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Articles posted by Radical Socialist on various issues.

Statement on the Arrest of Chhatradhar Mahato

 

Statement on the Arrest of Chhatradhar Mahato and the Extension of State Terror in West Bengal


The police terror in Lalgarh has now been compounded by attempts to extend the terror to other parts of West Bengal, including Calcutta. The arrest of Chhatradhar Mahato, leader of the Peoples Committee Against Police Atrocities (PCAPA) was done in a flagrantly illegal manner, with police dressed as journalists arresting him, rather than being in uniform, and not providing the arrest memo in accordance with a Supreme Court judgement.

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Lalgarh - Our Stand

The Lalgarh movement, which began in November 2008, is one major form of manifestation of popular unrest among Santhals, Mundas, Shabars and Lodhas, some of the most exploited adivasis of West Bengal. It explodes in a particularly graphic manner the claims of the Left Front government about its treatment of adivasis, which is not particularly different from governments in other provinces or from the colonial regime even six decades after independence. Located near Salboni in West Medinipur district of West Bengal, it is in the eastern part of the vast tract of the central part of India inhabited by adivasis (stretching over Jharkhand, Orissa, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Maharastra and Gujarat), Lalgarh is an extremely poverty stricken area. Each day is a struggle against poverty, starvation, malnutrition, ill health, illiteracy, unemployment and unending list of marginalisation. Laws about forests and forest dwellers have been ignored. Forests have been illegally cleared by contractors while adivasis have suffered. Few pattas have been given to adivasis in West Midnapur.

 

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Condemn the State Terror

Lalgarh is invaded. Lalgarh is bloody. In the name of stopping Maoist activities, the combined forces acting on behalf of the Indian state have declared war on the people with such alacrity, and have established a nightmare of terrorism in village after village, that words fail us in our attempt to condemn them.

We believe that in the name of tackling the Maoists, the government is seeking to negate the legitimate demands of the Lalgarh movement, and at the same time to annihilate that movement and its leading organization, the Peoples’ Committee Against Police Atrocities (Polisi Sontras Birodhi Janaganer Committee). In this context, we want to remind the government that for the so-called “decline of the law and order situation” in Lalgarh, the state and the central governments are both responsible. The people of that region have been compelled to take the path of protest and resistance because of the long years of ill-treatment, exploitation as well as the recent spate of police tortures.

 

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Social Democracy Punished

Jan Malewski, François Sabado

(From International Viewpoint)

At the centre and south of Europe — in Germany and Portugal — parliamentary elections on September 27, 2009 marked a historic electoral setback for social democracy. In Germany the SPD lost a third of its electorate, or more than 4.5 million votes, in five years, and with 23% of those voting obtained its lowest score since 1949. In Portugal, the PSP of the outgoing prime minster José Sócrates lost a fifth of its electorate, or more than 500,000 votes, and with 35.56% of the votes it no longer has an absolute majority in Parliament. This was its worst result since 1991.

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