As the polling for the 15th Lok Sabha gets going, there has been an all too familiar story of attacks and disruption of the polling process by the a so-called communist party which tags the name of Mao to its posterior! Attacking the very people whom it claims to represent as they go about exercising their hard earned right to vote is a clear symptom of fascist politics. The right to vote was not a gift to the Indian masses by the ruling class politicians, but rather a democratic right wrenched through intense popular struggles against colonialism.
Poor material conditions, the shifts in national politics and a common agenda against neoliberalism result in the formation of a new United Left Bloc featuring the three largest communist parties in Bihar. The dichotomy between the “social justice” agenda and the economic struggle has blurred in a conjuncture in which the electoral battle and the political struggles of the three left parties have finally found a meeting point to cement the material basis of the ULB in Bihar – a scenario that had been impossible less than four years ago.-Argues Chirashree Dasgupta in an article in EPW,March 7, 2009