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

Articles by Arun SinhaSubscribe to Arun Sinha

BIHAR-Police to Landlords Aid

BIHAR Police to Landlords' Aid Arun Sinha IT was the afternoon of August 5 and paddy transplantation had been completed in the fields of Zahur Diwan, the zamindar of Mahuawan. Agricultural labourers queued up to collect their daily wages. The disbursement went on as usual until it was the turn of Shekhua, a young labourer. The zamindar gave him only half the usual wage because, according to the zamin- dar, Shekhua had become lazy, a kamchor (shirker). When Shekhua remonstrated, the zamindar flew into a rage and, started lashing him with the cane which he always carried. The labourers waiting to take their wages found it outrageous. They swooped on the zamindar and assaulted him by whatever they could lay their, hands upon

BIHAR-Police, Politicians and Hoodlums

October 1, 1977 BIHAR Police, Politicians and Hoodlums Arun Sinha THE Bihar chief minister, Karpoori Thakur, has alleged that his opponents, outside the Janata party and inside, have been making political capital out of the police firing in Barahiya in Monghyr district. This may be so, but the fact remains that the Barahiya tragedy does raise basic issues of use of force and violence by the police and collaboration between politicians and anti-social elements.

BIHAR-Landlords on Rampage in Champaran

In June 1977 the Governor of Tamil Nadu orderted an administrative en- quiry into Seeralan's murder despite the TNCLA's specific demand for a judicial enquiry. The police have resorted to threats, bribery, violence and kidnapping of witnesses in order to frustrate the enquiry. As for the government, it considers .the transfer of the three constables accused of murder to other towns in the same district as sufficient precaution against police interference in the Commission's work. The Commission is yet to submit its report Seeralan's mother presented a memorandum to the chief minister last BIHAR month demanding a judicial enquiry not only into the killing of her son but also into the illegal detention and torture of Jaya and Velu and police- landlord atrocities against the peasants of Ponneri, "The men who perpetrated these atrocities are walking as free men today, five months after the Emergency nightmare has ended.. ..As a mother in deep sorrow I am anxious to ensure that this fate docs not befall other mothers in future. This, I am convinced, can only come about by vigorously defending people's civil rights and by meting out exemplary punishment of the criminals involved." Landlords on Rampage in Champaran Arun Sinha THE killings at the math of Darpa show that even if ill-paid agricultural labourers refuse to die of starvation their masters will find other ways to destroy them. The labourers of Darpa, Sukhlahia and other villages of Champaran were merely asking for employment; they had been fighting only for their right to exist. For showing such 'daring', five of them, including an old woman, were killed on September 5.

BIHAR-Not Out of Bondage

September 10, 1977 THE labourers or Gopalpur, it seemed, had shaken off their bondage. Grasping the debt redemption law, they had secured the required official papers and had refused to pay the landlords. They also demanded the new wages

BIHAR- Murder of a Peasant Leader

BIHAR Murder of a Peasant Leader Arun Sinha NORMALLYa funeral in the country- skie is attended by a hundred persons or two, with women strictly staying indoors. But when Gambhira's dead body was brought from the thana to his Mahuawan village more than 10,000 poor peasants from villages near and far came; among them were over .3,000 women. They all wept profusely, except a dozen of Gambhira's close comrades. The place of cremation was enclosed by bamboo sticks; quickly a plan was drawn up to instal a huge portrait of the dead leader there.

MICA INDUSTRY

Unbroken Grip of Monopoly Arun Sinha THE Mica Trading Corporation (MITCO), a state trade enterprise created as a subsidiary of Mineral and Metals Corporation in 1975, has never been liked by the monopoly exporters of mica. The Mica Syndicate, an earlier enterprise set up in 1962 by the Bihar government, was destroyed by these same interests: but just as they were celebrating the death of the Mica Syndicate, MITCO was born' Naturally, MITCO has been under constant attack.

MICA INDUSTRY- Profitable Stagnation

MICA INDUSTRY Profitable Stagnation Arun Sinha THERE were 808 mica mines in 1961; today there are about a hundred of them. Average daily employment during this period has slumped from 30,000 to a mere 5,000. Production too has been steadily . falling; from 7,804 tonnes in 1971, it declined to 5,784 tonnes in 1975. Mica Syndicate, a .state enterprise, owns 3,200 acres of mine squares but in the last twelve years it has worked only a hundred acres, and that too most unsatisfactorily. A whole industry is collapsing; thousands of workers have been retrenched; and yet nobody seems worried about it.

BIHAR-The Ruam Conspiracy Case

functions in the interests of expediency and speedy execution of the law. The criminal law must be allowed to take its own course and the trade union movement should not tolerate this encroachment on their fundamental democratic right to be tried before a criminal court. The whole of Chapter VIII dealing with powers of Labour Court and Industrial Court to try offences should, therefore, be repealed.

BIHAR- Violence against the Poor

Budget Memorandum, has mentioned two other factors that would help reduce the deficit : the likely devolution to the state government of Central taxes and the special Plan assistance from the government of India for the state's major irrigation and power projects, and strenuous efforts to exercise strict control on administrative expenditure. The state government has set up an economy committee which, apart from suggesting measures to reduce expenditure, would also put up plans to streamline the functioning of various departments and ensure efficiency. In previous years, it had been a common practice for the state government not to impose any new tax at budget time but to announce a few direct and indirect levies in the course of the year so as to enhance the state revenues without the people feeling the pinch, or the legislators and critics having an opportunity to lodge protests. Last April bus fares were raised by 25 per cent. In November the state government raised the rate of sales tax on general goods from 6 per cent to 7 per cent, thus arranging Rs 60 lakhs additionally in a full year. Land revenue receipts were originally estimated at Rs 4.70 crores in 1976-77, while the revised estimates have raised the figure to Rs 6.26 crores. The 1977-78 budget, however, estimates receipts from land revenue in the year at only Rs 5.50 crores.

BIHAR-Decline and Fall

portfolio. Chose soon found, however, that he held the portfolio in name only, and that the real power lay in the hands of the chief minister. During the polls this gave rise to the spectacle of Ghose lodging a complaint at a police station against some police officers for their indifference to malpractices. He also demanded the suspension of the superintendent of police of the 24-Farganas district in which his Assembly constituency lies. Another volatile and controversial figure in the West Bengal ministry, Subrata Mukherjee, has openly said that the chief minister abetted the rigging of elections for four seats

BIHAR-Vote Banks Break Down

 bicycle tyre' increased from 76, 319 numbers to 2,32,672 numbers. Output of tread rubber was lower at 47,20,858 kg (50,26,699 kgs) Net sales were down, from Rs 49.35 crores to Rs 34,26 crores; and gross profit was a mere Rs 43 lakhs against Rs 3.14 crores previously. With depreciation requiring Rs 1.31 crores, the outcome turned into a net loss of Rs 88 lakhs. After writing back Rs 4 lakhs from development rebate reserve and after adjusting the carried forward profit of Rs 72 lakhs, there was a loss of Rs 13 lakhs which has been transferred to general reserve. After this adjustment, the company's reserves and surplus still stood at Rs 4.39 crores. The company was able to step up exports by 70 per cent to Rs 2.20 crores. Efforts are being made to exceed this mark in the current year by entering into new markets. The directors are looking forward to better prospects for the current year, although they have taken note of severe competition, price cutting, and continuing slackness in the home market. Their optimism is based on the good reception the company's products enjoy in the market. During the first four months, both total sales and the market share have been substantially enhanced. Meanwhile, expansion of the Goa fac- tory, from 4 lakh numbers to 8 lakh numbers, each, of automotive tyres and tubes is being considered. The company is also engaged in the process of diversification into bias belted tyres, radial tyres, and special agricultural tyres, which command a good export market' ATUL PRODUCTS, on March 17, 1952, completed 25 years. Wheu Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru inaugurated the company's first manufacturing plants, Atul's product-range consisted of simple basic dyes and chemicals. Today, Atul has grown into a giant chemical complex manufacturing a wide range of dyes, dye intermediates, basic chemicals, and pharmaceutical intermediates. It has introduced, over the years, several sophisticated products with the technical expertise of three world renowned collaborators

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