CPI(ML) HOME Vol.11, No.40 30 SEPT - 06 OCT 2008

The Weekly News Bulletin of the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist)(Liberation)
U-90, Shakarpur, Delhi 110092. Tel: (91)11-22521067. Fax(91)11-22518248


In this Issue

Graziano Factory, September 22 : Outcome of State-corporate Industrial Violence and Denial of Industrial Democracy

A CEO of a prestigious MNC is killed – at the hands of a ‘maddened mob’ of workers...It’s a lynching, a murder” – cry the voices of corporate industry and corporate media in pious horror after the CEO of Italian MNC Graziano was killed on September 22 in the course of a scuffle with agitating workers. The police machinery rushes to round up, arrest, beat up and jail hundreds of workers.
The Labour Minister, in a surprising moment of truth, let the cat out of the bag. He mentioned the ‘unmentionable’ fact – that companies like Graziano habitually violate labour laws – including minimum wage laws; restrictions on contract work; working hours; right to unionise; and basic human rights liberties of workers at the workplace. And he said that the lynching of the Graziano CEO ought to serve as a ‘warning’ to industry to mend its ways. Of course, corporate industry and the Government which is its faithful servant could not bear such a home truth to be told – and Oscar Fernandes has been forced to issue an ‘apology.’ However, the fact remains that even the establishment has had to recognize that the September 22 incident at the Graziano factory marks an explosion of the pent-up anger and resentment of workers in the face of systematic exploitation and suppression of democracy in corporate industrial enclaves.
The ‘official’ version of the lynching calls for a serious investigation by an impartial agency. In enquiries by Trade Unions, workers have testified to the fact that Graziano had illegally laid off regular workers; employed contract workers; enforced highly exploitative work conditions. Nine months of peaceful protests had been ignored; and workers’ attempts to register their union had also been denied. On the fateful day, the management reportedly had plans to get goons to beat up a delegation of workers – but when workers assembled outside the factory realised this plan, he tables were turned. Many workers today are in hospital with grievous injuries – brutalised by police and private goons.

Graziano’s story is unfortunately not a unique one. Corporates in the ‘new’ industrial areas like Noida, Gurgaon, or Pantnagar (SIDCUL) in Uttarakhand are notorious for their rampant violations of labour laws, repression of workers’ basic rights and violence unleashed by the management. Labour Commissioners routinely ignore such violations. In Gurgaon, Pantnagar, Greater Noida, and other such industrial enclaves, there is a clear pattern of state-corporate industrial violence and utter lack of any industrial democracy. The same region is also noted for widespread corporate land grab, peasants’ protests which are met with police bullets and batons. Workers’ and peasants’ resentment as they watch corporate profits soar – while they pay with their exploited and underpaid labour, livelihood and land. They watch corporate employers and real estate sharks violate labour and land-acquisition laws with impunity, with the connivance of the State. Their democratic protests, seeking implementation of labour laws, are crushed ruthlessly, while the corporate violators of the law are given sops and subsidies. In the days to come, one can expect to see growing solidarity between, and united resistance of the struggles of workers and peasants in this region.top


AICCTU Fact-finding Report

A fact-finding team of the AICCTU led by AICCTU National Secretary Santosh Roy and V K S Gautam that visited the spot after the September 22 incident at the Graziano factory at Greater Noida found that out of the 1200 workers employed in the factory, only 500 were regular workers, and the rest were on contract. Graziano paid its regular workers Rs. 3200 a month for working 12 hours a day; contract workers were paid Rs. 2200 per month, and denied various rights like PF, ESI, double overtime etc...The workers are never local residents – but always vulnerable migrants from other states. And nine months ago, the company began laying off most of its permanent workers, and employing contract workers in their stead. This was in blatant violation of the law which clearly states that contract workers can be used only for non-core functions and not on the shop floor.
Not only that, workers were forbidden from leaving the factory premises during work hours. They were expected to pay and eat at the factory canteen, where meal rates had been hiked. And they were regularly subjected to threats, abuse and even violence. Goons and musclemen were employed in the guise of an unregistered ‘security agency’ called Awake and used to keep workers in line.
Workers had formed a union – but the registrar of unions (who is usually in the pockets of the corporates) turned down the application of Graziano workers not once but thrice. The workers had conducted a peaceful agitation lasting 9 months – but all authorities from the Labour Commissioner to concerned ministers to the Italian embassy had turned a blind eye and a deaf ear to the evidence of illegalities by the company. Leading agitators were targeted and any worker who dared to lead struggles promptly lost his job.
On the day of the incident, workers say that in fact, police remained absent at the behest of the Graziano authorities, who planned to get the leading elements of the agitation beaten up after getting them inside the factory premises on the pretext of talks. They say that while the workers’ delegation was inside and being assaulted, one worker ran out to the gates (which had been shut) and told those assembled outside that their comrades within were being beaten. Then, workers stormed in and the confrontation took place which resulted in the CEO getting killed.

Workers’ organisations and human rights groups must be allowed to visit the Graziano premises and investigate the circumstances of the incident of September 22. A judicial enquiry should be ordered to probe the incident. The arrested workers must be released and charges against them dropped pending the enquiry. All laid-off workers must be reinstated in the factory. And a National Enquiry Commission including representatives of leading Trade Unions should be set up to conduct a comprehensive enquiry into the work conditions at all industrial units and enclaves (industrial areas) all over the country. The Commission should hold Public Hearings of workers in all major industrial areas. And all employees found to be violating labour laws should be sternly prosecuted.



Jury Verdict in the People’s Tribunal (Jan Sunwai)
Organized in Patna (September 27 2008)
On Floods and Rural Development Schemes in Bihar

Having heard the depositions of some two dozen people from various districts in Bihar, the Jury members (economist and social activist Jean Dreze, Nikhil De from MKSS, Prof. Himmat Singh, Advocate Nepal Supreme Court and legal advisor, Kosi Peedit Samaj, Rajasthan, Prof. Himmat Singh, Advocate Nepal Supreme Court and legal advisor, Kosi Peedit Samaj, Kaustav, Centre for Social Development, Prof. Naval Kishore Chaudhury, Ex Head, Deptt.of Economics, Patna Univ., Prof. Santosh Kumar, former Professor, Water Resources, NIT, Vimal Kumar, poet and journalist from Delhi, Prof. Nityanand Shastri, retired professor, Mithila University and Kavita Krishnan, AIPWA Secretary and former Joint Secretary, JNU Students’ Union) prepared the following verdict:
The Jury at the People’s Tribunal held at Patna on September 27 stands witness to testimonies of people’s tremendous sufferings and remarkable community efforts of rescue and relief in the face of floods.
Governments in both Patna and Delhi stand indicted in the people’s court for criminal negligence which is wholly responsible for the scale of devastation caused by the floods. Not only was the task of maintaining embankments neglected, causing the flooding; even available warnings were not conveyed to the public which could have allowed them to evacuate their homes and villages before the flood waters swallowed them. The Central Government has failed to put into place any comprehensive flood-management strategy in cooperation with the Nepal Government, and has not even recognized this issue as a major national concern.
In spite of this, the Bihar Government and the Central Government are remarkably unapologetic about being responsible for so much death and devastation. Instead, people have testified to the extreme arrogance, callousness, and exploitative character of the entire machinery of the Nitish Government towards the flood-affected people.
This Jury warns that the enquiry ordered by the Bihar Government must not be turned into an eyewash and demands a comprehensive enquiry to establish the persons, authorities and institutions responsible for negligence which caused the floods, and which are responsible for corruption and loot in the course of flood relief. The Jury demands stern punishment for the guilty – and demands that the Bihar Government, found guilty in the people’s court, must face justice at the hands of the people.
Further, the Jury demands that the Government declare specific relief and rehabilitation measures for the flood affected – including NREGA coverage for all adults all year round in the flood-affected districts, where the work of reconstructing their own homes and fields can be taken as work under NREGA.

The Jury, on the basis of people’s depositions, indicts the Bihar Government for its total failure on the front of pro-poor rural developments laws and schemes like NREGA and PDS rations. People have testified to the fact that the Government has failed abysmally to give even a single person the promised 100 days employment under NREGA; and the poor are systematically excluded from BPL lists. These schemes are entangled in a corrupt nexus of politicians, police, administration and criminals. When people raise their voices and seek to ensure proper implementation through mass protest and vigilance, they are targeted, brutalized, even killed. In this situation, the Government is bound to face the militant expressions of people’s anger. This Jury demands that a comprehensive enquiry be ordered into the rampant corruption in and subversion of pro-poor rural development schemes – and all those found guilty must be prosecuted and severely punished.top


Don’t Express Your Slavish ‘Love’ for Bush in Our Name, Mr. PM!

Manmohan Singh at Oxford had heaped praise on the ‘good governance’ of the British Raj - and in Washington he has declared to George Bush, “I am very grateful to you, Mr. President…People of India deeply love you.” Shame on the Indian Prime Minister, for expressing his own servility and ‘gratitude’ in the name of India’s people! As the Indo-US Nuke Deal nears finalization, it becomes increasingly clear how the PM lied to Indian citizens about the nature of the Deal. Bills passed in the US Senate and Congress establish the explicit supremacy of the Hyde Act and other US laws over the 123 Agreement, directly contradicting the Prime Minister’s assertion that it was bound only by the 123 Agreement.
Even if the NSG waiver were really ‘clean and unconditional’ as promised by the Manmohan Singh Government, the fact remains that the whole purpose of the Nuke Deal is to make Indian foreign policy “congruent with” (i.e. subservient to) that of the US, a savage imperialist power and the world people’s enemy number one. To claim that this hated enemy commands the ‘love’ of India’s people is a shameful and slavish insult to India’s independent spirit and self-respect.

Indians will not tolerate this insult. Thanks to an obstruction in the American Parliament, the Bush-Singh dream agreement has been temporarily put on hold; we in India will work to see that it is scrapped altogether.top


CPI(ML) Condemns Nanavati Commission Eyewash

The CPI(ML) has condemned the Modi Government’s attempt to whitewash its bloody role in the Gujarat genocide with a ‘clean chit’ from the Nanavati Commission. The Nanavati Commission, contradicting the earlier findings of the Banerjee Commission, has claimed that the fire in the Sabarmati Express was no accident, but was rather committed by Muslims at Godhra station. This claim is not backed up by facts, and is quite clearly a politically motivated claim to strengthen the communal Modi regime and boost the BJP on the eve of Parliamentary polls. In the Tehelka sting, Sangh Parivar’s own functionaries has gleefully revealed how the 2002 communal pogrom was pre-planned and not a ‘spontaneous’ reaction to the Godhra fire. The CPI(ML) has demanded prosecution of Narendra Modi for crimes against humanity.top


Citizens' Dharna by CPI(ML) and AISA

The CPI(ML) and All India Students Association (AISA) organised a Citizens' Dharna in New Delhi on 29th September to condemn the incidents of bomb blasts as well as to demand that the Government must take proper steps to identify the perpetrators and no one should be left out of the purview of the investigations. The speakers in dharna criticized the ongoing communal campaign of branding the minorities as 'terrorists' and demanded Impartial judicial inquiry into the Jamia Nagar Encounter, to stop attacks on Christian community in various parts of the country, a probe into the role of RSS in terrorist acts, immediate ban on outfits like VHP and Bajrang Dal and scrapping of the Nanawati Commission report. They called upon the people to keep a strong vigil against such divisive forces in order to maintain social harmony and also to stop any recurrence of such incidents.
The speakers in dharna reminded that alert citizens are asking a range of questions about the police version of the ‘encounter’ in Jamia Nagar on Sept. 19. Conflicting versions of the encounter and inconsistencies in the police story are yet to be satisfactorily clarified. Unfortunately, investigations into terrorism are notoriously marked by biases and double standards, and even blatant falsehoods and framing.
While youth from the minorities accused of terrorism are often denied even basic legal aid, communal ‘masterminds’ like Modi are allowed to set up Judicial Commissions to give themselves a clean chit in the Godhra train fire and Gujarat genocide – as we have seen in the case of the Nanavati-Shah Commission recently!
Not only that – in Nanded (Maharashtra) and in Kanpur (UP), Sangh Parivar lumpens were killed while making bombs, and on the premises, police found fake beards and topis. In Faizabad, recently, a former BJP MLA and RSS leader Ram Vilas Vedanti claimed he was being threatened by SIMI and al- Qaeda – but it was found that Hindu Yuva Vahini and Bajrang Dal men had made the threats, pretending to be SIMI and al-Qaeda! In Tenkasi (Tamilnadu) also, an RSS outfit was found to have put a bomb at the RSS office to give Muslims a bad name. Yet, the above evidence is ignored, and there is never any enquiry into the possible role of the RSS outfits in terrorism. It is well known that it is the agenda-wise bankrupt BJP-RSS get a big bonanza from blasts: a tailor-made opportunity to spread communal propaganda, brand the Muslim community as ‘anti-national’, and demand draconian laws.

The dharna demanded that a judicial enquiry headed by a person of secular and democratic credentials be instituted into the Jamia Nagar encounter of September 19; the existing evidence of the role of Sangh Parivar in blasts at many places in the country be investigated thoroughly; that Sangh Parivar outfits involved in communal violence be banned; that the human rights of all those arrested in blast-cases be vigilantly guarded; Nanawati Commision report on Godhra be scrapped, and strongly condemned all the attempts to brand a community as ‘terrorist,’ as well as the unconstitutional attempts to deny legal aid to those accused of terrorism.


CPI(ML) Delegation in Azamgarh Dist.

A Delegation cum investigation team comprised of three CPI(ML) leaders and other local comrades of Azamgarh District visited Saraymeer Sanjarpur on 22-23 September to meet the families of the youths killed by Delhi police in Jamia Nagar and the families of arrested youths, all of whom hail from the same area of Azamgarh Dist. The Delegation got a first hand information on the background of the killed and arrested youths from their families and the villagers.


AIALA’s Bihar State Conference

The Bihar State Committee of All India Agricultural Labourers’ Association (AIALA) held its Third Bihar State Conference at Dehri On-Sone on 28th September in an atmosphere of much political vigour amidst challenges and obvious difficulties due to floods, heightened Government and administrative apathy towards the poor people and various obnoxious attempts going on in the country to destabilise people’s life.
One thousand and three hundred (1300) delegates elected from among twelve lakh AIALA members in Bihar attended the Conference. The delegates hailed from 34 out of the 38 districts of Bihar. The Conference was inaugurated by Com. Nand Kishore Prasad, Bihar State Secretary of CPI(ML) who in his opening remark said that “Its a significant development that khemas (AIALA) has become famous among the millions of agricultural labourers and this progress must be strengthened and advanced”.
The Conference adopted many political resolutions some of which are: (1) participating in nation-wide protest programme called by CPI(ML) on 3rd October, 2008, to ask for immediately curbing the RSS affiliated Hindutva groups attacking the Christians and religious minorities in especially in Orissa and Karnataka, (2) the Conference held the Central and Government pro-American governments responsible for the bomb blasts in the country, (3) launching all round movement against the Nitish Govt. which has failed completely in protecting the people of Bihar- either from floods or rising unemployment. The Conference has also declared to conduct special membership drive from 13th-20th October, 2008 followed up by militant demonstration on all block offices on 21st October.

The Conference elected a one hundred and five member State Council and twenty nine member State Executive. Com. Satyadeo Ram was elected as the President and Com. Virendra Gupta as Secretary of the Bihar State Committee. Apart from this six vice presidents and seven joint secretaries were also elected.top


CPI(ML) Leaders in UP Face Charges for Flood-Relief Protest

In Khiri in Uttar Pradesh the Police has charged CPI(ML) leaders with various cases under IPC for holding a demonstration asking relief measures for flood victims. The Police have also raided the houses of some of the comrades. As is known that many districts of UP have been ravaged by disastrous floods. The CPI(ML) leaders had held a protest demonstration at many places in Khiri District on 23, 24 and 25 September against the insensitivity of the Mayavati Govt in providing relief materials to the thousands of flood victims.
On 29th September the State Committee of CPI(ML) observed State-wide protest against the above issues and demanding immediate provision of relief materials to the flood victims and withdrawal of all cases filed against the CPI(ML) leaders.

Reports from Gujarat: On 28th September, the anniversary of 101st birthdate of Shaheed-e-Azam Bhagat Singh, about hundred youths of the Revolutionary Youth Association (RYA) took out a motorcycle rally and went through all colonies and areas of Maninagar constituency in Ahmedabad, hailing the great martyr’s anti-imperialist struggles. The motorcyclists in their street corner meetings strongly protested attacks on the Christians and religious minorities and severely criticised the Nanavati Commissions report exonerating Narendra Modi and they rejected the report.


Murder of Elderly Woman in Gwalior

In Gwalior, there are many areas which receive their water supply only by tankers and their is great tensions at such timings when the tanker arrives. Due to insensitive nature of the administration’s handling of this water crisis, one elderly woman Narayani Devi, who naturally had to be anxious for seeing her vessels filled with water was killed by lumpen elements assembled there over argument for water.

Against this cruel incident the All India Progressive Women’s Association (AIPWA) Gwalior city unit held a protest demonstration and dharna demanding arrest of the killers and resolving the water situation.

Edited, published and printed by S. Bhattacharya for CPI(ML) Liberation from U-90, Shakarpur, Delhi-92; printed at Bol Publication, R-18/2, Ramesh Park, Laxmi Nagar, Delhi-92; Phone:22521067; fax: 22518248, e-mail: mlupdate@cpiml.org, website: www.cpiml.org
 Please offer your comments at : mlupdate@cpiml.org