Darjeeling, April 15 : Undaunted by the chauvinistic campaign of the BJP and the autocratic & divisive policies of the TMC, as hill people demonstrates an intense tale of betrayal , CPI(M) has uphold the unity baton in its campaign amongst the 14,37,126 electors in the only Loksabha seat , perhaps in the country which spans over Himalayan region, Terai and the sub Himalayan plains . Offering an all out clarity on its position, as a party which is committed for all out economic and social development of the Hill people and those from the plains, the vast tribal, schedule caste and general population , it chose not to play any card , but focusing on the unity in racially fragile area , which falls in the strategically important chickens ‘ neck of the country.
Interestingly CPI(M) candidate Saman Pathak , is the notable leader of the Tea workers in the Darjeeling segment ,and the son of Legendary communist Ananda Pathak .Tallking with this reporter , Saman Pathak related how as a 10 year old , he had to escape from his house in Sonada in 1986 , at the height of Gorkhaland agitation , and their home in Sonada , was set upon fire by the cessionist forces. ‘Our view is that only the sixth schedule can solve the worries of the hill people , and statehood won’t be able to guarantee development of the hill people’. The racial overtures of the cessionists in the hills has been more buoyed by the autocratic constitution of 16 different ethnicity oriented Boards by West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee, who also forcibly using the administrative power has exiled the top brass of the GJM leaders, who were erstwhile leading the cessionist sentiment in the hills. She also engineered defection of several top Morcha leaders , as a breakaway fraction of GJM , which supported her Party’s candidate , Amar Singh Rai ,till recently a GJM legislator. In the hills many like Sanjog Tamang of Jorbanglo has alleged that this time too, like the erstwhile time , the Darjeeling seat has been sold to BJP by GJM leader Bimal Gurung.
On 15th April GJM ,today,conducted a show of strength , in the Chawkbazar area , where about 15000 GJM activists participated , and Gorkhaland or separate statehood was advocated by the hill leaders as well by the BJP candidate , a Corporate Tycoon from Manipur , with Nepalese ethnicity , and the owner of Surya group ,with assets of more 1000 crore. Interestinly BJP has adopted an opportunist twin strategy of advocating for unified Bengal in the plains of the state , through out the North and South Bengal ,while in Darjeeling fanning racial sentiments and advocating for separate statehood.
‘Over a million of Tea workers and their dependents constitutes the electorate in the Parliamentary segment of Darjeeling ,and Daju (brother ) Saman Pathak is a big factor this time ‘ conceded Mahendra Gurung ,once considered to be ‘Bimal Gurung’ of Bagdodra. Interestingly this is for the first time in the last thirty years that CPI(M) has forced its way in the hills too, and CPI(M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury led a huge rally of CPI(M) activists ,mostly from the working class background and Tea plantation workers in the hills. They came from the various tea estates of the hills, and filled up the chawkbazaar area ,last Saturday with the slogan of voting for Hasua Mardi bartalo, (Hammer-sickle and star) ,the electoral symbol of the CPI(M). From Ghoom bustee to Gurung bustee area , CPI(M) posters are everywhere , as a breakaway fraction of CPI(M) , CPRM led by former MP RB Rai ,has lost steam after supporting the sangha pariwar, in this election. CPI(M) which was the dominant party in the hills before 1986 , when the Gorkhaland agitation started, still commands respect for its honest communist ethics , aand lifestyle of legendary communists Ratanlal Brahmin and Ananda Pathak , are still recollected by the elders of hills like retd Armyman Shivakumar Rai of Gandhigote to Meena Yulo of Chawkbazaar, whose makeshift shop sells shawls and cardigans.
‘The racial feeling of the GJM , and opportunism of BJP and TMC has peeved a large number of hill people ‘ In the plains of Siliguri , in the three assembly segments od Siliguri , Matigara and Naxalbari , and in Chopra , the BJP GJM combine will fare very badly. Interestingly after 2014 , TMc has not also won a single election in the plains and last November ,to wrestle aPanchayet Samity in Naxalbari it used police force to arrest CPI(M) Sec member and CITU leader Goutam ghosh , and kept him imprisoned for 71 days on false charges . Siiliguri Mayor Ashok Bhattacharya an extremely popular figure in the Siliguri and North Bengal ,explained to Prajasakti , that this time there will be three cornered contest in the hills , which has changed the earlier poll calculation. CPI(M) commands most of the votes in the plains , for its principle stands , is gaining now in the hills. This according to Manjula Tamang and Mina Gurung , the only two woman Central committee members of GJM , whom Prajasakti met today near the rally . In an undisclosed place , near the Mall area , the Woman face of GJM agitation , who are leading the agitation in hills in the absence of Exiled GJM leader Bimal Gurung ,told Prajasakti ‘ As Central Committee members of GJM , they are leading the agitation now in the hills and said that the todays show of strength by the GJM was necessary , to show ‘gaddar’- Morcha leader Binay Tamang now the GTA chief with Mamata Banerjee’s help , who the real power centre in the hill ,is? . Both of them has got multiple warrants issued in their name , and told ‘ We will be arrested if the Police
Interestingly , in Naxalbari region , in the famous Totaram jote and Kaluajote , Prajasakti had been privy to election meetings being conducted in night by the CPI(M) , where TMc hooligans were matched by eye to eye by the farmers and the tea workers , and in one such case ,the mother of Md Farhad, TMC’s terror bigwig and student leader of Naxalbari college , told aus candidlythat she will support the party of Jyoti Basu this time , as experience has taught her , that peace ,unity and economic upliftment , is the necessity of the hour in Naxalbari, which can fall prey to racial or communal politics if TMC or BJP , wins. Standing by the side of river Bataria, besides ‘kamruddin setu ‘a bridge named after Md Kamruddin , a respected CPI(M) leader who led a hawkers , in the working class resided Bustee (Slum), his grandson Rabiull Islam , a CPI(M) leader and Former Panchayet Pradhan, too echoed the feelings of communal unity and development. A youth Babai Roy of Rajbangshi community , in another meeting in Matigara area said that only the Red flag supports the real development of all the ethnic groups , and PM Modi and CM Mamata are students of the same Pathashala (village school ) of RSS. In Chopra assembly segment of the Darjeeling PS , where the last 5 years has seen umpteen Left martyrs, killed by the TMC , on Saturday witnessed an huge public meeting by Left Front Chairman Biman Basu and Siliguri Mayor Ashoke Bhattacharya. On Sunday Siliguri witnessed a mammoth rally of more than 30000 Left activists and Red flag bearers in Siliguri. The deft march of Red Flag bearers has also electrified the hills,said Sunil Pradhan a Government employee ,from Kalimpong .
Indeed the signs of back of powers of reasoning and of poor working class peoples ideology in the hills , has been a great achievement for the Red flag bearers already in the hills of Bengal.