The slogans of achhe din and the likes, with which the BJP rode gorgeously to the seat of the Union government, are still on record. True, some of those such as the one of recovering black money stashed in foreign banks and providing each poor with a sum of 15 lakh from that, have already been brushed aside by the BJP leaders themselves as chunavi jumla or election stunts. But those slogans which are still trumpeted, as and when required, are also fast fading in their glow and sharpness to show their real face. On the contrary, each day people are confronting newer and newer master strokes from the BJP government, which are hitting the target, the common poorer masses of the country right at their heart.
In the name of achhe din BJP brings debacle sabke saath
For example, endless streams of suicide of debt-trapped peasants, point to their helplessness, notwithstanding all high-sounding phrases from the Union and state governments on farm loan or loan waiver, with thousand and one hassles putting those schemes beyond reach of the marginal and poor, even the middle peasants. To this tragedy are added, ghastly killing of several peasants in the police firing at Mandsaur in MP for their agitating on demand of loan waiver, and minimum support price of crops, 2-day bandh by Maharashtra peasants, 40 day dharna of Tamilnadu peasants in the capital Delhi, seething discontent of peasants of UP, Gujarat, Haryana, Rajasthan and Punjab — all on the same or similar demands in states most of which are BJP-governed. While the government could liberally grant tax waiver and concession to the tune of Rs 9 lakh crores to the big industrial houses and moneybags in the last fiscal year, its spokespersons are now shamelessly opposing farm loan waivers on the plea of denting the economy. All these together bring out the spectacle of achhe din that the BJP has gifted to the population comstituting the backbone of the country.
But the BJP has still other slogans in store, such as sabke saath. So why should it be peasants alone? The entire poor and middle class common people were made to be enchanted with the flurry of innovations, so- called reforms, starting with say, mid-night promulgation of demonetization to end with black money and corruption, followed by drives for cashless or digital economy to rise to a new age and finally to end with the ‘magnanimous’ GST promising end of multiple taxing. The results! Demonetization took more than a hundred lives and who cares to count how many more, who were again helpless commoners baffled and harassed by the cruelty of the move, though black money and corruption continue to reign supreme. Leaving aside all other multifaceted tentacles of fraudulence, non-accountability etc., associated with digital economy, it is accompanied by Aadhaar linking, which makes every personal details of people shelved within the grip of the government and bureaucratic machinery readily available to be used to gag any non-conformist, any protestor, anybody chosen as a target. And lastly, the promised single tax GST for the entire country, a hoax, is introduced with so many taxes at so many levels, in disguise or exposed, to be taken into account through such complex processes, in effect giving way to such a rise in the price as well as cost of business for small to middle traders that even the hard-core vote bank of the BJP in the PM’s own state of Gujarat, the businessmen at large, those of textile sectors in particular, could not but register their unstinted opposition. The workers also need not feel left out. One after another labour laws are changed and steps taken to silence any voice of protest; when the latter still bursts out, ruthless coercion is brought down, hard-earned trade union or democratic rights are snatched back. And coming along with these are further benefits showered upon the entire masses of common people, like loss of jobs, rampant unemployment, spiralling price rise with all essential commodities, steep hike in costs of education, medical facilities and such other essential services, all these go on unbridled and wayward. One may be led to wonder, if there is any governance.
BJP government is the present political manager of monopolists-corporates
But surely there is governance, because the government stands as the political manager for the handful monopolists- corporate along with the gamut of the mainstream parliamentary politicians, in power or in opposition bench, bureaucracy, administration including police, highest echelon of judiciary, even military and the strongmen in the payroll of the above to serve them in any eventuality. Thus every single policy that make people shed tears is welcomed by the monopolists and their multiple adjutants; every hike in price or cost of service, meaning more loss for people add to the profit of the owners- monopolists- policy makers for building a helipad on their roof top or for including their names in the list of world’s richest.
Unprincipled, unethical politics reigns supreme to protect and preserve the prevailing system
Economy is the base and this is how it is characterized now in the country, whom it serves, for whose interest all its reforms are directed to. And there is the superstructure, the politics, which determines the course day to day, year for year. Rights are becoming selective, optional. Freedom of expression is mortally threatened, with radical thinkers being murdered in open daylight to cause panic and inaction among anybody daring to protest. The party in power and their different wings and outfits, broadly coming under the umbrella of the ruling RSS-BJP combine, which directly opposed nationalist movement during the British imperialist rule, are now stepping out to catch any opposition by the neck accusing them of anti-nationalism. Even option for food is being curbed through mass-lynching by cow-vigilantes or through diktat from the RSS chief for ban on cow slaughter or prohibiting sale of cows etc. even by the Union BJP government. On one side, under criticism, the prime minister utters a few words, asking to stop these so-called intolerance, really rabid communal attacks; while on the ground, incidents of lynching carry on even of legal vendors in bovine business; attacks are brought down on opponent student organizations, agitating workers –peasants-employees. In institutions of national importance, be it film, education, judiciary, state governorship, even for president of the country, pliant candidates, most preferably RSS members are carefully plucked and placed at the top. While trumpeting for parliamentary democracy, the elections are manipulated by the ruling party with the help of shameless use of monopolist moneybag-mainstream media controlled by them- mafia on their payroll and the pliant administration with which administrative neutrality has become an obsolete phrase. But not content with that, to rise to power in any opponent governed state, the ruling party is purchasing opponents with fabulous sums of money which cannot be anything other than the black money itself that they pretend to fight out, or chasing them with so-called investigations against corruption, which in reality is presently the trademark of parliamentary politicians of all major parties. These continue to remain in safe-vaults, till any enemy, a political opponent or business rival chooses to grab at it, to meet some nefarious end; the BJP is taking that route, knowing full well that they will have easy prey in opponents always steeped in corruption, and so they can bring the victims to their own fold without difficulty. The latest examples of such unprincipled unethical power-grabbing politics are found in the frantic, finally successful, drive of RSS-BJP to shatter the united opposition in Bihar by getting hold of the chief minister Nitish Kumar to change camp to sit on the lap of the NDA, or in shepherding Congress leaders into the fold of the BJP in Gujarat for the sake of which they unleash Income Tax raid on a Karnataka minister who is reportedly providing safe custody for some Congress MLAs of Gujarat to save them from the hunting BJP or the Union Home ministry nominating three MLAs to the State Legislative Assembly of the Union Territory of Puducherry.
And what are these for? Obviously to rout out any opposition and smoothen the process of carrying out any agenda for the government or the RSS-BJP combine in power. And there can be no two minds in defining the agenda: it is the Hindutvawad, with clear ominous communal signals to the religious minorities on their future, and with distinct intent to drive vertical cleavage among people preventing them from standing united for any movement against the government policies or the present ruling order of capitalism. The entire ambience smacks of pro-monopolist unprincipled unethical even communal activities perpetrated by the RSS-BJP combine as naked attempt to concentrate-consolidate power to tend towards administrative fascism and divide people into an array of distraught, helplessly inactive, rather mutually inimical, disunited masses. The purpose is singular: to protect and preserve the exploitative, oppressive rule of capitalism, rather of monopolists, to continue it without any distraction or difficulty.
Naturally in the face of fierce economic onslaughts which are fleecing people to the skeleton as also terrible political attacks which are disuniting people, it was required that sustained united powerful movements of people be launched to thwart attacks one by one, directing these towards movements against exploitative- coercive capitalist rule. And it is a fact that such movements can grow in reality only when political forces with leftist orientation become the guiding force to lead the movements. Only real leftist forces deeply and earnestly engaged in developing democratic movements can build up powerful movements on democratic values and ethics, on formidable ideological base against communal or any other divisive politics. And it is those forces which are also acceptable to people as sincere sentinel for their cause, while they gasp under capitalist exploitation or torn by communalism or such others. So this was the need of the hour, namely building up of powerful united movement of people cutting across all divisive traits of religion, caste, race or language, to be led with real leftist orientation by genuine leftist forces.
Danger looming large cannot be combated by any makeshift combination
But in face of terrible all-out onslaughts from the ruling RSS-BJP combine, is the unavoidable task of launching movement and developing it step by step being carried out in right earnest in the desired path? Can the aggressive force of BJP aided and abetted by the ruling monopolists and their ancillaries, be combated with the help of some-sort-of electoral combination or even alliance of a motley of parties, each bearing strong aspirations for power and pelf and for that carrying totally unprincipled, unethical attitude to have their boats on tow with any ship that may promise them even some crumbs? Among the parties which are now posing as opposition to the BJP, some have had the taste of the power in this bourgeois set up in the Union government or in this or that state government serving equally the interest of the bourgeois class. So they always sit on the razor’s edge to be caught in the traps of charges on corruption or mal-governance or exploitation. How can they be expected to fight the BJP in such cases on a definite ideology standing on the edifice of even minimum principled moral-ethical standards? Rather, in the face of the opportunistic aggressive policies and measures of the presently ruling RSS-BJP they either prefer to keep safe distance, aloof, or at best raise some hullabaloo to gain some political mileage in winning attraction of people and cash it for gaining some parliamentary seats or power. And at the worst, they fall easy prey to the bait now being put by the BJP to them with the help of the power and money it enjoys. People are sure to find that given a chance they also would carry on with the same trend of unprincipled, unethical politics in future too.
At this point it should be made clear that not only the branded bourgeois petty-bourgeois parties, even those which claim themselves as pro-poor, leftists, even Marxists, and have chosen to sustain upon parliamentary politics, fail to come out of this pattern of politics for the sake of power and pelf. That is why, knowing full well the track record of the Congress on communal questions and its involvement in so many ghastly communal incidents, these self-proclaimed Marxists do not hesitate to form electoral combination with the Congress with the avowed aim of fighting communal politics of the BJP. Does such an act provide the ideological strength and conviction that may help people to identify them as real fighters against communalism? Was it not the Congress that served as the most trusted representatives of the ruling monopolists? For sure, pro-monopolist, unprincipled, unethical, even communal politics cannot be eradicated or even defeated without proper ideology. What should be the correct shape of that ideologically guided fight? Can it be anything other than real leftist politics without any compromise with forces whose hands still carry the blood of communal politics or which stands as the creator of the plethora of pro-monopolist black Acts and measures during their rule since the independence? Can a united fight against the aggressive RSS-BJP combine be conceived without proper consideration of these questions and issues?
Media-made all opposition unity proved a damp squib
But it was conceived in actuality and naturally fell through. In the recently held elections to the posts of the President and Vice- President of the country, the ruling RSS-BJP combine with their shrewd calculations staged hard-core RSS or veteran BJP candidates respectively. In addition, to placate the Dalits, antagonized by the casteist anti- Dalit politics of the RSS-BJP turning violent and fatal in cases, the BJP Presidential candidate was also a Dalit. Against them, the parliamentary opposition parties of all categories including the social democratic parties masquerading not only as leftists, but even as Marxists with not even an iota of real leftism or Marxism in them, together put up a candidate for each of the post. The entire bourgeois media and political circles hailed it as a mark of all opposition unity. But they carefully side-tracked the vital question of what kind of ideology, what kind of politics did this all-opposition unity represent. Was it anything other than a motley of parties with their individuals craving for power and pelf? The fact was clear from the way numbers of MPs crossed sides and voted for the candidate of the other camp. It was clear from the beginning that the BJP would sail its ship through without any difficulty by dint of brute majority of numbers. So there was never any question of an opposition candidate winning the race. In such a situation the parties and forces with minimum pro-people and leftist leanings committed to developing mass struggles and united democratic movements centring round burning problems of peoples’ life, should have thought of staging a candidate of their own, solely and simply resting on ideological ground. Shouldn’t they? Instead what they did, the way they combined with parties of totally different approach and ideology, was nothing but equivalent to hoodwinking people with the stance of fighting aggressively pro-monopolist, communal force, actually by forming a hotchpotch combination of opposition. Is it different in any way from the opportunist politics being practiced by the branded bourgeois parties, in power or in opposition?
The task ahead
Thus, the recent elections for the President and Vice-President of the country have left a vital lesson for people. They will have to realize that it is high time that the real leftist forces must come out with the pledge to resist the RSS-BJP combine and thwart their dangerous measures and policies both ideologically and organizationally on the basis of concrete ideology, principle and ethics. Undisputedly, the RSS-BJP very much represent utterly reactionary ideology. Trying to give defeat to RSS-BJP without a correct ideology is living in a fool’s paradise. So, the correct approach and correct path lies in drawing people together and towards democratic movements centring round the burning problems of their life and livelihood on the strength of correct ideology, thus freeing them from the influence of arch communal ideology of RSS- BJP. Needless to emphasize, that all elections from the level of Panchayyats to the President of the country, must be fought based upon this governing approach uniting with parties with which unity can be made, at the same time making them agreeable and conducive to this basic understanding. These are the tasks to accomplish, that the history has laid down before all the genuine left and democratic- minded people of the country to combat a menacing force that is working frantically to drag the country towards fascism, the worst evil, the deadliest enemy of mankind.