For the Left,the election results in France and Greece reflected the natural anger of the people. The global capitalist economic crisis imposed severe hardship on the people,it argues. But Indian communists feel that the results have not thrown up a political alternative to capitalism.
An editorial in CPM weekly Peoples Democracy criticises the capitalist order in light of the results. It says that 10 European countries have officially slipped into recession and that Nicolas Sarkozy is the ninth head of government in Europe to have lost an election. The unsustainability of international finance capital-led imperialist globalisation is pushing global capitalism into a cycle of serious crises, it notes.
Last few years had seen widespread protests against the manner in which global capitalism and international finance capital was seeking ways out of the crisis. Every effort they made in this direction had laid their seeds for a fresh crisis which had graver consequences on peoples livelihood. The latest efforts to overcome the crisis by imposing austerity measures has worsened the situation, it says.
An article by Sitaram Yechury argues that what is unfolding is a systemic crisis of capitalism and no lasting solutions can be found within the system…What is needed is a strong political force that can bring about a revolutionary replacement of the capitalist system by socialism. These election results,however,have not thrown up such a political alternative.
IRAN OIL CUTBACK
In another article,CPM General Secretary Prakash Karat argues that the main purpose of the recent visit made by Hillary Clinton was to ensure that New Delhi falls in line with the US plan to choke off Iranian oil supplies to India and other countries.
He says that the US has been putting pressure on India for the last two years to cut back on its oil purchases from Iran. The relentless US pressure led to the government directing the oil companies that are importing Iranian oil to reduce their oil intake. As a result,the Mangalore Refineries and the Hindustan Petroleum Company have reduced their orders. The Essar company has also cut back their orders, he says.
In 2008-09,India imported 21.8 million tonnes of oil from Iran. This came down to 18.5 million tonnes in 2010-11. In 2011-12,this has come down to around 14 million tonnes,which is a drop of 20 per cent from the previous year, he adds.
He says that Hillary Clinton had told a US Congressional committee in March that India was responding to demands to cut back on oil purchases from Iran. The current episode is a sad commentary on the manner in which the Manmohan Singh government sacrifices the vital interests of the country at the altar of the Indo-US strategic alliance, he concludes.
NEW ENTRANT IN KERALA
The CPI magazine New Age carried a report on the formation of a political outfit by backward Hindu communities in Kerala,led by Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana (SNDP) Yogam,a powerful organisation of the Ezhava community.
The report argues that the message emanating from the formation of the outfit,Kerala Peoples Front,was that caste is becoming more important in Kerala politics. At the same time,it notes that the formation of such an outfit amounts to a stinging rebuff of the principal political fronts monopolising Keralas political space the Congress-led United Democratic Front and the CPM-led Left Democratic Front.
The development must worry the CPM the most as Ezhavas constitute the mainstay of the party. And any attempt by the community to float a political party to espouse the causes dear to the Ezhavas is bound to severely dent the support base of the CPM, the article says.
The report says that the politics of appeasement being practiced by the ruling Congress-led coalition has encouraged religious,caste and community organisations to dictate terms to the ruling dispensation and extract their pound of flesh to the exclusion of large sections of society,especially the majority community.
It is the anger against perceived marginalisation and pandering to the minorities that has prompted organisations like the SNDP to have their own political formations, it concludes.
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