A Bridge to the Struggling Women in India – Speech of the RPFM to the International Meeting in Support of People’s War in india


The Revolutionary Proletarian Feminist Movement, generated organization of PCm Italy, salutes today, from this international meeting, with deep revolutionary joy, the 10th anniversary of the formation of the Communist Party of India (Maoist), party leading the great people’s war in India against the increasingly reactionary Indian state and imperialism; we salute all the members of the Party and the revolutionary masses fighting in India and in particular the many women who in the march toward to achieving of a new power, the people’s power, which represent an integral broad and decisive part of it; and we also pay homage all the men and women who fell martyrs in battle, raising even higher the red flag of revolution.

At the International Conference in Hamburg, on November 2012, coinciding with International Day against the violence on women, we launched the proposal to construct a bridge/link of solidarity/support with Indian women “both to acquaint the popular and proletarian women masses in our country the war of the Indian people and the direct protagonism in it of the many women comrades and thousands Indian women, and, on the other side, find the strength and the example to let progress also in our country the revolutionary process in which women will be protagonists, especially the proletarian women”.

And indeed we started to build that bridge since that 25 November, when at the international level we particularly dedicated that day to the Maoist women in India; and then advancing in our country towards new and important stages of struggle in the spheres of women, especially with the first historical women’s strike on 25 November, 2013 and more recently on March 8 this year, each time directing our internationalist gaze to all workers and proletarian women struggling in the world, especially to all revolutionary women who are at the forefront of people’s wars. We wanted to raise hands higher and higher and shake them together with our sisters in India, because India is becoming a symbol of the violence of the capitalist and imperialist system, particularly and in all aspects against women, and today, with the new Modi’s fascist and pro-imperialist government, this process quickly increasing. In India, the old feudal traditions, the family tribalism, religious fundamentalism in the vast areas out of the big cities, are combined in the modern megalopolis with the savagery of the bunch, the new bullying, where imperialism adds new aberrations to the old ones.

Anuradha Gandhy, comrade Janaki, deceased leader of CPI(Maoist), who developed the theory of the revolutionary women’s movement in India and organized them in several areas, in an interview to Poru Mahila on March 2001 organo of Krantikari Adivasi Mahila Sanghatan, speaking about women in urban areas, said: “Though all women in India are under feudal, capitalist, imperialist and patriarchal oppression, it is seen in various forms in different areas, the urban and the rural areas. The working class and middle class women in urban areas have some specific problems. Firstly, if we look at the problems inside the family, even in urban areas women are oppressed by the feudal culture. (…) The unmarried girls are under pressure to marry men from the same caste and same religion(…) Even if a woman wants to work outside home she will have to take the permission of her father, brother or husband. People of some castes and religions (for e.g. the Muslims and Kshatriyas) do not like their woman to do jobs. So it becomes inevitable for women to fight even for economic independence. (…)Especially since the past 25-30 years may be India is the only country in the world where the new crime of burning brides for dowry has come into vogue. (…) Women in urban areas have many opportunities to step out of home and work. They get jobs in factories, offices, schools, hospitals and shops. But in many jobs they are not paid equally with men. (…) On top of it they have to face harassment from the contractors and the men under whom they work. This takes place in many forms. Not only the working class women but even educated middle class women are facing such harassment. (…) Lastly, another point is the influence of imperialist culture is very great on the urban women. They are not only influenced by consumerism but are also victims of it. This is increasing day by day. Instead of human values they are giving more importance to beauty and beauty products. As a result there is an environment of insecurity due to atrocities and harassments in the urban areas.

But especially in India violence, killings of women – against which in recent period large mass demonstrations took place in several states, in which the participation of women, youth was huge – are perpetrated directly by the Indian state as instrument of repression, especially in rural areas where the people’s war advances and raping of peasant, Dalit women by the police, military and paramilitary forces, has become a routing as part of Operation Green Hunt, and rapes are hideously combined with torture against the Maoist women in custody. Many women, comrades, however, have turned this violence, the hard conditions of their life, the state repression into a powerful factor of rebellion and joining the people’s war. Around 40% of fighting force consists of women and they constitute a fundamental part of the revolutionary people’s war led by the CPI(Maoist). “People’s War had shattered the hesitations of the women.” said Anuradha Gandhy speaking about the adivasi women who massively joint people’s war in DK, but it occurred in all areas affected by people’s war, so that the State fears the numerous participation of women and tries to oppose them in many ways.

So, that of women is one of the basic issues addressed by the CPI(Maoist), to develop and strengthen the revolutionary militancy of women. Many of them are cadres of the PLGA, yet steps have to be done to fully assert their leading role. Anuradha Gandhy wrote: “…Wherever the party is working systematically, we can see that the participation of women is more in all political activities and movements. … Likewise there is a need to give special social and political training to women members in the squads and platoons. Though they are opposing such big enemies and forces, the shyness and sense of subordination whose remnants are still present, are also their big enemies which are obstructing their development. … They have to fight against the enemy inside them. … To face all these challenges our women comrades should attain political and ideological maturity and have self confidence. …to put forward its understanding regarding true liberation of women by intervention in the women’s movement which is going on in the form of various streams in the country.”

The struggle against the of feudal/patriarchal/sexist oppression in the areas where the new power emerged is a concrete, daily, struggle. Although difficult and complex it has advanced both practically and ideologically through the special mass organizations of women led by the party. But this struggle goes on also within the party, among the revolutionary ranks against, persisting o reproducing patriarchal forms, through also specific rectification campaigns.

The leading role of women in the People’s War in India shows that while the revolutionary class struggle is carried forward, it sets in motion the struggle for a transformation of ideas, culture, family, religious traditions…

The people’s war in India is therefore an international example of the liberation struggle of women and of making revolution within the revolution. An example which comrades of the Revolutionary Proletarian Feminist Movement, have always looked along the not easy but exciting path, in a imperialist country as Italy, aimed at the win over the majority of women for the revolutionary struggle.

The tie / support with the revolutionary struggle of Indian comrades is and should be a stimulus, inspiration and mutual encouragement. Particularly, in our country today the main field of our struggle fight on the ground of women is their conditions of life and work, the double oppression of the proletarians, precarious workers, unemployed, immigrant women. It is a field on which the members of the MFPR, lead various struggles. For example, last year in November, as we already mentioned, these struggles merged into a single and historical event, the “strike of women”, that has seen been joint and participated by thousands of women: factory workers, school workers, precarious workers in different sectors, unemployed, students. It was a strike in which the struggle against the systemic emergency of femicides and sexual violence on women in our country, so-called “civilized”, is intertwined with the whole condition of double oppression and exploitation that the majority of women suffer, as a result of the more and more reactionary policies of modern middle ages implemented by rulers. A strike that owners, government, State, political parties, official unions, bourgeois and petty-bourgeois feminists felt as a “danger”, but also underestimated or ignored by economistic “communist” organizations, because it has put at the center the issue of the revolutionary double struggle of women as crucial to overthrow from the top to the bottom this social system, according to the concept of the revolution within the revolution to build a new society in which the whole life must change.

Indeed it has been a bright spark that, igniting many fires of women’s struggle, from North to South in the country, can, throughout the time, “set fire to the prairie”. During the strike of the women we connected our struggle to that of Indian women and all women in the world against capitalist and imperialist system, as a powerful force for revolution. Through the experiences of struggle as the strike of women, the comrades of the Revolutionary Proletarian Feminist Movement ,organization generated by the party, led by the Marxism-Leninism-Maoism, who are at the forefront in the organization and leadership of the proletarian women in particular, stepped forward to play a leading role in all fields, in the union movement, the women’s movement and especially in the struggle for the revolutionary transformation of our country, starting from the construction of the party for the revolution.

A communist party of new type, which raises as strategic the issue of women, as a delimiting line, a party where women are objectively the most radical vanguard, the driving force within the ideological and political struggle against patriarchy, bourgeois / sexist ideas and influence, against the merely accepting “in principle” the issue of women which does not turn that into a material force, grasping the concept of revolution within the revolution already inside the party, as an overall richness in the Party and for it. Amidst advances and setbacks, the our comrades contribute to the revolutionary process in this country.

With this in mind, to be firmly tied to the Maoist of the people’s wars in the world, and today specially with the women fighting in the most advanced and effective People’s War’s at the international level, is a key point. At the light of all this, in conclusion our speech on behalf of MFPR we feel necessary to take the commitment for a specific initiative toward Indian women, vital heart of people’s war against the fierceness of the Indian state, genocide of its own people, an initiative we propose to the ICSPWI, organizer of this meeting and to the women’s movement at the international level, so that the bridge we built is strengthened and extended.

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