May 2, 2009


RANIGANJ (BURDWAN): ‘We need new governance for a new India,’ said CPI (M) Polit Bureau member Sitaram Yechury at Ranigunj right amidst the coal belt of Bengal. He was addressing a mass rally in the afternoon of 1st May.

The entire country is now poised to throw out the ‘gaddi hasil’ brand of politics in favour of popular governance. The new government shall have people’s welfare as the locus of its policies. The certainty of the Third Front assuming control in Delhi, post election, was becoming clearer every day.

Held at the large Sihrasole grounds, the rally saw participation in their thousands of both coal mine workers and workers in the unorganised sectors, in particular. There was also a large number of adivasis who came in their traditional dressage and raised a storm of kettle drum beats.

Sitaram Yechury said that at present a ‘Chamakta hua Bharat’ was confronted by a ‘tadapta hua Bharat.’ In the former, ‘shining,’ India, a few people and families concentrated in their hands of massive amount of wealth. More billionaires exist in that India than even in the rich and developed nation of Japan.

In the suffering India, 75% of Indians cannot have Rs 20 per day as income. Every day, 1000 children die. 755 of the mothers are the victims of anaemia. One crore of Indians have been thrown out of employment as a consequence of the big depression worldwide. The jobs of five crore more are under serious threat. In Surat in Gujarat 71 workers have taken their own lives. The textile workers sell their kidneys to survive. ‘We want a change of this India,’ said the speaker.

Sitaram Yechury said that the secular formations were coming together in a new way. On the eastern coast of the country, the alliance partners have left the BJP. Laloo Prasad Yadav and Ram Bilas Paswan have created a separate morcha. The Third force will become stronger after the elections are over. Sitaram Yechury recalled to the mind of the politically conscious Bengali the words of Gopal Krishna Gokhale: what Bengal thinks today, India thinks tomorrow.

The Left Front government is established in Bengal after winning seven consecutive elections. Bengal shows the way to the future for the rest of the country. Sitaram Yechury called for a massive electoral triumph of the LF-nominated CPI (M) candidate from the constituency, and a sitting MP, Bangsa Gopal Chaudhuri. Other who addressed the rally besides Bangsa Gopal was CPI leader and MP, R C Singh.


KOLKATA,2nd May: Dr Manmohan Singh addressed a Congress rally in Howrah on 1st May and said that ‘recently the Congress has published a report card on the working of the Bengal government with which I tend to agree, and it is shown there that Bengal has dropped back in various developmental activities.’

The same Dr Manmohan Singh had said on 12 January, 2005 while in Kolkata that ‘when I see newspapers call Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee the best chief minister in the country, I am not surprised. I agree with this statement. Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee and his government are working away with courage, with the heart in the right place, and with intelligence. This is what is needed for the development of the nation. Bengal is about to re-claim the position of leadership in the country.’

Need one add anything more?


MIDNAPORE(INN): When we reached the spot at a remote corner of Jambani in Midnapore west, where an improvised explosive device or IED detonation buried in a desolate part of the road leading to Jhargram town, had taken place post-poll in the evening of 30 April, and we were met with the combined reek of blasting powder, of human remains -- the bodies were scattered over a half-a-kilometre radius -- and with the smell of death.

Prasada Bandyopadhyay, polling work completed, rang up his ailing and elderly father telling him that everything was all right and that he was well on his way home, and then he asked of his three-year old daughter to ‘tell mummy to have some food ready.’ He had hardly beeped off his cell phone when the word turned topsy-turvy for the Bandyopadhyay family.

The IED exploded with ferocious impact on the jeep Prasada and two of his colleagues Sougata including the chauffeur Sanjay Das were travelling in. We found little evidence of the vehicle other than a few steel parts from the engine. The body parts were flung as high as the flowering Palash trees crowding both sides of the metalled road, trees that reached out 40 feet into the sky. A ‘Maoist’ leaflet later clamed with glee that they had exploded the devices and that ‘many more deaths would follow.’

What is tragic is the fact that Prasada who was computer software engineers, and his men innocently believed in -- and that cost them their lives-- what the ‘Maoist’ posters had earlier proclaimed in the jangal mahal that: ‘we shall only kill police personnel and not the civilian populace.’ Does one believe the cruel criminal, the merciless and opportunistic hunter of men and women, the social evil incarnate, and the people on the dangerous lunatic fringe?

As we had reported earlier, the presence of the fourth component during what was purported to be a tripartite meeting that the CEO Bengal took with the Maoist backed ‘people’ committee,’ upset all equations, leaking in profusion the poll arrangements to the criminals and the killers. A slip meant the death of three men, and a dirge-like impact on their family units, especially as all three men who mat such a cruel end on the line of duty were the only earners in their household units.

Expectedly, none of the opposition political groupings, none of the foreign-funded ‘democracy-mad’ NGOs, none of the members of the ‘civil society’ would deign to utter a single word in empathy for the departed and for those the murdered left behind.

Earlier, last October, a similar IED blast had left a doctor Dhaniram Mandi, a nurse, Bharati Mandi, and the chauffeur Pranay Mishir, dead much in the same spot. It is believed by the local Party unit that the same gang had brought about the latest detonation and that they operate out of a remote forest area of Jharkhand across the porous border.

Socio-Economic Development of West Bengal to continue:Chief Minister

KOLKATA: A meeting on “Socio-Economic Development of West Bengal” organized by Calcutta Citizens’ Initiative (CCI) was held on 28th April,Tuesday at G.D. Birla Sabhagar. The main speaker was Shri Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee, Chief Minister of West Bengal. People from various walks of life, joined the meeting including Shri R M Kapoor (Town Planner), Shri Subodh Sarkar (Poet), Shri Barry O’Brien (Journalist), Shri Sunil Das (Painter), Prof Suren Munshi (Academia); Dr S K Sharma (Radiologist) and Prof Dipankar Dasgupta (Economist). They appreciated the work of the State Government and expressed their solidarity for the developmental steps being taken.

The CM held out hope that mega projects announced earlier such as the numerous steel plants and petrochem hub were bound to come up, despite pressures induced by the global economic meltdown. “I just can’t accept the Opposition position. They are opposing everything, even the extension of national highways and acquisition of land for a thermal power plant at Katwa. But, I accept the challenge since I believe in people power and not muscle power,” Bhattacharjee told a gathering at the G D Birla Sabhagar, which also included Nicco’s Rajive Kaul and Titagarh Wagon’s J P Chowdhary from the industrialist fraternity.

“I have spoken to Sajjan Jindal and he has assured me that the JSW plant would definitely come up despite the problems in raising funds from banks at the moment,” the CM added. Bhattacharjee — whose industrialization policies had helped disparate Opposition parties to join hands — said his government had taken lessons from the mistakes committed earlier in acquiring land. “Our intention was not bad. I have no personal preference for cars. All I wanted to see was the smiling faces of thousands of workers at Singur. We wanted to make Nandigram another Haldia. But the Opposition played a destructive role,” he asserted.

However, the state was in the process of setting up a land bank — largely comprising fallow land — at a cost of Rs 500 crore to ensure that plots could be handed over to companies quicker. A rehabilitation package was also being drawn up for affected landlosers. “We are negotiating with a Czech company for a mass rapid transit system,” he added.

Shri Shishir Bajoria, President of CCI urged the citizens to take a pro active role in the overall growth. In the beginning Shri Narayan Jain in his welcome address pointed out the low polling taking place in Kolkata and urged all eligible voters to cast their vote in the ensuing Parliamentary elections without any fear. Mr Jain further emphasised that "We need to appreciate that behind efforts for setting up industry, the major thurst has been creation of job opportunity for youth, which is the need today. These realities need to be appreciated by all including other political parties and cross section of society. Positive attitude is desirable for fast growth of the State."

On the occasion Justice B.L. Jain former Judge of Calcutta High Court, Shri Buddhadeb Guha, Smt. Diplai Bhattacharya, Shri Samir Dutt, Shri Mahesh Shah, Shri Wasim Kapoor were also present.

Earlier, other speakers invited at the programme said the electorate should teach the Opposition a lesson for its negative brand of politics. “We have to ensure that agitational politics is washed away from the shores of West Bengal,” town planner R M Kapoor said. “The intellectuals who are seeking change through hoardings should have the courage to specify what change they want,” painter Sunil Das said.