“Building on the new, unique and unprecedented achievements of the last decade, Indian revolution will certainly overcome the difficult situation to win newer, larger and more glorious victories”
Maoist Information Bulletin (MIB) Interviews CPI(Maoist) General Secretary Comrade Ganapathy on the Occasion of the Tenth Anniversary Celebrations of the Formation of the United Party
MIB: Revolutionary greetings to you and all our comrades from all of us at MIB on the occasion of the Party’s Tenth Anniversary.
Ganapathy (GP): Thank you. Revolutionary greetings to all our comrades at MIB on behalf of our Central Committee.
MIB: What do you think are the party’s significant achievements in the past ten years?
GP: Since the formation of the Communist Party of India in 1925, the history of the revolutionary movement in our country has witnessed some momentous periods. Of all these, the period covering the past decade is not only unique and marked by some of the most significant developments in our Protracted People’s War (PPW) waged for the victory of New Democratic Revolution (NDR) since Naxalbari, but is also witness to something new and unprecedented in the entire history of class struggle in our country. The significance of this decade lies in
– Ushering in a single guiding centre for the NDR of India; The Party, Army and United Front (UF), i.e., the three magic weapons of the revolution becoming stronger than before; Enrichment of the political line, military line, UF policy and several policies in the form of united party documents
– Unity Congress documents, policy papers, important resolutions, summing-ups, articles, etc.; Further development of the military line and significant advances in waging guerilla warfare, the participation of the vast masses, as never before, in the PPW giving it a true mass nature and rich and new experiences in defeating some of the most brutal counter-revolutionary suppression campaigns of the enemy; Rich and new experiences in building mass movements against imperialism, feudalism and bureaucratic capitalism by mobilising broad masses of the people, particularly the peasantry, around issues of Jal, Jungle, Zameen, Izzat and Adhikar; Rich and new experiences in building strategic UF in the form of Revolutionary People’s Committees (RPCs) at a primary level and better and new experiences in tactical UFs, recognition of RPCs as an alternative model of development that could be applied successfully in contrast to the anti-people, country-selling development model of the ruling classes;
In spite of being in a very difficult situation at present, Indian Revolution withstanding a brutal unprecedented countrywide repression campaign waged by the fascist Indian regime with the support of the imperialists, particularly US imperialists, keeping alive the hope for revolution among the people of India and the world; Considerable support for the fighting revolutionary masses from the most diverse sections of the Indian society, both against OGH and in support of the People’s War (PW);
The merger into one party of CPI(Maoist) and CPI(M-L)NAXALBARI as another turning point in the effort to achieve unity of genuine revolutionaries in our country; PW in India serving as one of the important focal points around which international unity of Maoist forces and an international solidarity and support movement could be built. These new and significant developments of the past decade were achieved on the basis of the new ideology, new politics, new line, new party, new army and new people’s front ushered in by the glorious Naxalbari armed peasant rebellion and formulated under the leadership of the great founding leaders of our party comrades Charu Mazumdar and Kanhai Chatterji.
All the developments of the past decade were achieved amidst and by fighting back relentless brutal enemy suppression campaigns on the one hand, and through bitter inner party struggles against right and ‘left’ opportunism that raised their head inside the party at various crucial junctures of the movement, on the other. One of the most significant features of the Indian revolutionary movement is the glorious sacrifices made both by the communists and the masses for the liberation of our country, without which none of the above significant and new successes of the past decade could have been achieved. Through these sacrifices, the party has put forward an alternative mode of thinking and culture representing the highest human values as opposed to the rotten, decadent and self-centered mode of thinking and culture instilled by the ruling classes among the masses. In this way, these sacrifices have inspired the oppressed classes and sections of the society to fight for revolutionary change.
MIB: What are the main challenges faced by the party now? What opportunities do you see to overcome them?
GP: The following are the main challenges our movement is facing at present. First, preserving our subjective forces, particularly the strategic leadership of the party. Since the formation of the new party, we have lost a considerable number of party leaders at all levels starting from the central committee to the village level party committees. Therefore, we have identified the preservation of existing subjective forces from enemy attacks as one of the foremost tasks before the party. Understanding the importance of preserving the subjective forces and protecting them, we must adopt secret and appropriate methods of functioning, rectify our mistakes in it and firmly implement the lessons learnt from our practice, prepare new leadership and raise the consciousness of the entire party about the need of a strong party with continuation of leadership as a condition for the success of the revolution.
Second, the revolutionary movement has weakened in the rural plains and urban areas. This is one of the factors leading to the difficult situation the party is facing today. It is a challenge before us to revive and expand the movement in areas where our party have been present for long but weakened over time. Similarly, we also need to expand the movement to newer areas and open new battlefronts in order to broaden the arena of the people’s war. In light of the rich experience of our movement, we should utilise the conditions that are becoming increasingly favourable for advancing the revolution without repeating the past errors. In this way, we can definitely overcome the difficult situation and take the movement forward.
Third, some people are trying to spread confusion in the revolutionary camp by claiming that changes in socio-economic conditions have transformed India into a capitalist country. They also put forward the incorrect view that the line of PPW has become irrelevant. But the path of PPW have been proven in practice to be the only correct revolutionary path for the success of the NDR in a semi-colonial semi-feudal country like India. Therefore, we must guard against such erroneous views and expose them. At the same time, we must deeply study the economic, political, social and cultural changes and bring appropriate changes to our tactics.
Fourth, the Brahmanical Hindu fascist forces have come to power at the centre, which reflects a further consolidation of the ideology, politics and culture of the feudal and reactionary forces. International finance and the comprador bureaucratic bourgeoisie backed Modi-led BJP in its ascendance to power, which was complimented by communal polarisation in some places engineered by the Sangh Parivar.
After coming to power, BJP is implementing pro-imperialist, country-selling policies at a breakneck pace catering to the needs of foreign and Indian big capitalists and big landlords, while at the same time advancing the Hindu-fascist agenda in various forms. This will provide new avenues for uniting all the democratic, progressive, secular and patriotic forces in struggle. Newer and more numerous classes, social sections, forces and people of the society would be brought into the arena of struggle, and new opportunities for advancing the PPW will open up.
Fifth, the objective world situation is becoming increasingly more favourable for revolution. The imperialist world economy is still reeling under a serious crisis and all the fundamental contradictions in the world are sharpening. Consequently, the revolutionary, democratic and national liberation forces all over the world are gaining strength against imperialism and its domestic props. Maoist forces too are consolidating. But at the same time, socialist bases no longer exist and the subjective forces in the international communist movement (ICM) too are weak at present. This too presents a considerable challenge before us.
MIB: After the merger of the party and the PLGA, we have seen that a qualitative change has occurred in the development of the PLGA and intensification and expansion of the guerilla warfare. But now there seems to be deceleration in this. How does the party plan to accelerate it again and advance?
GP: Your observation is correct. That is why some spectacular successes were won in the past decade. And the observation that there has been a deceleration in it is also correct as we can observe this since 2011. The CC summed up the situation in 2013 and assessed that our movement is facing a very difficult situation. But this is at different levels in our different Guerilla Zones (GZ). In the past ten years, there has been unevenness in the development and also in the subsequent weakening of our different GZs. Just as there is unevenness in the economic, social and political conditions in our country, similarly not only among the different GZs but also in the entire countrywide revolutionary movement there is unevenness. This is a law of the PPW. Undoubtedly, it is our subjective efforts that advances the guerilla war, a matter which is not to be disputed.
However, guerilla war has advanced in the different zones on the basis of different economic, social, political, historical and geographical conditions. Likewise, these conditions also form a basis for the ups and downs in guerilla warfare. We should not ignore this fact. From 2011, we have gained some significant achievements in some states/GZs in the military front, in building mass struggles and in expanding the movement. The movement was developed in some GZs in this period by keeping the RPCs as the focal point and consolidating the party. Yet we have faced a deceleration. The party identified the reasons for this deceleration and geared the entire party, PLGA and mass organisations for overcoming this situation and this should be seen as a positive aspect.
The OGH second phase began in 2011 and the OGH third phase has started after Modi- led NDA government came to power. So we should keep in mind that all these were done amidst severe offensives and by fighting them back. The party also acknowledges and wholeheartedly appreciates the positive role played by the democratic and patriotic sections of the society in lending their voice and support to the struggles of the people for Jal, Jungle, Zameen, Izzat, Adhikar and also their vehement opposition to the OGH. This also had its share in sustaining the people’s fighting spirit. In fighting back this counter-revolutionary war since mid-2009, the difference in the strength of the revolutionary forces and that of the counter-revolutionary forces was very wide. Guerilla forces were deployed at a company level to annihilate platoon level forces of the enemy. Guerilla forces at battalion level began to wipe out company level enemy forces.
In these conditions, the enemy deployed tens of thousands to one lakh forces in every GZ. So due to the gap between the strengths of the opposing forces, new unfavorable conditions arose for waging our guerilla war. The huge deployment of the enemy forces was not only to crush our armed resistance but also to suppress the upsurge of mass movements witnessed in this decade such as the historic Nandigram, Lalgarh, Narayanpatna and several significant movements in almost all GZs. Thus, the Maoist movement emerged as an alternative to this decadent system. The deceleration that occurred need not be seen only as the result of enemy repression, but is also a fallout of our subjective weaknesses. To come out of this situation, we have identified our mistakes and weaknesses and taken up the Bolshevisation of the party, the PLGA and mass organisations.
At the same time, we should also look at the objective conditions that led to it. We had taken up certain tactics to fight back the enemy offensives when it was at the previous level and won some successes. This leads the enemy to take up some counter-tactics. So a new situation arises. So we will have to take up tactics that would again give us the advantage to counter the superior forces of the enemy through guerilla warfare and mobilise the people. A crucial factor in building up and developing the guerilla war would be the deepening of our mass base. The ebb and flow of the movement would always give rise to new situations. In understanding this and preparing the party, PLGA and the people for this, there have been some serious mistakes from the party. Losses increased due to shortcomings in the party to face the new challenges. While fighting back a strong enemy in the course of PPW, losses and setbacks do occur.
That is why Mao said that the PPW would advance through the process of victory-defeat-victory-defeat and ultimate victory. The PPW line would always pass through a complex process. Along with several smaller and partial successes and some big successes and leaps in the course of PPW, there would also be several smaller and partial losses, defeats and some big losses and retreats. It is a law of PPW that it advances in a zigzag manner. So we should look at the deceleration in guerilla war with this perspective. Taking necessary tactics means this. Keeping in view the uneven development of the movement in various parts of our country, we should take up either self-defence tactics or offensive tactics according to the changes in the concrete conditions in our areas of work. This should be as an inseparable part of the overall changes in the revolutionary war in the present difficult situation with the aim of surmounting it.
Not just in the different parts but also inside a single GZ too, we will have to take offensive or self-defence tactics according to that particular Division/Zone’s specific conditions. Even if the conditions may be better in some areas, here also it should be subordinate to the overall difficult situation we are facing and the aim should be to overcome it. And we all know that self-defence would always include offensive and there can be no self-defence without being offensive. But in all the tactics we take up, preservation of the subjective forces, particularly leadership at all levels is very important. The two deviations that may occur in our party while preparing ourselves according to the new situation are
– 1. Looking only at the apparent strengths and the severity of the enemy offensive and not identifying the underlying weaknesses; not looking at our strengths and advantages and the epochal role of the people in the revolutionary war; not strategically understanding the enemy and only looking at them tactically. This would lead to comrades losing initiative and becoming passive in the name of self-defence and finally losing the fighting spirit. This is a right deviation;
2. Not understanding the change that occurred in the contending sides in the guerilla warfare and trying to take up offensive tactics without taking into consideration the relative or to a large extent weakening of our subjective strength, passivity in the people and without giving importance to self-defence, i.e., preservation of subjective forces. They do not see the enemy tactically and assess them only strategically. This is a left deviation.
So studying the new changes that occurred in the revolutionary war and strengths and weaknesses of both the enemy’s and ours along with study of the overall social, economic, political and cultural changes that occurred in the country is very crucial to bring about acceleration in our guerilla warfare. This is one of the main aspects that we are seeking to achieve through our Bolshevisation. Increasing the mass base, putting efforts to mobilise the masses and increasing their active role in the guerilla warfare and in all PW activities are all very important to regain the upper hand. The CC, the CMC and all leading committees are at present tackling the situation with this understanding.
MIB: Even the well-wishers of the party are concerned by the fact that the major activity of the party is confined to Adivasi areas. Some people are arguing the PPW line is relevant only to such areas and not to India as a whole. What is your reply? How will you spread the PW all over the country?
GP: India is a vast semi-colonial semi feudal country with uneven economic, political and social development. This unevenness rules out the line of a simultaneous revolution throughout the country, or armed insurrection. We must base ourselves on the backward and strategic areas of the countryside. This means that the revolutionary war has to be carried on for a long period in the relatively more backward areas where the social contradictions are sharp. Therefore the revolutionary movement can only advance along the path of PPW. Moreover, the ruling classes have a strong repressive machinery in their hands in the form of a powerful centralised state with a well-trained and well-equipped modern army.
So we have to wage our revolutionary war in the weakest link of enemy rule, i.e., the countryside. Our own experience and the history of revolutions in China, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, etc. prove the correctness of the PPW line in semi-colonial semi-feudal countries beyond doubt. The arguments that it is not possible to build liberated areas, to build the red army and to carry out protracted people’s war in the country is not a new one. The ruling classes and the intellectuals serving them, revisionist parliamentary ‘left’ and the pseudo- ML parties – all of them have been making such arguments since long. Such views are put forward by them to create confusion among the revolutionary, democratic and patriotic forces that are increasingly drawn into the people’s war.
Moreover, left forces which have rejected PPW have not been able to achieve anything in transforming the society in their long practice. In fact, they are always against such transformation and are neck-deep in the parliamentary morass. One variant of this erroneous argument against PPW is the claim that PPW is applicable only in Adivasi areas and not in the rest of the country. This view too has no substance. Such views coming from the enemy, however, have to be distinguished from the views of the well-wishers of Indian revolution who are concerned about the confinement of the major activities of the movement in Adivasis areas. It is true that our movement is today relatively stronger in the vast forest areas of central and eastern India, which are traditional home of Adivasi people. The movement has made advancements in the last one decade by keeping Dandakaranya and Bihar-Jharkhand guerrilla zones at the core. It has a clear perspective of how to develop the movement in various types of plain areas and the tactical guidelines are outlined in our document ‘Strategy and Tactics of Indian Revolution’.
We also have a policy paper on urban work. Yet our movement in rural plains as well as in urban areas has weakened. One of the main reasons for this is our shortcomings in preparing the party cadre according to these guidelines. There are also some limitations in grasping the strategic importance of these two areas and undertaking social investigation to analyze the changes in social conditions. As a result, we have lost considerable subjective forces that became soft targets of the enemy and the movement faced severe losses in these areas. An important factor behind our weak presence in the country’s vast agrarian plains is that we have not been able to rally the peasant masses, particularly the agricultural labourers and the poor peasantry, into the guerrilla war in large numbers. Similarly, our shortcomings in mobilising the non-peasant classes in the forested Adivasi areas, including the newly emerging middle classes, into the revolutionary movement have also led to the weakening the movement. It had a negative impact on our efforts to fulfill the central task. But we must not lose sight of the positive aspect while analyzing the weaknesses and shortcomings of our movement in the rural plains and the urban areas.
We must not forget that the revolutionary movement has acquired vast experience in working in such areas. The new experiences gained in the last decade after the merger will also help us to draw appropriate lessons and rebuild the movement where we are in setback, strengthen where we have weakened and expand to areas where we are absent. We must learn from the mass upsurges of Kalinganagar, Singur, Nandigram, Lalgarh, Narayanapatna, and Telangana separate statehood movement, etc., all of which have had a positive impact on the toiling masses of rural and urban areas. The majority of the people who are under the yoke of imperialist, feudal and comprador bureaucratic capitalist exploitation and oppression reside in the vast rural areas and in the cities lying outside the Adivasi areas.
They have no other option for resolving their problems than to struggle. They are being influenced by the ongoing people’s war. So the conditions in these areas are favourable for the spread of revolutionary war. We need to act creatively keeping in mind the concrete conditions and the demands of the various classes and sections of the people. By firmly adhering to our political-military line, creatively working in a planned manner in the light of our vast experiences, implementing correct style of work, rectifying our past mistakes, employing correct tactics to suit the changing conditions and enemy tactics, we will be able to utilise the excellent objective conditions to build class struggle by mobilising the masses in these areas and advance the guerilla war. In this way, by building on the new, unique and unprecedented achievements of the last decade, Indian revolution will certainly overcome the difficult situation to win newer, larger and more glorious victories.
MIB: The government is claiming that more Maoists are responding to their improved surrender policies and are surrendering. What is the truth?
GP: What do they mean by improved surrender policy? They ostensibly mean more money and more rehabilitation packages. This is for public consumption. Surrenders haven’t increased due to the offer of more money or better rehabilitation. There are two reasons for this. The Indian State is one of the most ruthless regimes in the world when it comes to crushing the Adivasis and poor people who fight for their rights. And if they chose to fight under the leadership of CPI(Maoist) the amount of atrocities heaped on them just can’t be described in words. To crush resistance to their pro-imperialist policies the State is resorting to several suppression methods of which this surrender policy is also a part.
The government forces are pouncing like bloodhounds on the people in the movement areas, who may or may not be part of the revolutionary activities. However, it is targeting with particular attention those who are active in the resistance and subjecting them to all kinds of pressures such as severe torture, rape, destruction of property, psychological warfare, threats (including to maim or kill them or by actually doing it to others) etc., and making them surrender in large numbers. This accounts for the mass surrenders that the police triumphantly and arrogantly parade before the media. More than three-fourths of the surrenders come under this category. The other part of the surrenders is made of some individuals from the party, PLGA and mass organisations who are kneeling before the enemy. Yes, there is some increase in such numbers recently and a few persons of leadership rank (State Committee, District Committee and Area Committee level) have also surrendered.
The need to make newer sacrifices arises whenever a new round of offensives is launched by the enemy and ruthless suppression reaches unprecedented levels. There will always be some weak elements who would leave the movement or surrender before the enemy during such periods. It is happening now too. There may be some impact of the so-called improved surrender policy of the governments. But that is very minor and can never be the reason. The first reason for this kind of surrender is also the ruthless enemy offensives. Not just that, after the surrenders too the State is dealing differently with different persons according to their class and other backgrounds. But there is no difference in trying to turn them all into traitors of the people. The State is putting all kinds of pressures to extract information from them, utilise them as mercenaries, and make them participate in the intensified offensive at various levels. So whoever naively thinks that the State is taking up surrender policies to make them part of the ‘mainstream’, to give them a ‘good life’ etc., should understand that surrenders are nothing but a part of the ‘War on the people.’ Its aim is to intensify this war by weakening the movement and turning them into traitors.
The second reason for surrenders is that some persons are not being able to understand the nature of enemy repression and some temporary losses in the movement and are therefore getting confused. The personal weaknesses of some are another reason. The solution for these problems is in raising the political consciousness and commitment of the cadres at all levels, putting up more formidable fight against the psy-war of the enemy and making them understand how surrender turns us against our own people and is therefore not a solution. The present Bolshevisation campaign in the party is dealing with this aspect too. One more thing I want to stress is that this very period of OGH first and second phases has witnessed some of the most unparalleled sacrifices of the revolutionary cadres and the people. Revolutions advance with sacrifices because firstly the people realise their inevitability and secondly because they prepare themselves for this with a higher consciousness.
The enemy as part of its psychological warfare would of course highlight only the surrenders and try to suppress the aspect of sacrifice. We should effectively focus on this aspect in our revolutionary propaganda war. As long as revolutionary wars continue, repression of the State too continues. Therefore, till the brutal system is overthrown, there may be some surrenders and their numbers may be relatively more or less in some periods. Sacrifices at all levels, including supreme sacrifice, are a result of voluntary dedication to the cause of revolution in the entire party and in all our movement areas and they are absolutely indispensible for any revolution.
MIB: Why did the party feel the need for a Bolshevisation campaign? What results are you expecting from it?
GP: Our party issued a call in 2013 to Bolshevise the party and it is being carried out in the party, PLGA and mass organisations now. It would take some more time to complete it and only then we can assess how successful it had been in remoulding our party into a Bolshevised party. It was the CPSU(B), popularly known as the Russian Bolshevik party, that overthrew the bourgeois class and established proletarian dictatorship for the first time in the world. When no communist party was in power in the world, this was the party that brought the working class and the toiling masses to power. It was the Bolshevik party that ushered in Socialism for the first time in the history of humanity. So we are taking this party as our model, and striving to turn our party into such a proletarian party by learning lessons from it and imbibing the qualities that made all this possible. That is why we named it as Bolshevisation Campaign.
On the other hand the Chinese Communist Party model is also very important for us because China and India have several similarities and so knowing and imbibing the qualities of CPC that made it possible for it to make a successful revolution and build socialism in a semi-colonial, semi-feudal backward country where peasantry is the majority by developing the PPW line and building a people’s army, a successful united front and through the process of establishing liberated areas. CPC, since its formation, put continuous efforts to strengthen itself by taking CPSU(B) as a model. So we decided to carry on this campaign keeping in view the experiences of this party, particularly from the Great Debate and in the light of the lessons imparted by the GPCR. We would keep these two parties as the models and try to Bolshevise the party but it would be in the light of the experiences gained in the long revolutionary history of our party.
The reasons for taking up this campaign are :
(1) There is a change in enemy’s countrywide offensive. It has intensified;
(2) There were severe losses to the party and the movement is now facing a very difficult situation;
(3) Comrades from peasant and middle class background form a majority in the party and so there is a need for enhancing proletarian outlook in the party;
(4) our shortcomings in studying and formulating appropriate tactics according to the significant economic and political changes that have occurred in the society and in revolutionary war; and
(5) There are some serious non- proletarian trends within the party.
Keeping these in view, we took up the Bolshevisation campaign for raising the ideological and political level of the party to tackle these challenges and to strengthen the party organizationally so that it can lead the revolution efficiently. Only by doing so the party can in turn mould the PLGA into a powerful weapon and strengthen the movement’s mass base. And only through this we can surmount the present difficult situation and advance. We decided to conduct this campaign in a planned manner to achieve some concrete targets. By achieving these targets we are expecting the following results. This campaign would remould the party with proletarian world outlook and enhance it inside the party, particularly among the new forces.
This would be done by enhancing the ideological study of MLM and training up the entire party in it. It would make the entire party, every unit in the party, gain the most clear-cut understanding about the goal of NDR and make them clearly understand the concrete targets to be achieved at the present juncture. It would help in understanding deeply the three point work style taught by Mao and thus improve our work style. It would enhance our understanding about secret party building and functioning, help in quickly rectifying the defects that are occurring in this and in implementing guerilla war’s operational principles. It would rectify the non-proletarian trends continuing in the party and enhance the consciousness and alertness of the party to fight against them.
It would also enhance and strengthen unity of thought and action and discipline. This would result in the party strengthening its mass base by firmly integrating with the people and mobilising them into various economic, political and other struggles. It would also lead to giving priority to rallying the peasants into the agrarian revolutionary war and putting special efforts among the vast non-peasant masses and the urban population. This would lead to the study of the changing socio-economic, political and cultural conditions and changing the tactics accordingly, thus developing the movement successfully. We are expecting this campaign to steel the comrades so that they can display the consciousness to face the most difficult situations, hardships and risks that may come up in the course of the revolution and heighten their preparedness to gallantly fight the enemy. Last but not least, we expect that it would enable us to defend our subjective forces, particularly the higher level leadership and the movement from the cruelest offensives of the enemy. All the above results would be achieved by grasping MLM deeply and keeping it at the core of this campaign.
MIB: The enemy is propagating that the PPW line is outdated. Some people are advocating Chavez’s 21st Century Socialism. The UCPN (Maoist) led by Prachanda- Bhattarai clique has chosen the parliamentary path and abandoned the PPW line. Several questions are being raised about the relevance of PPW line in India and elsewhere in the present globalised world. What is the party’s answer to all these arguments?
GP: The exploiters and all reactionaries have always been propagating against Marxism and revolution not only in our country but also elsewhere in the world ever since Marx and Engels propounded proletarian ideology and after the working class emerged as a revolutionary force in the struggle against feudalism and capitalism, particularly in proletarian revolutions since Paris Commune. After Russia and China turned revisionist – they started propagating that Marxism itself is outdated. The reason is obvious. Revolutions and Marxism would bring their end. How can the line of PPW be outdated? After Mao’s death, all the revolutions that took place in the world, whether NDRs or national liberation wars, were protracted.
Even if some of them faced betrayal or were abandoned, it is a fact that all of these were protracted. As long as semi-feudal structure does not change basically and imperialism keeps countries like ours in its clutches and does not allow their independent development, there is no other path than the PPW for the liberation of such countries. Some of the feudal forms may change but feudalism would be left intact as it serves the interests of the imperialists and serves as a basis for furthering the interests of the CBB. That is why the people are waging the PPW under the leadership of the party for the victory of an anti-imperialist, anti-feudal revolution, the NDR. And the specific characteristics of our country decide that it would be protracted and it would be a war waged by the people led by our party.
Hence the PPW. I have already explained why we consider the line of PPW to be indispensable for carrying out a successful revolution in a country like India. Now about Chavez and his model of the so-called 21st century socialism. Till now two paths have been established for revolutions in the world – insurrection and the PPW. These two are basically to be applied according to the concrete, specific conditions in the respective countries. There might be modifications to these two paths in the new historical context. That is what Marxism says, not to do revolutions mechanically or dogmatically but creatively. But whatever may be the modifications they would always have to lie within the purview of revolutions. That is why revolution is a must. However, it has to be carried out in the specific characteristics of a particular country. Trying to reform the decadent system without any perspective of traversing towards a classless society is purposeless.
Chavez’s model is not of revolution but of mere reform. It is socialism neither in form nor content. Several changes have occurred in the world after the Russian and Chinese revolutions. Both in the capitalist countries and the third world the petty bourgeois sections have increased considerably. A section of them possess liberal bourgeois ideas, another section possess utopian socialist ideas. In countries where bourgeois democratic revolutions or new democratic revolutions did not take place, where revolutionary movements could not bring them into its fold to a large extent, most among these petty bourgeois sections want some change or reforms in the framework of bourgeois parliamentary system. Chavez took some steps in the interests of the working class and the peasantry in Venezuela. Their main product is oil. Though oil and some other industries were nationalized, of course with several limitations, feudalism and comprador bureaucratic capitalism were not done away with.
They are not separated from the world capitalist system too and so there was no basic change in the system. They are not completely independent from imperialist domination. A major section of the feudal and comprador capitalist forces in Venezuela are so anti-poor that they are opposing even these reforms vehemently which is turning into a boon in disguise as it is getting wide propaganda for Chavez’s model from diverse sections. He never mobilised the masses in class struggle. Chavez invokes Bolivar and Che Guevera but his model is minus Bolivarism and minus Che Gueveraism. It is mainly reformism and that is why even the bankrupt CPI and CPI(M) in our country are highlighting his legacy. When they were in a united party they hailed ‘Nehruvian Socialism’ and betrayed revolution.
In Nepal the parliamentary system exists based on semi-feudalism and under the imperialist yoke; it is under the domination of Indian expansionism on one side and under the influence of China on the other. Anybody who joins it has to abandon revolution. In spite of good successes in the NDR, the Prachanda-Bhattarai modern revisionist clique in the UCPN(Maoist) chose this path. It is nothing but a betrayal. They just betrayed the millions of masses and thousands of their martyrs. Like all the revisionists before them, they did this for their selfish interests, for sharing power with the ruling classes. We also accept that several changes in the economic, political and cultural spheres have occurred due to globalization. But for whom did these changes occur? These changes were brought to fulfill the interests of monopoly capitalism. The world capitalist system brought these changes over the past 23 years.
This gave the opportunity for a section of ruling classes among the capitalist, imperialist and third world countries for super-exploitation of labor, labouring masses and indiscriminate loot of natural and other resources of colonies and semi-colonies. This led to enormous increase of gap between the incomes of the rich and the poor and concentration and centralisation of capital to gigantic levels. This is the same period that witnessed increased intervention of US imperialism in West Asia and later in Afghanistan. Almost all imperialist, capitalist States, particularly the US, and their lackey regimes turned neo-fascist. The ruling classes tried to portray the neo-liberal policies as the ultimate solution that would lead to GDP growth, boost the economy, employment, prosperity, and what not. All these claims came crashing down like a pack of cards with the worldwide economic crisis of 2008. So we should look at the havoc played by imperialism in the lives of people with these neo- liberal policies not only due to its economic crisis but also due to the wars of occupation and increasing neo-colonial intervention, bullying and control of other third world countries.
With ‘globalization’ the imperialists have resorted to the only solutions they can adopt in their desperation to come out of their crisis. Wars, more exploitation, oppression and repression of the world people, particularly the third world people. So without fighting imperialism and their domestic lackeys the third world people cannot breathe free. Therefore, we have to enrich our strategy and make changes in the tactics keeping in view these changes and mobilise the people accordingly in the revolutionary war. We have to bring changes in slogans, political tactics, military tactics and work methods and only then we can advance. The solution is not to abandon the political line and the PPW path but to adhere to it more firmly. Whatever tactics we take should serve this and advance this. I reiterate that correct ideology, a correct political line, a correct military line, a strong vanguard party, a strong people’s army and strong united front are the only solution to make success the NDR for smashing the present semi-colonial, semi-feudal system for the liberation of our country and our people.
MIB: What is the position of the International Communist Movement (ICM) at present especially since the party’s assessment is that the objective world situation is turning further favorable to the revolution? What do you think would be the impact of Avakianism and betrayal of Nepal Revolution by Prachanda-Bhattarai clique for the ICM?
GP: The objective world situation is turning excellent for the advancement of revolution. As noted before, the imperialist system continues to go through its most serious crisis since the Great Depression, leading to massive lay offs and shrinking of job opportunities, unemployment and impoverishment on the one hand and intensified exploitation of working masses and neo-colonial plunder of oppressed countries and people on the other. Wars of occupation have shown no signs of abating, with US imperialism getting bogged down in Iraq, Afghanistan and several other warfronts. Revolutionary, democratic and national liberation forces against imperialism and its domestic props are strengthening in different parts of the world. Workers, peasants, the middle classes, Blacks, immigrants, Muslims and other persecuted communities, women, students, youth and various oppressed classes and sections are coming out onto the streets.
Several EU countries have been rocked by massive worker’s demonstrations and strikes against job cuts, unemployment and underemployment, reduction in real wages, withdrawal of social security spending and other ‘austerity’ measures of the governments. As the gap between the rich and the poor is widening and class antagonism is sharpening, more and more people are joining struggles in the capitalist countries. The Black people, Muslims, immigrants and other oppressed people are protesting in Europe and North America for their democratic rights. In the backward countries too, the disparity of wealth, impoverishment and destitution of the working people, political oppression are all leading to mass upheavals. Several Asian and African countries are going through turmoil and civil war. The armed national liberation struggles of the Iraqi, Afghan, Palestinian, Kurd and other peoples are advancing even in the face of bloodbaths and massacres.
National aspirations of the Scot, Catalonian and other nations of Europe are sustaining. In South America, people have organised massive protests against the anti-people neo-liberal policies adopted by the governments of countries like Brazil. However the subjective forces in the ICM are seriously lagging behind this favourable objective situation in the world today. There is a contradiction between the potential of the objective situation and the subjective capacity of the Maoist forces to utilise it for the advancement of World Socialist Revolution. We know from the lessons of history that this subjective weakness can be overcome principally by waging revolution according to the concrete conditions of each country.
As the revisionist and reformist forces are proving incapable of addressing the people’s issues, the possibility of their rallying with the Maoist forces is increasing. Maoist parties and organisations in many countries are gaining strength and some new parties are in the process of formation. The unity among Maoist parties, organisations and forces is also growing. The potential for a powerful new wave of revolutions is increasing. Facing several odds, PPWs in the Philippines and India are continuing. Maoist parties are carrying out struggles in several other countries as well. Solidarity activities among international Maoist forces around support to the people’s war in India, international mobilisation against counter- revolutionary OGH and Oplan Bayanihan, struggles for the rights of political prisoners, etc. are being carried out. So it is possible that the ICM and the Maoist forces will be in a position to play a significant role in people’s struggles and thereby usher in a revolutionary wave in the future.
Of course, the revisionism of Prachanda-Bhattarai clique and their betrayal of the cause of Nepali people and WSR caused serious damage to the ICM. These traitors have destroyed the glorious people’s war from inside and helped the enemy to retain their stranglehold over the oppressed Nepali people. This is a reversal not only for the Nepali people but also for the entire ICM. However, the bitter struggle waged by genuine Maoist forces against Prachanda-Bhattarai clique, their shameless surrender before the imperialists and their agents, and most importantly, Nepali people’s own struggle against these traitors has have exposed the clique’s reactionary character and its betrayal of MLM in the name of developing and enriching it.
These modern revisionists have become the most trusted lackeys of imperialism, domestic feudal and comprador bureaucratic capitalist forces and Indian expansionism. Nepali masses and the ICM have completely rejected their class collaborationism and will definitely advance on the path of revolution by throwing these turncoats into the dustbin of history. Similarly, the so-called new synthesis of Avakianism too has seriously damaged some Maoist parties. This is because Avakianism is nothing but disguised revisionism and liquidationism. Though it may have some negative impact in the ICM temporarily, it will certainly be defeated. As a detachment of the world proletariat, our party will continue to struggle against Avakianism and all forms of revisionism in the communist movement internationally and in the country.
MIB: Modi-led NDA government is rapidly implementing the imperialist agenda and the RSS is speedily spreading its Hindutva tentacles. Home Minister Rajnath Singh has stressed that the Indian State still considers the Maoists as the biggest internal security threat. That the fascist offensive has been stepped up on all fronts is obvious. How does the party plan to fight this back?
GP: In the five months that the NDA government has been in power, it has intensified the policies of Liberalisation-Privatisation-Globalisation (LPG) that have been pursued by successive governments since 1990s. In fact, Modi and BJP has been installed at the helm of government by imperialists, comprador big capitalists and big landlords precisely for carrying out these policies faster and more aggressively than the previous UPA government. Therefore a ‘weak’ Manmohan Singh was replaced by a ‘strong’ Narendra Modi. The combination of imperialist-driven policies with ruthless exploitation of the toiling classes and Hindu-fascist oppression of Muslims, Dalits and Adivasis was carried out in Gujarat under Modi. This ‘Gujarat model’ is now being extended all over the country.
The aggressive neo-liberal policies of the Modi government will intensify the hardships faced by the workers, peasants, government employees and various sections like women, students and the youth. Attacks on Muslims by the state and the Hindu- fascists will increase. Atrocities on Dalits is on the rise due to the strengthening of the feudal reactionary forces. Oppressed nationalities is facing further persecution. The drumming-up of big-nation chauvinism in support of NDA’s aggressive expansionist policies would generate opposition from the peoples of South Asia. We need to intervene in such issues and organise the people in struggles. Neo-colonial stranglehold will tighten over the country as a result of the aggressive implementation of the LPG agenda.
To deflect the consequent anger of the masses, Sangh Parivar will resort to fanning up jingoism and false talk of nationalism. Such tricks must be challenged by presenting the true picture of the wholesale sell-out of the country by Modi’s government. We must carry out wide propaganda exposing the pro-imperialist, pro-feudal nature of Modi’s agenda. The aggressive promotion of Modi’s ‘development’ agenda will result in displacement on an unprecedented scale. Adivasis will find their existence threatened. This will bring forward mass struggles. We should actively intervene in these, either directly by adopting suitable forms or by playing a supportive role. These attacks on the people will be accompanied by more draconian laws. Old laws are being modified and new laws introduced to suit imperialists, big landlords and comprador bureaucratic capitalists, to take away the jal-jangal-zameen and livelihood of the people.
Blatant violation of even formal justice, and more brutal persecution of political prisoners and suppression of activists who take up such issues. We must energetically intervene in such issues. There is good potential for building and strengthening civil rights movements in a broad manner. Assessing the post-election situation, our CC noted that the formation of RSS- dominated NDA government at the centre has brought the urgent task of fighting back the Brahmanical Hindu fascist forces across the country. This can be done effectively by building broad-based and powerful mass movements through uniting the revolutionary, democratic, secular and patriotic organisations, forces, individuals and the vast masses. Wide and concrete propaganda must be carried out to expose the real pro-imperialist, pro- feudal nature of Modi’s agenda. All these activities must be carried out with the aim of uniting them with the ongoing activities to fight back the third phase of OGH.
The fascist home minister Rajnath Singh has parroted the approach of the UPA government by declaring that Maoists are the ‘still the biggest internal security threat’ and that countering the Maoist movement is the top priority of his government. We will fight back this fresh counter- revolutionary offensive by Bolshevising the party, intensifying the people’s war and mobilising vast masses into the revolutionary war.
MIB. The OGH third phase has begun. How is the party preparing to face this?
GP: One of the early measures taken up by the Congress-led UPA-2 government after it came to power for the second term in mid-2009 was to launch OGH – the war on people. It was a countrywide multi-pronged counter-revolutionary war on the struggling masses of our country. The NDA government led by Modi is continuing the same approach of its predecessor more aggressively and ruthlessly by launching the third phase of OGH, which is more extensive and more intensive compared to the earlier two phases.
The masses led by our Party have emerged as a major hurdle in implementing these anti- people policies in the areas where our movement is strong. While in the Opposition, BJP criticised the previous UPA governments for not preparing an integrated centralised policy to suppress the Maoist movement. After coming to power, BJP-led NDA is now implementing such a comprehensive policy in the form of OGH third phase under the overall LIC framework. Declaring large bounties on the heads of the leadership, announcing new surrender policies, increasing the amount of compensation for counter-revolutionary elements punished by the people, fake reform and civic action programmes, etc., are being intensified. Some of the new aspects introduced in the third phase are the use of air force for transport of forces for combat operations and closer collaboration with the US and Israel in the use of advanced drone/UAV technology.
These measures are complimented by the raising of new units of central and state commando forces and increasing the number of existing ones, modernisation of armed forces to raise their combat capabilities, improving communication and intelligence network particularly in our movement areas, intensification of atrocities on the people including fake encounters, beating up, loot of people’s property, arrests, custodial torture, rape and other forms cruel repression. But a completely opposite picture is being depicted through the media as a part of the psychological war. Our response needs to be tempered with an understanding of the particularity of OGH third phase.
The Adivasi people of central and eastern India have played a historic role in advancing the protracted people’s war. They have joined the movement in large numbers, defended it with their blood and sweat, and prepared grounds for its expansion. Due to this, parts of central and eastern India have emerged as strongholds of the revolution. With the third phase of OGH, the enemy is concentrating its efforts to decimate these strongholds. By bringing quantitative and qualitative changes to its offensive, the enemy seeks to destroy the party, the army and the emerging organs of new democratic power so as to reinstate the old state and the decadent political system in their place. Though these old and new forms of repression are aimed at the Maoist movement, they will not target the Maoists alone. This war on people will certainly extend to all the oppressed sections. All the exploited classes and social sections like the workers, peasants, Dalits, Adivasis, religious minorities, oppressed nationalities, women, etc. will come under attack politically, economically, socially, culturally, judicially and militarily. So the arena of war will expand. We have to politically and militarily counter this new phase of enemy offensive which comes in combination with the Brahmanical Hindu fascist ideology and country-selling policies of the Modi government.
Whether it is Modi, Rajnath Singh, Jaitley, Venkaiah Naidu, Gadkari, or any other representative of the NDA government, they are saying one thing to befool the people and doing its complete opposite. The anti-people nature of this fascist Modi government is getting more and more exposed as the ruling classes are using all extra-constitutional and extra-judicial means to carry out their all-out offensive against the people. We will have to resolutely confront and defeat this attack by uniting with all the sections that will be adversely affected. For this, our policies and tactics should be such that all democratic, progressive, secular and patriotic forces rally together in favour of the people and oppose and fight back Modi’s reactionary policies and particularly the third phase of OGH. The parliamentary ‘left’ too will be forced to come forward to take up people’s issues and oppose this enemy offensive in their own way in order to retain its relevance. It should come forward to join this fight. We call upon all the forces to fight in all fronts against this multi-pronged enemy offensive. Unite, unite and unite against the enemy offensive! Fight back, fight back and fight back against the common enemy!
–Maoist Information Bulletin, #30, September 2014