Das Kapital
“Most of the creations of the intellect or fancy pass away for good after a time that varies between an after-dinner hour and a generation. Some, however, do not. They suffer eclipses but they come back again, and they come back not as unrecognisable elements of a cultural inheritance, but in their individual garb and with their personal scars which people may see and touch. These people may call the great ones—it is no disadvantage of this definition that it links greatness to vitality. Taken in this sense, this is undoubtedly the word to apply to the message of Marx. But there is an additional advantage to defining greatness by revivals: it thereby becomes independent of one’s love or hate. People need not believe that a great achievement must necessarily be a source of light or faultless in either fundamental design or details. On the contrary, one may believe it to be a power of darkness; one may think it fundamentally wrong or disagree with it on any number of particular points. In the case of the Marxian system, such adverse judgement or even exact disproof, by its very failure to injure fatally, only serves to bring out the power of the structure.” (Joseph Schumpeter)

“Marx was the great character reader of the capitalist system.”... The significance of Marx for modern economic theory is that of an inexhaustible source of direct observation. Much of the present-day theorising is purely derivative, second-hand theorising. People often theorise not about business enterprises, wages, or business cycles but about other people’s theories of profits, other people’s theories of wages, and other people’s theories of business cycles. If before attempting any explanation one wants to learn what profits and wages and capitalist enterprises actually are, he can obtain in the three volumes of Capital more realistic and relevant first-hand information than he could possibly hope to find in ten successive issues of the United States Census, a dozen textbooks on contemporary economic institutions, and even, may I dare to say, the collected essays of Thorstein Veblen.” (“The Significance of Marxian Economics for Present-Day Economic Theory” by Wassily Leontief, Harvard University; The American Economic Review, Vol. 28, No. 1, Supplement)

“Let us finally imagine, for a change, an association of free women and men, working with the means of production held in common, and expending their many different forms of labour-power in full self-awareness as one single social labour force.” (Capital Vol 1, Karl Marx)
Sudeb Mitra

Vernon Gonsalves
Mumbai Rises to Save Democracy (MRSD) is distressed to learn about the health situation of 65 -year -old activist, poet, and writer Vernon Gonsalves, incarcerated since 2018 in the Bhima Koregaon/Elgar Parishad case. Gonsalves started developing several symptoms, such as fever, cough, dizziness, and nausea starting on August 30, as per the affidavit filed by his lawyers in Court. However, his health condition was met with neglect and it was only after pleading several times that he was finally taken to the state-run JJ hospital on September 6. Instead of continuing his treatment there, he was taken back to jail the same day. Upon hearing about this from other co-accused, Gonsalves’ lawyers and family members moved the NIA court seeking temporary bail on medical conditions. During the hearing, the lawyers told the Court that apart from Dengue, he may also be suffering from Pneumonia. It is appalling that in spite of this he was not provided adequate medical care by the authorities, leading to his health deteriorating further. Only after the bail hearing on September 7, he was admitted to the state-run JJ hospital. Gonsalves has since been put on Oxygen support.

Notably, his condition deteriorated in prison, as mentioned in the affidavit. At first, he was administered Paracetamol and Erythromycin without examination. Upon no improvement, and recurring fever and cough, on the fourth day, upon requests of co-accused Sudhir Dhawale and other fellow inmates, he was given an injection and antibiotics and sent back to the barracks. The fever still did not reduce, and by the fifth day there was nausea, weakness and dizziness. Till that point also, no checkups were done.

Earlier, out of the 16 arrested persons, Jesuit priest Stan Swamy died at a hospital in Mumbai while in custody, due to gross delay and neglect on the part of the prison authorities to provide medical care and treatment. Several others have fallen sick or were delayed medical help for an ongoing health condition. Two other accused persons, Sudha Bharadwaj and Varavara Rao, are currently out on bail. The latter, who is out on medical bail, similarly suffered medical neglect in jail and delayed treatment during the pandemic.

The activists, academicians, and lawyers incarcerated in the case have been arrested in multiple rounds, starting from June 2018, months after saffron flag carrying mobs attacked Dalit- Bahujans who had gathered at Bhima Koregaon for its bicentennial anniversary of the battle of Bhima Koregaon. The denial of timely medical treatment and care to not just these undertrials but several others indicates the callous attitude of the prison authorities and state governments, which is in contravention to national and international guidelines of human rights and individual dignity.

Apart from Gonsalves, the other accused persons in custody are Sudhir Dhawale, Rona Wilson, Surendra Gadling, Shoma Sen, Mahesh Raut, Arun Ferreira, Anand Teltumbde, Gautam Navlakha, Hany Babu, Sagar Gorkhe, Ramesh Gaichor and Jyoti Jagtap.

All the prisoners who are suffering from medical ailments should be released on bail as neither the jail nor the government hospitals are equipped to address emergency medical situations.
Mumbai Rises to
Save Democracy, Mumbai

A Farcical Interview
The interview for the post of political science (Guest) (Delhi University) was scheduled on September 10, 2022. Given my previous experience, I was not willing to appear for it. But friends persuaded me to go and fight for our rights.

I reached the college well before the time. When my turn came and I entered the room. The first question was asked about my experience. I said that I had taught for four semesters at NCWEB. I mentioned that I had taught ”Comparative politics”, “International Relations”, “Comparative Political Thoughts” and “Indian Government and Politics”. I said that as a teacher I had taught all the articles listed in the syllabus of the same Delhi University and the expert could ask anything about any reading or ideas.

Friends, the first question asked by a female member, perhaps she is the principal of the college if I am not wrong, to give the full form of NCWEB! The second question asked by a male expert, perhaps he is the political science department head, is to differentiate the money bill and finance bill.

These two questions were clear indications that the board does not deserve to take my interview. My work is on minority affairs and social justice; the expert did not have any time to look into it. Had they studied it carefully, they would not have asked me finance bill and money bill questions as I have never worked on that issue. Had they asked about the larger political economy question, it might have still made some sense.

Even I said that you could ask and discuss any reading from the above- mentioned four papers but they could not ask anything. Perhaps, they themselves have not read anything!

Soon, they called a person from the office and asked him to take me out.

Having experienced such a humiliation, I felt very sad. My sadness is not because I was thrown out of the interview room but because of the sorry state of Indian academics, particularly the political science department which is headed by intellectual bankruptcy.
Dr Abhay Kumar, New Delhi

Energy Protest
Huge protests are pouring into the streets in Germany against Olaf Scholz's Government.
—  Energy Bill protests are on in Italy.
—  Spain is teetering on the edge of bankruptcy. It already saw massive protests in March.
—  70,000 Czechs protest over energy crisis at Prague.
—  Slovak Government has fallen.
—  “Don’t Pay UK” and “Enough is Enough” campaigns are gathering steam in UK.
—  France issued "Energy Sobriety" measures with more to follow.
—  Sweden and Finland have announced rescue packages for their Energy Companies.
—  Austria's primary power company has already folded.
—  Many European Energy Companies are on the brink of going under.
—  Russia has earned OVER 158 Billion in excess energy sales, post the Ukraine invasion.
—  Russia has suspended supply of Gas to Europe.

But...guess whose Government is in danger of falling, as per Western 'experts'?
Soumyabrata Guha Thakurta, Kolkata

‘I am not a Marxist’
Marx hyphenated himself as a Marxist as he was opposed to confine his ideas into any 'ism'. Marcello Musto in his 'Last years of Karl Marx: An Intellectual Biography', wrote: "After the birth of the French Workers’ Party, in September 1882, he raged to Engels about the husbands of his two elder daughters: “Longuet as the last Proudhonist and Lafargue as the last Bakuninist! The devils take them!” And in a similar vein, he more than once attacked those who claimed to be following his ideas, wittily noting:

'What is certain is that I am not a Marxist [Ce qu’il y a de certain c’est que moi, je ne suis pas Marxiste].' Marx stated in chaste French.
Sankar Ray, Kolkata

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Vol 55, No. 19, Nov 6 - 12, 2022