Wednesday, April 23, 2014

ML Update 17 / 2014

ML Update

A CPI(ML) Weekly News Magazine

Vol.  17        No. 17                  23-29 APR 2014

BJP-RSS Leaders' Rants:

Symptoms of Would-Be Despot's Desperation   


The recent rants of BJP and Sangh leaders smack of frustration and desperation in their bid to somehow achieve the throne of Delhi for Narendra Modi. And in their desperation, they end up letting the fascist cat out of the Modi bag, and revealing the true colours of a would-be Modi regime.

BJP's Nawada candidate and prominent Bihar leader Giriraj Singh declared that all those who criticise Modi have no place in India, and should be sent to Pakistan. Even after the ECI has filed an FIR against him in this regard, Giriraj Singh has defiantly repeated his statement, indicating that he in fact enjoys the blessings of the BJP top brass, which has formally distanced itself from his remarks. Giriraj's remarks confirm that Modi in fact visualises India as his fiefdom, from which he can evict dissenters. No wonder Modi names his rallies 'Bharat Vijay' – indicating he is a conqueror seeking victory over the country. And once his 'Vijay' over Bharat is complete, he will be free to brand all critics as agents of Pakistan and deal with them accordingly.

This is in fact how Gujarat is now ruled – activists who have painstakingly pursued cases of massacres and fake encounters have found themselves inundated by false cases alleging various crimes, and publicly accused by the Chief Minister of being in the pay of foreign powers. The 'Pakistan' touch in Giriraj's threat is telling – it seeks to associate critics and Muslim minorities alike with Pakistan. References to Pakistan, in Sangh-speak, serve to question loyalties of Muslims in India. Giriraj, let us recall, had also hailed the Ranveer Sena chief Brahmeshwar Singh, mastermind of horrific massacres of landless poor and dalits, as 'Bihar's Gandhi'.  

Meanwhile, VHP chief Praveen Togadia has provided a timely reminder that in Modi's Gujarat, he is able to practice what Giriraj preaches, and openly threatens Muslims to vacate 'Hindu' areas of cities. He did this in Bhavnagar, but promised to conduct this eviction drive all over India. In his legal notice to media houses, Togadia actually confirms the substance of what he is accused of – i.e., he admits to having advised Hindus to invoke the Disturbed Areas Act as amended in Modi's Gujarat, to free property from Muslims. The Disturbed Areas Act as amended in Gujarat, instead of serving its intended purpose of protecting vulnerable groups from distress sale of property, actually serves to enforce ghettoisation and criminalise Muslims who buy property from Hindus. 

Giriraj's and Togadia's threats serve as an ironic counterpoint to the efforts of media persons like Indian Express editor Shekhar Gupta, who has written to suggest that the 'Modi threat' are a figment of liberal phobia, and that India's democratic institutions are robust enough to tame Modi. India's democratic institutions have failed, as of now, to prevent or punish massacres, fake encounters, organised violence against dalits or women, or hate-speech. To mock those who speak of the Modi danger to India's democracy, is to pander to Modi's own corporate-driven communal-fascist agenda. It would also be a grave mistake to dismiss the likes of Giriraj or Togadia as a 'lunatic fringe' and advice BJP to distance itself from them. The examples of Godse and Aseemanand serve as sobering reminders that the RSS is skilled at deploying such terrorists to commit unspeakable crimes against humanity and democracy – only to disown them as 'lunatic fringe.' Former West Bengal Governor Gopal Krishna Gandhi is far wiser in sounding the alarm against the corporate subversion of democracy and the real and present danger of a despot on Delhi's seat of power.      

Gadkari's remarks on caste being in Bihar's DNA smack of sour grapes. After all, Modi himself reminded his audiences in Bihar, Kerala and every other state, many a time, that he was an OBC. In Bihar, from his Hunkar Rally speech to his many election speeches, he repeatedly appealed to the sentiments of 'Yaduvanshis', drawing on the mythological relationship between Krishna, the God dear to the Yadavs, and Dwarka (Gujarat). He even compared himself directly to Krishna, claiming to have come from Dwarka as a saviour. He even brought divisive politics to the food thali, trying to divide the traditional 'Muslim-Yadav' solidarity by instigating the dairy-farming and cow-worshipping Yadavs against Muslims who got subsidies for 'exporting beef and meat'. At the same time, the BJP also tried its best to consolidate its traditional upper caste vote base; but of course the casteism of the dominant castes never recognises itself as such – it only brands the assertion of the backward and oppressed castes as 'casteism'!   

Perhaps all Modi's appeals to OBCs and Yadavs in Bihar fell on deaf ears, since Bihar seems to be defying the so-called 'opinion polls' that predicted massive gains for the BJP. Certainly Gadkari's outburst seems to indicate as much. When voters fail to vote for you, it is common to blame the voter. Like the despotic regime in Brecht's immortal poem, the BJP of course has the option to dissolve the people - or, as Giriraj recommends, send the entire people packing to Pakistan - and elect another.            

Tribute to Lenin

-by Langston Hughes


Lenin walks around the world.

Frontiers cannot bar him.

Neither barracks nor barricades impede.

Nor does barbed wire scar him.

Lenin walks around the world.

Black, brown, and white receive him.

Language is no barrier.

The strangest tongues believe him.

Lenin walks around the world.

The sun sets like a scar.

Between the darkness and the dawn

There rises a red star.


 ML Update A CPI(ML) Weekly News Magazine U-90 Shakarpur Delhi - 110092 INDIA PHONE: 91 11 22521067 FAX: 91 11 22442790 Web:

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

ML Update 15-16 / 2014

ML Update

A CPI(ML) Weekly News Magazine

Vol.  17      No. 15-16                                       9-15 APR 2014


On the 45th Party Foundation Day

Let's Resolve to Carry Forward the Heroic Legacy of Our Party and
Fallen and Departed Comrades!


April 22, 2014 marks 45 years of the foundation of CPI(ML). This year, the entire party is in the midst of an electoral battle, where our agenda reflects the party's foundational principle, articulated by Comrade Charu Mazumdar, that "the people's interests are the party's interests." Even as we take on the corporate-communal nexus, our party has had to suffer losses and challenges. On the very eve of nominations in the Ara Lok Sabha seat in Bihar, our Charpokhri block secretary Comrade Budhram Paswan was killed by feudal forces. Even as we have put up an impressive showing and a strong bid for a victory in the Koderma Lok Sabha seat in Jharkhand, dalit supporters of CPI(ML) in some booths have been attacked by feudal-criminal supporters of BJP, and candidates and activists in some seats have been attacked by communal and criminal elements. 

As the ongoing electoral battle continues, let us give a fitting rebuff to the corporate-communal forces, put our best foot forward, and strive for a powerful assertion of the people's agenda! 

Red Salute to the Historic Legacy of April 22, 1969, and to the Memory of all the Martyrs! 


Opinion Polls, Advertisements, Paid News:

Seeking to Manipulate and Distort Voters' Behaviour

Even as the country prepares to go into the fifth phase of Lok Sabha polls, a fresh 'opinion poll' has been released, giving the NDA a clear majority. There are several disturbing questions that can be raised about the impact of such 'opinion polls' on voting behaviour.

In the first place, the EC has placed a clear restriction on exit polls. But when an opinion poll claims to reflect the opinions of voters in constituencies that have already voted, isn't the opinion poll a thinly veiled 'exit poll'? Isn't it all too likely that voters will perceive such opinion polls as virtual 'exit polls'?

If an opinion poll shows a particular party or coalition close to achieving a majority, is it not bound to bolster the campaign of that party/coalition to 'vote to form a stable government rather than hung parliament'? Insidiously, the opinion polls being publicised during elections, are supplementing the BJP-NDA's aggressive campaign to vote for a stable government led by Modi.

Not long before the elections, the BJP – and most media organisations – had vociferously condemned any talk of restricting opinion polls, as an attack on freedom of expression. Then, too, we had pointed out that opinion polls are not simply mirrors reflecting opinions, they are tools that seek to shape, influence, and organise political opinions. Opinion polls claiming to 'objectively' and 'scientifically' popular will are very different from editorials, or comments by TV anchors or 'experts,' since the latter are self-avowedly subjective. Laypersons or media outfits should be free to express opinions projecting poll outcomes and to persuade others to accept these opinions – but these subjective opinions are likely to affect voters very differently from the 'objective' polls presented authoritatively by media houses and various other bodies. Voters can easily assess and process the predictions of the local 'expert' at the tea stall or street corner or even the poll 'pundit' on the TV news; but lay voters are far more likely to accept at face value, the conclusions of an 'opinion poll' that claims to be the opinion of the people, supposedly gathered through scientific methods.     

And finally, the opinion polls are highly dubious given their corporate provenance. As it is, newspapers and channels are full of 'paid news' – essentially advertisements that are masquerading as 'news'. Opinion polls generally do not make public their raw data and their methodology; even if they were to do so, laypersons would lack the expertise to assess them. In the case of the latest opinion poll by NDTV, for instance, it emerges that there are possible linkages between Hansa Research, the organisation that has conducted the poll, and APCO, the PR firm that runs Modi's PR campaign. Both are American firms, and the Director of strategic communication and public affairs for APCO Worldwide in India was formerly CEO with Hansa Public Relations. This raises serious questions about the credibility of the opinion poll, and the possibility of the poll being inflated or manipulated to suit Modi's PR efforts. 

The EC has erred grievously in failing to ban opinion polls during the election period. Even now, corrective measures should be applied and the EC should acknowledge the potential distorting and manipulative effect of opinion polls, and ban them during the election period.

Another cause for concern is the huge, full page advertisements for Narendra Modi that appeared as the covering sleeve of all newspapers on 10th April, the day polls were held in seats in Jharkhand, Bihar and other states. The EC forbids campaigning 48 hours before polls, in order to shield voters from any undue influence immediately before they vote. How is it, then, that huge advertisements for Modi are allowed to reach every voter's home through the morning newspaper, on the very day of polling?

It is disturbing that in some booths of the Jamua assembly segment of the Koderma LS, dalits were attacked and prevented from casting their vote on 10th April by feudal elements. The Election Commission that has ordered repoll in some booths, has yet to order repoll in booths where this anti-dalit violence has occurred. In Ara LS in Bihar, the EC has declared Agiaon and Tarari Assembly segments as extremist-affected, thereby reducing the voting hours till 4 pm instead of 6 pm. Agiaon and Tarari have no history of being 'extremist-affected' for the past 25 years; why have they been declared such now, when the MLAs from Agiaon and Tarari are Shivesh Kumar from the BJP and Sunil Pandey from the JD(U) respectively? The fact is that the only incidents of pre-poll violence in these areas have been the murder of CPI(ML)'s Charpokhri block secretary Budhram Paswan, and popular young teacher Akbar Khan, by feudal-communal criminals. Moreover, the recent acquittals of all the convicts in the Bathani Tola and Laxmanpur Bathe massacres committed by the Ranveer Sena, and the resulting release of these convicts, has created fear and terror among the poor from the oppressed castes in these Assembly segments. In these circumstances, why are these Assembly segments being declared 'extremist affected'? Restricting voting hours will discriminate against poor labouring voters, who are extremely busy during the ongoing harvest season and are also under threat from feudal-communal terror.

Opinion polls, polling-day advertisements, and paid news are all blatant attempts to manipulate voters and vitiate and distort the democratic process. The Election Commission needs to take stronger measures to end all such manipulation, and to protect the rights of voters from dalit, minority, adivasi and other oppressed sections.

CPI(ML) Complaint to Election Commission



The Chief Election Commissioner
Election Commission of India

Subject: Decision to declare Agiaon and Tarari assembly segments of Ara LS 'extremist-affected' has no basis, and will discriminate against voting rights of the poor


We are surprised at the decision of the Election Commission to declare Agiaon and Tarari Assembly segments of the Ara Lok Sabha constituency (Bihar) as extremist-affected, thereby reducing the voting hours till 4 pm instead of 6 pm.

We would also like to point out that Agiaon and Tarari have no history of being 'extremist-affected.' The MLAs from Agiaon and Tarari are Shivesh Kumar from the BJP and Sunil Pandey from the JD(U) respectively. The BJP was till recently in power in Bihar and the JDU is still in Government. How come Assembly segments ruled by representatives of these two ruling parties became extremist affected?

We would also like to point out that the only incidents of pre-poll violence in these areas have been the murder of CPI(ML)'s Charpokhri block secretary Budhram Paswan, and popular young teacher Akbar Khan. Feudal-communal criminals are implicated in both these murders. Moreover, the recent acquittals of all the convicts in the Bathani Tola and Laxmanpur Bathe massacres committed by the Ranveer Sena, and the resulting release of these convicts, has created fear and terror among the poor from the oppressed castes in these Assembly segments. In these circumstances, why are these Assembly segments being declared 'extremist affected'?

This is the harvest season – a time when poor agricultural labourers tend to be busy the whole day from early morning onwards. In addition they face intimidation from the feudal-criminal forces. This decision to restrict voting hours would only make it more difficult for them to cast their vote.

We appeal to you to withdraw the decision to declare Agiaon and Tarari extremist-affected; a decision that in effect would be deeply unfair and discriminatory to the poor voters in these Assembly segments.


Dipankar Bhattacharya

General Secretary, CPI(ML) Liberation

Confronting the BJP Gameplan in the Hindi Heartland

(Article by CPI(ML) GS Dipankar Bhattacharya that appeared in DNA daily, 14 April 2014)

Uttar Pradesh and Bihar are undoubtedly the two most crucial states that will decide the final overall outcome of the battle for the 16th Lok Sabha. The BJP's ambitious Mission 272 revolves heavily around its desperate game plans to secure a dramatic increase in its tallies in these two key battlegrounds. And indeed, most opinion polls predict rich dividends for the BJP in UP, Bihar and Jharkhand. But the ground level signals and campaign trends emerging from these states clearly suggest that the hype and hot air unleashed by the BJP would not fetch it the kind of booty predicted by these polls and propagated by the mainstream corporate media.

In UP, the BJP design has been woven around two key components – the Muzaffarnagar riots and Modi's Varanasi expedition. The riots indeed fetched rich dividends for the BJP in the Assembly elections in Rajasthan and in rural pockets of Delhi, and now Amit Shah is invoking it openly to harvest votes in UP. The implications of Modi's foray into Varanasi amidst frenzied chants of 'Har Har Modi' are also quite obvious in the light of the old Sangh brigade slogan "Ayodhya toh jhanki hai, Kashi-Mathura baaki hai" (Ayodhya is only a prelude to what is going to happen next in Kashi and Mathura) as much as the unmistakable communal overtone of the Modi campaign and the renewed call for Ram Mandir in the belatedly released BJP manifesto.

As far as Bihar is concerned, the BJP's poll drive began with Narendra Modi's highly publicised Hunkaar Rally in Patna in last October. The mysterious blasts and the unfortunate casualties that marked the rally presented the BJP with an emotive platform to launch a high-decibel campaign against perceived threats to Modi's life – the bogey invoked to legitimise the string of fake encounters in post-genocide Gujarat – and advocate the BJP's agenda for a hard state. But the inspiring and emphatic mass response to the Khabardar Rally organised by the CPI(ML) just two days after the Modi show went a long way to challenge and defuse the BJP game plan.

The aggressive rise of the BJP in Bihar in recent years has obviously been facilitated to a large extent by the opportunist and capitulationist politics of self-styled crusaders of social justice and secularism. While Nitish Kumar deluded himself with the praises he got initially from the BJP camp, the latter quietly and systematically went about the job of spreading its network and consolidating its grip over the political and bureaucratic establishment in Bihar. By the time Nitish Kumar severed his ties with the BJP – partly because of the inherent incompatibility and unsustainability of the overarching social coalition represented by the BJP-JD(U) combine and partly driven by the calculation of emulating the Naveen Patnaik strategy in Bihar – it was too late.

While Nitish Kumar is trying to chart his own course after faithfully serving the BJP for seventeen long years, Ram Vilas Paswan and Upendra Kushwaha have rushed with alacrity to claim the slot vacated by Nitish Kumar in the BJP-led coalition. But the opportunist strategy of these self-seeking leaders has failed to enthuse their ranks and the so-called 'masterstrokes' do not really seem to be paying off either for the BJP or for its allies. At the end of the day, the BJP has to rely essentially on its predominantly feudal core and its traditional politics of feudal aggression epitomised most notoriously by the Ranveer Sena which had carried out a series of massacres of the rural poor during the reign of Lalu Prasad and Rabri Devi.

The close organic relationship between the BJP and the Ranveer Sena has always been an open secret in Bihar. One of the first steps the JD(U)-BJP government took after coming to power in November 2005 was to disband the Justice Amir Das Commission which was about to expose the political links of the Ranveer Sena. In recent times the Patna High Court has acquitted en masse all those who had been convicted in connection with massacres perpetrated by the Sena. Brahmeshwar Singh, the notorious chief of the Sena, who was described as Bihar's Gandhi by BJP leader Giriraj Singh, had expressed his explicit wish to see Modi as PM. Brahmeshwar Singh had contested from Ara as an independent candidate in 2004 when the BJP was not in the fray. And now when the BJP has fielded its own candidate in 2014, Brahmeshwar's son Indubhushan Singh is supporting the BJP from Ara, choosing instead to contest from Patliputra where the BJP has fielded the former RJD leader Ramkripal Yadav as its candidate!

In a desperate bid to weaken the CPI(ML)'s poll prospects – the party had won from Ara in 1989, finished second in 2004 and third in 2009 – the Sena chose the period of nomination to kill CPI(ML) leader Budhram Paswan. On 24 March, Ara saw two contrasting processions, the cavalcade that accompanied the BJP candidate, former home secretary RK Singh, while filing his nomination, and thousands of people who joined the last journey of their beloved leader Budhram Paswan. CPI(ML) activists are not the only ones who are facing the brunt of the Sena-BJP politics of feudal-communal violence. Popular young teacher Mohammad Akbar Khan who used to offer free tuition to needy students, Hindu and Muslim alike, was gunned down at Piro, the evening before Budhram Paswan was killed in the adjacent Charpokhri block.

At a time when the BJP is trying to vitiate the political atmosphere with its feudal-communal venom and the likes of Nitish Kumar, Ram Vilas Paswan and Lalu Prasad stand exposed and discredited for their politics of opportunism and betrayal of the people's cause, the Left must step up its independent political role based on struggles for justice, human dignity and people's rights. Unfortunately, at this crucial juncture the CPI has once again chosen to side with the ruling party, a thoroughly discredited and rapidly declining JD(U), even as the CPI(ML) is spearheading a spirited and powerful Left rebuff in Bihar and Jharkhand to the aggressive and sinister BJP campaign. The suicidal policy of opportunist alliances with regional parties has run its course and the Left must forge ahead on the basis of popular assertion against the growing threat of corporate and communal subversion of democracy.

Dalits prevented from voting in Koderma

(based on report by Anumeha Yadav in The Hindu)

CPI(ML) members have alleged that Dalit villagers were stopped from voting in Jamua in Giridih district in first phase of polling for Koderma constituency in Jharkhand on April 10 by upper-caste landlords and have demanded a re-poll. They alleged that the villagers, including women, were physically assaulted when they arrived at the polling booth. Election Commission officials said they had not received reports that confirmed CPI(ML)'s allegations from their staff.

"We received reports that seals were broken and tampered with in two booths in Bagodar and four in Dhanwar and we will hold re-poll there but we did not receive inputs reporting any incident from Jamua," said Chief Electoral Officer PK Jajoria.

"When we reached the polling station, several men attacked us with lathis. One of them assaulted me on the chest and stopped me from casting my vote, ten persons from the village got injured, five were bleeding," said Uma Devi a Dalit farmer from Gardi village in Giridih's Jamua block. CPI(ML) Politburo member Manoj Bhakta said the party had registered an FIR against Suraj Narayan Dev who led the men whom he alleged injured 10 villagers.

"There are six assembly seats in the Koderma consituency and six booths were captured. The administration is anti-Dalit and are siding with feudal powers in this area," alleged CPI(ML)'s Koderma candidate Raj Kumar Yadav. "We were encouraging the villagers to vote as they think right but Suraj Narayan's goons did not let them," said Sunil Singh a CPI(ML) worker in Jamua. When the villagers asserted that they would vote for the candidates of their choice, the landlords became angry. For years they had suppressed them and dictated whom they should vote for, he added.

CPI(ML) Activists Attacked by BJP-backed Criminals in Bihar

In the Araria Lok Sabha seat in Bihar, criminals backed by the BJP attacked CPI(ML) candidate Sanjay Rishidev in Simraha Rahika village of Narpatganj thana. The man who led the attack is the brother of the local BJP block pramukh. Also in Bihar, in the Raghopur village of Raniya Talab thana of the Pataliputra Lok Sabha seat, the BJP-backed criminals attacked the CPI(ML)'s campaign van. The village is that of BJP leader Janardan Sharma. CPI(ML) activists are braving these attacks in order to resist the corporate-communal forces.

Edited, published and printed by S. Bhattacharya for CPI(ML) Liberation from U-90, Shakarpur, Delhi-92; printed at Bol Publication,
R-18/2, Ramesh Park, Laxmi Nagar, Delhi-92; Phone:22521067; fax: 22442790, e-mail:, website:

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

ML UPDATE 14 / 2014

ML Update

A CPI(ML) Weekly News Magazine

Vol.  17             No. 14                                                           2-8 APR 2014


Crafting an Image for Modi:


Politicisation of Terror Investigations

In the run-up to the Lok Sabha elections 2014, several instances of politically-motivated violence have been witnessed. The communal violence at Muzaffarnagar, intended to sharpen communal polarisation and consolidate the dominant and majority community in UP and neighbouring states in favour of the BJP, is a prominent instance. In Bihar, the murder of a young Muslim schoolteacher Akbar Khan followed by the murder of CPI(ML) Liberation leader Budhram Paswan, have also been used to serve a political purpose.

Following Comrade Budhram's murder, feudal forces fired celebratory shots in the air, aiming to terrorise the poor supporters of CPI(ML). Following Akbar's murder, there was a malicious attempt to spread a rumour that he was killed because he cheered for Pakistan in a cricket match. Fortunately the communal canard failed, because the young Akbar, who used to teach poor children for free and organise actions to keep the streets free of sexual harassment for schoolgirls, enjoyed the affection and respect of local people of all communities. As the elections unfold, it is disturbing to note a trend of communalisation and politicisation of terror investigations. In the month of March, there has been a concerted attempt by investigative agencies and by sections of the media, to create an image of the BJP's PM candidate Narendra Modi, as a leader who is the target of terrorists and to foster suspicion and hatred against the minority community as well. Following the arrest of 4 youths in Rajasthan recently, the media carried many stories claiming - supposedly based on 'IB alerts' that these four men were part of a terror plot against Modi. The Delhi Police Special Cell that made the arrests chose to hold a Press Conference about the arrests. What was the need for a Press Conference in an ongoing investigation, when no substantial facts are available? Such an exercise, in an election season, smacks of a political motive.

In Bihar, the conduct of the NIA in the investigation of the Bodh Gaya and Patna blasts, has reeked of shocking political bias as well as rampant torture. The supposed investigation has rested on the detention and torture of teenage boys, in an attempt to extract false 'confessions,' and the terrorisation and intimidation of an entire community. 19-year old Aslam Parvez from Abgila village, Arwal district, Bihar, has been held in NIA custody since March 5th. Papers report that he has been produced in a Ranchi court on March 31st. His father and other family members, who saw him in NIA custody in Delhi testify to the fact that he had been severely tortured. In a blatant display of political bias and intimidation, Aslam Parvez's father Maksood Alam was asked by the NIA why he would not vote for Modi! Aslam Parvez's cousin Irfan Ansari had been picked up on March 1st, and tortured in NIA custody: in Jehanabad, he was stripped naked and beaten on his legs and soles of the foot. In NIA custody in Delhi, soap was put in his mouth, and his head was held under water repeatedly. A chair was placed on his chest, and NIA personnel would sit on the arms of the chair to create unbearable pressure on his body. He put be placed in a room all night with no clothes on, with the fan on. Irfan Ansari was told by the NIA - 'We'll ensure that no Muslim from Arwal ever gets a government job.' Several other young men from Abgila village were also detained and interrogated by the NIA; they were warned not to tell anyone about the torture.

The NIA Act is a draconian law under which an accused can be held in police custody for 30 days, and further detained without charges for

180 days: the case of Aslam Parvez clearly shows that such powers are a licence for extracting false confessions under torture.

The above facts emerged during a visit to Arwal by a team comprising CPI(ML) Liberation and the Rihai Manch of UP, a platform of activists and lawyers working to ensure that civil liberties are respected in terror investigations.

The BJP candidate from Ara LS, RK Singh, has been saying in speeches that as former Home Secretary, he is privy to knowledge that Modi is a prime target for terrorists. NIA during interrogations, asks the father of a detainee, why he doesn't vote for Modi. The electoral purpose of such unsubstantiated assertions and biased line of questioning is obvious.

The political bias displayed by the NIA in Arwal further shows that terror investigations seem to following a political script. Such political bias and the use of torture, can never serve the cause of the truth or identify the true perpetrators of terror attacks.


Communal Profiling in Terror Investigations:

Report from Abgila, Arwal, Bihar

A team comprising CPI(ML) leaders Dhirendra Jha, Kavita Krishnan, Mohd Salim, Rajaram and  Mahanand, as well as senior advocates and activists of Rihai Manch, Mohd Shoaib and Asad Hyatt, visited Abgila village in Arwal district on March 31, 2014. Below, we summarise what the team was told by people of the village:


NIA asks 'Why won't you vote for Modi?'

Maqsood Alam, father of 19-year old Aslam Parvez told the team that his son has been held in NIA custody since March 5th. Alam had taken his son to Karauna OP of Jehanabad after being informed by the police to present himself there. In his presence, his son was beaten by the NIA team and asked to confess to involvement in the blasts. Subsequently, he was held in NIA custody in Delhi and papers reported on April 1 that he was produced in a Ranchi court on March 31st and that he has 'confessed' to involvement in the blasts.'

Maqsood Alam and other family members were told by the NIA to present themselves in Delhi on the day of Holi. Alam saw his son in NIA custody in Delhi, and according to him, 'Aslam Parvez appeared crazed by torture, talking incoherent rubbish. It was heartrending to see my young son in this condition.'

Maqsood Alam himself was interrogated by the NIA. During interrogation he was asked to which party he belonged, to which he replied 'Maaley'

(CPIML Liberation is known in Bihar by this name). Asked 'What's Maaley', he replied 'It's Dipankarji's party (Dipankar Bhattacharya is the party General Secretary)'. To which an NIA interrogator asked him, 'Why won't you and your family support Modi, vote for Modi?' Maksood Alam is a homoeopathic doctor; the NIA also tried to instigate his landlord to evict his clinic from the premises.


Severe Torture, Threats and Intimidation of Entire Community

Aslam Parvez's cousin Irfan Ansari had been picked up on March 1st, and tortured in NIA custody. In Jehanabad, he was stripped naked and beaten on his legs and soles of the foot. In NIA custody in Delhi, soap was put in his mouth, and his head was held under water repeatedly. A chair was placed on his chest, and NIA personnel would sit on the arms of the chair to create unbearable pressure on his body. He put be placed in a room all night with no clothes on, with the fan on. Irfan Ansari said the NIA told him - 'We'll ensure that no Muslim from Arwal ever gets a government job.' Irfan has been selected for the CRPF, and the NIA told him that they would ensure that he lost his place.

Irfan was asked to confess to having introduced Aslam Parvez to some 'Hyder' and to have been in Gaya on the day of the Bodh Gaya blasts (7 July 2013). He had in fact travelled by train to Asansol via Dhanbad; and the train passes through Gaya. However, he said he never alighted at Gaya. He was shown photographs of persons and asked, under torture, to identify them - but he was unable to do so.

Irfan was released and told that he would be interrogated again at a later date.

During interrogation by the NIA in Delhi, Manzoor Alam was brought face to face with Aslam Parvez, and the latter said to Manzoor, "We met together at Gaya with Irfan and Hyder to plan the Bodh Gaya blasts." Manzoor Alam said that Aslam Parvez's manner revealed that he was under duress and severe torture.

Irfan's brothers Rustom and Sohrab, Murtaza Ansari, Parvez Alam, Sarfaraz, Sarfuddin and Naushad Alam are some of the other youth from the village who have been summoned and interrogated by the NIA. There is an atmosphere of palpable terror, with every youth living in the village fears that he will be tortured and branded a terrorist.

The NIA Act is a draconian law under which an accused can be held in police custody for 30 days, and further detained without charges for 180 days. For Aslam Parvez, this has meant that the NIA has the powers to extract false confessions under torture.

The whole episode displays a disturbing trend of politicisation and communalisation of terror investigations.


Anniversary of Martyrdom of Com. Gangaram Koal

Workers Rights demand Day observed

25th March, 2014, the 1st Anniversary of Martyrdom of Com. Gangaram Koal was observed as 'workers rights demand day' in different districts of Assam. CPI(ML), AICCTU, ASCSS (Asom Sangrami Chah Sramik Sangha) organised meetings and protest processions on this occasion.

In Panitola under Tinsukia district CPI(ML) and ASCSS leader Gangaram Koal, was killed last year, and massive protests demanding arrest of culprits, including local MLA Raju Chahu, have still been continuing in the state.

Tinsukia district committee of CPI(ML) on his 1st anniversary opened Gangaram Koal Memorial complex in his native villege Gutibari. A mass meeting of around 800 people was organised which was addressed by Subhas Sen, party’s district secy, who called upon the people to defeat Congress, the party in the power, which defends culprits of Com. Koal. Other leaders including Subhrajyoti, Denish Orang, Devnath Mazhi, and those from various other organisations, attended the programme.

In Bargang, Sonitpur district, a protest procession of around 1000 people was brought out demanding arrest of killers of Com. Gangaram Koal. The procession was converted into a protest meeting where Bibek Das, CPI(ML) Assam State Secy, Lila Sarma district secy, Lakshmi Kanta Kurmi ASCSS leader and candidate of Tezpur Lok Sabha constituency delivered their speeches.

The Day was also observed in Tingkhong (Dibrugarh district), Jorhat, Nagaon, Silchar and Guwahati.

In Guwahati a meeting was jointly called by CPI(ML), AICCTU and United Workmen Union at Noonmati. The meeting was attended by workers of different industries and AICCTU affiliated unions. The meeting was presided over by AICCTU’s state president Biren Kalita. While addressing as main speaker, Rubul Sarma, PB member of the party discussed about party’s participation in the ensuing Lok Sabha polls and called upon all participants to take active role in election campaign. Loknath Goswami, Pankaj Das, Janik Barman, representatives from Asam Carban Employees and Workers’ Union, India Carban Employees and Workers’ Union, Builtworth Workers’ Union, Refinery Employees co-operative workers’ Union, and All Assam Construction Workers’ Union addressed the meeting. The meeting demanded immediate arrest of all culprits of Gangaram Koal murder and called upon the people to defeat Congress, the party that is defending the killers of Gangaram Koal. The meeting reiterated that struggle will continue until the culprits get punishment and resolved to hold high the sacrifice of the martyr comrade.


Uttarakhand Pony-Porters' Union

Uttarakhand Pony-Porters' Union in Dharchula is on agitation path and has given a 2-point memorandum to the DM for wage increase as well as fixing of load limit to be carried by them and their ponies.

The wages of the porters of Kailash-Mansarovar Yatra are officially decided by the District Magistrate. The Union has demanded a 20 percent increase in wages and to decrease the maximum load to be carried by them above the altitude of 14,000 ft upto 13 kg and by their ponies upto 35 kg limit.


CPI(ML) Election Campaign in Pithoragarh

CPI(ML) activists have covered hundreds of kilometers on foot during a Jan Davedaari Yatra (People's Assertion Campaign) in second week of March to reach out to thousands of households in distant hills of Pithoragarh.  While they made a lively dialogue on various issues party is raising in this election, it was quite disheartening to know that people in those villages still living under the trauma of devastating calamity happened last year as no relief and rehabilitation measures have reached to them significantly, even government officials and elected representatives have not cared to visit them. As roads and pathways are still unrepaired, people in dozens of villages have to spend thousands of rupees only on cartage of essential goods like foodgrains leading to unaffordable costs and hardships. The common salt can be purchased only by paying upto Rs. 70 for a kilogram! Then sorry plight of facilities like health, education, transport, and electricity can easily be understood.

The CPI(ML) has demanded that at least rations be supplied free of cost till the situation gets normal. With governmental and administrative apathy, the last year's calamity stands prolonged indefinitely for those villagers of Dharchula district. The plight of such people in other districts of the state is no better.

Continuing with the campaign, the third week of March was spent on general propaganda in Dharchula town as well as rural areas, where activists campaigned against candidates representing parties, especially Congress and BJP, fostering on corporate money and corruption and asked for contribution for the campaign of CPI(ML) Candidate Vijay Kumar. Many people came forward not only to contribute funds but also to support and campaign for the issues party is raising. The major issues being raised there, besides the Charter of Demands and Manifesto of party, are an effective relief and rehabilitation policy, to give at least 3 acres of land in terai area to the calamity displaced families, proper development package for these border areas and, most importantly, the dignity of the people. It is well known fact that two chief ministers, Vijay Bahuguna and Harish Rawat, have completely failed in rehabilitating the affected people irrespective of various false claims being made by them.

A block level cadre convention was held on March 30 in Dharchula which was addressed by comrade Vijay Kumar who visited this region during his election campaign of Almora-Pithoragarh parliamentay seat. This was also addressed by party's State Standing Committee member Purushottam Sharma who told that 56 big scams were reported during Congress govt. in state while this number was 65 for the BJP governments, and not a single case has been registered so far for any of the scams.

Party activists are engaged in similar campaigns in Garhwal and Nainital constituencies too involving a large number of youth and students.


Edited, published and printed by S. Bhattacharya for CPI(ML) Liberation from U-90, Shakarpur, Delhi-92; printed at Bol Publication, 
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