Protests on Kashmir

Report from Harsh Thakor

With the repealing of acts 370 and 35 a new epoch has been written in the history of Indian proto- fascism and has paved the way for it to reach its boiling point. Whatever remnants of parliamentary democracy remaining in Kashmir have been crushed to the dust. Nevertheless, many parts of India still reverberate the echoes of resistance with Punjab leading the road.

The state of Punjab has been engulfed with a series of demonstrations lighting the spark of resistance against the repealing of laws 370 and 35. Groups belonging to all sections of the revolutionary camp vociferously condemning the robbing of Kashmir people of their just right to self-determination and summed up the fascist nature of the repealing of such acts. With meticulous precision and clarity, they narrated the history of Kashmir from 1947 explaining how morally it was not an integral part of India or Pakistan as Nehru had signed a plebiscite to withdraw Indian troops in 1952 adhering to leader Sheikh Abdullah. Slogan raised highlighting how fascist such abolition was and for re-instating the laws as well as against Hindutva fascism as a whole. Such an act of the BJP is a perfect illustration of how it is removing every needle in the haystack to permeate Hindutva in every sphere of society and bang every possible nail in the coffin to beak the backbone of constitutional democracy. Fascism has reached a crescendo as never before since 1947 with such a ban.

Lok Morcha Punjab held a protest in Bathinda of around 50 persons. ZPSC Sangrur held a protest in Sangrur on 7th August of around 200 people. Punjab Radical Students Union organized a protest rally outside Ranbir college on 6th August of about 50 persons Punjab Students Union and Naujwan Bharat Sabha organized a protest in Patiala on 6th August of about 100 people. Punjab Students Union (Shaheed Randhawa) led a protest meeting on August 6th in Gudda village in Bathinda of about 50 people. Democratic Students Organization organized a march in Patiala as well as Students for Society in campus pockets. Even if numbers were not so large qualitatively, they were very effective in illuminating the torch of liberation from the darkness of fascism unleashed on the people of Kashmir. The strong mass political movement had a strong bearing on the impact and success of youth protests in Punjab.

In Mumbai the traditional left parties and Ambedkarist groups organized a demonstration of around 200-3000 persons at Azad Maidan condemning the fascist oppression in Kashmir and vociferously defended Pandit Nehru keeping clause 370 even if he did not withdraw the army. Thus, left parties differentiated between the fascist nature of the Bharatiya Janata Party in contrast to the neo-liberal polices of Nehru. There was a significant counter exchange between a participant and an observer with the latter ultimately coming to some understanding of the reality. Generally, the crowds were impartial and willing to give the speakers a hearing, which is positive., in one of the most communalized bastions of our country which is Mumbai.

In Telengana activists of Virasam, CPIML (New Democracy) and C.P.I.(M.L.) protected but hundreds were taken into police custody.

In Delhi left parties and mass organizations launched a strong protest. Statements have been issuing by C.P.I. (M.L) New Democracy, C. P.I.(M.L.), C.P.I.M.L. (Red Star), Lok Morcha, Punjab and many other left groups. Very significant to see such unanimity in condemning the communal Fascism by BJP in Kashmir. Which is instrumental in building the broader movement against Fascism. A joint 2 joint public meetings in protest of 3 Marxist Leninist groups is planned in Kolkata later this month. The Democratic Students Union is also holding a public meeting today on College campus.

Significant that now we face a different situation than under Oppressive Congress regimes with Fascism formalised under the Jupiter was strong military repression under the past Congress regimes on the Kashmiri people but remnants of Neo-liberalism still remained which have been totally crushed to the ground now. Revolutionary forces have to devise a strategy to counter this which is most challenging when Communal and chauvinistic hysteria has deeply penetrated and poisoned the minds of the Indian masses at a height never reached before.

Harsh Thakor

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Aug 8, 2019