Fifty million workers take action against privatisation
The members of the New Socialist Alternative (CWI-India) took part in the May Day 2005 demonstrations in the ‘silicon city’ of India – Bangalore – with a two-page leaflet in the Kannada language. The theme was: “Enough of the horrors of Capitalism – We need Socialism now!”.
INDIA SAW more than 15,000 killed as the tidal wave pounded southern fishing villages with Tamil Nadu and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands the worst hit. Thousands are still missing. In Andhra Pradesh alone, 400 fishermen were missing immediately after the first strikes.
The Hindu newspaper, published in southern India, reported that 40 children playing cricket on a beach in Cuddalore drowned when a massive wave pulled them out to sea. One local man, who lost two sons playing on the beach, said: “I suddenly saw waves 30 to 40ft high. People just froze, they didn’t know what to do.”
Of course the question was somewhat different in the days of Marx and Engels and even of Lenin. Marx wrote at a time when the capitalist system was still capable of developing the productive forces and taking society forward. A feature, indeed one of the crowning achievements, of capitalism in this, its progressive phase, was the assimilation of peoples into nations and the creation of nation states.
Lenin lived in the epoch of imperialism – that period at the close of the last, and beginning of this, century, which saw the rest of the globe carved into spheres of control and influence of the major powers. The export of capital to the less developed countries meant that their political and military domination was further cemented by an economic enslavement to these mighty capitalist states.
A POLITICAL earthquake has rocked south Asia following India’s general election. Millions of workers, the dispossessed and rural poor decisively rejected the ‘neo-liberal’ policies of the ruling Hindu nationalist coalition government led by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and its prime minister, Atal Behari Vajpayee.