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

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United Front of the Oppressed

Bernard D’Mello’s clinical analysis of India’s “rotten liberal political democracy” from the perspective and standpoint of the oppressed and exploited “underclass” compels him to focus attention on the reasons for the continuation, survival and “stability of this form of democracy”, and on the goal of real “democratisation” of Indian society. In his article, D’Mello (“ ‘The Near and the Far’: Why Is India’s Liberal-Political Democracy Rotten?”, EPW, 1 June 2013) mentions the fact that the oppressed peasantry and the labouring classes have not been just passive spectators; many powerful struggles have been launched by them against the existing exploitative social system and in spite of such struggles, the foundations of the system have not been shaken. He emphasises that the exploitative and oppressive strata of the ruling classes have not felt threatened at all about their successful survival – a survival which stands on a private property-based society and state.

D’Mello is partially correct while stating that an extremely powerful militarised coercive state power with the help of well-equipped armed forces and draconian anti-people laws is in place in India. Beginning with the Preventive Detention Act to the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, the State has sought to utilise them to crush all militant struggles beginning with the anti-feudal, anti-Nizam and anti-landlord Telengana peasantry’s armed struggle of 1946-51. This concentrated coercive military might of the state is at work in crushing the People’s Liberation Army of the Communist Party of India (Maoist), which according to the prime minister, Manmohan Singh, is the “greatest threat to the internal security of the country”.

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