The Silence of the Lambs

protest nandigram

It has happened many times in the past and it seems destined to happen again – thanks to the silence of the left-liberal intelligentsia and the opportunism of the political class. Soon Nandigram may be forgotten by the political class and CPM will be ‘forgiven’ its misdemeanour – all for the sake of some supposedly ‘larger cause’.

After making some noises for public consumption, the Left Front partners have eventually decided, or so it seems, to make peace with the CPM. What else can they do if they have to remain in power? Remember the NDA allies – including the heroine of today, Mamata Banerjee and her Trinamool Congress, the TDP and others? Did they squeak, when Gujarat burned? AB Bardhan, the CPI General Secretary is of course, knows full well, which side his toast is buttered and is known to be inside his own party a CPM mole (he has been advocating the merger of the CPI into the CPM.) So we can let Bardhan be. But what are the other LF partners in West Bengal thinking? They can choose to sink with the CPM – as and when it happens (like the TMC and TDP sank with the NDA) or they can help the formation of an alternative platform with other smaller parties. The CPM, after all, was not always a big party. It became big in the process of presenting an alternative to decades of Congress rule.

protest nandigram2

Yes, no one can guarantee the smaller partners that they will or can be on the winning side – or become the winning side by becoming big. Indeed, if they continue to remain a pale shadow of the CPM, it is unlikely that they will ever be perceived as any kind of alternative. But they should know one thing: just as the NDA’s defeat in 2004 surprised everybody – from pollsters and psephologists to the contesting parties themselves – the future of Bengal too may not lie with the CPM. And yet, it will be truly tragic if, by default, the TMC were to win.

But equally eloquent is the silence of the bulk of the Left wing and liberal intelligentsia against this bizarre Narendra Modi-like turn of Left politics in the country. And this silence, we know, stems from the strange way in which the secular intelligentsia thinks of the CPM as some kind of a ‘bulwark’ against the fascist Right. The irony of the situation is that the state might soon go into the hands of its reliable ally – the TMC. Astute BJP politicians are already talking of reviving ties with the TMC. For intellectuals sharing common fronts and alliances with the CPM, this is the time for a serious rethink – if they can not bring about any pressure on it, then they would be participating in its cynical power game, all in the name of secularism.

6 thoughts on “The Silence of the Lambs”

  1. The state passing into the hands of the TMC? That’s a gross over-estimation. Nothing will happen as long there is someone consistently moronic as Mamata Banerjee. The problem is with the notion of the chariot, not who rides it. What about considering stateless societies? Well, here in West Bengal, as a journalist correctly pointed out, we’re already having one on the reverse gear— the state has withered away in Nandigram.[:P]

  2. I understand your anxieties, Aditya. I do not however understand your contradictions. Or perhaps I understand your contractions through your anxieties. Your write-up is so tellingly split. I wonder if it is a symptom of the times we are living with and living through. Nandigram is a colossal tragedy – ideologically, administratively and in terms of real politic. It has spawned existential crises for the likes of you and, if you allow, me.

  3. Mr Nigam, what is new in your accusations against CPI(M)? You left the party on similar charges and because of your post-mordern shift. For your ultra-left friends (alas! they are not many), CPI(M) has been a “fascist”, “social(!!) fascist” and “semi-fascist” party from the days of Charu Majumdar and Kanu Sanyal and Naxalbari. For your right-wing allies, CPI(M)and undevided Communist Party have always been considered as traitors and enemies of Bharatavarsha.

    For whatever reasons you may be against Mamta Banerji, but whatever you are saying is being said by her for years. Despite her histronics, people of Bengal have rallied themselves under the banner of the Left Front led by CPI(M).

    I think you are only using this issue to target CPI(M) because you had to leave the party years ago and you want to see it defeated. I would like to suggest you to refer to the speech of Prof Randhir Singh(Guru Tegbahadur Kalsa College, August 2007). I remind you that Prof Singh is not from the CPI(M).

    if you are really worried about Mamta Banerji’s politics, please tell your ultra friends not to ally with her against CPI(M).

    Anyway, I am excited about the proposed “alternative left”. It would be no less than a miracle to see hundreds of parties (with ‘ML’ tagged to each of them) under one leadership.

    One last thing, why your proposal is for Bengal only, not for the other states and the centre? Do you think other governments are governments of “alternative left”?

  4. Diffrence between MODI,BHUDHDEV,HITLER
    In Gujrat thousand goondas are arrestted by police, punished by court.
    in Bengal no one arrestted till date .WHY
    WHAT IS DIFFRENCE between BHUDHDEV and HITLER

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