‘Leftism is not a bad ideology, but CPMism is not leftism’

Discussion in 'Politics & Society' started by pmaitra, Mar 13, 2011.

  1. pmaitra

    pmaitra Moderator Moderator

    Mar 10, 2009
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    EST, USA
    ‘Leftism is not a bad ideology, but CPMism is not leftism’

    Mohua Chatterjee, TNN | Mar 13, 2011; Time of India

    Trinamool Congress chief and railway minister Mamata Banerjee, 55, is aiming for a 'jasmine' revolution in West Bengal in next month's assembly elections. She wants to end 35 years of the Left Front government Just before she left the national capital for Kolkata to prepare for her "big battle", she spoke to Mohua Chatterjee about election strategy and plans for the state should she be elected chief minister. Excerpts:

    Why are you not contesting the election? The CPM is campaigning against your decision, saying you're shying away from a challenge.
    It is a unique election in West Bengal this time. Unfortunately, the Left misrule lasted 35 years. Nowhere else in the country has something like this happened. This battle is for 294 seats, hence I don't want to be a solo player in it. It's a big fight... so it is important for the Trinamool to win. It's not about my personal victory. And, even my worst critics will be generous enough to say that I can win any election. I am a five-time MP. Isn't it unkind to say that I am shying away because I am scared of losing?

    But surely you agree you're the face of change there. If you don't contest, how can people see you as Trinamool's chief ministerial candidate?
    I have the option of being elected to the assembly within six months of the poll verdict through a byelection from any constituency. That is something our party will decide.

    What will be your main election theme?
    The main theme will be "Badla noy, badal chai" " (not revenge, but change). So I have told my party that it is not revenge that we are looking for, but Bengal is not the CPM's ; it belongs the people —" Ma, Mati, Manusher" (to the land and the people ). It's been 35 years of erosion in Bengal in terms of the economy, culture, everything... we want to free the people from that. So this election is a celebration of democracy. That is why I am asking all the people to vote and participate in this celebration.

    But "change" is something you have long talked about. What positive slogan do you have for your agenda in Bengal?
    Bengal's tradition is known to all. The 19th century renaissance happened here. But after that came the flight of capital; development has suffered, so has education and healthcare. I feel the people of Bengal need another renaissance and the people will do it. So the slogan will be for development, education, health and infrastructure.

    But you opposed the entry of industry?
    This is the CPM's propaganda. I am not against industrialization. Our manifesto is pro-industry ... we need capital. As railway minister, I tried to get FDI into the state's indigenous industry. I was not against industrialization, but against the mishandling of governance by the CPM. I am against a lacklustre approach to industrialization. I am for an inclusive approach to development, which is not meant for a handful of rich people, but for the benefit of the masses.

    Even the Left has talked about inclusive growth. Ideologically, the Left talks about it, but in the last 35 years, the ruling CPM has not followed it. This is why I say leftism is not bad as an ideology, but there is a difference between CPMism and Leftism.

    Are you saying you support left-wing ideology?
    The Trinamool Congress has a distinct ideology. We originated from the Congress, where there was convergence of left and right ideologies. We have built on that to create an ideological space that is acceptable to the people of Bengal, where their regional aspirations are fulfilled... and with a propeople and pro-industry approach.

    What stand will you take on the Maoists if you become chief minister?
    I believe in the philosophy of Rabindranath Tagore , Mahatma Gandhi and Swami Vivekananda. So there is no space for violence in my political dictionary. But my approach is to combat Maoist violence; you cannot only use force and that too abruptly. One has to go into the genesis of this violence, the socio-economic conditions in districts where there has been no development... where people have taken to violence. Thirty-five years of CPM rule have contributed to it. Maoists are thriving in the state. I will try to bring back those people — especially youth who have lost their way — to the mainstream political system. Already, there are people in the Trinamool who once believed in the armed Maoist movement, but they have realized their mistake and have come with me.

    What will be your party's first task if it wins the election?
    Unfortunately, Bengal has reached a stage where the state treasury is empty. Every month, the government has to take an overdraft from the RBI and pay salaries. So the first job will be the Herculean task of getting the economy back on its feet. I'll need the support of industry and the Centre for this.

    Do you expect a clean sweep in the elections?
    The people will decide that. But I am confident that this time people will oust this government and the Trinamool Congress will come out with flying colours.

    What about your alliance with the Congress?
    My main opponent is the CPM. In this battle to oust the Left Front government, I have called out to all democratic, secular forces and Congress is part of that. The CPM always tried to divide this force. The Trinamool Congress, therefore, does not want to break the alliance with Congress. I hope Congress will also understand this.

    Source: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/...CPMism-is-not-leftism/articleshow/7690123.cms
  3. The Messiah

    The Messiah Bow Before Me! Elite Member

    Aug 25, 2010
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    No political entity around the world has followed socialistic policies in its correct form and thats why all have failed.
  4. Sabir

    Sabir DFI TEAM Senior Member

    Jul 31, 2009
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    According to Marx....socialism was supposed to come when capitalism would be in its zenith in highly industrialised states, .....but it was shoved in people's mouth in less industrialised countries actually.

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