to work with West Bengal to promote its image among other states and also bring back the manufacturing industry in the state. We will also advice the chief minister to allow private sector investments in agriculture”, Srinivsasan said addressing the press here.
Kolkata, April 6: Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) patriarch Jyoti Basu Monday regretted not being able to participate in the election campaign for the Left Front in West Bengal, saying he was “physically unfit” to do so.“This time I could do nothing for the Left Front as I have become physically unfit to participate in poll campaign,” Basu told reporters at his Salt Lake residence here, while launching a website for Laxman Seth, the CPI-M candidate from Tamluk Lok Sabha seat.
“I came to know from Left Front chairman Biman Bose that our party cadres are working hard across the state so that our candidates can win in the election,” the veteran leader said.“We have to carry on with the victorious legacy of the Left Front in this April-May elections also. I wish that Left Front candidates would win in the coming general election,” Basu added.
The target was of course the extremely popular CPI (M) local committee leader of Belatikari and AIKS activist Chandi Karan. The village he inhabits abuts the Lalgarh zone from where the ‘Maoists’ issue diktats in secret to their running mates elsewhere in the state.
Deep into the night of 7-8 April, two groups 20 trained gunmen of the CP (Maoist) in fake but realistic army fatigues, black scarves and all, and carrying the latest short-barrelled, glass-fibre stock-and-handles, quick firing SLRs available, at a high cost, in the arms’ bazaar, outside of the country, and backed by a dozen-odd Trinamulis carrying sharp and cutting weapons, surrounded the hutment of Chandi, kicked down the flimsy bamboo-and-wood door, and started shooting. Their great mistake was that this time around they did not have the very effective silencers screwed onto the barrels.
Aroused, the villagers, rotating groups of whom wielding well-oiled bamboo staves do the night watch following the earlier attack on the village and on Chandi Karan, came rushing in, faced and not fled from the hail of fire that was let loose by the panic-struck ‘Maoists,’ the Trinamulis chose discretion to be the better part of valour and ran away leaving behind frustration as well as their chappals.
The fact of the ever-growing presence of lathi-wielding villagers whose number had quickly exceeded several hundreds made the ‘Maoists’, too, play ‘follow the leader’ game, and they, emulating the Trinamulis, in a show of great non-political solidarity, chose to scoot, with a only barrage of fire as they retreated preventing the villagers from approaching them at close quarters – except in the case of two of the insidious invaders who, new to the topography, stumbled, fell, and felt a huge crowd of villagers pile up on them.
The two named Haradhan Dulé and Dayal Dulé were however not beaten up, although we are told several young men were ready for ‘mixing it’ well, and the two were duly handed over to the police when the latter came after sunrise. We believe that after being taken into protective custody at Chandi’s house, even a bit of tea-and-biscuit hospitality was given to the two ‘Maoists’ which we thought was a very Communist-like humanitarian gesture.
How did the ‘Maoists’ preferred to return the gesture? They chose that very night to flag down at random a truck carrying cut-pieces of bound piles of bamboo sticks near the Lalgarh-Salboni zone, put the truck to the flames by tossing a couple of grenades, and then beat the driver and the helper to an inch of death, indeed leaving them for dead. The two were found by kisans taking the first plough to the fields with the break of the day, and the unconscious duo were shifted in very, very critical condition to nearby health centres, and both nursing deep head wounds.
That was not all. The ‘Maoists’ then raided the remote village of Bejdanga deep into the jungle mahal near Sarenga in Bankura at a stone’s throw distance from Lalgarh, picked up at random 10 young men aged from as young as 5 years and averaging 30 years, beat them up with gun butts and a ‘squad’ of ‘Maoists’ stood impassively on guard, sten guns at the ready-- and as the raiders bound the 10 villagers up and took them away they asked the villagers to ‘take a good look’ at their near-and-dear ones for ‘we are not going to return them alive.’
The hapless captives fearing the worst were then taken to the far side of Lalgarh known to be an underground ‘Maoist’ den, and help captive for ten hours, the captors depriving them of not merely food and water but also forcibly making them sit on their haunches tied hand-and-foot. To avoid political retaliation, the police and the district administration opened a dialogue with those who represent the ‘Maoists’ in the area and after a pour-parler that lasted for hours together, the ten were released, and they reached their village, each carrying several deep wounds on their bodies and heads, and each shook up mentally.
Biman Basu, state secretary of the CPI (M) has condemned the incidents of attack and of hostage-taking and has called for a political response to the Maoists through ever greater mass mobilization in the area and elsewhere.
Biman started off by saying that lying about Bengal under the Left Front was not something that was new or surprising. This has happened in the past repeatedly, and every time the attempts were found as based on falsification of the reality. Biman reminded the media that in February earlier this year Mukherjee while in Bengal had heaped praises on the Bengal government for the ‘vast improvement’ in health care, and the progress made in rural development especially in terns of rural employment generation.
In Delhi, Mukherjee accused the LF government with the ‘fact’ that the rate of malnutrition and anaemia amongst women in Bengal was very high. UN and International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) in a joint report have stated that in India itself more that 50% women suffered from anaemia and that so did 75% of the children. The states where anaemia amongst women and children has increased recently are all non-Left-ruled states, viz., Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Gujarat, Haryana, Karnataka, Rajasthan, and Madhya Pradesh. The highest growth from 51% to 54% is in Andhra Pradesh.
Responding to Mukherjee’s allegation that Bengal has the highest indices in hunger and malnutrition, the CPI (M) leader pointed out that according to the report published by the FAO, 21% of the people of India suffers from hunger and malnutrition. IFPRI states that of the 88 developing countries, India holds the 66th position in terms of hunger reaching a dangerous level. The figure shows that even poorer sub-Saharan African nations fare better than ‘incredible’ India. Of the states where such dangerous hunger levels exist are all non-Left rules states like Bihar, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Chhatisgarh, and Jharkhand.
In relevance, Biman mentioned the fact acknowledged by the government that Mukherjee serves as the foreign minister that the rate of neo-natal death in India is 55% compared to 37% in Bengal. In the country, the number of Primary Health centres (PHC) has gone down by 3% between 2002 and 2007. Only 13% of the target PHC figure mentioned in the 10th Plan could be reached. Of one thousand rural patients, 583 are forced to seek the aid of private sector health institutions. In Bengal 786 out of one thousand patients go to government hospitals when they fall ill. In Indian urban areas, 383 out of one thousand patients can have access to government health institutions whereas in Bengal the figure stands at 658.
Mukherjee has also been a purveyor of the untruth as far as employment is concerned. Contrary to what the Congress leader has said the rate of rural employment in Bengal is greater than the national average. Those below the poverty line comprised nearly 74% of the population in 1973-1974. The figure now stands at just over 28% (2004-2005). In the same period, urban poverty has gone down from 34.7% to 14.7%. The 11th Plan document states that poverty has increased most in such non-Left-ruled states as Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, and Bihar. All the figures concerning poverty are underwritten by the UNO.
Mukherjee has also been fanciful with his figure work as far as education is concerned, noted Biman Basu. Quoting figures out of context, Mukherjee has sought desperately to prove that there was ‘big’ number of school-drop-outs in Bengal. The drop-out rate, one of the most welcome aspects of the progress made in Bengal in the realm of education under the LF government is just over 8% between classes V and VIII. The rate gets lower every year. The NCERT itself can be quoted to refute Mukherjee’s comments on the school education scene in Bengal. The NCERT report states that in recent years the rate of successful candidature in school examination is among the highest in the country, much above the national average.
Biman concluded by saying that while lambasting Bengal’s development, Mukherjee would not for reasons not difficult to guess bring up two issues: land reforms and rate of growth in agriculture. Bengal tops the list in both cases nationwide.
Hence, the time has come for a secular-democratic-Left alternative that the Third Front represents. The nomenclature ‘third,’ we assure our bourgeois friends in the big media, is not a descending signifier.
It is the name and style of a Front, a conglomeration of growing popular forces who stand outside of, and against, the two big bourgeois-landlord political groupings, the Congress-led UPA and the BJP-led NDA. The time has come, notes Bengal LF’s electoral appeal to the masses, for the Third Front to lead the nation, post Lok Sabha polls.
Biman Basu, chairman of the Bengal Left Front released the ‘appeal’ to the people at a media conference on 2 April 2009 where the LF has called upon the electorate of Bengal to augment farther the position of the LF in the Lok Sabha for that would help both gelling quicker the Third Front into a weapon of democratic challenge in and outside of the parliament, and would also advance the cause of the poorest of the poor whose interests the Left and the CPI (M) represents with dedication and courage. The Bengal electorate must ensure that the Left is victorious in all 42 Lok Sabha seats in the state.
At the same time, the appeal notes, the people must stand up against the ambience of terror, deceit, lie, and of killing, that is being built up in a planful manner by the dark forces aided, abetted, sometimes led from the front shamelessly by the opposition outfits, for these forces of reaction and sectarianism seek to bottle up all pro-people and pro-poor developmental programme of the state LF government.
The LF calls upon the people to organise bigger mass mobilisations all over the state, to widen the extent and range as well as scope of the class and mass struggle, to farther augment the unity of the poor, and to defeat all conspiracies and orchestrated inky dark stirs in the name of language, nationality, religion, and region.
The appeal commences by pointing out to everyone concerned that the election the electorate face is an election to the Lok Sabha, an election at the national level. It is not an election to the Assembly or to the urban and local bodies. Nor, we may note, is it is an election to management committees of institutions, as some of our opposition worthies would have the people believe, micronising the canvas to make ‘fair most foul’ in a political sense.
The election is to elect a central government, a union government that would be expected to govern the nation and the people of India in the days to come. It is not a small matter, and it is not something one trivialises, as the opposition is happily, comfortably prone to do, trying to cut down sizes of things to their own sub-political cretinism, organisational insolvency, and ideological bankruptcy.
The appeal explains the political background against which the elections are held. The UPA government has followed the economic and financial policies of the previous NDA government. It has thus found it conscionable to pass on the burdens of the present economic crisis enveloping the world economy in recession on to the shoulders of the common people who are already groaning under the jobloss growth the country as such experiences along the capitalist path.
At the same time, the UPA government has surrendered itself to the political will of imperialism, kow-towing before the US administration and finding pleasure in aspiring to be the junior partner to that imperialist power here and abroad. This has been done on a long-term strategic basis. On the other hand, the appeal notes, the realms of agriculture, industry, land, water resources and minerals have all been made the unbound hunting ground for finance capital. The country has never faced such a challenge to its sovereignty in its politically independent existence from 1947.
The appeal notes the circumstances in which the Left had supported the UPA governance from outside based on a Common Minimum Programme and how it had to withdraw support when the union government, not interested in keeping to the pro-people aspects of the CMP, was however more than willing to sell the sovereignty of the country down the river at the behest of US imperialism. The appeal has summarised the ills that have harmed the mass of the people under the two succeeding NDA and UPA régimes. The Left has always stood against these evil policies and have expressed their opposition through mass mobilisation. The efforts will continue apace with wider circumference of influence among the toiling masses.
Explaining the developments at the level of the state, the appeal notes how during the earlier years of the LF government, the pernicious licence raj, and the freight equalisation system harmed the process of industrial growth. The union governments in succession stood against the states’ rights, especially in the instances of the three Left-led states. When in subsequent years, from the mid-1990s in particular, the LF government sought to concentrate on industrialisation, a situation of anarchy and violence was built up by the opposition, institutionalising the process in the later period right onto the new century.
The opposition in the state have unleashed terrible violence against the state LF government, the LF and the CPI (M). They are indulging in what can be called anarchism with a focus on destruction of the pro-poor infrastructural growth. They also along with national parties want to see Bengal get divided up with anti-people slogans being given for a separate ‘Gorkhaland,’ ‘Greater Coochbehar,’ and a ‘separate western Bengal,’ which, the Jharkhand Party so desires should be taken away from Bengal as a whole and added to Jharkhand. Then there are the forces who call themselves ‘Kamtapuris,’ and who are engaged in working out a violent path with impunity, again for a separate state in the north Bengal. These forces all work together and have the backing of powers here and abroad.
These forces have targeted this state for Bengal is the forward post of democracy, and is a Red bastion, a ray of hope for the toiling masses of the country. The state has also raised the hackles of the ruling classes because it progresses along a path of alternative, pro-poor development. The foreign hand is certainly visible in the attempt to unseat the Left in Bengal and the Lok Sabha election is targeted to allow fewer LF candidates to win. Foreign agencies like the CIA were active earlier in the 1970s in Bengal for much the same purposes. These noxious attempts have been renewed with dangerous dimensions as communalism and separatism added to the brew.
The LF appeals to the people to make LF candidates victorious in all 42 Lok Sabha seats:
1.To ensure that a Third Front-led government is installed in Delhi
2.To augment self-reliant economy, independent foreign policy, and to set up a model federal structure
3.To defeat the Trinamul Congress which represents anarchism, terror, and disorder and is backed by forces of reaction both here and abroad, and their allies including Congress, as well as the communal forces that the BJP represents
4.To maintain an ambience of peace, democracy, and communal harmony
5.To ensure that there is a consolidated and integrated development of agriculture, industry, services, and that social justice prevails in every realm
6.To keep alive the Left alternative economic policy to counter the present economic crisis
7.To ensure that Bengal remains one and united
KOLKATA: The drive up to the Lok Sabha polls must see the Bengal CPI (M) self-confident and not affected with complacency and smugness. The opposition is engaged in creating a situation of terror and anarchy in many parts of Bengal. Communal propaganda of a violent nature is rolling on, covertly and even overtly in sensitive areas in particular. Benoy Konar, CCM, presided over the meeting. Biman Basu, state secretary led the speakers.
The CPI (M) must not allow itself to be bogged down in entrapments. It must take the masses along and face the pre-election run-up ensuring a situation of amity, peace, and pro-people progress. Certainly it must always remain, as ever, deep amongst the masses, listening to them, responding to them. This was the basic thrust of the arguments heard at the meeting of the state committee of the Bengal CPI (M) held on 3 April.
Biman Basu was clear in his mind when he addressed the state committee to stress that the Bengal unit must face the electoral struggle brimming with self-confidence borne out of the lo g and intimate contact it had had with the masses. Complacency and a laid-back attitude should find no place in the work schedule of a Communist. The strength and width of the political campaign must be taken to newer heights as the hour draws near. Most emphasis must be given to smaller meetings, house-to-house campaign, and discussions that would never be a one-way ‘road show.’
The principal aim of the Left Front is to enhance the number of Left Front Lok Sabha members with the further aim of strengthening a national-level Third Alternative. The election organisation must be made solid and without flaws. The unity of the Left Front must be continuously augmented as one progressed along the path towards the polls. A mass collection campaign would be conducted between 10 and 16 April all over Bengal.
The sales figures of the Party publications must be farther increased. The large number of pamphlets, leaflets, and CDs VCDs put out by the Bengal CPI (M) must find greater circulation and display. The Bengal CPI (M) must realise that it has a big role in deciding the strength of the Left and the CPI (M) in the new Lok Sabha – and that this would be a critical factor in the formation of the Third alternative.
KOLKATA: Left Front Committee chairman Biman Basu on Monday reeled out official statistics to refute External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee’s “Development Report Card – an indictment of the performance of the State Government” released in New Delhi on Sunday.
Mr. Mukherjee, “who only a few days ago had spoken highly of the government here,” now dished out figures that “lie; they are not true.” “This is part of a vilification campaign against the Left Front to which the people of the State will give a fitting reply [in the Lok Sabha elections],” said Mr. Basu, who is also secretary of the CPI(M) State Committee.
“The data must have been provided to him by others; he, as president of the West Bengal Pradesh Congress Committee, was under compulsion to read it out… Mr. Mukherjee is a learned person but had not verified the facts,” Mr. Basu told journalists here.
On malnutrition and hunger — an issue in which, according to Mr. Mukherjee, the State had a dismal track record — Mr. Basu pointed out that he, as a senior minister in the government, would find it difficult to admit that the country stood 66th among the 88 nations where the problem existed.
Mr. Mukherjee’s claim that 11.7 per cent of the rural households in the State reported lack of food in 2004-05 “is a blatant lie.”
More than half of the country’s women suffered from anaemia and the figures were higher in eight States but not in West Bengal — “most in Andhra Pradesh which has a government led by Mr. Mukherjee’s party.”
West Bengal had among the lowest child mortality rates — a performance bettered only by Kerala and Tamil Nadu — and much less than the national average. But the Congress-led Andhra Pradesh and Assam had figures of 54 and 63 per 1,000 against the national average of 55. In West Bengal, it was 37. The number of those in West Bengal availing themselves of medical facilities provided by the State was higher than the national averages in both rural and urban areas.
As regards employment generation, the increase in both rural and urban areas in West Bengal was substantial but this fact was suppressed in Mr Mukherjee’s report, Mr. Basu claimed.
“Neither was there any mention of the fact that one crore people have lost their jobs in the country in the wake of the global economic meltdown … nor of land reforms, mention of which would not have been favourable to the Congress.”
West Bengal had the highest State Domestic Product in the country, the below-poverty-line percentage there had fallen drastically since the Left Front came to power and was 20 per cent in 2004 against the national figure of 22 per cent, Mr. Basu said.
Mon, 04/06/2009 - 05:50
West Bengal’s Finance Minister Ashim Dasgupta today refuted Congress leader and Union Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee’s allegations. He added that the allegations leveled by Mukherjee were completely bogus and were not based on credible facts but were politically motivated coming as they did just before the parliamentary elections.
Dr. Asim Dasgupta also criticized Pranab Mukherjee for depending on questionable findings of privately funded studies of small sample. He said that West Bengal fares better in the rate of reduction of poverty amongst many other states. In this regard West Bengal fares much better than the national average. In 1977 when the Left front Government formed the State Government in West Bengal for the first time, the rate of poverty in West Bengal was much more than that of the rest of India. At that time, the Congress was in power in West Bengal. Currently the percentage of people living under poverty line even if we were to accept the questionable methodology of the has decreased to 20% while about 22% people of rural India still lives under poverty line according to reports of the Planning Commission.
Answering to the allegation of Congress on the position of West Bengal as per the index of per capita income, Dr. Asim Dasgupta said that in the seventies West Bengal under the Congress rule was at the bottom of the chart. Furthermore, the freight equalization policy adopted by the Central Government in 1958-59 discriminated against the people of the state. Along with this at the time of partition there was an influx of a large number of refugees and the Central Government indifference to the their rehabilitation heavily burdened the State exchequer. At the same time it caused population explosion. But after coming to power in 1977 the West Bengal’s Left Front Government adopted many positive measures due to which this situation started to improve. According to statistical information available from the Central Government sources, in the year 2008-09 when the rate of agricultural growth in India has hovered around 2.6 per cent the corresponding rate of growth has been 4.1 % in West Bengal. In the case of industries when the rate of growth has been 4.1 percent in India the same rate in West Bengal if 5.8 %. When due to the current turmoil expert are predicting that the rate of growth of GDP is going to decrease to below 7 %, even at such a time West Bengal has maintained an average of about 7.8 % when it comes to the state domestic product. Even in the terms of the per capita income that State’s position is better than the national average.
On charges of the maximum occurrence of poverty in Murshidabad district and mentioning reports of Indian Statistical Institute (ISI) as a source he said that the ISI has not done any such work on Murshidabad district and it is not at all clear on whose basis this figure has been compiled and why the Congress is saying that Murshidabad is the poorest district of West Bengal. Though a survey conducted by the State Government has found that the incidence of poverty is there in Murshidabad still the situation is not as bad as is being projected by the Congress.
A survey conducted on behalf of the Panchayat and the Rural Development Department Government of West Bengal has pointed out that in the year 2008-09 in all the 40000 villages in the state and in 91 % of the 96265 habitats of West Bengal, West Bengal Government has been able to provide the people with access to safe drinking water.
He also said that the charges leveled by the Congress that 14 districts of West Bengal falls under the top 100 poorest districts of India are completely baseless and frivolous as the source of this is unknown. He said that the Human Development Index is 0.61 in West Bengal, which is much better than the national average.
In addition, consider the following facts:
Ø Hunger: Figures that are used for hunger are based on perception and not on scientific and objective criteria like calorie intake, under nourishment, underweight children, under five mortality. If these are taken as has been done by FAO’s hunger index then West Bengal ranks as the eighth least hunger affected State out of 17, ahead of Maharashtra, a Congress ruled State.
Ø Health: West Bengal’s Infant Mortality Rate at 37 continues to be lower than the Indian average of 55. (2007 SRS). The decline is most remarkable at an annual rate of 5.5 per cent.
Ø Maternal Mortality Rate in West Bengal is 19.4 as compared to all India average of 30.1.(NFHS 3). Reduction in MMR is far better than the all India average.
Ø The percentage of West Bengal children who are fully immunized is 64.3 per cent, which is again far above the all India average 43.5 per cent.
Ø Education: According to NSS 2004-2005 and annual State of Education report percentage of out of school children in age group 6-14 years in West Bengal is 4.8 for rural areas compared to 15 per cent eight years ago. As far as primary school dropouts is concerned, the national average is 9.36 per cent, while West Bengal is 8.56 per cent.
Ø Mid Day meal scheme: Pranab Mukherji quoted the CAG report. But the State of Education report 2007 found that mid-day meals in West Bengal were being provided in 98.3 per cent of schools in rural areas.
Ø Poverty: Rural poverty in West Bengal declined from 73.2% (percentage of persons below poverty line) in 1973-74 to 28.6% in 2004-05, as against the decline of poverty at the all-India level from 56.4% in 1973-74 to 28.3% in 2004-05. Urban poverty in West Bengal declined from 34.7% in 1973-74 to 14.8% in 2004-05, as against the decline of urban poverty at the all-India level from 49% in 1973-74 to 25.7% in 2004-05. Going by the Planning Commission’s estimate, West Bengal has achieved creditable success in poverty reduction, which is among the best in the country. In fact the Eleventh Plan document notes (Vol.3, Ch.4, p.80).
Ø Agricultural growth: 11th Plan document notes that between 1995 and 2005 it was 2.67 per cent in West Bengal, which was the third highest among all major States and way above national average of 1.85 per cent. In year 2008-2009 Indian agricultural growth was 2.6 per cent, which in W.Bengal is 4.1 per cent. While the acute agrarian crisis has led to farmers’ suicides in several States, especially Maharashtra, West Bengal has remained relatively immune from such acute distress. It is not surprising that the report, given its motivations, has carefully avoided any detailed discussion of agricultural performance. How can any analysis which ignores agriculture where the majority of the workforce is employed, be taken seriously?
"It is astonishing that the BJP has promised in its election manifesto to look into the Gorkhaland issue sympathetically. It is the reflection of its double standards," CPI(M) State secretary Biman Basu told reporters.
The CPI(M)'s reaction came in the wake of the GJM joining the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) and extending support to Jaswant Singh's candidature from the Darjeeling seat. The BJP manifesto has promised to consider sympathetically the GJM's demand for a Gorkhaland state to be carved out of parts of north Bengal including Darjeeling.
Mr. Basu said the BJP had not supported the Gorkhaland demand at the all-party meeting in the state secretariat and accused it of being greedy for votes.
"The BJP's game plan is in sync with its policy of trying to divide the people on the basis of religion, language, caste and creed. This will definitely be an issue for us. We shall never allow Bengal to be divided again," Mr. Basu said.
The BJP’s game plan was to divide the people of West Bengal. It was adopting “double standards,” as it had supported a resolution passed in the Assembly opposing any division of the State — one that was endorsed by all parties, he said.
“The BJP is following the imperialist design of divide and rule. It is an exponent of dividing the people of Darjeeling district as a whole,” said Mr. Bose, who is also chairman of the Left Front Committee.
The BJP is to contest from the Darjeeling Lok Sabha constituency with the support of the Gorkha Janamukti Morcha (GJM), which is demanding the creation of Gorkhaland, comprising Darjeeling district and areas in the Dooars of north Bengal. The BJP president declared in New Delhi that Jaswant Singh would be the party’s nominee for the seat.
Mr. Bose said that for the sake of getting votes, the BJP was trying “to create discord among people and divide them along linguistic, religious and ethnic lines.” Its decision would provide momentum to divisive forces that were trying to undermine the unity and harmony among the people of the hills and the plains in Darjeeling district.
Reiterating the Left Front’s resolve not to allow any further division of West Bengal, he criticised the GJM’s writ that parties opposed to those forces that supported the creation of smaller States would not be permitted to campaign in the Darjeeling hills. Only the Trinamool Congress, the Congress and the BJP were being allowed to do so.
Mr. Bose declined to comment on the candidature of Mr. Singh for the Darjeeling seat. “I do not know whether Mr. Singh will get a clean chit from the Election Commission to do so,” he said.