Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Alternative forces gain momentum in Orissa

CPI (M) is contesting in Sundergarh (ST) parliamentary constituency in Orissa. Ms. Salomy Minz is the candidate of CPI (M) supported by BJD, CPI and NCP. Salomy Minz is a leader of the state insurance employees union. She resigned from her job in LIC to contest the election.

Sundergarh parliamentary constituency has seven assembly constituencies falling under it. They are Rourkela, Raghunathpally, Biramitrapur, Bonai, Rajagangpur, Sundergarh and Talasara. It is a tribal dominated constituency. Christians also have sizeable presence in the constituency.

During the last five years, the CPI (M) has waged numerous struggles against the anti-people policies of the government and the communal activities of the Sangh Parivar. Party has led struggles for proper implementation of NREGA in the state. Party has been steadfast in demanding that tribal gets their due rights on forestland. It has organized rallies, dharnas, and demonstrations on issues like price rise, PDS, employment. It has waged struggles demanding land to the landless peasants. Party has launched massive campaign throughout the state against communal carnage by Sangh activists. Several local issues such as access to drinking water, availability of electricity, protection of minorities, increase in the rate of royalty of minerals/mining products were also raised by organizing roadblocks and demonstration. All theses issues are also part of election campaign.

BJD-BJP alliance ruled the state for nine years. BJP tried to utilize the situation to foment communal violence in the state. BJD was a part of BJP led NDA at the national level. Following the murder of Laxmananand Saraswati by Maoists, the Sangh Parivar unleashed a communal violence in the area and blamed Christians for the murder. They wanted to polarize the people on communal lines and get political advantage of the situation. BJD understood the danger and slowly distanced itself from BJP and their communal programs. Finally, following the stalemate during the seat distribution talks between the BJD and BJP, BJP went to the Governor and demanded President’s rule in Orissa. At present BJD, CPI (M), CPI and NCP are having full seat adjustments for both parliamentary and assembly elections. They have declared to fight unitedly against the Congress and BJP and work for strengthening non-Congress, non-BJP, left secular forces. A grand rally was organized in Bhubneshwar on 3 April where national leaders of the CPI (M), CPI, BJD, NCP addressed people.

CPI (M) is also contesting four assembly constituencies in the ensuing elections. Preparations for the elections are on. Party committee meetings at constituency level have been held. Both committees are being formed. Leaders of various mass organizations have started campaigning among their respective mass base. Village/tehsil/constituency levels public meetings are being organized. A new wave to strengthen the third alternative can be seen among the masses.

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