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

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The Singur Movement

​ Land Dispossession and Everyday Politics in Rural Eastern India by Kenneth Bo Nielsen, London and New York: Anthem Press, 2018; pp 221, £70, hardcover.

"It's a Melancholy Ride, You and I are Included in it": A Slice of Ashok Mitra’s Writing

Ashok Mitra’s contribution to the Economic Weekly, the EPW and the EPW Research Foundation was immense and unforgettable. Below, we present glimpses from a few of his articles in Calcutta Diary, spanning decades. (These articles have been taken out of paywall)

Where to be Left Is No Longer Dissidence

What does it mean to be left in Tripura today? In retrospect, the success of the left in Tripura depended on the recognition of the contrarian geographical impulses of ethno-nationalism. It is argued that efforts by the left to eradicate these geographies of ethno-nationalism not only implied an abandonment of this mode of dissidence, but also that these efforts ensnared the left into gratuitous, quiet militarisation of the state underthe garb of peace and development.

Missed Goals

Government as Practice: Democratic Left in a Transforming India by Dwaipayan Bhattacharyya, Delhi: Cambridge University Press, 2016; pp xx+273, ₹750, hardback.

Political Intolerance in Bengal

Political intolerance is a bigger problem than religious intolerance in West Bengal. How will this affect the 2016 Assembly elections in West Bengal?

Unfinished Tasks

Beneficiaries of Land Reforms: The West Bengal Scenario by Anil K Chakraborti in association with Apurba Kumar Mukhopadhyay and Debesh Roy; State Institute of Panchayats and Rural Development, Kalyani, Nadia, Government of West Bengal, Spandan, Kolkata, 2003; pp 154, Rs 150.

The Left after the Elections

Now that the dust of the elections has settled, several questions need to be addressed by the Left, if it is to seriously think of chalking out its future. After its debacle in Kerala, will the Left now remain content with its electoral power confined to Tripura and West Bengal? In the rest of India, will it reconcile itself to the role of a minor ally of various regional and centrist parties? Shall we see more of spectacles like the CPI and the CPI(M) tying themselves to the apron strings of the likes of Laloo Yadav and Jayalalitha? Will they be seen on the same platform as the Shiv Sena and the RSS-led Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh in anti-WTO agitations, as witnessed recently in Maharashtra?

Left Front Win in West Bengal

A far-reaching consequence of long Left Front rule has been the manner in which debate and discussion have been made subservient to the CPI(M) party line with the result that to mount any critique of entrenched positions is difficult due to the lack of space for autonomous thinking. The challenge from Saifuddin Chowdhury's Party for Democratic Socialism, its organisational weakness notwithstanding, has perhaps provoked the beginning of some changes within the CPI(M) and the LF. Buddhadev Bhattacharya alluded to this in the run-up to the elections. Whether the substantial issues are addressed or swept under the carpet yet again after the LF victory remains to be seen, but in the long run the CPI(M) has to come to terms with the changing conceptual prisms through which it has habitually viewed the world.
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