ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Lalgarh: Questions to the Left

Lalgarh poses questions that the two main streams of the Left in India have to answer.

The Left Front led by the Communist Party of India (Marxist) has just suffered its worst ever defeat in parliamentary elections since Independence. The reasons for the defeat, particularly in West Bengal, had much to do with the way the CPI(M) went about implementing policies that alienated its core support base – the rural poor.

The post-poll incidents in Lalgarh in Paschim Medinipur d istrict confirm both the alienation and the anger against the ruling party as well as the degradation of the Left Front. But the manner in which activists of the Communist Party of India (Maoist), present in the region for years, have unleashed their own violence reveals the Maoists’ immaturity. The reprisals by the central and state governments that have followed will s urely result in the suppression of the local adivasi movement that was striving to assert the rights of the Santhalis in the r egion. Caught in the three-pronged attack by the CPI(M), the Maoists and the State, the Lalgarh tribals are, sadly, now doomed to further subjugation.

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