CPI(M) West Bengal state committee thoroughly reviewed the election results in two day meeting on 2nd- 3rd. June. CPI(M) General Secretary Prakas Karat, along with Polit Bureau members Sitaram Yechury, Manik Sarkar were present in the meeting.
The preliminary review report and the discussion on it identified the rise of BJP to power and its strengthened support in states including West Bengal is a dangerous turn of politics. Along with them, TMC has gained seats in West Bengal. The strengthening of two rightist political forces and weakening of the Left has imposed serious dangers in front of democratic movement and the working people.
Review report and the discussions have identified both political and organizational reasons of Left Front’s unexpected setback. BJP has taken advantage of intense anti-Congress discontent among people. The national situation has affected the scenario in Bengal too and the idea of alternatives other than BJP did not find ground. There was weakness in combating BJP’s aggressive campaign. BJP even took advantage of discontent against TMC government in the state. There were lapses in the election organization too. The election organization was not satisfactorily active in many areas.
The review also took into account the impact of large scale terror in the state. In many areas, election campaign could not be conducted due to intense terror. On the day of elections large scale rigging and booth capturing took place. The Election Commission failed miserably to facilitate free, fair elections. These were reflected in vote share. In many constituencies, peoples’ verdict was not reflected in the result. The state committee decided to thoroughly examine in an objective manner the difference of vote share between Left Front and TMC and determine the impact of political reasons and rigging behind that.
After the discussion, Prakash Karat, in his address, said that major political change has occurred in the country with BJP getting absolute majority in its own. BJP, which is backed by RSS has received unstinted support of the big bourgeoisie. On the other hand CPI(M) and the Lefts have suffered throughout the country except Tripura. Party has to take appropriate tactics to face this unprecedented situation.
Karat said that CC would review the electoral tactical line and all related questions. The impact of BJP’s campaign, though apprehended, could not be effectively combated even in states like West Bengal. TMC’s three year rule in Bengal has provided a fertile ground for the communal forces. This will pose a serious danger in the future. With the weakening of the Left and weakness in class movements, identity politics has grown. Party has to adopt proper political line to meet the challenge.
Karat said, Party and the Left movement in Bengal are facing fascistic method of terror. Elementary democratic rights are being attacked. It is an urgent task of the entire Party and the leadership to stand by the people who are being attacked. It is an urgent task to defend and protect Party’s activists and supporters. Party will take up this attack on democracy in West Bengal throughout the country in a big way.
Karat said, we have to take up peoples’ issues and develop class and mass movements even in such an adverse situation. We should develop independent activities of class and mass organizations.
Karat said that the Party will patiently listen to and grasp criticism, suggestions, and opinions of the Party members, supporters and sympathizers. We will critically process the political and organizational issues and take all necessary measures within the framework of the Party.
Summing up the discussion, Biman Basu said that this election was fought in an entirely different situation from the past. We have to work harder to overcome the weaknesses identified in the election struggle and in Party organization. Sustained ideological campaign against the communal forces should be conducted. To combat this danger, working class and peasants’ movements have to be strengthened. One of the major areas of priority will be developing the work style of the mass organizations. State Party will take up this matter urgently. Party and leaders of all levels will steadfastly stand by the victims of terror. Party will take more initiatives to support them legally. Party will collect funds to support those who have become homeless in terror.
Meanwhile, Left Front has decided to submit deputation to the Chief Minister on 9th June demanding immediate halt of violence in the districts. On 25th June , conventions will be organized on the issue of protecting democracy commemorating the anniversary of declaration of internal emergency. On 30th June, Hul day will be observed throughout the state. On 8th July, the birth centenary celebration of Comrade Jyoti Basu will be observed throughout the state