Tempo building up for spark to turn into a prairie fire on January 26th tractors March in Delhi to protest laws representing neo-fascism of Narandra Modi led BJP
A protracted war of resistance is being waged by the peasant organizations on the border of Delhi protesting the three agricultural laws. In the manner of preparing for a great war a massive tractor march is being planned. on Republic day. Farmers are being mobilized under guidance of the BKU(Ugrahan) in Haryana,Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan. The iron feet of the rulers are reluctant to scrap any of the bills which is manifestation of the economic neon-fascism prevailing projected as neo-liberalism.
President Joginder Singh Ugrahan feels the struggle has reached a higher stage or peak while secretary Sukhdev Khokri is very optimistic of the progression of the struggle. Some of the most positive words have been written by Surkh Leeh editor Pavel Kussa and interviews. A positive development is that the landless dalit agricultural labour of Punjab have joined the contingent in Delhi. The Punjab khet Mazdoor Union and the Zameen Prapt Sangharsh Commitee have mobilized agricultural labour. Student and youth contingents are continuously storming in like the continuous flow of river water. In the words of Surkh Leeh chief editor Jaspal Jassi the peasantry has struck the rulers in their very belly and won a great moral victory. A huge plethora of democratic section shave revolved around this agitation like never before. A new saga in Indian people’s movement continues to be written. In the history of resurgence of Indian peasantry such meticulous planning and organisation or such relentless courage ever been displayed. A crystallisation and polarisation has developed like never before galvanising every possible drop of water to prepare for the tractor march. It virtually looks like the farmers have created a new town at the border where they are inhabiting today.
A massive parade is being planned on Republic day on January 26th if the rulers continue to be defiant. Till now the peasant leaders have pledged that under no circumstances would they relent. Massive solidarity protests have been undertaken in Punjab amongst all sections It is a remarkable phenomena how the solidarity movement has spread to engulf so many areas in Punjab.The January 26th tractor march promises to be India’s greatest ever showdown or defining moment confronting neo-fascism. The flame of resistance will be lit at a crescendo on January 26th resembling the invasion of an army.
A blot in the book has been the accusations of leaders of the kirti kisan Union on the opportunism of the Ugrahan group form inviting leaders like Joginder Yadav to speak from its platform. They alleged that it was a contradiction of the Ugrahan group to allow political forces to step on such a platform.Pavel kussa rooted this at the very roots explaining it was undertaken to broaden unto on this single issue and not for opportunist forces to rob the stage.
The leaders of Kirti Kisan Union alleged that it was Ugrahan who earlier opposed political groups from using the joint platform.to propogate views. The Ugrahan group vociferously defended its stands summing up it was allowed to allow democratic voice to simmer at its optimum .
The farmer leaders especially Joginder Singh Ugrahan have displayed great mastery in understanding the connivance or conspiracy of the ruling party leaders with Corporates at every step and guauge their malicious objectives.
I salute the painstaking efforts of the All India Kisan coordination Commitee to shimmer the spark of resistance with death defying courage. The most valiant efforts have been by the Bharatiya Kisan Union(Ugrahan) and the Kirti Kisan Union. Bravery of their cadre remind you of the Soviet red army confronting the Nazis facing the coldest winters. The tractors in processions remind you of the military tanks of the Russian red army. Above all the movement is taking an All India shape with the Ugrahan group being the principal architect of spearheading struggle to Haryana,Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan. Noteworthy that the basic unity of all the 32 participating Organisations has remained rock solid.
For sheer expanding broad base of movement in neighbouring states the BKU(Ugarahan) played the most formidable role. Illustrating deep grasp of mass line it undertook political education of cadre when galvanising forces. The biggest role in ideologically confronting BJP fascism was initiated by the Kirti Kisan Union.No organisation made such sustained efforts to project the inter-relationship of the economic struggle for partial demands with the overall movement against fascism.
A notable aspect is that the traditional or revisionist let parties like C.P.I.and C.P.M have not been able to influence this struggle nor leaders of opposition parties like Congress or Aaam Adami Party.
A predominant weakness is the lack of integration of the working class or Industrial workers in the movement. There has hardly been sufficient intervention or solidarity by the Industrial proletariat .The main cause of this is the weakness or organisaed movement of industrial workers or hardly effective movements built by the working class.The neo-liberal economic policies have completely subdued the industrial proletariat.
Efforts must be made to build the broadest democratic front with workers, students, traders and intellectuals.
The focus of this movement must never be lost or diffused. The course of the movement itself will have a great bearing on the future course of political action.
Major solidarity rallies have taken place in Bandra in Mumbai,in Kolkata and in Vijayawada in Andhra Pradesh. Tremendous solidarity actions have been done in Canada.
Editor of Surkh Rekha Pavel Kussa has in analytical depth refuted such a movement being dubbed as ‘Naxalite’ by the state and how the ruing classes are trying to suppress the agitation by branding it as a Naxalite inspired insurgency. In no uncertain terms he defended the Naxalites as a democratic revolutionary force who were struggling on behalf of the oppressed. We need to build a concerted propaganda to refute propaganda of Naxalites. as anti-people.I feel it is of great importance that intellectuals educate the peasantry on the democratic essence of Naxalite politics. Tooth and nail the contribution of Naxalites and their ideology in confronting GATT and other components of globalisation at the very grassroots ,must be propagated.
A very significant aspect is how this movement could create a major base for all-round movement against privatisation.
It is also important to educate the peasantry on the relationship of its struggle with the political struggle of tribals or Adivasis in forests against corporate.
What is most important is that the broad unity of the democratic forces is not broken whatever aberrations and the spirit continues to illuminate like an inextinguishable flame. Whatever weaknesses like not giving sufficient vent to demands of dalit agricultural labour or demands leaning towards rich peasantry, the revolutionary democratic essence must at no point be allowed to dilute or basic unity diffused. A base should be stitched to build a protracted anti-fascist movement.
Above all a base has been built for creating new political cadres into the democratic revolutionary movement, particularly amongst the youth. It would be most fascinating and of great importance how such an economic struggle takes political shape.
Along with the return of these laws, there is still a long and enduring struggle to to guarantee government procurement at reasonable prices of all crops and the right to the public distribution system while the fight remains to move forward with the most hardworking phases of society. The resolve of sharpened people’s enmity with the corporate world cannot be implemented in any haphazard manner
Quoting Bengali journal Nizam on behalf of “Ei Muhurte Kichhu Bhavn “This farmers’ movement is no ordinary movement. Every passing day, this movement is growing mightier, as farmers from the length and breadth of India are marching towards the border of our national capital.
“This movement has been witnessing some never seen before phenomenon:
“Retired army personnel coming out on the streets in support of the farmers.”
“Mandeep Singh (Punjab Cricket Team Captain) participating in a sit-in demonstration with a portrait of Bhagat Singh.”
“Eminent scientist refusing to accept award from the present government, in solidarity with the farmers’ movement.”
“Many farmers’ union of prominent political parties and their conglomerations are part of this movement. Influential leaders from these unions like Hannan Mollah from CPIM have only been able to play second fiddle in this movement. The resolute farmers have rejected advice from prominent co-ordination committee leaders to return back to their homes from Haryana Punjab border.”
“Have you ever heard farmers observing “Human Rights Day”? Yes, this movement has witnessed voices raised in condemnation of the illegal detention of worker’s activist Sudha Bharadwaj, Andhra’s revolutionary poet Varavara Rao, Social Activist father Stan Swamy and several other political and social activists arrested under the draconian law called UAPA.
We have often seen demonstrations and movements condemning any government and its policies. However, seldom have we seen collective voices raised in unison to boycott goods and services of multi-national companies, who are deemed to benefit from a new policy or law. Farmers part of this movement has given a call to boycott all products of Adani group and Reliance Group, including usage of Reliance JIO Connections. Can you recall of any movement from the last decades which has been so focussed and resolute?”
Quoting BKU(Ugarhan) president Joginder Singh Ugrahan “Our struggle is reaching the peaks after a journey of several months. Over fifty warriors have drenched it with their blood. This phase of struggle needs to be very clearly understood in order to stand up and move it further in this glorious struggle.”
“The current phase is that after many unsuccessful claims about the struggle, the government has been forced to accept the depth of the struggle and take the road to talk. The pressure of the struggle now is on the government to protect the right to struggle. Farmers are being destroyed in Dharuhera (Riwari) shows where the police are still pouring tear gas balls and the farmers are also being stopped. The government’s apathy towards deaths during the Delhi Morcha is also a disgraceful violation of basic human rights.”
“The government is now looking to destroy the struggle through weapons of talks. Amendment proposals actually want consent for laws which direct means farming wants to stamp people for large corporates entry into crop marketing. Organizations have jointly extinguished this move of government and have refused to get trapped in it. Now the government finally wants to create an atmosphere of disappointment in the struggling people by showing the stubbornness of not abolishing the law during talks. Wants to create confusion between struggling people, organizations and their supportive parts. “
What is heartening is the massive support received from the people of Haryana .Another very significant step is the support of agricultural labour. The government is looking to take advantage of this feelings of chaos or loneliness. While at present it is important to understand that these protests have become a tip of serious political harassment to the Modi government. These strikes need to combine the actions of different oppressed sections at other places. The emerging of struggle centers within the states is an important necessity especially along with these protests. The headache should remain for the BJP leaders and the corporate families should not be allowed to sit in peace. The ban against corporate families needs to be speeded up. Speeding up the struggle in the present time means to put the government into more criticism through the culprit of this issue, the prolongment of farmers in other states, and their patience, sacrifice and perseverance. People’s opinion in favour of our struggle needs to be more widespread and deeper. To do this, we need to tighten our struggle.”
“These huge protests at Delhi’s entry points are currently suppressed by the veins of the central government. Sitting here has shaken the farmers of other states, reports of protests are speeding up from different states of the country. The government has failed to present it only the struggle of Punjabi farmers. Our movement has raised the issue at national and international level. We have won the support of democratic sections all over the country and they are being our voice and covering the Modi government’s steadfast attitude at the national and international level and standing in favor of our reasonable demands. Discussion has started on the plans of farming by corporates across the country. The waves of The second side is the side of strengthening this struggle in Punjab. The farmer public has been completely extended but so far as an organisation phase, farming workers who are almost out of the struggle needs to be made strong to bring in the struggle. Farm labourers of Punjab’s farmers are coming with all the sorrow and happiness. They are also the victims of our farming crisis. Agricultural laws are going to fall on the most farm workers. This is not only for farm workers as a waste of work in fields and markets but also as a complete destruction of the public distribution system, it has to be taken serious results. Farmers have to get out of the land by being itchy and the unemployed forces have to increase, the wages of the labourers are more degrees. But yet farm workers have not fully seen a sword hanging on their depot’s ration and employment. Their implication in the struggle will give the struggle a huge strength. It is an important task of a farmer who was awakened and organised today that he joined to identify his role in awakening and organizing the farm workers and to make the field workers a part of the struggle as an equal force.
“Along with the return of these laws, there is still a long and enduring struggle to to guarantee government procurement at reasonable prices of all crops and the right to the public distribution system while the fight remains to move forward with the most hardworking phases of society. The resolve of sharpened people’s enmity with the corporate world cannot be implemented in any haphazard manner.”
Quoting an excerpt in an article by Dr Paraminder Singh a former professor of Guru nAnak Dev Universty in the Tribune “The most important aspect of this farmer’s movement is related to the passage of true democracy to the principles and behavior of democracy. It is necessary to reference the two waves evolved in India to explain this aspect. These were the waves: 1974’s Jai Prakash Narayan’s wave and Anna Hazare’s wave. Without others in weaving and strengthening these waves, the organisation power of the Rashtriya Swamsevak Sangh, its ideology and access played a role in expanding and strengthening itself. Also, one of the aim of these waves was to replace the ruling party to another party or group of parties; as the Bharatiya Janata Party took the most advantage of the Anna Hazare movement and the Indian Fiza. I dissolved communal poison but today’s farmer movement has no such agenda as the base of the farmers and other working people. This is based on the same way that the movement is purely secular and free from all kinds of tuasab. The movement is not aimed at giving political power to a particular party or group of parties, so the movement is not inspired by politics but the politics of this movement is to increase its tax on the basis of their strength. That’s why the politics of this movement has the possibility of actually making the democratic rights of the people deeper and wider.”
Quoting Punjabi journal Surkh Leh editor Jaspal Jassi “Although in a limited sensethe ongoing dialogue between government and peasant representatives is significant . It indicates moral victory of struggling peasantry over the rulers of the country. Ruthless and dishonest propaganda against peasant struggle has got the initial beating it deserved. Those who were being dismissed as khalistanis, urban naxals, foreign agents and what not are now invitees for table talk as representatives of peasants.”
“However beyond this initial though significant point of success lies a largely grey area of deceptive moves and misleading presentations on part of the central government.
The dialogue process is not voluntary on part of the government. It has followed failure in deflating the tempo of struggle through false propaganda, adamant attitude and cunning moves.”
“The massive show of struggling peasant power along with widespread public support and sympathy proved too large to be ignored. The government is now on the table. It is still aiming at getting approval to the essential content of anti people farm laws and the draft electricity amendment bill from peasant representatives .The offer for so called amendments is a camouflage to facilitate such approval. Any amendment to specific clauses is bound to remain harmless to the actual thrust of the laws.”
RALLIES AND PROGRAMMES CHALLENGING NEO-FASCIST LAWS
Under the invitation of Punjab Farm Labor Union against the impact of farming laws on field labourers, Prime Minister Modi’s effigies have been burnt in 51 villages of 7 districts under the invitation of Punjab Farm Labour Union. In the rally and protests in 110 villages, the workers were invited to travel to Delhi on 7 January along with their families. This information was given through a statement issued by the Union State General Secretary Lakshman Singh Sevewala, based on reports reached the Union State Headquarters. They said that the protests were held in the villages of District Sri Muktsar Sahib, Bathinda, Faridkot, Moga Jalandhar, Sangrur and Patiala which were participated with heavy anger and enthusiasm by the field laborer men and women. He said there is a huge protest against these laws among farm workers and a large number of farm labourers male and female will move to Delhi on January 7 He said that the gatherings at different places were addressed by the Union State President Zora Singh Nasrali, Finance Secretary Harmesh Malri, State Committee Member Harbhagwan Singh Munak, Gurpal Singh Nangal, Major Singh Kaleke and Tarsem Singh Khunde Halal etc. Speakers said the agriculture laws brought by the Modi government are part of rapid implementation of reforms in the agriculture sector. They said the laws will increase the unemployment of farm labourers who would be stabbed by corporate households as a result of the public distribution system clean and essential goods amendment law for grains, pulses, vegetables and other food items Opening of black market to corporate families will elevate and put more agricultural workers to the mercy of starving.. He said the struggle against agriculture laws is the struggle of farm workers. Farm labour leaders claimed that a large number of farm workers will move to Delhi on January 7 with families from Dabwali and Khanori border.
In reliance petrol station the farmers have launched an embargo a few hours ago.
More contingents of Punjab Students Union and Naujwan Bharat Sabha have left Monak in Punjab to join and re inforce the agitation. A stage was set up by them at Tikhri border.In Sangrur brutally activists of Kirti Kisan Union were attacked when protesting.
A whole dalit family left village of Lambi to reach Delhi.
The Punjab Students Union and Naujwan Bharat Sabha pledge that the Republic day parade will be the most challenging ever to confront the neo-fascist policies of the Modi govt.President Rupinder Singh Chaunda told me how massive preparations are being undertaken in almost every district of Punjab for the tractor arlly on 26th January.
It is most heartening to hear the interviews of Rajinder of Kirti Kisan union ,who reveals the determination of a military commander .At the very heart he denounced the fascist social order.
The agitation has now reached the eight round of talks with farmers leaders still not relenting.
In Bathinda a most notable conference was staged by democratic forces. Support Committee Bathinda gave financial assistance of one lakh to the field workers going to Delhi ** Urban people and shopkeepers of Bathinda are also supporting the farmer’s struggle *The topic of the Covention was ‘ Black laws on farming are a devastating attack on every phase of food and employment .’
Farm workers going to Delhi to fight their part in the farmer’s struggle, Bathinda gave financial assistance of Rs. lakh to the farmers and shopkeepers and the private bus operator union Malwa zone for the workers. The buses were arranged. It is unbelievable that the decision was made by the farm workers of Punjab to further strengthen the struggle of farmers standing to oppose black farming laws brought by Modi government in Delhi as a major convoy on January 7 Will be attended. Punjab Farm Labour Organization’s leader Zora Singh Nasrali said on the occasion that the black laws brought by the Modi government will be the sharply t hit on the field workers and labourers of the village. Through these laws, they will also take away the minor facilities such as the nigga ration and electricity subsidy they got under the public distribution system. So today the farm labourers of Punjab are also going to Delhi as a big convoy to fight their part in the farmer’s struggle. While leaving the farm workers, the convener of the Farmers Struggle Committee, Varinder Singh and Co-Convener Harjit Singh Jida said that the struggle against black laws of farming is not the only farmer’s struggle but the big fight of all oppressed people.. This is why all exploited classes should make their contribution. He said people living in the urban area are out of reach of farmers and labourers restriction. So Bathinda city employees, labourers, urban, shopkeepers and people-friendly organizations of Kisan Sangharsh Committee together to take the matter of farmer movement to the people living in the urban area and contribute to the farmer’s struggle Formed which is implementing the invitations of continuous farmer struggle in Bathinda city and is continuous campaign within urban areas to meet the needs of the farmer struggle. D. Tee. F. From District President Resham Singh, District Secretary Baljinder Singh and 6060 Teachers Union State Vice President Vikas Garg and Medical Practitioner Association Leader H. S. Ranu said that the residents and shopkeepers of Bathinda city are openly supporting the farmer s’ struggle and they are responding to the invitations of the Farmer Sangharsh Support Committee. On the occasion, Convener of Private Bus Operator Union Malwa Zone Baltej Singh, President of Kareana Association Bathinda Om Prakash Goyal, President of New Wholesale Clath Market Bharat Bhushan Jindal and President of Trade Mandal Bathinda, Rajinder Raju addressing the press that Modi government corporates and In partnership with empire companies, not only lands from farmers, but also the policy of occupying the area and total markets by giving open govt. discounts. Small shopkeepers are being destroyed with big pigs like direct foreign investment and Wal-Mart Reliance and best pipe. Guru Hargobind Thermal Plant Contract Workers Union Lehra Mohabbat President Jagroop Singh, Contract Employees Struggle Committee Powercom Zone Bathinda President Gurvinder Pannu, Technical Services Union Satwinder Soni and Rang Singh said Modi government introduced the electricity bill in 2020 to the electricity sector. Fully waiting for corporates to get a bag. Unemployment is sinking to an all-time low and electricity rates elevating sky high.
While leaving the farm workers, the Bharatiya Kisan Union Ekta Ugraha and Kisan Sangharsh Support Committee Bathinda welcomed the workers and arranged tea for them.
Punjab Farm Labor Union State President Zora Singh Nasrali thanked the Farmers Sangharsh Samartha Committee and the shopkeepers of Bathinda and the urban residents and shopkeepers, said that many urban people have done a great help to them to help the labourers-farmers-employees and urban shopkeepers. I have done it.
On this occasion, Gurvinder Singh from Government School Laboratory Staff Union, Randheer Singh Gilpati from Tarksheel Society, Dilbagh Singh and Hakam Singh from Teachers Dal, Jagtar Singh Bath from Shaheed Bhagat Singh Library Jida. Only Krishna Singla, Storyteller Atarjeet from Literary Culture Forum, Jaspal Singh Mankheda from Literature Sabha Bathinda, Jagsir Singh Jhumba from Bharti Kisan Union Ekta Ugraha, I. G. C. Bathinda President Ram Prakash Jindal, Sukhwinder Singh from Lok Morcha Punjab, Atar Singh from Corona Warriors, Sukhbir Singh from Youth Bharat Sabha, D. Tee. F. Former District President Paramjit Singh Jida ‘ Lachman Singh Maluka from Government School Teachers Union, Khuskaran Singh from Private Bus Operator Union, Vijay Bhatt from Mahlan Chowk Market, Jagsir Singh Sahota from ETT Teachers Union, Powerkam and Rajesh Kumar from Transco Union, T. S. U. A large number of urban organisations leaders and activists, including Hemraj, participated.
– The renowned writer Arundhati Rai arrived in the Delhi Morcha on January 9th to show solidarity with the farmers struggle and addressed the people from the stage of BKU Ekta (Ugraha).
Addressing thousands of people who joined the rally including a large number of women, she said ′′ this struggle cannot be defeated because it is a struggle of living hearts, the whole country has hopes with you because the fighting people are in Delhi Gone and they are not going to lose. ′′ She said that there is no such struggle in the world matching the intensity as it is on the border of Delhi today., and it is destined to re-write political history. Arundhati Rai linking the farmer s’ struggle with the tribal people, summarised how the corporates looted the tribal community of their land. She said this movement taught the country the meaning of unity. Governments tackle various pressed phases / sections alone but are afraid of the unity of Dalits, tribals, women, farmers, labourers. All governments get votes from the people and then fulfill the interest of Ambani, Adani and Samraji multifunctional companies. The world-famous author said the country has seen the concepts of those books that were being taught so far through the movement. She narrated the tyranny of Operation Greenhunt in the forests of Bastar unleashed on Maoists to tear part democratic aspirations of Adivasis.
During this time addressing the rally, BKU Ekta (Ugraha) state president Joginder Singh Ugraha discussed the importance of involvement of farm workers in the farmer’s struggle. He said the new agriculture laws will make the hit the farm labourers. He insisted that the support of farm workers is needed to bring the struggle to the decision of victory.
Punjab Farm Labor Union State Finance Secretary Harmesh Malri said that his organization is trying to build Punjab’s farm workers as an important struggling force in the movement and huge public ban in farm labour courts from Lohri to Punjab The second round of the campaign will be started.
In today’s rally, under the leadership of Punjab Students Union (Shaheed Randhawa), a group of students also participated. Organization leader Hushiar Salemgarh addressed that the Modi government’s attack on new economic policies is not only on the agriculture sector. It is currently on all sections of the working class, including migrant workers, students and employees. Discussing the National Education Policy, he said it was an attack of privatization in the education sector. Like farming laws, it’s aim is to serve corporates and multiply companies. All classes should unitedly oppose this entire public treason attack.
Addressing on behalf of the Naujwan Bharat Sabha, Sukhbir Khemuana said that the youth played leading role as catalysts in this struggle. He said that to further enhance this role, the youth must fight for the views of Shaheed Bhagat Singh and the slogan of imperialism Murdabad he raised needs to be full force in the movement because the current agriculture law is on the country of the empire. This is the end of the riots. This is why all kinds of wars need to be guided against imperialism for which Bhagat Singh shows the way.
Dozens of speakers including Prof. Saleem, Navsharan, Farmer leaders Shingara Singh Mann, Ram Singh Bhanibagha, Gurbhagat Singh Bhalaiana, Manjit Gharacon, Jamat-e-Islami addressed the rally, and said that courage, With the spirit of determination and sacrifice, farmers are standing in the movement and the rest of the society are standing on their back. This is a historic behaviour in itself. This practice will also be compulsory to write the sign of victory of struggle. The play was also staged by Parwaz Theatre Amritsar under the direction of Dr. Jasmeet Singh.
Though the tractor march by Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM) has been suspended as of now, a tractor march by BKU Ugrahan along with farmers of Haryana was organised on January 2 from Tikri to Shahjahanpur border via villages.
Their slogan was ‘Pind Jagao…Pind Hilao’, so as to reach out to more and more villages of other states of India. The march started from Tikri Saturday morning and after covering 15 villages of Jhajjar, Sonipat etc., reached Rewari toll plaza Saturday night.
On Sunday morning, despite the rain, more than 2,000 tractors powered ahead to Shahjahanpur, where they participated in a rally with Rajasthan and Haryana farmers at this border.
Harsh Thakor is a A political commentator based in Mumbai who regularly tours different parts of India, particularly Punjab and also Telengana ,Uttar Pradesh and Kolkata,to report democratic events and movements. Regularly write for ‘Frontier Weekly’, ‘Otters War Room’ and earlier for blogs ‘Democracy and Class Struggle’, ‘Naxal Revolution’ and Anti-Imperialist Camp.’Main area of writing is on ‘Massline in India”.,’Maoism and International movements, ‘Peasant movement in Punjab’ Emailemail@example.com