Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Toothukudi to Bhangar - competitions in a neo-liberal India

It is about eight years now that neoliberal loot in mining sector was quite clear as it was evident in Vedanta in Niyamgiri hills under the Congress led UPA Government (see and Well the neo-liberal states were in a hurry to attract private investors in every sphere. The Left Front (LF) led by CPIM was no different than others with the aggressive go-ahead of Special Economic Zone (SEZ) pollicy. In due course we have witnessed Nandigram killing, eventual loss of credibility of the LF to become completely irrelevant in the state and national politics.

Hopeless submission of state machinery:

The crucial question remains does it stop there? Does the change in the political party leading the state curb out the aggressiveness of the neo-liberal competitive market economy every sphere of our late capital self, life and governanc? Perhaps it doesnt.

While West Bengal has seen a prolonged dilemma with the industrial growth leading to substantive investment in the farming sector - like a revert back and often justifiably so for a state which has all the potential to perform well in the farming sector (see for a recent state initiative that has benefited the farmers). However, there is also a parallel rise to Bhangar power grid movement and state's brutal response to it.

The killing of Toothukudi is one of the latest examples of the helplessness of the state and their submission to the corporate players which required undermining people's call, urge and questions. The state machinery opened fire without any warning, neither rubber bullet nor water cannons were used. Plain and simple firing from automatic rifles. Yes, a hundred days of agitation was enough for the state to go for an extreme measure like taking away lives of its own people. 

There will be reasons for such act as 'uncontrolled mobs', 'attack on police', 'declaration of curfew and subsequent intrusion' and perhaps the theory of 'maost link' will somehow join the show shortly. 

Be it copper factory or power grid - capital flows over flesh and bloodline of people. Its been quite some time now and people will enjoy their democratic rights CPIM to TMC to something else. AIADMK to something else. 

PS. Don't forget to include North East into the trail - you can easily map a neo-liberal horse trader clearing pathway for capital inflow.

Photograph: the person in plain cloth responsible for shooting. PicCredit

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