POSTED BY Sundeep Dougal ON Jun 21, 2009 AT 03:59 IST ,  Edited At: Jun 21, 2009 05:16 IST

Rudrangshu Mukherjee in the Telegraph:

In 1964, when the CPI split and the CPI(M) was born, the latter, at least in West Bengal, got the giant share of the party’s resources save the intellectual ones. The intellectual cream remained with the CPI. The CPI(M) was born under the sign of mediocrity. Its leadership promoted anti-intellectualism and the cult of mediocrity. This, it was assumed, would bring the CPI(M) closer to the people. Promode Dasgupta, the redoubtable head of the party apparatus in West Bengal, was the driving force behind this kind of thinking. Under his successor, Anil Biswas, this tendency was aggravated. Biswas personally controlled educational institutions and intellectual organizations. This brand of nepotism alienated real talent. Many came under the flag of the CPI(M) lured by the loaves and fishes of office, but numbers did not make for quality. The moral and intellectual high ground that communists had once enjoyed in West Bengal gradually came to be eroded. Today, the CPI(M) stares at a moral and intellectual vacuum....

...The transformation of society will never occur through the brutal use of State power and the deployment of terror through cadre. It demands a more sensitive handling by a leadership that is confident enough to be broadminded and open.

Read the full piece: Cult of Mediocrity. And staying with West Bengal,  MJ Akbar has a word of caution:

Nature, and political nature, abhors a vacuum. The space vacated by the CPI(M) retreat is being visibly occupied: those who vote are with Mamata Banerjee; those who don't vote in rural Bengal are gravitating around the Maoists...

...It would also be unwise to forget the game-changer of the 1960s, the riots. Violence is an infectious plague, and demographic tensions always have a fuse in the tail. Bengalis believe that they are not communal. No one is communal, except in that brief moment of madness when the civilized mind crumbles.

The drama of Bengal is full of actors making powerful speeches. We need a plot, very quickly.
Read the full piece: West Bengal: Next time, the volcano
POSTED BY Sundeep Dougal ON Jun 21, 2009 AT 03:59 IST ,  Edited At: Jun 21, 2009 05:16 IST
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Digression
4/D-134
Jun 22, 2009
08:27 PM
do you ever expect the karats and baradhan to accept that the communist are over.by calling for a political battle against maoists the communists are indulging in double speak.What else do u have when a communist born to a toddy tapper builds a mansion has his kids educated in the UK.The communist must look into themselves.Isnt it enough to inspire innocent poor to join the maoists in kerala.Karat and his cronies are getting no were.
drharun
chennai, India
3/D-134
Jun 21, 2009
07:46 PM
One is getting to read and hear a lot of 'experts' discussing the shortcomings of the CPM. This was not something that happened overnight. What were these experts doing all this while? Is the fourth estate carrying out its duties and responsibilities as watchdogs of our democracy?
gajanan netravali
mumbai, india
2/D-130
Jun 21, 2009
08:21 AM
The question shouldn’t be: will the CPM learn? Rather, the question should be whether the CPM or, for that matter, the left parties, are serving the interest of India.

I am very glad for the demise the left parties. Commissars are not going to act as pressure groups to hold an elected government to ransom. Communism is modern anachronism that is unsuited to the modern market driven economy. This truism was well understood by the late paramount leader Deng Xiaoping of China and he began to modernise Chinese dilapidated economy. In the late 1970s China began to progress after ditching the moribund and outdated communist policies. No communist country-Marxist or Leninist – ever succeeded in improving the standard of living of its citizenry. That was the reason for the demise of the totalitarian regimes the word over. Indian commies are living in the past and that was nothing to be proud of and plenty to be ashamed about. On the eve of India attaining independence from the British rule, Nehru’s tryst with destiny speech was listened by the freedom loving Indians with excitement, except the Indian commies who declared the Indian Independence Day as a black day. I am completely in agreement with George Fernandez who once said China was India’s immediate threat. Indian commies are subservient to China and often echoing their master’s voice. That was exemplified by the dirty work done the Commies for China by thwarting India’s attempt in the civilian nuclear deal in the IAEA. Any party going to bed with the communists are aiding abetting their goal of the destruction of India for their master-China. The sinister plot in withdrawing support for the UPA was to serve the interest of China-bringing the UPA government down and killing the Indo-US civilian nuclear deal.

It is imperative for the Indian Government to investigate into the CPM’s amass of wealth-in cash and kinds-to the tune of 4000 crore rupees . Where did the money come from? It was reported in the papers that a Chinese embassy emissary paid a visit to the AKG House for a parley prior to the recent Lok Sabha election. Shouldn’t the Indian citizenry have a right to know how this staggering amount of money amassed by the CPM?
Scaria Varghese
Melbourne, Australia
1/D-127
Jun 21, 2009
06:09 AM
FAct is today Trinamool Congress is more communist more Maoist than CPI (M). And media is erroneoulsy playing along trinamool as progressive party just because it's B team of their favourite congress (I).
Anil
Toronto, Canada
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