Covering more than 10,000 kilometres across the length and breadth of the country, the CPI(M) is organising four jathas (marches) from four corners of the country which are going to crisscross carrying the message of struggle for alternative policies.
The ‘Sangharsh Sandesh Jatha’, as it is called, is being held to address the issues and concerns of the millions of common people of the country – of the kisans, agricultural workers, workers in the organised and unorganised sectors, of women, dalits, adivasis and minorities.
The jathas are led by General Secretary Prakash Karat and three Polit Bureau members – S Ramachandran Pillai, Sitaram Yechury and Brinda Karat. The Southern jatha has already been flagged off on February 24, 2013 from Kanyakumari. It was inaugurated by Prakash Karat. This jatha is being led by S Ramachandran Pillai. The Eastern jatha from Kolkata, led by Prakash Karat will begin on March 1; the Western jatha from Mumbai led by Sitaram Yechury will begin on March 8 and the Northern jatha from Amritsar led by Brinda Karat will begin on March 4. All these jathas will culminate in a huge central rally in New Delhi on March 19. There will also be jathas from Guwahati (Assam), Paralakhemundi (Odisha), Shimla (Himachal Pradesh) and Bhavnagar (Gujarat) to link up with these main jathas. Sub jathas are also being conducted within many states, and these will link up with the main jathas when they are passing through these states.
The CPI(M) has embarked on these jathas in an effort to mobilise public opinion against the anti-people policies of the Central as well as the State Governments. The jathas would educate the people on the issues of food security, rising prices, education, health, unemployment, unabated corruption and rights of women, tribals, dalits and minorities. They will highlight the demands and rights of the people like right to land and house-sites, right to food, right to education and employment, right to health facilities and cheap medicines, right to a life free from discrimination on the basis of caste, community and gender. The struggle for alternative policies, for basic rights and for social justice is sought to be galvanized through out the country through this Sangharsh Sandesh Jatha.
The CPI(M) has demanded the government to implement land reform policies by distributing surplus land to the landless and guarantee house-sites to each landless household; to ensure universal right to 35 kgs of foodgrains at a maximum price of rupees two a kg and scrap APL/BPL based fraudulent poverty calculations; to stop privatisation of educational and health services, strengthen public services in health and ensure strict regulation of the private sector. It has also demanded the enactment of Lokpal legislation with autonomous powers of investigation, to curb corruption. It has also asked the government to step up public investment to ensure creation of jobs; lift the ban on recruitment and ensure time-bound recruitment for all vacancies, particularly for SC/ST/OBC backlog; increase days of work under NREGA with price index linked minimum wages and expand it to include guarantee of work days in urban India.
The CPI(M) has taken to social networking sites like facebook, (http://www.facebook.com/pages/Sangharsh-sandesh/139154606252027 ) for spreading across the message of the jatha. Even the CPI(M) website has been re-designed to incorporate more visuals and videos from the jathas. (see http://www.cpim.org/site1/issues/fornewindia)
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