Fact VS Fiction: Busting the lies about CPI(M)-BJP relationship in West Bengal– TEAM SI
In a report, few days earlier we had exposed the deliberate attempts by a section of the bourgeois media and the forces like TMC & BJP to suggest that some sort of ‘ground level understanding between CPI (M) and BJP has been arrived at in the run-up to the panchayat polls’. CPI (M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury and Secretary of the West Bengal state committee Surjya Kanta Mishra- both have categorically rejected and refuted these claims point-by-point. Yet, many among the liberals and some of the ‘friends of the left’ continue to peddle this bankrupt theory which we must admit is a quite good work of fiction. Hence, we at Socialist India are presenting a point-by-point rebuttal of the utter lies that continue to be peddled to substantiate the canards.
Fiction: “CPI (M) first denied any political understanding, but later the West Bengal state secretary in his interview informed about taking disciplinary action against 2 members. This means that the Party was lying throughout and it was only after criticism from different quarters that it chose to act”
Fact: The newspaper reports first in bangla daily khabar 365 din and later in the national media following a PTI feed (based on the report of khabar 365 din) had claimed that ‘CPI (M) and BJP had allied to defeat the ruling Trinamool Congress in the panchayat elections.’
Sumit De, the Nadia district secretary of CPI (M) who was quoted in the PTI feed as saying that:
“Yes, there have been adjustments at the grassroot level…In many seats as the villagers had wanted a one-to-one fight, we had to respect it and act accordingly. But it is not that there have been several rounds of discussions between parties and it is a formal seat sharing adjustment.”
He gave a detailed statement on the same day given the confusion which was sought to be created by twisting his statement. The operative part of his statement which is relevant to this debate is:
“News of adjustment in this poll between the CPI (M) and BJP in Nadia is totally false and misleading. We have no connections with those independents that have entered into adjustment with the BJP which is also spreading canards against our party.”
This was followed by public statement of Surjya Kanta Mishra yesterday, in which he not only elaborated the political line of CPI (M) in West Bengal (he said “Our slogan in West Bengal is: oust BJP-save the country and oust TMC-save Bengal.”; he also categorically said that “if any of the party member maintain any contact with BJP or the enemy camp, he or she will be expelled directly according to the party constitution”. He also said that: “Immediate arrangements have also been made against two of such members. We are keeping close eye on it and if any such information is received no compromise will be made on this regard. If any of the independent member supported by party found to maintain any political relation with BJP then party will immediately detach itself with that candidate, even if he/she wins the election.”
What does it mean? It means that CPI (M) has no confusion about its political line and its approach towards the BJP. It also means that the Party is serious about the concerns (quite valid concerns too!) of many of the anti-BJP intellectuals and hence, it is undertaking serious investigation into the matter. Far from being hypocritical (as the ‘friends of left’ claim), it is the clarity of CPI (M) which gives it the conviction to take action against those who have erred in implementing the Party’s political line.
Fiction: “The initial reports about seat adjustment in Nadia are indeed true, given the firefighting mode that CPI (M) is in”
Fact: The panchayat polls in West Bengal have witnessed unprecedented level of sabotage by the ruling TMC, reflected clearly in the number of uncontested seats won by the TMC. In Zila parishad, 203 seats have been rendered ‘uncontested’ out of a total 625. In Birbhum, TMC captured all 42 seats without contest. In Murshidabad, TMC ‘won’ in 48 seats without contest out of 70. In Bankura, TMC ‘won’ in 31 out of 46 seats. In South 24 Parganas they ‘won’ 28 out of 81 seats. In panchayat samiti level, TMC ‘won’ 3,059 out of 9,217. In gram panchayat level, out of 48,650 seats, the ruling party ‘won’ uncontested in 16,814. In zilla parishad, 25 per cent seats were rendered uncontested, in panchayat samiti, it is 33 per cent and in village level, it is 35 per cent. On an average 34 per cent of seats in the three tiers have been ‘won’ by the ruling party without contest.
Apart from the uncontested seats, there are many seats where only one or two opposition candidates left in the fray. It is hence that CPI (M) has said that “In the Panchayat elections where there are no candidates for Left Front or Left Front associate parties, we have appealed to the people that if any candidate contested politically against the Trinamool and the BJP, then we have to support them.”
This ‘appeal to vote for non-BJP, non-TMC candidates in places where no candidates of either CPI (M) or the LF are left in fray’ by no way means and surely by no stretch of imagination means ‘asking people to vote for either the BJP candidates or the independents with BJP connections’.
Fiction: “But what about the wall writings of independent candidates with symbols of both BJP and CPI (M) (and in some places with Congress too)?”
Fact: There are some seats where only independent candidates are left in fray. They are using the electoral symbols of all the opposition parties (which ever are applicable) in order to pool in all anti-TMC votes. These are guided by local level political dynamics at the level of village and by no intelligible means do this hint at any coordinated adjustment between the parties.
Fiction: “The PTI report and later the social media commentators are citing an incident wherein Roma Biswas, a MLA and CPI (M) state committee member participated in a joint ‘CPI (M)- BJP’ election rally in Nadia.”
Fact: The truth is that there has been no such election rally. Villagers were organizing a protest against the attack of the ruling party in a village. Being a local MLA Rama Biswas participated in the procession. Therefore participation of Rama Biswas has nothing to do with any election campaign or any electoral understanding with the enemy camp.
CPI (M) in West Bengal is very clear about its enemies. It is trying to advance in the tumultuous times- tumultuous not only for itself, but also for the state and society of Bengal- with courage, conviction and trust on the masses. It is high time that the ‘friends of left’ sitting in Kolkata and Delhi too decide who their enemy is and who is their friend?