Roadblocks to the struggle of the working class and peasantry in developing the alternative
The struggle of workers, peasants, working people, women, students and other broad sections of the toiling masses is growing in scope and intensity. Working masses are actively seeking an alternative to the course of globalisation through liberalisation and privatisation. Important sections of the middle strata are breaking out of the illusions fostered by the bourgeoisie and imperialism about the "benefits" of the globalisation program. Various political forces are defining and redefining their stands on this important question. This is an opportune moment for the workers, peasants and working people to identify and deal with the main roadblocks to victory in the struggle.
The Indian big bourgeoisie and imperialism is clearly the force that is pushing through the anti-worker, anti-peasant and anti-national program of globalisation through liberalisation and privatisation, or what is commonly referred to in the movement as LPG. The spokespersons of the bourgeoisie and imperialism repeatedly call for "harsh measures" and decry any hesitation on the part of any government as "bowing to populism". In other words, if a government attacks livelihood and rights of workers and peasants and middle strata, the women and youth and dalit and tribal people, it is "doing a good job" as far as the big bourgeoisie and imperialism is concerned. Using the control of the print and electronic media, it is made out that what is good for the capitalists and imperialists is what is good for the country and that the workers, peasants, women and youth and the middle strata who are opposing the anti-social offensive are "opposing progress". It is made out there is no alternative to the anti-social offensive.
The first task facing all those opposing the anti-social offensive is to believe that there is an alternative. We are calling the present offensive of imperialism and the big bourgeoisie as an ant-social offensive precisely because it is targeted at society as a whole, and constitutes all round retrogression on all that society has achieved through struggle and sacrifice in the twentieth century. The very act of participating in the working out of the alternative will at the same time usher in the beginning of the defeat of the bourgeoisie and imperialism.
Today, many political forces are talking about an alternative, including the CPIM. There is a talk in the working class and peoples movement about a "common minimum program". Various forces are putting forth their vision of the alternative. The most crucial question facing all the victims of the anti-social offensive, including workers and peasants, women and youth, working people from different sectors of economy and the middle strata, the tribal peoples, the dalits, the religious minorities, the oppressed nations and nationalities is this—what is a real alternative and what is the same old wine in a new bottle? It is also this—what will unite all the exploited and oppressed around one single program, and what will divide the exploited and oppressed people and line them up behind different sections of the bourgeoisie and imperialism?
What is the core of the alternative program on which workers and peasants, women and youth, all those seeking a real end to this anti-social offensive cannot afford to compromise on? Firstly, that workers, peasants, women and youth are the masters of India—it is they who constitute India. Secondly to recognise that various political parties as well as the Indian political system and political process have defrauded the workers and peasants and deprived them of political power. Thirdly, that central to any real alternative is that workers and peasants must have political power. Fourthly, this political power is only a means to ensure that the Indian economy is oriented in a socialist direction to ensure the well-being of the vast majority. This needs to be widely discussed in the movement and the contours of the program fleshed out.
In the workers and peasants movement in India, as well as in the communist movement, there are influential forces who are ever ready to adjust the program of the working class and peasantry to suit the bourgeoisie. In the name of "fight against corruption", "immediate danger", "lack of forces", "defending national unity and territorial integrity", "fighting communal forces" and such other slogans, what has been repeatedly put forth in the past decade is a program of the bourgeoisie. It is the bourgeoisie and its political system which is the fountain-head of corruption. It is the rule of the bourgeoisie which constitutes the immediate and long term threat to everything that workers and peasants stand for. It is the bourgeoisie whose rule is a threat to Indian unity and which has used the slogan of threat to national unity and territorial integrity to safeguard its rule. It is the reactionary rule of the bourgeoisie which has perfected communalism and communal violence as a weapon to defend its rule and divide, disorient and divert the people. It is the bourgeoisie’s policy of dispensing privileges and depriving people of their rights that divides the toiling masses, and creates a situation wherein it seems that the majority of the population, the toiling masses have a "lack of forces" while the minority, the big capitalists, has abundant forces.
The program of the workers and peasants must target the big bourgeoisie and imperialism. Adjusting the program to make it acceptable to the bourgeoisie is not acceptable to the working masses. These days, the bourgeoisie is trying to split the polity along the line of "secularists" and "communalists". Some in the communist and workers movement are falling easy prey to this tactics. Workers and peasants, based on their own life experience, must reject this.
This is but just the beginning of the discussion on the roadblocks in front of the workers and peasants, women and youth and the struggle to defeat the anti-social offensive. As the activists in the communist and workers and pesants movement take up this discussion in right earnest and critically analyse the different "alternatives" for what they are worth, they will come to the conclusion established by science that just as the bourgeoisie has only one common program at this time (or at any other time), the working class and peasantry have only one real alternative program at this time. Everything else is illusions. The time has come to shatter these illusions. Then, and only then can we make a real advance.