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C.P.I. (M.) Expresses Concern Over "Modi-fication of India"


The Hindu, New Delhi, Jan. 18, 2003

The Communist Party of India (Marxist) [C.P.I. (M.)] has charged the Vajpayee Government and the Bharatiya Janata Party [B.J.P.] leaders with engaging in a 'systematic effort to undermine secular democracy' to advance the agenda of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh [R.S.S.] and facilitate the 'transformation' of the Indian Republic into a fascist 'Hindu rashtra.' . . . 'The process of Modi-fication of India that we discussed earlier has been accelerated by Modi himself who urged a gathering in Mumbai not to be ashamed of Hindutva and fight its (B.J.P.'s) opponents through Hindutva . . . Such fascist aggressiveness is matched by activities centring on inflammable communal agenda at the ground level,' the C.P.I. (M.) politburo member, Sitaram Yechury, said in an article in the latest edition of the party organ, People's Democracy.

It said that reports showed that violence and curfew continued to rage in various parts of Gujarat and even normal events such as kite-flying contests were generating communal strife and tension. Referring to Mr. Advani's statement, describing the internal security situation as being 'warlike,' the article noted that he even justified curtailment of democratic rights by saying that a 'democratic state need not be a soft state.' Mr. Advani had also mentioned that democracy did not mean people could do whatever they wanted. 'No originality here. Sounds pretty much the same language as that of Indira Gandhi during Emergency.'

On the prime minister's suggestion to the [state] governors that they should play a more pro-active role, it said in the past this office had often been 'blatantly misused' to serve the interest of the central government in a state where the opposition parties headed the government. 'Under this B.J.P.-led government, this trend has become more blatant given the fact that leading R.S.S. personalities have been appointed as governors in many states . . . the prime minister's exhortions, thus, are fraught with grave consequences for centre-state relations leading to the erosion of powers and rights of the state governments,' it said.