Hollow claims

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Owing to its false propaganda and petty political appeasement, the Communist parties have deviated from ground realities to plunge into organisational and functional decay

Indian communists, even with depleted political clout, continue to deftly indulge in propaganda and false information dissemination. They have desisted from introspecting on their reduced presence in the legislative arena and on their shrinking political footprints. The Congress and the CPIM and the Left parties, for instance, saw a complete washout in the recently concluded West Bengal assembly. For the first time in seven decades, the Communists have no representation in the West Bengal assembly clearly demonstrating their growing political disconnect and their inability to reinvent their political narrative. Also Read – Olympic dreams The preeminent political debate in the Indian communist parties today is whether their political energies must be directed to propping up the Congress or to cobbling up an alternate political front that can unseat Modi. In West Bengal, they are even considering the possibility of supporting their nemesis — the Trinamool Congress. Such is the present political waywardness of a party that would once take pride in its strict implementation of the “Party Line.” The Politbureau refuses to accept that the CPIM has transformed into a regional party. Considering that even the communist parties in India had grand notions of being part of a global revolution, the fall has been sudden and steep. The only country that engages with them internationally is China and it has been often revealed how closely Indian communists continue to work with the Chinese establishment. Also Read – Raising the alarm The latest disclosure by former Indian foreign secretary and veteran diplomat Vijay Gokhale in his book that Chinese communists manipulated Indian communist parties to try and scuttle the nuclear deal in 2008 comes as no surprise. The satellite mindset continues to drive communist parties, the slogan of China’s Chairman being their Chairman still holds sway over the imagination of their greying ranks. The recent communist victory in Kerala has evaporated in a multi-dimensional administrative failure and mismanagement. The “Kerala Model”, for whatever it has meant, has come across as a hollow propaganda narrative that was created to pick aplomb and accolades from Western “capitalist” countries and tout it as a communist success model. So disastrous has been Pinarayi’s government’s handling of Covid that more than half of Covid cases being reported in India have been from Kerala. Yet the greying and rootless Politbureau is only concerned with Jammu and Kashmir, with Assam and Mizoram – areas where they lack political base and prospect – and is obsessed with the fact that Modi, despite their limitless propaganda, remains unperturbed and continues to successfully tackle the pandemic, the economy and other challenges. Also Read – A road to nowhere Politically the CPIM in Kerala has been ceding ground to radical elements; the relaxation of the Covid lockdown for Bakrid was a case in point when ‘secularism’ was pushed into cold storage in the name of appeasement and vote-bank. The radical Islamic vote bank in Kerala is a crucial crutch for the continuance of the CPIM dispensation. The Apex Court rapped the CPIM government saying that the granting of relaxation demonstrates the “sorry state of affairs” in the state. The Apex Court termed it a “shocking state of affairs.” CPIM which displayed disdain towards Hindu sentiments, opposed the construction of the Ram Mandir, opposed Kumbh and vociferously led a false propaganda campaign against the Yogi-led BJP government of Uttar Pradesh for its handling of Covid, gave up all pretensions and jettisoned the collective health and well-being of the people of Kerala in order to appease one community and its religious and radical leaders. Also Read – Required underpinning The reason is not far to seek, communists depend for their political oxygen on those radical outfits which glorify the Moplah pogrom of 1921 and who have often publicly threatened to bring back that era for the Hindus of the state. These elements have already demanded a separate state of Malabar, carved out of Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Karnataka where perhaps they wish to experiment with Sharia and Islamic laws. Over the decades the CPIM has allowed these extremists to grow and gain ground for a few political crumbs. Observance of Bakrid became thus paramount and thousands could be consigned to Covid and yet the “Kerala Model” was touted to be a model which could be globally replicated. As anticipated and warned, Bakrid relaxations emerged as a super-spreader leading to Kerala contributing 50 per cent of Covid cases in the country towards the end of July. The state saw a single day’s spike of twenty-two thousand plus cases. Communist propagandists in academia and politics pulled in committed experts to explain that the comparison and assessment were flawed and that Kerala was actually doing well. With each passing day, one could well see how the “Kerala Model” was tripping with several thousand active cases being added daily to the state’s and the national tally. The CPIM’s meek surrender to the Islamists was also evident when it failed to protect one of its own leaders and his family who were subjected to forcible conversion by fronts run by the SDPI. PT Gilbert, CPIM Area Committee Member in Thenhippalam town in Malappuram district, for instance, complained of being harassed for conversion and of his son and wife being forcibly detained in an Islamic centre. Gilbert also revealed how the SDPI ran a conversion racket by coercion and enticement. Instead of standing by him, Gilbert’s party expelled him and his primary membership was cancelled for “anti-party” activities. Resisting Islamic conversion was considered an “anti-party” activity by the CPIM leadership. The Politbureau, as usual, was busy with national and global issues and had no time for a local leader like Gilbert. Apart from the disastrous record of handling Covid by pandering to a vote-bank, the CPIM’s political record in the state also shows how the party has become increasingly hostage to radical Islamists and to indiscipline. In the end of July, a doctor in Alappuzha was assaulted by CPIM leaders after he had refused to yield to the pressures of the local party-men and cadres who wanted vaccines for cadres and their friends instead of palliative care patients for whom those consignments were meant. CPIM goons barged into the centre, pulled out the concerned doctor who held his ground, and roughed him, with the police on duty completely ignoring the incident. The indiscipline is not only limited to vaccines, in mid-July, a CPIM’s youth wing leader in the state was accused of raping and killing a six-year-old girl in Idukki. The local MLA, pursuing the line of dialectical propaganda, asked the local police not to conduct a post-mortem. It was only after the villagers – the “proletariat” – protested that the accused was apprehended. The state leaders brazenly defended the youth leader while Politbureau members desperately tried, through their various wings, to cover the failure of its state government in addressing the Covid challenge. False propaganda, inability to address challenges, capacity to mouth separatist discourse, propensity to denigrate India globally and meek surrender to Islamist break-India forces, combined with an inability to reinvent itself politically is the hallmark of the CPIM’s politics today. The bogus “Kerala Model” narrative is a partial expression of those attributes.

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