(This is the speech delivered by Comrade Satyawan, Polit Bureau member and Haryana State Secretary, SUCI(C) at the mammoth meeting organized at Brigade Parade Ground, Kolkata, on 5 August last.)
Today is 5th August. This is a day of immense significance to the working class, other sections of toiling millions of not only India but the entire world. One hundred years back, on this very day, was born Comrade Shibdas Ghosh, the great leader of the proletariat. After observing his birth centenary with due solemnity throughout the year commencing from 5 August 2022, the concluding programme is being held today here with this mammoth mass meeting.
Comrade Shibdas Ghosh was an outstanding Marxist thinker, beloved leader of the proletarian class and the Founder General Secretary of the SUCI (Communist). Imbued with his invaluable teachings and inspired by his glorious life struggle, we all have assembled here today. His thoughts are etched deep in our hearts. Comrade Shibdas Ghosh plunged in the Indian freedom movement of India at a very young age without caring for his life. He dreamt of independence, free from all injustice and divisiveness. He cherished a society where there is no room for capitalism, imperialism, fascism. He yearned for an Indian society free from the tentacles of capitalism-imperialism-fascism and guided along the path of socialism. But the immense sacrifice and martyrdom of thousands of freedom-loving Indians did not beget the desired emancipation as the Indian national bourgeoise usurped the entire credit of the glorious freedom struggle to assume political power. Now politically independent India is in their grip. The men and women who fought for liberating the motherland from the oppressive rule of British imperialism, had longed for eradication of all divides based on religion, language, casteism, provincialism, etc. But that yearning of theirs has remained unfulfilled.
To free the country from all these maladies and aberrations, Comrade Shibdas Ghosh held aloft the banner of a new struggle and delineated the path along which this struggle has to be conducted. To free the country form the tentacles of all kinds of exploitation and injustice, he built up a correct revolutionary leadership and a correct revolutionary party which would lead that struggle. Not just that. He devoted himself to develop and nurture a band of thousands of revolutionary leaders who are fighting hand in hand today with the oppressed people in every corner of the country to bring an end to all their pains and sufferings by overthrowing the ruthlessly exploitative capitalism.
Comrade Shibdas Ghosh provided the correct analysis of the character of ruling capitalism in newly resurgent capitalist countries as well as concretely showed the distinct features of imperialism in the post–Second World War period. He pointed out that in every capitalist country in this era, whether advanced or backward, fascism is a common feature. In course of clearly providing the correct guideline of conducting effective struggle against the fascistic onslaught, he had theoretically enriched the communist movement, not only of India but of the entire world. There has not been any misconception, any confusion, any threat or difficulties confronting world communist movement whose solution was not provided by him out of his profound wisdom acquired through struggle. Such was possible because he could assimilate the essence of Marxism-Leninism, the highest philosophy of the time, and could so internalized it as to apply it concretely in a concrete solution, to ferret out the truth of a concrete problem or phenomenon. He accepted Marxism as a comprehensive life-philosophy, as the guide to action to the entire activism covering all aspects of life. Along the path of this struggle, he further elaborated, enriched, developed Marxism—Leninism and brought its understanding to a new height.
He breathed his last on 5 August 1976. After some days following his demise, Vishnu Prabhakar, an eminent Hindi literary personality, in a radio programme organized on the occasion of the birth centenary of the great litterateur Saratchandra Chattopadhyay, cited quotations from the evaluation of Saratchandra by Comrade Shibdas Ghosh and wondered how could Comrade Ghosh, despite being a Marxist thinker, could have such an easy but deep understanding of literature. He also said that he was stunned and overwhelmed by Comrade Ghosh’s discourse on literature. So, not only in the spheres of philosophy and politics, Comrade Shibdas Ghosh also had endowed us with the correct outlook in making a literary appraisal. Vishnu Prabhakarji said that after coming across the penetrating analysis of Comrade Shibdas Ghosh, he started to read Sarat-literature anew. When another eminent Hindi author Nirmal Kumar Verma was asked as to spell out the first three foremost personalities of India after independence, that writer replied with deep respect that Comrade Shibdas Ghosh’s name would prominently feature in the list.
But the capitalist rulers of the country do not leave any stone unturned to obfuscate the name of this great revolutionary. By design they do not allow Comrade Shibdas Ghosh’s name to be known to the people. This historic rally of today has frustrated that vile conspiracy. It is very opportune time to widely reach out to every nook and corner of the world with Comrade Shibdas Ghosh Thought and history of his arduous unprecedented life struggle.
Friends, what is the situation prevailing in the country when we are holding this meeting? Everyone is aware of the grave situation we are confronting with. After independence, Comrade Shibdas Ghosh while exposing the real face of capitalist rule had said that, as days would pass, more and more monstrous would it become. From 1947 till now whichever governments have come to power at the Centre or in states, all are slaves of the capitalists. To buttress their sinister interest of exploitation of India, the British rulers built up a powerful state machine which included police, military, draconian law and a judicial system. On 15 August 1947, the Indian national bourgeoisie took over that exploitative state machine from the British imperialists through compromise. Now nation means the interest of the capitalists, development means increase in the wealth and property of the capitalist rulers. We cannot accept it. To us nation represents the millions of toiling people of the country, who are the creators of all wealth and builder of civilization. The day the Indian national bourgeoisie captured sate power, they were not as powerful as today. By ruthlessly exploiting the people, they now rank among the first 10 richest capitalists in the world. Indian capitalism is now a super power in this subcontinent. Comrade Shibdas Ghosh had shown long back that Indian monopolists have already acquired imperialist character and become a junior partner of world imperialist bloc which are plundering the natural resources and cheap labour power of different countries. But the friends who call themselves Marxists-leftists still keep their eyes close to this aspect. They do not find enemy anywhere. If the enemy stays at a particular spot, they shoot arrow at the opposite direction; they direct their baton in a different direction. Who is the enemy of the oppressed people of India? The enemy is capitalist rule and exploitation. Today capitalism cannot provide employment to the jobless, cannot reach out necessary medical to the large section of the people, cannot even protect the honour of the citizens. It cannot give justice. It cannot give even a little peace or relief to the suffering millions. Whichever government subservient to capitalism is saddled in power, it only pushes people towards the precipice of ruination. They are squeezing out even the last drop of blood of the people. In our country today the gravest attack of capitalism is on culture and ethics-morality. The ruling capitalism are bringing down severe attack on this sphere to emasculate the youth and students from within, to ensure that they do not grow as man worth the name. Atrocities against women have assumed a menacing proportion. The BJP government today is on a spree to distort knowledge, science and history. At the same time, it is poisoning the whole country with communal venom, generating casteist-communal-ethnic fanaticism. Today Manipur is burning. In fact, it is not burning, but is being scorched by a nefarious design of the ruling dispensation. You know it all.
Recently, a communal frenzy has been conflagrated in Nuh district of Haryana by the RSS-BJP-Sangh Parivar. During the prolonged rule of the Congress, exploitation and injustice went on increasing. Now the BJP is furthering that to a severe extent. When the BJP was formed, they used to talk of the welfare of the small traders. Now they are slaves to big monopolists. People are waiting for the ensuing Lok Sabha election in 2024 when, they think, they will be able to topple the government. Assembly elections are on the anvil in five states where also the oppressed people desiring a change. Various political parties and the monopoly-controlled media are propagating this view. People are refusing to bear anymore the injustice, torture, oppression, mutual hatred, polluting of socio-cultural milieu and such other maladies and aberrations that the BJP and other bourgeois parties in power aiding and abetting. Most importantly, this utterly communal reactionary BJP government must go. But one important teaching of Comrade Shibdas Ghosh has to be kept in mind. He said that the incumbents in governmental power are changed from time to time. But with every such change, the ruling bourgeoisie accumulates more fat and intensify their exploitation. Who control the elections? Who build up election fever? How is people’s mind influenced to think in a particular direction? How are people deceived in the elections? In parliament and assemblies, there is no discussion about plight and privation of the people, about the escalating hardship of the workers and peasants. There is no debate on education system, no talk about providing proper medical treatment, no concern is expressed over is told about outraging of modesty of mothers and sisters. Great Lenin had said, parliament is the most protected armoury of the capitalists. The parliamentary politics, the politics of vote bank are all in the interest of the capitalists. This system will only lead to aggravate people’s suffering with every passing day. Comrade Shibdas Ghosh had said that even after thousands of elections, there will be no end to people’s problems. Rather the problems would assume more dimension.
Only solution to mitigate the hardship of the people is to build up and intensify powerful mass movements. But who is to lead this movement? If movement is to be channelized along right track, what is needed is a correct leadership. To fulfil that objective, he founded the SUCI (Communist). He himself showed the correct path to the movements of the students, youth, workers, peasants, and women. He showed that because of absence of necessary political consciousness among the people, the capitalist assault on them is mounting. For this, mighty movements are to be developed against injustice by constituting people’s struggle committees. The historic movements in Singur and Nandigram in West Bengal could emerge victorious because our Party guided by his thoughts could steer them along correct path.
In Haryana also, the decision to set up Special Economic Zone (SEZ) on 25,000 acre of forcibly acquired land with Ambani at its head was overturned by launching mighty resistance movement by building up struggle committees based on the teachings of Comrade Shibdas Ghosh. Today in every nook and corner of the country, many movements are being organized following the teachings of Comrade Shibdas Ghosh and drawing lessons from his historic life struggle. Only the correct revolutionary party is able to make all these movements mightier; can provide correct anti-capitalist direction to these movements. Other than SUCI (Communist), no one else can do it.
I will end my speech with one more point. Quit India movement of 1942 stirred the country so much that the British imperialists had to flee our country. Political independence has been achieved, but emancipation from exploitation has not come by. Why? Because correct leadership was not established on that movement. The compromising leadership of the Congress had slighted Bhagat Singh. They ousted Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose from the leadership. That is why it is very urgent to establish correct revolutionary leadership on the surging mass struggles. For that, it is crucial to strengthen the correct revolutionary party. Think of 1974-75, when widespread movements of the students and the youth burst forth and gained momentum starting from Gujarat to Bihar. At that time, an opportune situation arose for steer that movement as conducive to revolutionary movement. But because of the so-called Marxists like the CPI, CPI (M), stayed away from that people’s movement and because of their treachery, rightist forces took control of that as against possibility of a leftist orientation to it. So, the movement fizzled out. That is why it is so important to establish revolutionary leadership on movements. This is the reason SUCI (C) is to be further strengthened in every corner of the country. the Party must be strengthened organizationally, politically, culturally. For this, the role of the Party workers and leaders need to be flawless and more precise.
Comrade Shibdas Ghosh had said that to build up a genuine communist party, the ideological-theoretical base must be established on strong foundation. Coordinating the ideological and organizational aspects, a new leadership is to be given birth to. New roads, new civilization, new thoughts, new culture are to be built up. He also added that those who will come forward to take up this task, they will have to change themselves first. This struggle to change the self should embrace every aspect of life. We all are coming from this capitalist society.
People of this society are entangled in many a ritualistic customs, superstitions and other obsolete practices. One is to change one’s life being freed from all such things through struggle. Then only it is possible to change the world. Comrade Shibdas Ghosh had again and again upheld the teachings of great Marx, accepted those in his life, and translated those in action. He had taught us to do the same in our life. The great thoughts of Shibdas Ghosh can alone show us the path. Along this path, we have to change ourselves. Change we must and we have to keep in mind that very process, through which Comrade Shibdas Ghosh had assimilated the essence of Marxism-Leninism and then, has enriched this scientific philosophy through proper application. In this process, like Marx, Engels, Lenin, Stalin and Mao Zedong, Comrade Shibdas Ghosh also emerged as an authority of Marxism-Leninism. His life struggle was in the finest continuity of the uncompromising trend of the Indian freedom movement. He had advanced taking upon himself the responsibility of fulfilling the unfulfilled task of renaissance and then spearhead proletarian cultural movement. He sounded optimistic that the future lies with the people. To deeply realize his thought, to cultivate it, we all have to take pledge on this centenary programme. With the vow to fulfill that task, we all will go back from here.