A People’s Uprising Destroyed by The Maoists: Santosh Rana

[This is a guest post by SANTOSH RANA, one of the legendary leaders of the Naxalite revolt in 1967. Rana lead one of the important CPI(ML) groups that is active in the Jharkhand region. Here he writes of the Lalgarh and the Maoists. The post was written sometime ago. It gives a more nuanced picture of the different strands and phases of the movement, including the PCPA phase.]

Lalgarh lies in Jhargram sub-division of West Medinipur district of West Bengal. It is part of the Paschimanchal (western zone) of the state and is an extension of Chhotanagpur plateau. With its laterite soil of low water-retention capacity and Sal-Mahua forests, the area differs from the Bengal plains both geographically and culturally. It is indeed a part of the Jharkhand cultural region. Nearly 30 percent of the population are Scheduled Tribes (ST), 20 percent Scheduled Castes (SC) and the rest are communities like Kudmi-Mahatos, Telis, Kumbhars, Bagals, Rajus, Tamblis, Khandaits and others. The Kudmi-Mahatos are the biggest among the rest, who had been treated as ST till 1935 when they were de-scheduled. The Mahatos, Bagals and some other communities are actually semi-tribals who have been partly Sanskritised but still retain their tribal characteristics; now they are treated as Other Backward Classes (OBC). There are other OBC communities like Kumbhar, Tanti, Teli and others. But in West Bengal, benefits for OBCs started not only late but also unenthusiastically. Even today, there is very little reservation – only 7 percent, and that too in the government jobs only – given to the OBCs here. The OBCs are not given any reservation in higher education. The SC communities living in the region ( Bagdi, Dom, Jele, Mal and Bauri etc) are so backward that they are unable to get government or semi-government jobs through reservation. The tribals constitute 30 percent of the population Jhargram sub-division, but in local jobs, they are given only 6 percent reservations – the stipulated quota for the STs at the  state level.

As a consequence of all these factors, the people of this region have very little participation in government and semi-government jobs or in administration. Among the primary school teachers, there are only 6 percent STs in contrast to their  share of population (30 percent). This resulted in a situation where there are many primary schools with the students being Santhals and Mundas and the teachers being non-adivasis , who neither speak the language of the students nor have any sympathy for them. This creates a Language-Barrier between the teachers and the students. Apart from poverty, this is one of the reasons for occurrences of large drop-out rates among the tribals. Moreover, the STs are deprived of their admission quotas in Medical and Engineering colleges by the West Bengal government. Since 2001, the rules of admission have been manipulated in such a way that 90 percent of the ST quotas remain unfulfilled in medical education.

Due to the infertile nature of the soil and lack of irrigation agricultural production is poor and uncertain. Forests provided some means  of livlihood  traditionally but the colonial forest policy deprived the people of this source. Those policies were continued even after independence. Unemployment, poverty, illiteracy and hunger are everyday companions of the people. This zone has a high concentration of agricultural labourers. In West Bengal as a whole, agricultural labourers are 25 percent of the main workers but in this region, nearly half of the main workers are agricultural labourers. Concentration of  agricultural labourers and lack of employment forces the people to out-migrate seasonally to the low lands – the journey is called going to namal. There are also cases of migration to far-off places like Gujarat, Maharastra and M.P..

The Uprising

On the first week of November, the Chief Minister of W.B. had gone to Salboni to inaugurate an SEZ-Steel Plant of Jindals. The Maoist squads operating in the area blasted a land-mine on his way back. It missed the target but the state government ordered night-raids in villages of Binpur I Block, headquartered at Lalgarh. Since the colonial days, night-raids on tribal villages by police have been continuing to take the form of  attack on the people, unrestricted by any law. The police repression ignited a massive uprising of the people. The Santhals were the main force in the uprising but other communities like Mundas and Mahatos also joined. The Bharat Jakat Majhi Marwa ( All India Association of Majhis) was at the forefront of the struggle at the initial phase. Different factions of Jharkhand Party and the CPI(ML) also joined the movement and it spread to adjoining areas in Jhargram, Bankura and Purulia. It took the form of blockade of highways. For nearly a week, the entire region was blocked. At this stage, the leadership of  Majhi Marwa entered into a negotiation with the administration. The administration conceded some of their demands and they decided to withdraw the blockade. However, the younger sections refused to withdraw the blockade at this stage. A People’s Committee Against Police Atrocities (PCPA) was formed  and the blockade continued. At the time of its formation, there were people of different political opinions though it was dominated by Maoist cadres and smpathisers. In the first week of  December, the PCPA entered into a negotiation with the government and withdrew the blockade. The terms of negotiation were more or less the same as those negotiated by the Majhi Marwas.
The movement was so strong that the administration had to withdraw eight police camps from the sensitive areas by the middle of November. It was a great victory of the people.

Opportunities  Lost

After the withdrawal of police camps, the people were in a victorious mood and the movement was spreading to new areas. An opportunity was found where the awakened masses could be mobilized to establish organs of self-rule on the basis of a democratic principle. Just six months ago the Panchayat election was held in the area. The CPI(M) had lost Binpur I (Lalgarh) Panchayat Samiti and most of the Gram-Panchayats therein to different fractions of the Jharkhand Party. Now, there was an opportunity to activate the Panchayats and to exercise control over them through the Gram-Sansads ( a statutory body where every adult is a member ), to demand more financial and administrative powers in the hands of the Panchayats (like some power of control over police, administration of forests, village-level planning and their execution, NREGA and authority to issue BPL cards etc). Such measures would strengthen democracy at the village-level and prepare ground for the masses to demand self-rule and autonomy.

But the Maoists operating in the area had a different plan. They wanted to utilize the uprising to create an area where the rule of the Maoist Party and their squads would be established, an area where there would be no opposition, not even any differing voices. So they attempted to abolish all other party and social organizations from Binpur II (Belpahari) and Binpur I (Lalgarh) blocks. The differences with the Majhi Marwa was objectively not such as could not be resolved within a democratic framework. This is an association of “ Majhis” ( traditional village headmen among the Santhals). There are no landlords or even rich peasants among them. When the CPI(M) had tried to impose its one-party rule in nearby Jamboni few years back, the Majhis played an important role in mobilizing the masses in their fight for democracy. But the Maoists wanted to abolish all social and political organizations who would not abide by their diktat. The PCPA led by the Maoists issued a leaflet  announcing the trial of Nityananda Hembrom, the head of  Majhi Marwa in “people’s courts”. They did not stop at that. They issued orders that everybody living in their area of influence would have to join processions called by them. Some people under the influence of Majhi Marwas defied this order. Many of them were beaten and some were killed. The murder of Sudhir Mandi in the last week of November by the Maoists created a major split among the masses. Sri Sudhir Mandi was the Chairman of the Binpur II (Belpahari) Panchayat Samiti in 2003-08. He belonged to the Jharkhand Party. He was a poor peasant having one acre of Dahi ( high infertile land). Even after remaining Chairman of Panchayat Samiti for five years, he lived in his traditional mud-house with thatched roof. On the day of his murder, he had gone to the market to sell Sabui, a grass used for rope making. But to the Maoists, he was a class-enemy. A poor tribal is a class-enemy simply because he refused to carry out their order.

The Panchayat election was held in June 2008. Earlier Panchayats had failed because they functioned bureaucratically. A democratic functioning of the Panchayats was possible now with the supervision of the awakened masses. But the Maoists have no respect for democratic processes or democratically elected Panchayats. They beat up the Panchayat members and stopped their functioning.They set up “people’s committees” with people loyal to them. In many villages, this loyalty was extracted by coercion. To them, these  “people’s committees” were the organs of people’s rule in the area who had the power to impose any amount of tax and punishment by beating or murder. The “accused” had nowhere to go for a hearing or an appeal. An Anganwadi worker earning Rs 1500 per month had to pay a tax of Rs 500, a schoolteacher had to pay Rs 5000, a small brick-kiln owner Rs 25000 and like that.

For seven months, there was no police in the area. During the period before the  Loksabha election, the CPI(M) government was so frightened by the memories of Nandigram that they withdrew all administration in the area and left it to the PCPA. After the withdrawal of the state, the armed squads of the Maoists were the only armed forces in the area. Of course, there were CPI(M) squads in nearby areas. During the Loksabha election, the people in the CPI(M)-dominated were forced to vote for the CPI(M) while in the Maoist-dominated areas the people were not allowed to come to the polling booth. Thus there was “vote boycott” in nearly 75 booths with approximately 50000 voters. The CPI(M) won the Jhargram Loksabha seat  with a margin of nearly three lakh votes, the highest margin in the state. In the state as a whole, the CPI(M) lost heavily to Congress-Trinamul combine and was totally in doldrums. In many areas, the people living under the rule of CPI(M) thugs took this opportunity and raised the banner of revolt. It happened in Khejuri and many other areas in East Medinipur. In Lalgarh, Dharampur Gram Panchayat was under the control of the CPI(M). During the Panchayat election, no other political party was allowed to set up a candidate. Even after the November uprising, this area was under the control of the CPI(M). The CPI(M) was actually using Dharampur as a base to attack people’s movements. Anuj Pandey, the notorious leader of CPI(M)  in Dharampur enjoyed the protection of his armed squads and state police. After the Loksabha election, there was a popular revolt in Dharampur which was aided by the Maoist squads. Anuj Pandey fled to Medinipur town and his house was burnt and smashed. After this success, the Maoists openly held public meetings and press conferences in Lalgarh announcing the area as a liberated zone. Making the PCPA irrelevant, they announced that they were leading the whole movement. They would mobilize thousands of tribals, men and women to resist police, they announced.

The Indian state was waiting for this opportunity. Mr Buddhadeb Bhattacharya, the Chief Minister of West Bengal abandoned all his federal and Left pretensions and prayed to Chidambaram to send central forces. The Indian state readily agreed with the condition that the Maoist Party would be banned. The Chief Minister of West Bengal accepted the condition (though some Left Front partners objected) and  center-state joint operation started in Lalgarh.

In the face of this joint operation, the Maoists tried their best to mobilize the people for a mass resistance. It was expected by many well-wishers that the tribal men and women with their traditional bows and arrows would resist the police. It was being claimed that the paramilitary forces would have to proceed to Lalgarh over mountains of corpses. But nothing like that happened. On the first day, the Maoists mobilized some people for a mass resistance. The police fired some tear-gas shells and lathicharged  to remove the blockade. Subsequently, it reached Kantapahari, the capital of Maoist rule in Lalgarh for six months without any mass resistance. The squads burst some landmines here and there but they were no effective deterrent to paramilitary forces.
Now the paramilitary forces are setting up camps in Lalgarh and Belpahari. The state government is sending high-level committees to promote “development” of Lalgarh. How far the paramilitary forces will get success in “sanitizing” the area or the government in promoting development is to be observed. But one thing is certain. The uprising has been suppressed. The state had to withdraw in November 2008. In June 2009, it reasserted itself. This is a defeat for the uprising.
Whether the defeat is temporary and how again the people will rise in mass movements depends on many factors. But people interested in revolutionary transformation of our society must analyse the movement and draw proper lessons.
The movement was powerful enough to force the state to withdraw in November 2008 because (i) all the democratic forces in the region participated in the movement and a very strong people’s unity was forged, and, (ii) there was division in the enemy camp with the contradiction between the center and state and between Trinamul and CPI(M) playing their role.

By March, 2009, the situation was fast changing. The coercion on the people for “collection” and forcible participation in processions, suppression of all opposition by beating, garlanding with shoes and killing were destroying the democratic content of the movement. The uprising was losing its internal strength. Then the squads resorted to more coercion and terror to show their “support” to the outside world. It reached its peak during the Loksabha election, when the squads with guns went from village to village telling the people that they would be punished if they would go to the polling booths to vote. On the polling day, a land-mine was blasted to kill some polling personnel. All these activities further alienated the masses.
When the joint armed forces started campaign, only the advanced sections and cadres were ready for some resistance with land-mines. The people decided to flee their villages and take shelter in surrounding villages of Jhargram and Bankura. While the people’s democratic unity was disrupted, the ruling classes bridged some of their differences. The Central Government offered all help to the State Government in its fight against the “Maoists”

Apart from tactical mistakes and mistakes on the question of united front, the Maoists hold a grossly wrong understanding of the nature of people’s power. They hold that absolute power in the hands of their party is equivalent to people’s power. They want a system where there will be no election on the basis of universal suffrage and no opposition party. “People’s  Committees” would be formed with people loyal to them  and they would decide everything. They tried to use the favourable situation  in Lalgarh to start an experiment on political power in a miniature scale. So they imposed  their “144” against all other political and social organizations in the area of their control. They did not allow an election campaign vehicle of the CPI(ML)-New Democracy, with a red flag hoisted on it,  to pass through the area. The car was allowed to leave only after the red flag was pulled down. Same was the fate of a vehicle carrying a flag of Jharkhand Party (Aditya).

In Lalgarh, the people’s uprising combined with the isolation of the CPI(M) forced the state to withdraw for some six months and the Maoists got an opportunity to practice what they understand as people’s rule. It is to be noted that they did not raise any class-issue or the issue of  people’s right over forests. They simply identified activists and supporters of other political parties as  “class enemies” and killed them. These are the basic reasons for the failure of the movement.
The people of Lalgarh and the whole of Paschimanchal will certainly learn from the experiences of the uprising and rebuild their struggle for “Self Rule” , an aspiration which expressed itself during the Jharkhand movement  and more explicitly during the November uprising. This will be a Self Rule where organs of political power will be elected by the people on the basis of universal suffrage and where these organs will seize all economic and political powers. They will certainly smash the limitations imposed by bourgeois dictatorship on the democratic aspirations of the people. But neither the people of Lalgarh nor the people of India will ever accept the one-party rule of any political party.

July  11,  2009

6 thoughts on “A People’s Uprising Destroyed by The Maoists: Santosh Rana”

  1. संतोष राणा के आलेख में बड़े ही वि‍स्‍तार और पारदर्शिता के साथ लालगढ़ आन्‍दोलन के बारे में वि‍श्‍लेषण कि‍या गया है ।यह वि‍श्‍लेषण जि‍स चीज पर रोशनी डालता है वह है लालगढ़ आन्‍दोलन की असफलता। क्‍या लालगढ़ में कोई आंदोलन चल रहा था ? लालगढ़ में कोई आंदोलन नहीं चल रहा था,सालबनी की बारूदी सुरंग वि‍स्‍फोट की घटना के बाद जि‍स तरह का बर्बर व्‍यवहार पुलि‍स ने कि‍या था उसके लि‍ए राज्‍य प्रशासन ने यदि‍ स्‍थानीय लोगों की मांगों को मान लि‍या होता तो यह समस्‍या उसी दि‍न खत्‍म हो जाती। राज्‍य सरकार ने अपनी दीर्घकालि‍क योजना के तहत पुलि‍स कैंप हटाने का फैसला लि‍या था, जनता का यदि‍ इलाके में कोई आंदोलन रहा होता तो वि‍गत बीस सालों से नि‍कम्‍मे लोग पंचायतों से लेकर लोकसभा तक चुनाव नहीं जीत पाते,इस इलाके में माकपा का वि‍गत बीस सालों से राजनीति‍क वर्चस्‍व नहीं है बल्‍कि‍ अन्‍य दलों का है। लालगढ़ में माओवादि‍यों ने जो हिंसाचार कि‍या है,जनता को उत्‍पीड़ि‍त कि‍या है,सजाएं दी हैं,माकपा और अन्‍य दलों के कार्यकर्त्‍ताओं की हत्‍याएं की हैं, उन्‍हें लेकर क्‍या कानूनी और राजनीति‍क कदम उठाए जाने चाहि‍ए ? दूसरी बात, आन्‍दोलन और संगठन के दम पर ‘इलाका दखल’ की राजनीति‍ मूलत: फासीवादी राजनीति‍ है, दुर्भाग्‍य यह है कि‍ माकपा से लेकर माओवादि‍यों तक,तृणमूल कांग्रेस से लेकर कांग्रेस तक सभी दल अपने- अपने तरीके से समय-समय पर इसका दुरूपयोग करते रहे हैं। माओवादी संगठनों के पूर्वज ‘इलाका दखल’ के जनक हैं ,बाकी तो उनके अनुयायी मात्र हैं। समस्‍या यह है क्‍या भारत में लोकतंत्र और लोकतांत्रि‍क संस्‍थाओं को बंद करा दें अथवा उन्‍हें सुचारू रूप से काम करने दें ? माओवादि‍यों के जो गि‍रोह ‘इलाका दखल’ अभि‍यान में लगे हैं उनके बयान कि‍तने ही क्रांति‍कारी हों, वे मूलत: लोकतंत्र वि‍रोधी हैं और राजनीति‍क और सामाजि‍क अपराधी की कोटि‍ में रखे जाने योग्‍य हैं। नागरि‍कों के जीवन , संपत्‍ति‍, वातावरण,रहन-सहन, स्‍वतंत्रताओं के हनन को ‘जनउभार’ कहना सही नहीं है। माओवादि‍यों की कार्यशैली मूलत: माफि‍या सरदारों से जैसी होती है,उसमें ‘क्रांति‍’ ‘जनउभार’ और ‘सामाजि‍क परि‍वर्तन’ के तर्क खोजना एकसि‍रे से गलत है। ‘क्रांति‍कारी’ भय पैदा करके,दमन करके,दंडि‍त करके यदि‍ वर्चस्‍व स्‍थापि‍त करना चाहेंगे तो बुर्जुआ राज्‍य उन्‍हें चैन की नींद सोने नहीं देगा चाहे उसके लि‍ए जो भी कीमत अदा करनी पड़े। हमें यह मानना पडे़गा कि‍ भारत में लोकतंत्र की पुख्‍ता बुनि‍याद है और उसमें सबके लि‍ए जगह है आप राजनीति‍ करें,संगठि‍त करें,जनता के लि‍ए संघर्ष करें और लोकतंत्र बनाए रखें, भारतीय लोकतंत्र में प्रति‍वाद और वि‍कल्‍प राजनीति‍ के लि‍ए पर्याप्‍त जगह है।माओवाद के भारतीय संस्‍करण स्‍वभावत: भारतीय मनोदशा के वि‍परीत हैं।

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    1. @ Shanta….
      Though your depthless whimsical comment doesn’t call for a reply But still going by your comments in other blogs I feel its necessary to throw some light over your face.

      Which socio-economic group do you belong to?
      Which socio-economic group does your friends belong to?
      Which mainstream political party do you belong or pretend to belong?
      Which newspaper do you read?
      I bet you must have felt proud to be an indian when we bought over 1400cr+ submarine?

      Facts:
      The World Bank and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) released separate reports that made the denizens of India Inc most indignant. The World Bank report upped its benchmark of extreme poverty by 25 cents from $1 per person a day to $1.25 per person a day. The ADB announced an even higher poverty benchmark of $1.35 per person a day. Media commentaries on these reports provide a glimpse of how outraged some people in Emerging India are about the claims that 42% to 55% of Indians, depending on the benchmark used, live in extreme poverty. (data :2005)

      Where do we stand then?
      Are we aiming at a cold war against all our neighbours?

      Your sense of Patriotism , I am afraid , is nothing but a vulgar sense of Bourgeiose contemplation coupled with a deep sense of insecurity.

      My friend what is the meaning of a country without right redessal of grievances from all sections of society, without a clearcut intention of Justice for all.

      The division is so adverse and huge now that you and me cannot feel it while taking a ride in a City Volvo bus.

      —————————–
      Lastly to say in direct opposition to your comments :
      The people who are in favour of exterminating the grievances of the poor fellow countrymen , must die- History says.

      —————————–
      One last advise : This blog is not like Orkut and Facebook where Dumbs like you have a free world to yourself , STAY AWAY

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  2. भारतीय बुद्धि‍जीवी ज्‍यादातर समय सत्‍ता के एजेण्‍डे पर काम करता है। उस एजेण्‍डे के बाहर जाकर सोचता नहीं है। वैकल्‍पि‍क एजेण्‍डे पर सोचता नहीं है।आम जनता के हि‍त के हि‍त के एजेण्‍डे पर वहां तक जाता है जहां तक सत्‍ता जाती है। वह सत्‍ता के हि‍तों के नजरि‍ए से जनता के हि‍तों को परि‍भाषि‍त करता है। बुद्धि‍जीवीवर्ग में दूसरी कोटि‍ में ऐसे लोग आते हैं जो दलीय प्रति‍बद्धता में बंधे हैं। तीसरी कोटि‍ ऐसे बुद्धि‍जीवि‍यों की है जो मृत वि‍षयों पर नि‍रंतर बोलते और लि‍खते हैं। हमेशा परंपरा की गोद में ही बैठे रहते हैं। बुद्धि‍जीवि‍यों की इन तीनों कोटि‍यों से भि‍न्‍न ऐसे भी बुद्धि‍जीवी हैं जो हमेशा वि‍कल्‍प की तलाश में रहते हैं,जनता के हि‍तों पर सत्‍ता,दल और जड़ मानसि‍कता की कैद से परे जाकर सर्जनात्‍मक हस्‍तक्षेप करते हैं। ले‍कि‍न इन चारों ही कोटि‍ के बुद्धि‍जीवि‍यों में एक वि‍लक्षण साम्‍य नजर आ रहा है ,ये पश्‍चि‍म बंगाल के गांवों में चल रहे हिंसाचार के बारे में अपने -अपने कारणों से चुप हैं। अथवा इस हिंसा को एकहरे रंग में देख रहे हैं। एकहरे रंग में हिंसा को देखने के कारण सबसे ज्‍यादा क्षति‍ग्रस्‍त आम आदमी हो रहा है, गांव के गरीब हो रहे हैं, आदि‍वासी हो रहे हैं। गांव के गरीब का सत्‍य बुद्धि‍जीवी के नजरि‍ए,आस्‍था,प्रति‍बद्धता और दलीय वि‍चारधारा से कहीं बड़ा होता है। बुद्धि‍जीवी के नाते हम सि‍र्फ अपने ही रंग में रंगे रहेंगे और एक ही रंगत और एक ही वि‍चारधारा के चश्‍मे से गांव के यथार्थ को देखेंगे तो हमें गांव का गरीब नजर नहीं आएगा। लोकसभा चुनाव के बाद पश्‍चि‍म बंगाल में जो हिंसाचार चल रहा है उसके कारण सैंकड़ों नि‍र्दोष लोग मारे गए हैं। हजारों बेघर हुए हैं, सैंकड़ों शरणार्थी की तरह इधर उधर पडे हैं। आखि‍रकार हमारे बुद्धि‍जीवी चुप क्‍यों हैं? अपराधी राजनीति‍क गि‍रोहों ,खासकर तथाकथि‍त माओवादी अपराधी गि‍रोहों के हमलों से प्रति‍दि‍न साधारण गरीब मारा जा रहा है। लोकसभा चुनाव के बाद अकेले लालगढ इलाके में अब तक 100 से ज्‍यादा गरीब लोगों को सरेआम माओवादि‍यों ने कत्‍ल कि‍या है और यह सब देखने के बावजूद भी यदि‍ हमारे बुद्धि‍जीवी चुप हैं,खासकर पश्‍चि‍म बंगाल के बुद्धि‍जीवी चुप हैं तो हमें सोचना होगा आखि‍रकार बुद्धि‍जीवी की ऐसी नपुंसक कौम कैसे तैयार हुई ? आज इंटरनेट के दौर में भारत के प्रत्‍येक कोने में खबरें सहज रूप में उपलब्‍ध हैं,इसके बावजूद कि‍सी भी कोने से पश्‍चि‍म बंगाल में हो रहे गरीबों के कत्‍लेआम का कहीं से भी बडा प्रति‍वाद बुद्धि‍जीवि‍यों की ओर से नहीं हुआ है। कलकत्‍ते की सडकें भी शांत पडी हैं।
    सवाल उठता है हमारा बुद्धि‍जीवी गांव के सत्‍य से डरता क्‍यों है ? वह नि‍र्भय होकर सत्‍य पर अपने भावों को व्‍यक्‍त क्‍यों नहीं करता। गांव के गरीबों के मानवाधि‍कार हनन और नृशंस हत्‍याकांडों पर हमारी सत्‍ता और कलमघि‍स्‍सु हि‍न्‍दी के तथाकथि‍त वीर पत्रकार चुप क्‍यों हैं ? हि‍न्‍दी क्षेत्र में सक्रि‍य जनवादी लेखक संघ,प्रगति‍शील लेखक संघ,जनवादी सांस्‍कृति‍क मंच आदि‍ संगठनों को पश्‍चि‍म बंगाल में माओवादी अपराधी गि‍रोहों द्वारा कि‍या जा रहा गरीबों का कत्‍लेआम वि‍चलि‍त क्‍यों नहीं कर रहा ? एक जमाना था जब बेलछी में हरि‍जन हत्‍याकांड होने पर नागार्जुन ने प्रति‍वाद में शानदार रचना लि‍खी थी आज कहीं से भी पश्‍चि‍म बंगाल के आदि‍वासि‍यो,गरीबों,दलि‍तों की हत्‍या के खि‍लाफ कोई गुस्‍सा नजर नहीं आरहा,बेलछी हत्‍याकांड से श्रीमती इंदि‍रागांधी वि‍चलि‍त हुई थीं और बेलछी भी गयी थीं किंतु लालगढ में न तो मुख्‍यमंत्री बुद्धदेव पहुंचे हैं और न देश का प्रधानमंत्री ही इन गरीबों के आंसू पोंछने के लि‍ए समय नि‍काल पाया है, दूसरी ओर हि‍न्‍दी के बुद्धजीवी हाथ पर हाथ धरे कि‍सी आपातकाल का इंतजार कर रहे हैं और फि‍र शायद वे महान रचना करें ? पश्‍चि‍म बंगाल में हिंसा के लि‍ए कौन जि‍म्‍मेदार है इसके वि‍वाद में जाए बि‍ना हमें पश्‍चि‍म बंगाल में नि‍र्दोष ग्रामीणों ,दलि‍तोंऔर आदि‍वासि‍यों की नृशंस हत्‍या के खि‍लाफ आवाज बुलंद करनी चाहि‍ए। लेखक और बुद्धि‍जीवी शांति‍ और सत्‍य की रक्षा के लि‍ए प्रति‍बद्ध होते हैं। आज शांति‍ और सत्‍य दोनों ही दांव पर लगे हैं। कुछ अपराधी गि‍रोह हिंसा का ताण्‍डव चलाकर गरीबों के कत्‍ल में व्‍यस्‍त हैं, प्रति‍दि‍न गरीबों का वेवजह कत्‍ल कर रहे हैं। आश्‍चर्य की बात है जो लोग नंदीग्राम में राज्‍य पुलि‍स के द्वारा की गई गोलीबारी पर चीख पुकार कर रहे थे आज वे महाश्‍वेता देवी और उनके समानधर्मा लालगढ में अब तक माओवादि‍यों के हाथों कत्‍ल कि‍ए गए 100 गरीबों की हत्‍या पर एकदम चुप हैं। महाश्‍वेता देवी की चुप्‍पी खतरनाक है, यह चुप्‍पी टूटनी चाहि‍ए।उन्‍हें लालगढ के हत्‍यारों के खि‍लाफ भी शांति‍ और सत्‍य की रक्षा का बि‍गुल बजाना चाहि‍ए। महाश्‍वेता की चुप्‍पी हमें तकनीफ देती है। वे जब बोलती हैं तो गरीबों को बल मि‍लता है। आज पश्‍चि‍म बंगाल खासकर लालगढ के गरीब परि‍वार महाश्‍वेता देवी की ओर आशाभरी नजरों से देख रहे हैं। वे अपने समानधर्माओं के साथ लालगढ में चल रहे कत्‍लेआम की निंदा करें। प्रति‍वाद संगठि‍त करें। सडकों पर उतरें।महाश्‍वेता कि‍सी एक की नहीं हैं वे गरीबों और आदि‍वासि‍यों की हैं। उनकी आवाज हैं। उन्‍हें बोलना चाहि‍ए। उन्‍हें शांति‍ के लि‍ए,गरीबों का कत्‍लेआम रोकने के लि‍ए सडकों पर आना चाहि‍ए। उनकी चुप्‍पी हमें तकलीफ दे रही है। हमें हि‍न्‍दी के प्रग‍ति‍शील दि‍ग्‍गजों की भी चुप्‍पी तकलीफ दे रही है। हम चाहते हैं नामवर सिंह,प्रभाष जोशी,राजेन्‍द्र यादव,अशोक बाजपेयी ,मैनेजर पांडेय,नि‍त्‍यानंद ति‍वारी,मुरलीमनोहर प्रसाद सिंह जैसे प्रगति‍शील लेखक आगे आएं और लालगढ में मच रहे कत्‍लेआम का सामूहि‍क प्रति‍वाद संगठि‍त करें। अगर ये लोग आज नहीं बोलेंगे तो कब बोलेंगे ? हमारा सभी नेट लेखकों से अनुरोध है अपने अपने ब्‍लाग पर लालगढ में चल रहे कत्‍लेआम पर लि‍खें, लेखकों और बुद्धि‍जीवि‍यों की ज्‍यादा से राय एकत्रि‍त करके प्रकाशि‍त करें। आज लालगढ के गरीब हमें शांति‍ के पक्ष में और कत्‍लेआम की राजनीति‍ के वि‍रोध में खडे होने के लि‍ए पुकार रहे हैं,हम चुप न बैठें,बोलें और लोगों को बोलने के लि‍ए उदबुद्ध करें।

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