CPI(ML)’s Nation-wide Protest Against Sangh Attacks on Christians

On October 3, CPI(ML) held nation-wide protests demanding prosecution of Chief Ministers of Orissa and Karnataka for allowing saffron mobs to indulge in an anti-Christian pogrom; demanding a ban on the Sangh outfits guilty of communal violence and protesting against the UPA Government’s refusal to take stern action against the communal killers. A memorandum to the President of India was submitted from all over the country. The memorandum, raising all the above issues and demands, also noted that the Sangh’s accusations of ‘forced conversion’ was actually serving to cover up their own acts of forcing adivasis and Christians to convert to Hinduism. Conversion from Hinduism has largely been an act of rebellion by the oppressed castes against the caste-ridden Hindu fold, noted the memo, and “the current wave of violence is therefore also an attempt to terrorise the Dalits and other oppressed social groups for their rebellion – and is therefore a continuation of social oppression in another form.” The acts of humiliation of Christians that have come to light – raping, parading naked, and forcing to eat excreta as ‘purification’ ritual – are all reminiscent of the atrocities against Dalits.

The party also noted the increasing incidents of communal violence in Dhule (Maharashtra) and Adilabad (Andhra Pradesh), in which the minority community bore the brunt of the attacks. Also, it condemned the Tarun Gogoi Government for allowing the Bodo-Muslim clashes to take place, which had resulted in thousands of people being driven into refugee camps.

In Delhi, activists of CPI(ML) gathered at Parliament Street and burnt an effigy of Navin Patnaik and Yeddyurappa, and submitted a memorandum to the President.

In Orissa, the party had held state-wide protests on 30 October, in which 2000 activists at Gunupur, 1500 at Gudali, 600 at Rayagada, as well as at other places like Koraput, had marched in protest. On October 3, party activists held a protest procession at Bhubaneswar.

In Karnataka, another major centre of the ongoing communal violence, protest demonstrations were held in various places in the state, and the memorandum to the President was sent through the tahsildars in the taluks.

More than hundred people protested in front of taluk office at Harapanahalli. The demo evoked much expectation in the town as a church near Harapanahalli was also attacked sometime back. Our comrades had helped in getting bail for the Christian priests, on whom false cases had been foisted in addition to the attack on their church.

The demo at Gangavati was also impressive and demonstrators shouted slogans against BJP that is coming out with its true colours after assuming power in the state.

The demo at HD Kote near Mysore protestors included construction labourers and AICCTU activists.

In Jharkhand, hundreds of people marched in the capital of Ranchi. The March against Communalism, in the Sainik Bazaar campus, was led by CPI(ML) General Secretary Comrade Dipankar, CCMs Comrades Bahadur Oraon and Rajaram, human rights activist Father Stensami, CPI(ML) State Secretary Janardan Prasad, AICCTU State Vice President Shubhendu Sen, State party Spokesperson J P Minz, AIPWA State Secretary Sunita, JSM State Secretary Anil Anshuman and many others. The March culminated in a mass meeting at Albert Ekka Chowk, addressed by the above leaders.

Protest processions, effigy burning, dharnas and mass meetings were also held at various district HQs in Jharkhand; Bihar; Assam and Karbi Anglong; UP; W Bengal, Tamilnadu, Uttarakhand, Rajasthan, and Durg.

South Orissa Bandh by CPI(ML) and Other Parties

On 13th October CPI(ML) Liberation along with four other parties – CPI(ML) ND, CPI(ML), SUCI and Samajwadi Jan Parishad held a successful bandh in five districts of South Orissa - Kandhamal, Rayagada, Gajapati, Koraput and Ganjam – against the carnage in Kandhamal, the complicity of the Navin Patnaik Government and the criminal inaction of the Congress-led UPA Government at the Centre. The bandh was total in the five districts and marked by the spontaneous participation of people. Around 10000 people actively participated in Liberation’s initiatives to make the bandh a success in Rayagada; 1200 in Gajapati.

Holding that the ruling BJD as well as Congress which is in power at the Centre too have blood on their hands because of their hands-off approach towards the Sangh Parivar mobs, the CPI(ML) had declined to join a joint protest announced by CPI-CPI(M) with BJD and Congress in the state.

In Bhubaneswar, trains were stopped and the National Highway blocked by 200 Liberation activists. All the activists were arrested including State Secretary Comrade Khitish Biswal, Radhakant Sethi, Bansidhar Parida, Mahendra Parida, Dibaka Beiria, Upendra Sahoo. Comrade Tirupati Gomango held a rally of around 8000 people at Gunupur. The bandh sent out a stern political message rejecting the communal violence against thousands of Christians by the Sangh outfits and condemning the forces in power which are allowing the violence to take place unhindered.

AIPWA Protests against anti-Christian Violence

Between 10-14 October, AIPWA held protests and submitted a memorandum to the President of India demanding ban on the Sangh outfits Bajrang Dal and VHP responsible for assaults on Christians, and a CBI probe into the rape of a nun in Orissa.

AIPWA protests took place along with AISA at Parliament Street in Delhi, as well as at many places in Bihar, Jharkhand, Andhra Pradesh, Assam and Karbi Anglong.

Liberation Archive