Braving the icy chill from the Himalayas consequent to the heavy snowfall, thousands of activists carrying the Red flag marched through the streets of the Shimla town in a rally marking the commencement of the 15th Himachal State conference of the CPI(M).
Addressing the rally CPI(M) General Secretary, Prakash Karat drew attention to the twin attacks on the people of the country especially after the assumption of power by the BJP. One the one hand the neo liberal policies which widen the gap between the rich and the poor are being implemented with greater vigour while on the other hand the BJP and its governmet is using communalism to strengthen its base which will be detrimental to the interests of the country.
Saying that the the six month period of the Modi government has exposed that the acche din is only for the big capitalists and corporates, the CPI(M) General Secretary said that the government is opening hitherto unthought of sectors like railways to 100% FDI. The government is hell bent on privatizing strategic sectors like coal. He reminded the people that Coal was nationalized by Indira Gandhi when thousands of workers were being killed because of hazardous work conditions and non compliance of security measures by private owners.
Com. Prakash condemned the moves to curtail and restrict the MNREGA scheme by cutting down allocations and altering the nature of the scheme. He castigated the central government for increasing taxes on oil and increasing its prices even while there has been a 40 per cent decline in international prices. In a bid to appease the US ahead of Obama’s visit to attend the Republic Day parade, the government is trying to increase FDI in insurance and the defence sector, he said. Com. Karat called upon the people to fight back these policies.
The other to address the rally included Rakesh Singha, CPI(M) state secretary, Sanjay Chauhan and Tikender Singh Panwar Mayor and Deputy Mayor of Shimla. They lambasted the state government for pursuing the policies that are heaping huge burdens on the common people. They pointed out that the phenomenal fee hike in the university and colleges has rendered higher education beyond the reach of the common man.