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Mad Rush for Top CPM Jobs!: CPI (Mohammad Rafi) News Service

July 15, 2012

Guest Post by CPI ( Mohammad Rafi) News Service

Mad Rush for Top CPM Jobs!:  CPI (Mohammad Rafi) News Service

New Delhi, 15 July 2012: The CPI(M) headquarters saw a mad rush of job applicants after General Secretary Prakash Karat said in a magazine interview that his party paid Rs. 3000-4000 to its whole-time cadre as salary every month. Job seekers from around the country clamoured for immediate appointment to as full time party cadre amidst unruly scenes reminiscent of a typical day at the Indian Parliament.

Karat had mentioned this figure while answering a question as to why the Party’s leaders were mostly from upper caste and middle class backgrounds. According to the CPM General Secretary working class members were hesitant to become whole-timers as ‘ it’s not easy to survive on this small amount’.Contrary to Karat’s claim though, the job applicants queuing up outside the CPM were adamant the salary offered was far from trivial.

“I am already collecting Rs.2,500 from another Communist Party every month and if the CPM gives me even Rs.3,000 my family can survive easily’ said Mangat Ram from Darbhanga, Bihar who is also flirting with the CPI(Maoist) in the hope of getting a free gun and some ammunition out of the comrades.

“In these hard times a steady income of Rs.4,000 per month is most welcome, especially as the work involved does not seem to be very much” said Balvinder Singh from Bhatinda, a former truck driver who lost his job after the recent hike in petrol prices.

Asked why he thought the job of a whole-timer in the CPM was a light one Singh quoted Karat’s statement in the interview that ‘only whole-timers can become top leaders of the party’. He reasoned that since people who actually work for a living are ineligible to lead the party getting anything done was obviously not expected from those appointed to these positions.

The rush of working class folks vying to join the party and become its leaders is expected to bring tears of joy to the current CPM leadership, which apparently has been trying hard for many years to woo able working class people to top Party positions.

“We should have let the working class people know about our salary structure for whole-timers decades ago. The history of the Indian Left would have been very different,” said a long time CPM activist, who did not want to be named.

The upper caste and middle class nature of the CPM’s leadership is held by some political analysts as one of the main reasons why it has failed to mobilise the Indian working classes. Hopefully, with this new policy on filling up vacancies in the party hierarchy the prospects of the Indian Revolution look much brighter.

Note: Prakash Karat’s full interview can be read here

50 Comments leave one →
  1. k.s.parthasarathy permalink
    July 15, 2012 7:11 AM

    is it dnouement for CPM that the bourgeosie press is enjoying? Party whole timers does not mean salary workers..yes they are paid some mantainenece..but they are there due to their idelogical commitment..and this employment exchange is ridiculous..

  2. July 15, 2012 8:45 AM

    ha ha ha! true to CPM’s character indeed!

  3. vallyettans permalink
    July 15, 2012 8:54 AM

    another master’stroke’ from the one and only karat

  4. Socialist Fakir permalink
    July 15, 2012 9:25 AM

    How about all the tens of thousands the author and his coterie earn and spend- presenting, publishing, writing, deliberating, debating, musing, gesticulating, professing, hibernating, articulating, congregating, preaching on the CPMs upper class and upper caste character-while ensconced in pretty gatherings with fine/finer/finest wine flowing? How we must pat ourselves at our fine sarcasm! And, we start a line of fine strings on the internet, claiming the fineness of our satire, when in fact, it is drunken/inebriated banter! Oh! I don’t see the masses laughing! But, the masters (with their book offers/ long lines of degrees/ and their thesaurised research papers) love laughing!

  5. Ishwar Dost permalink
    July 15, 2012 4:16 PM

    I find the original interview far more hilarious than this piece.
    Also see these lines:
    Don’t you think the regional parties also follow neo-liberal policies?
    No, I don’t think so. Because they run state governments and they are elected by the people…

    There are so many problems in your Kerala unit….
    …you will see the results very soon because central committee is going to meet shortly to discuss this matter.

    • July 16, 2012 9:23 AM

      Complete replies sound less hilarious, though not entirely honest!!

      1. Don’t you think the regional parties also follow neo-liberal policies?

      No, I don’t think so. Because they run state governments and they are elected by the people, they are more responsible towards the people. To sell rice for one rupee a kilo is not a neo-liberal policy. If they were neo-liberal, they would curtail the Public Distribution System, cut subsidies on rice and wheat and let the market prevail. But because they have to maintain their support at the base, they are the ones who are actually moving against neo-liberal directions and providing subsidies themselves. Look at Andhra (even when the TDP was there), or you take Tamil Nadu and see the PDS there. There are issues on which we don’t agree. But it was regional forces who opposed FDI in retail. Mayawati did not even allow Reliance stores in UP.

      2. There are so many problems in your Kerala unit….

      In Kerala, at the state level, there has been a particular problem. We have taken action in that matter. We have intervened, not now, but for more than a decade. And we are continuing our intervention and you will see the results very soon because central committee is going to meet shortly to discuss this matter.

      • July 16, 2012 10:45 AM

        Another very recent gem from the same Central committee! The second-in-command and the real man-at-the helms Mr Sitaram Yechuri said in Nagpur in a congregation of workers and civil society members, when asked about the support for the Presidential nominee, “Just like we have a national anthem, a national bird, a national flag, we wanted to have a national President! ” what a bliss of wisdom! Then why stop there? why shouldn’t we have a national government and a national milli-julli national political party? Actually that is what and where CPM is heading too- a nice collaboration with the Congress party blessed by the imperialists – their world bank and funding agencies – with the neo-liberal policies of PPP, deregulation of essential commodities and prices, land grabbing favoring the corporate houses! The cat now is out of the bag, and the conscientious workers in Delhi and elsewhere have smelt the smelly cat and raised an alarm!

  6. Kunal Chattopadhyay permalink
    July 15, 2012 7:13 PM

    Does Socialist Faker know for sure that everyone criticising the CPI(M) is inebriated? If you do not like sarcasm, you evidently love gross and uncouth attacks on those you doisagree with or dislike. How typically CPI(M)-ish.

    • Socialist Fakir permalink
      July 16, 2012 11:52 PM

      If Mr. Chattopadhyay is unable to understand the metaphor of ‘inebriation’, then his ghoulish characterisation of ‘CPIMish’ requires silence, rather than questioning ‘flatulence’-in the name of stone pelting!

      “Born upwards by a subterranean wind.
      The mantle fell to the young prophet’s part,
      With double portion of his father’s art.”

  7. Sohail Hashmi permalink
    July 15, 2012 9:17 PM

    This is in poor taste.
    You can fight your political fights with the organised left
    and try to be the conscience of the nation
    but to make fun of party whole timers,
    many of whom have made great sacrifices for their ideals
    smacks of a terrible cynicism
    a cynicism that the author would share with all those
    who have for long ridiculed any commitment to the cause of the oppressed.

  8. Sagar permalink
    July 15, 2012 9:53 PM

    Sweetheart Socialist Fakir,

    Don’t try this ‘you bourgeois intellectuals’ crap please. The CPM is one of the biggest landlords in Kerala. It owns a television channel in addition to amusement parks, super-speciality hospitals and supermarkets. Its latest venture is supposed to be a mega water theme park in Kannur district. The finest of fine, fine wine is flowing down the gullets of at least a section of comrades allegedly living on Rs.4000 per month too.

    But the real question remains: why can’t people from a working class background become leaders of the country’s largest communist party? Surely the idea that low monthly stipends will not attract working class comrades to become whole timers is the most ridiculous thing any communist leader has ever said since Khruschev repeatedly banged his shoe on the table at the UN General Assembly in 1960!!

    • Socialist Fakir permalink
      July 17, 2012 12:53 AM

      Hello Mr. Black, have you met Mr. White! Your Twin !…Born of the wedlock of Messr’s Grey! (Darling Sagar-somewhere in your gastric distaste for the CPI (M), there appears to be your inability to understand my point- of method and manner- but then sweethearts are timid ‘ad hominem'(s) bestowed before frivolous banter)

  9. zahoor siddiqi permalink
    July 15, 2012 11:17 PM

    Never indulge in issues that are made to laugh at those who did something really admire
    able to live on a meager amount with a view to serving the cause of people;do not have some thing concrete to throw for discussion- for instance why till date the left made a dent in the Hindi belt?But never try to be personal while you participate in discussion.

  10. zahoor siddiqi permalink
    July 15, 2012 11:21 PM

    ‘no desirable dent’

  11. passerby permalink
    July 15, 2012 11:32 PM

    Is Karat not aware of the fact that many of the regional parties have populist schemes and are also supporters of neo-liberal policies both at centre and state. There are enough issues in the interview to discuss and criticise CPI(M) and this piece is in poor taste and diverts attention from larger issues. The fact is CPI(M) is in deep crisis and however much it may support regional parties, these parties choose left when it suits them and prefer BJP/Congress when they want a share in coalition governments in the centre. The left is loosing credibility by entering into alliances with them election after election. Are these regional parties labour friendly.

  12. July 16, 2012 10:49 AM

    I completely concur with Kunal on the general characteristic behavior of these CPM troupe who very typically slanders against anyone who falls out with whatever their leaders say!

    • Socialist Fakir permalink
      July 17, 2012 1:06 AM

      No one is interested in Slander! But, in all sincerity, the choice of sarcasm to reveal your distaste for a comment by Prakash Karat, was mistimed and ill-conceived, to say the least, especially, since, the choice of attack was party involvement. I mean, the author is bantering because he appears to be disdainful towards the ‘party’, but, then decides to rant eloquently about how no one rises up in the party. Its a circle of ‘mistrust’ on his part. What does it amount to? You should not be in a party, because you will not rise. You will not rise because you are in a party!

  13. Abdul permalink
    July 16, 2012 1:11 PM

    It was expected from Apoorvanand who has no sense of humor at all. I wish com Karat had offered him the post of a whole timer. If he works for an organised left party even for a day, i am sure he will not be able to waste his and other people’s time posting such crap.

  14. July 16, 2012 8:45 PM

    Abdul, you have missed the entire point of the satire and display a lack of of not just humor but perspective as well. The organised left, which claims to represent the working class does not have a mechanism to get working class people into its leadership- this after 70 plus years of existence in this country. If this issue is ‘crap’ then the toilet is surely the destiny of the left movement.

    What is this magic thing about being a ‘whole timer’ that qualifies only them to become leaders of the Communist Party? What about ordinary Indians working for a living every day who might be more motivated and even capable of actually bringing about a revolution in this country? Are they being excluded from leadership positions because they might actually get the job done?

  15. Afzal permalink
    July 16, 2012 9:11 PM

    I have to reiterate what Sohail Hashmi has said it so well. This piece of “satire” betrays a cynical, heartless attitude and that it is published in kafila which only recently got a very sensible piece on the dissolution of the CPI(M)’s student organisation in JNU is sad. I wish, Kafila showed some maturity in picking and choosing what it felt were apt satire and what wasn’t. This left-bashing for the sake of it is immature, cynical and plain idiocy.

    As someone who has seen party wholetimers slogging it out with meagre salaries and abandoning the luxuries that are enjoyed by scores of others in their respective class strata – I can only say that mocking them is mocking idealism. Prakash Karat may have his flaws but his invocation of the issue of wholetimer pay to suggest that working class communists find it difficult to eke a living as wholetimers is a genuine concern and not to be scorned or laughed at.

  16. Harivaths permalink
    July 16, 2012 9:14 PM

    It is precisely this kind of nonsensical sectarian satire that does not allow for a unity on the Left. What is Satya Sagar’s point?

    It is indeed true that a living on a wholetimer’s salary is a difficult endeavour. And for those with working class, poor backgrounds, on whom families are dependent upon, it is difficult to become a wholetimer because it is not possible for these people to support their families. It is much easier for middle class people to do so, because they have other family members working in relatively better paying jobs and can take care of families. What is wrong in pointing that out? There are several issues worth critiquing about the CPI(M). But this form of derision over a genuine issue is misplaced, illinformed and cynical.

    And why reserve such derision over the organisational troubles of a communist party?

    • Sagar permalink
      July 17, 2012 12:21 AM

      There is no derision intended at all. Every middle-class whole timer who struggles to work for the party and also maintain his/her family needs to be given a red salute. In fact they should be given much better stipends or honorariums or whatever so that they don’t have live so poorly. After all the CPM’s trade union wing has been responsible for raising the minimum wages of millions of workers around the country and there is no reason why they can’t do it for their own party workers. The CPM is not a poor party and can certainly afford to treat its whole timers much better and show ordinary Indians a glimpse of what the socialism of the future can look like. If the Party cannot organise some minimum social welfare for its own dedicated workers what is the guarantee they can do it for the entire nation. The idea that Communists should live in poverty and become ascetics is an imitation of a Gandhian and even an ancient Brahmin ideal- which only breeds hypocrisy and even corruption in the ranks. The ‘sacrifice’ of potential luxuries by members of the middle-class, worn as they may be as badges of honour and committment, is not going to change anything and only going to add to the ocean of poverty all around us.

      The point of the satire is about the fate of many hundreds if not thousands of party workers from working class backgrounds who never make it beyond district committees to national leadership. There is something very tragic here and this is not just the story of the CPM but many other left parties that when it comes to leadership magically the choice never falls upon a dalit, adivasi or a Muslim- just like in other mainstream Indian institutions, including those the Communist Party is supposed to overthrow. Is this not a matter to be debated? Is there no link between this elitism on the Left and its failure to transform a country with the world’s largest number of poor people? Should one shut up and continue with business as usual in the name of ‘left unity’ when the need of the hour is for revolutionary change? If harsh truths come across as ‘poor taste’ then indeed some who call themselves Marxists and Communists or even Leftists are dining at the wrong table.

      • Harivaths permalink
        July 17, 2012 9:02 AM

        Are you sure that the CPI(M) is not paying its wholetimers and workers the due amount despite it being able to? Or is it the case that as a communist party, it’s mite is only so much?

        There is indeed something tragic about the backward classes not getting their due chances at leadership roles in a party like the CPI(M) – having said that there are exceptions to this “rule” – but if you think that a honest response from the general secretary about this issue is worthy of cynical satire, then there is hardly anything to talk about. Who is asking you to shut up? There are various forms of engagement with this issue. You could have questioned if “wholetimers” should alone be given a chance at leadership roles. You could have questioned and asked as to why the CPI(M) is paying its wholetimers (including its general secretary) such meagre incomes. And so on. Did you do that? You engaged in cynical and poor satire

        Did you even check the environment within which the CPI(M) functions? What is the case with other parties in the democratic fray? Clientalism, crass patronage, crass sycophancy, venal corruption and rat races for “tickets” etc.. compared to these, the CPI(M)’s internal functioning – with its weaknesses, primarily democratic centralism as pointed out by Aditya Nigam – is far far superior, idealistic, democratic and clean. Why does it deserve such derision?

        Either the writer – you – lack objectivity or you are blinded by CPI(M)-hate. Check yourself in the mirror once.

      • July 17, 2012 9:47 AM

        There was once when a communist legislator had to give the whole salary to the party and then live on the levy provided to him by the party. I recall even Jyoti Babu fell into that category, his dress were very humble then. Later starting from him then Budhhadev babu and Biman Babu now dons the Muslin dhoti of 500 counts [ the best in the world that takes 6 and half months]. and their lifestyle is more luxurious than any corporate house executives. And watch Laxman Seth adorned with gold all over! what will you say to this?

    • July 17, 2012 9:37 AM

      The point is missing in the debate. A professional works for money and fame and achievement that would translate into money again. A wholetimer of any party works for the ideal-fulfilling of the party and cannot consider this job as a career or something to sustain life. CPM’s approach is now like a professional corporate house asking to submit incumbents to deposit CVs. A revolutionary belonging to a revolutionary left or communist party works with the minimum wage or below [as per Comrade Lenin’s suggestions] and dedicates his whole time and life to bring people to the level of collective class consciousness. A professional revolutionary therefore would have professional experience and skill level to becoming the best of organization technique exemplary to others- that makes him a leader through being a worker! CPM’s recent promulgation is not only falling way behind the standard it is a deliberate attempt to deflect the line of common-place and approved understanding among the left and concerned populace within the society!

  17. Abdul permalink
    July 16, 2012 11:22 PM

    At justiceforishrate, I wish you could understand why i call this kind of writings as crap. And if this is satire then what is cynicism?????? And can writing a nonsensical line like “CPI (Mohammad Rafi)” be qualified for an academic discussion? Such a level. Even kids will not like it.

  18. zahoor siddiqi permalink
    July 17, 2012 12:04 AM

    Keeping the dreams alive one makes even the most difficult journey a bit smooth;it is true that one has to live longer to see better results- younhein hum nei khilayein hein aag mein phool’. Therefore it is silly to think that CPI(M) is facing a big crisis;there is difference between crisis and difficult times.However,one should keep the eyes open as the situation inside the party and outside is quite challenging.But this means that we as well wishers of people’s cause avoid saying or doing any thing that helps the fascist forces to take advantage of the situation.Naxalites should also think any further weakening of this left formation will not going to fatten them rather it will make them an immediate target of brutal attack .Kerala comrades must forget the bitterness of the past and come forward to kiss each other and see to it that once again the largest left formation complete its historical task!

    • July 17, 2012 9:40 AM

      Left resurgence can only be done through ideological firmness and rectification. History has testified that with every sharpening of debates on ideological and political points, the movement have gained ground!

  19. Nakul permalink
    July 17, 2012 1:58 AM

    This piece is in such poor taste. Healthy political debates around the left are welcome and even important. But this is clearly a desperate attempt at CPI(M) bashing. Many whole timers (not just in the CPI(M) but even other left parties including the ML’s) make huge sacrifices in their personal lives and dedicate their lives to the movement. I know of whole timers who earn even less than what has been quoted in the interview. To write off their struggles with this biting sarcasm is by no stretch of imagination a healthy critique of the left movement.
    A little humility, Apoorvanand, does no one any harm.

  20. take1 permalink
    July 17, 2012 2:31 AM

    Am I the only one missing the point here or commentators just chose to conveniently ignore? A stable salary of 3000-4000 salary is a luxury for most Indians…so commees with all the commy infrastructure in place (read hostels, saprophytic univ prof with revolutionary beards and their univ accommodations, newspapers, magazines, journals, pen, pencils, fab India etc.) seem to be, in comparison to most Indians, living pretty decently!

    • take1 permalink
      July 17, 2012 2:33 AM

      and lets not talk about how luxurious it is to sacrifice by choice in comparison to….guess?

  21. Sagar permalink
    July 17, 2012 10:39 AM

    It is interesting to see how another communist stalwart deals with the same question posed to Comrade Karat on leadership of the party being dominated by people from certain backgrounds. Here is the excerpt from his interview in the Outlook on 28 May 2012:

    “What of the fact that while OBC and SC representation has increased in all parties post-Mandal, in the Communist parties the number of Brahmins has increased! Bardhan argues that this is because there has to be “a certain level of literacy to understand the ideology of Marxism and socialism”. (see:

    Hmmm, so while Comrade Karat says there are no leaders from the working class in his party’s top positions because they ‘cannot afford to be whole timers’ and are too poor, Comrade Bardhan says the poor are too ‘illiterate’ to understand Marxism and Socialism!

    To be fair to them, both comrades are giving very honest and straightforward answers and I don’t think there is any deviousness here at all.

    It could very well be that they are a bit out of touch with the poor in this country many of whom, as far as I know, may be both willing to take up leadership positions in a Communist Party and also teach some finer theoretical points of Marxism to the gatekeepers of the Indian Revolution.

    What are the principles on the basis of which the issue of leadership is decided within the Party? Why should only whole timers be eligible to lead the Party? Why are some whole timers considered to be automatically more capable than other whole timers? Have not many whole timers themselves been emasculated by Party structures to become docile and unquestioning loyalists who have lost their ability to speak honestly and bravely when the Party takes wrong decisions? How are whole timers who dare to ask tough questions treated by the Party? Are they not thrown out of the Party, out on the streets despite decades of service to the organisation? Are we going to justify all this by comparing it with what goes on inside the BJP or the Congress or Shiv Sena?

    Eighty plus years after the Indian communist movement was founded in this country are these not questions that merit debate? And if it takes a satire, however poorly written, to spark off such discussion is that not to be welcomed instead of sneered upon or abused as ‘diversionary’ or called a ‘personal attack’ of some kind? Or is it the fact that like other political streams in this country the left too has its secret stable of ‘holy cows’ to be fed and worshiped but never doubted?

    • Harivaths permalink
      July 17, 2012 2:15 PM

      It was diversionary because you never asked those questions in the first place. You now ask them and then say that it was not diversionary and cynical. It was. Glad you realise it, but can’t admit it.

      To the question of “wholetimers” vs others.. it is but obvious that a wholetimer – someone who gives up her career to serve the party and its organisations is given more opportunities to lead than others, simply because she has taken that step of not pursuing a career outside and is more dedicated to doing the job of a party worker than someone otherwise. That is but logical. (Sometimes logic does fall deaf to cynical ears though).

      Now if the question is why wholetimers get docile and become unquestioning loyalists, it is a legitimate and constructive one. Is it got to do with the nature of the organisation that is run on “democratic centralist” principles? Is Democratic Centralism the problem? Those are legitimate questions and some of us feel it is indeed so. But to say that being a wholetimer and rewarding one for being so *itself* is problematic is .. cynical and illogical and not well argued out.

      The problem with cynicism and illogical criticism is that it does not consider nuance and objective criticism. It simply brackets everything under the same umbrella.

      If you can’t tolerate a criticism of your poor satire, you should think twice about writing satire. Can you think, Satya Sagar?

      • Sagar permalink
        July 17, 2012 4:31 PM

        The task of satire is to provoke the target of its ire. Going by the responses to my piece it is not doing too badly. Admittedly some of you are more inflammable than others and even a weak spark seems to be enough to get you fuming.

        Far from being upset by all your barbs I am actually very delighted. With such a kind and understanding audience I will certainly continue to write more satire in future, I THINK!

        • Nakul permalink
          July 18, 2012 1:43 AM

          “Far from being upset by all your barbs I am actually very delighted. With such a kind and understanding audience I will certainly continue to write more satire in future, I THINK!”
          Ah Sagar… the depths one can stoop to for attention. Go right ahead with your “satire”. I’ll know exactly what not to read. :)

    • July 17, 2012 9:55 PM

      By far this is the best response..In India Press is mischievously anti Left and the best way to floor a progressive development is to corner it on caste lines. And attacking a party that does not believe in caste and works for abolition of caste , the question wants to divert the main line..Ideological developments take place in the most advanced section of a society and even within a a backward class/caste, its most advanced section is in leadership. An illiterate Kamaraj came to power indeed because of his ideological development. In Communist Parties I have met and inspired by ceratin leaders raisning from Bhangi cgroup . Every body grants the Brahmin caste is an advance section of this society.. and some of them have veered round to Comunism even as a backward class, but educated, higly motivated Narendra becomes a Vivekananda. The same press has rediculed Paswan Lalloo for their not so cultured but rustic performence. This is a dirty press. And I am afraid Karat did not handle this well enough..long back, the Ex communist underground communist, JP called Communist Party as Brahmin Party, the kayastha he was! and it is because they suported his political enemy Indira! God save our country from Casteist politics. Bardhan or Karat do not belong to any caste..

  22. Ishwar Dost permalink
    July 17, 2012 1:41 PM

    निंदक नियरे राखिए आंगन कुटी छबाय::-
    बहस में हिंदी के जरिए शिरकत करने के लिए माफ कीजिएगा। बेहद अचरज हुआ व्यंग्य के प्रति असहनशीलता की बानगियां देखकर। खास तौर पर कामरेड हाशमी जैसे सह्दय, रसिक और आत्ममुग्धता से मुक्त साथी को नाराज होता देखकर। तो क्या यह मान लिया जाए कि आखिरकार कामरेडों में भी खुद पर हंसने का माद्दा कम होता जा रहा है। कम्युनिस्ट अपने आलोचनात्मक और आत्म-आलोचनात्मक रुख के लिए जाने जाते हैं। व्यंग्य आलोचना और गंभीरता का उल्टा नहीं, बल्कि उसका एक अहम हिस्सा है। हिंदी के चोटी के व्यंग्यकार हरिशंकर परसाईं कहते थे कि तमाम विधाओं के बीच व्यंग्य की स्थिति शूद्र की है। व्यंग्यकार के जोखिमों में एतराजों का सामना करना शामिल रहता है। ‘’पुअर टेस्ट” का एतराज अक्सर लगता है। परसाईं ने आरएसएस, कांग्रेस, सोशलिस्टों, और भांति-भांति के कम्युनिस्टों पर व्यंग्य लिखा। उनके निशानों में माओवादी, जेएनयू के वाम बुद्धिजीवी, माकपा, भाकपा सभी शामिल थे। परसाईंजी सीपीआई के नजदीक थे और प्रगतिशील लेखक संघ मध्यप्रदेश के अध्यक्ष थे। सोवियत संघ, चीन और कम्युनिस्टों का मजाक उड़ाने वाले कई चुटकले भी उनके पास जमा थे। मैंने कभी कामरेडों में उनके प्रति गुस्सा नहीं देखा। <> उन पर शारीरिक और अशारीरिक हमले किए।
    क्या साथी चाहते हैं कि काफिला के दरवाजे व्यंग्य-विनोद के लिए बंद कर दिए जाएं? क्या यहां मनहूसियत भरी गंभीरता ही शोभायमान हो? व्यंग्य का काम ही विसंगतियों, बनावटी रवैये, और हर तरह के पाखंड का मजाक बनाना है। व्यंग्य का काम ही सुंदर-स्वच्छ आत्माओं के पुण्यात्मापन को संदिग्ध बनाना है। चाहे यह राजनीतिक पाखंड हो और चाहे यह पाखंड वाम के नाम पर किया जा रहा हो।
    कोई भी देख सकता है कि इस व्यंग्य का निशाना पूरावक्ती कार्यकर्ता नहीं, बल्कि करात का वक्तव्य है। यह अलग बात है कि यह व्यंग्य और धारदार और सटीक हो सकता था। इस व्यंग्य ने जो सवाल उठाए हैं, उनका सामना करने से बचा जाएगा तो मजाक उड़ाने, उपहास करने से तौबा करने के उपदेश ही सामने आएंगे। करात के वक्तव्य को प्रतिबद्धता, कुर्बानी के आख्यान आदि ढालों से बचाने की कोशिशें स्वयं हास्यास्पद हैं। शायद इसीलिए इन कोशिशों का मुंह गंभीर हो-होकर थुंबा सा सूज रहा है कि आलोचना सदा गुरू-गंभीर और शालीन होनी चाहिए और काफिला को ‘परिपक्व’ होना चाहिए।
    करात का यह रवैया क्या हास्यास्पद नहीं है कि ऊंची जात वाले मध्यवर्गियों और उच्च वर्गियों को सर्वहारा वर्ग के नाम पर बनाई गई एक पार्टी का नेता इसलिए बनना पड़ रहा है कि गरीब पूरावक्ती कार्यकर्ता बनना ‘अफोर्ड’ नहीं कर सकते। इसे इस तरह भी पढ़ सकते हैं कि चूंकि कोई विकल्प नहीं है, इसलिए मध्यवर्ग के लोगों को पार्टी का नेतृत्व संभालना पड़ रहा है, और अगर हम कुछ और पार्टी फंड का इंतजाम कर पाए तो फिर गरीब तबका भी नेतृत्व में आने लगेगा!! क्या यह पूरावक्ती कार्यकर्ताओं का ही नहीं बल्कि वाम के राजनीतिक मकसद तक का मजाक नहीं है? यह सवाल भी निकलता है कि जब गरीब पूरावक्ती कार्यकर्ता बनेगा, तब क्या उसे आदर्शों के लिए कुर्बानी नहीं माना जाएगा? कुर्बानी क्या कुछ मध्यवर्गियों का विशेषाधिकार है!
    यह भी देखिए कि करात से जो सवाल किया गया उसमें ऊंची जात का जिक्र था, मगर जवाब में मध्यवर्ग का हवाला है। यह हैरत की बात है कि शायद करात यह कहना चाह रहे हैं कि दलित, ओबीसी में मध्यवर्ग नहीं पनप पाया है। सिनिसिज्म इस रवैये में है कि ‘क्या करें कोई चारा नहीं है’, गरीब बेचारे पूरावक्ती बन नहीं पा रहे हैं, तो मध्यवर्ग सामने आ रहा है।
    एक और ख्याल आया है कि मध्यवर्गीय इसलिए पूरावक्ती कार्यकर्ता बन पाते हैं कि उन्हें अपने परिवारों और दोस्तों का वित्तीय समर्थन मिलता रहता है। सोचिए जरा, कितना खतरनाक विचार है यह। तो क्या जब कोई गरीब पूरावक्ती कार्यकर्ता बनेगा तो उसे पार्टी के बहुत से मध्यवर्गीय संगठनों, कामरेडों का दोस्ताना और पारिवारिक (पार्टी परिवार!) समर्थन नहीं मिलेगा।

    • Ishwar Dost permalink
      July 17, 2012 1:46 PM

      ऊपर की टिप्पणी में जहां ” उन पर शारीरिक और अशारीरिक हमले किए।” लिखा है इसे सुधारकर पढ़ लें- सिर्फ आरएसएस वालों ने उन पर शारीरिक और अशारीरिक हमले किए।
      इसी तरह इस लाइन को “करात का यह रवैया क्या हास्यास्पद नहीं है कि ऊंची जात वाले मध्यवर्गियों और उच्च वर्गियों को सर्वहारा वर्ग के नाम पर बनाई गई एक पार्टी का नेता इसलिए बनना पड़ रहा है कि गरीब पूरावक्ती कार्यकर्ता बनना ‘अफोर्ड’ नहीं कर सकते।” को इस तरह पढ़ें– करात का यह रवैया क्या हास्यास्पद नहीं है कि ऊंची जात वाले मध्यवर्गियों और उच्च वर्गियों को सर्वहारा वर्ग के नाम पर बनाई गई एक पार्टी का नेता कृपापूर्वक इसलिए बनना पड़ रहा है कि गरीब पूरावक्ती कार्यकर्ता बनना ‘अफोर्ड’ नहीं कर सकते।

  23. Pankaj Bhan permalink
    July 18, 2012 10:50 AM

    Nothing but slanderous propaganda. And in very bad taste indeed. I don’t think ‘Kafila’, even with its anti-organisation Left (?!) politics, should indulge in this kind of discussion. Even the most ardent anti-Left propagandists do not indulge in it.

  24. Sagar permalink
    July 18, 2012 6:16 PM

    What can one do when some readers in their outrage over a satire cast aspersions on its author, except quote Ghalib, :

    “Har ek baat pe kahate ho tum ki tu kya hai
    tumhin kaho ke yeh andaaz-e-guftagu kya hai ?”

    Or when they ignore content and find its style in ‘poor taste’:

    “Piyoon sharaab agar khum bhi dekhloon do chaar
    yeh sheesha-o-qadaah-o-kooza-o-subu kya hai ?”

    And for those who think it should not have been published at all :

    “Khuda ke waaste parda na kaabe se uthaa zaalim
    kaheen ‘eisa na ho yaan bhee wohee kaafir sanam nikle”

  25. Comrade permalink
    July 19, 2012 7:20 PM

    okay people, the writer has no basis for saying that some XYZ was queing up in a line for the membership, it is a cruel Joke by a fundamentalist (who’s scared of Atheism and de-recognition of god/God by Communists).

    For the record, in CPM, one has to be an EC member for a year, then if the branch feels that the person is doing good job, he will become CM and after at least another 6 months, the entire EC can make him a PM (Permanent Member).
    CPM might not follow progressive ideology but it always follows its party constitution and without that no decision is taken be it even deciding about the venue of a meeting or induction somebody in the EC.

    So, Believe me the writer has no basis and can never prove himself right.
    Left believes in Freedom of Speech, that’s why there is no hue and cry, had it been Rahul Gandhi this writer would have been crying.

    No Regards,
    Comrade Imran

  26. johng permalink
    July 21, 2012 1:28 PM

    I thought the comrades might enjoy Victor Serge’s description of the operation of democratic centralism in the early Comintern. Reading the above discussion one might almost come to believe in clairvoyance.

    “What’s that your saying? So you are trying to discredit the Executive are you? Which comes first: The Communist International’s reputation? Or your version of the truth, and the moral interests of individuals?
    Scapegoats had to be found. Out of defeat came the lying, the suppression, the demoralizing discipline that ruins consciences. Nobody talked about the basic fault. The whole Party lived on the involuntary bluff of functionaries whose first concern was not to contradict their superiors. Misinformation was generated at the base by the poor wretch who, simply to keep his job, assured the bezirk or Central Committee organiser that, yes, he had his fifty men available and that the fifty mausers had been bought – when in fact he had ten men and was searching in vain to find Mauser’s for sale. Misinformation ascended stage by stage, through the whole hierarchy of secretaries, so that, at the end of it all, the delegate from the central committee of the KPD could tell the President of the International, “We are prepared” when nothing was prepared and everybody in the Party knew it was so, except those who drew up the confidential reports. Now, the International was in fully blown crisis…” Victor Serge, Memoirs of a Revolutionary NYRB classic edition p 204 in chapter five ‘Europe at the Dark Crossroads: 1922-1926.’

  27. johng permalink
    July 21, 2012 2:25 PM

    NB..for Serge fans the new New York Review of Books edition is an absolute must. As eighth of the text has been restored (it was cut from Peter Sedgewick’s original translation by Oxford University on the grounds of ‘economy’).George Paizis has managed to restore the text to something like Sedgewick (and Serge) would have originally intended. For those who are not fans..become ones. One of the 20th centuries most necessary books.

  28. Ritaja B permalink
    July 24, 2012 3:17 PM

    Being a neighbour of Shri Buddhadev Bhattacharjee , I strongly denounce the incorrect and inappropriate statement by Soumitra Bose about his lifestyle ( muslin dhoti etc etc). I am no sympathizer for Buddhababu or his policies but his spartan lifestyle is something to look at and admire. He lives in a one bed-room apartment without an Airconditioner in Palm Avenue. His bed doubles as his workplace where he reads or writes and both he and his wife has spent a quarter century in this building where even today’s Group D staff of a government office would think twice before entering. I have actually seen him polishing his shoes sitting on a stool on his own even after he became a Chief Minister. His dress sense is simple & impeccable and his food habits are minimalist – this forum should never be used to spread lies & falsehood to personally attack people who are your ideological adversaries ( I am doubtful whether Soumitra Bose as any)

    • July 24, 2012 7:28 PM

      I specifically mentioned one thing. The dhoti he used to wear was of 500 count muslin, and I know the weaver who supplied that. Now can any one deny that he used to ply home every day for lunch and go back on busy Kolkata streets with his 32 caravan security party burning unnecessary fuel at the tax payers’money? What kind of spartan life-style was that? No CM ever in West Bengal ever did such a thing. There are lot many and please note these are not personal attacks, these are ideological renegacy. Reply to these…. if you can….

      • Ritaja B permalink
        July 28, 2012 9:49 PM

        This is personal attack as the original post was discussing something else. I am not sure on what capacity or authority Mr Bose is making these comments ( and he knows the weaver who supplies ). I know Smt Meera Bhattacharjee buying Dhotis from a cooperative store where none of Mr Bose’s ilk would enter and I also know so many ‘FabIndia’ socialists who advocates militancy in facebook or kafila but send their kids to work for MNCs. Shri Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee’s car used to have 4 cars before and after including his own ( 32 car is a lie, a damn lie) and he gave up all once he lost the election. Mr Bose had no clue about which CM did what and that includes our current CM. And, I know personal attack also has its own ideology and sometimes it has its roots in jealousy and personal grudge. But that taking over a serious debate is often unfortunate.

      • SOUMITRA KUMAR BASU permalink
        July 30, 2012 11:39 PM

        Dear Mr Namesake,
        Your criticism of Buddha babu is based on total lie. Even the staunch enemy of Buddhadeb babu wiil not not try to malign him, in respect of his personal life style as there is no negative ingredients in it. However, you may criticize him politically or you may discuss at length about his administrative capacity, if you want, but don’t engage in cheap play like what you did in your write-up. We all know that where logic ends slandering begins. Is not it Mr. Bose ?

        • July 31, 2012 9:30 AM

          This has been a very old trick of the bourgeoisie which in the name of civility has seeped in to the pseudo left circles. A person’s life-style is the manifest of the person’s ideology. Bourgeoisie always strives to delineate ideology from politics in the name of professionalism, civility, decency and social-ethics. This is bovine scat. A leftist’s [let alone communist’s] every aspect is an open book for open criticism, the whole matters or it does not. First of all I did not start the thread- the first comment came from someone who vouched for the spartan life of Buddhadev, and now some one asserts that he is a lily in the whole valley against whom as per him even enemies have personal respect- no he does not, as a matter of fact he is alleged to be involved in many scams being dug in by the present government. Just because we do not approve the politics of the present government does not mean always that all their investigations are necessarily false- it is the same STATE police who are now coming up with it. Mr Bhattacharya’s flamboyant life-style is no secret as his pro-TATA and pro-SALIM politics is- this is the man who said that the most important day in his life was the signing of STATE government with the TATAs and the SALIMs.. And of course the blood of Bengal peasants and the honor of the peasant women being trampled had everywhere the imprint of Buddhababu- by his own admission – he puts on all the blame on himself and yet not ready to accept any punishment for that! ONLY a hardened criminal with flamboyant lifestyle with no regard to the toil of the people, can do that!

  29. July 26, 2012 12:45 AM

    I think some of those who took in the debate are reading too much into the average monthly wage of a CPI(M) wholetimer. I am citing two real experience. In the mid-1980d, I was travelling together with the late s Selaliah, rural works adviser, ILO. He asked how do unions raise fund for whole-time workers/leaders. I said, from monthly subscriptions of less than Rs 10 a month on an average. He said bluntly, in that case, the WT workers might become dishonest to live with their families. One of the founders of Sri Lanka’s largest central trade unions, he informed, in Sri Lanka, workers pay 3-5% of their salary to the unions to help WT unions run their family. Many unions refuse ads from managements from for publications/bulletins of unions. We bought a few sick tea estates and made them healthy. workers manage them rotationally. While i was a member of CPI, a delegate from CP of Japan said the samething, unions take care of the families of WT leaders. inference are at the moment should not come from me.

  30. SOUMITRA KUMAR BASU permalink
    August 2, 2012 12:06 AM

    This is a very favourite trick of ultra-left and reactionary force to attack a political personality on personal field, rather than on political line. It is so because these forces have no political depth, nor they have any ideological weapon to argue with. As such they engage themselves in the cheap game of slandering.
    One can criticize Buddhadeb babu, if he /she thinks he has taken and/ or has been taking wrong political steps. He/She has every right to it but he / she has no right to go on slandering about the said personality on the pretext of mentioning about the allegations of scam, a blunt lie, orchestrated by the present government with a vindictive attitude.
    One may have scores to settle with Buddha babu, but he/she should not do it in this way, he/she should fight politically, if he/ she has the just understanding of politics, and should not just try to malign him, because in personal life Buddha babu does not have any negative shed, he is just above that.

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