Friday, March 4, 2011

Priyo Didi (Aaj Hok Na Rong Fyakashey)

Didi'r dol'er aakashey
Doibobani lekha shey
Didi'r neeti hok na jotoi bhranto

Shila putuk, nai ba putuk
Joley theluk, nai ba theluk
Tata ashuk, nai ba ashuk
Didi duronto

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Poribortoner Lukochuri (Ami Kon Pothey Jey Choli)

Didi, kon kotha jey bolo
Aar kon pothey jey cholo
Shuru thekei tomar party bodddo elomelo

Ekhon tumi bhengchi kato
Shilpo eley, ulto hato

Hoyto moner janla khuley Bangla chhilo boshey
Bhestey diley, o Didi go, tomar kaaj'er doshey

Vote'r i maashey tey mitey jaabey jaari juri
Vote'r i maashey tey mitey jaabey jaari juri

Tomay samney peley, thanda mathay, ei kothata boli.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Poribortoner Gaan (Sokhi Bhabona Kahare Boley?)

Didi, khomota kaharey boley?
Jano sotota kaharey boley?

Tomra jey bolo, dibosho rojoni, "Godi chai, godi chai."
Didi, raajniti karey koy?
Sheki keboli jhamela moy?
Sheki keboli vote'ro chhol?
Sheki keboli singurey ghaash?
Ki dukhero torey, lokey tobey korey, emono didi'ro aash?

Tomar chokhe to shokoli Kishen,
Shokoli Gurung, shokoli Bimol,
Paharey aagun, Singurey kondol,
Hotash holoje, Kobir Sumon-
Shokoli tomari moton.
Keboli kande, keboli chenchay, doritey jhuliya morite chaye -
Chhoyni kolom, mejajey gorom, bhulechhey tader shokolo shorom.

Rail jey chhutitey chhutitey maarey, shilpo kandiya palaye jaay,
Kanditey kanditey oi lalgorey koto lokjon morchhey haay.
Tobey, tomar moton sukhi ke aache, sushil somaj tomar pashey -
Sukhi staboker sukher gaan, suniya tomar jurabe pran.
Protidin jara kandichhey ekhon, ek din tara koribey tara-
Ek din oi ghashful chhentey, shokole miliya gahibo mora.

Didi, khomota kaharey boley?
Jano, sotota kaharey boley?

Tomra jey bolo, dibosho rojoni, "Godi chai, godi chai."
Didi, raajniti karey koy?

Monday, February 21, 2011

J'accuse or J'taime?

I have been getting messages from Trinamool supporters criticizing me for criticizing Trinamool and Mamata Banerjee. Some see a tacit love for the incumbent Left Front government in my critique of Trinamool. And they try to attack my arguments by accusing me of being a CPIM supporter, who, by their definition, can do no right. Hence this clarification post.

I am not asking anybody to vote Left. I am not here to tell you which ideology you want to see as the driving force behind the next government. I am not here to say who you should love, for that is your freedom of thought, speech, and democratic action.

I am here only to identify the flaws of one party. Yes, you might say that I am not being impartial in my fault-finding mission. Well, I do not have all the time in the world, and have to stop somewhere. I have stopped right after Trinamool because, honestly, one covers a lot of ground here. I agree that the Left Front has had horrendous problems. So, have Congress and the BJP. But I consider them a lesser problem than Trinamool.

So, I repeat, vote anybody, I say vote for SUCI or Samajwadi Party even. Bring Congress or BJP to power if you hate the Left. But beware of Trinamool!

Some may still see a subtle ploy of attempting to divide the opposition vote through such an appeal. Well, well, dear opposition, it seems you have united. So Congress getting more seats than Trinamool should not irk anybody unless they specifically want Trinamool to win, which, to me, is just a symptom of a totalitarian worldview based on aggressive policy of political aggrandizement. Remember, even the Left Front is a coalition. True Left supporters should not have a problem if CPI comes as a bigger power than CPIM. True Left haters should not have a problem if Congress or BJP comes as a greater power than Trinamool.

So, the basic question is: what does Trinamool want? Does it merely want to dislodge the Left, or does it want to accumulate total power? I guess we all know the answer, especially after it was so carefully explained by one of the Adhikaris. Trinamool doesn't ackowledge anything other than the Left. It won't concede anybody the anti-Left space.

So, dear Trinamool supporters, please do not spam my blog accusing CPIM. I agree with you completely when you say that the Left Front government has had major issues. So please do not bother badmouthing them to support Trinamool. If you have anything positive to say about Trinamool, or, according to one frequent visitor, its rather humorous, fun-loving, sporty, edgy, push-the-mayor-in-the-pool leader, you are honestly welcome. Criticizing the Left to justify Trinamool's existence only reinforces the party's vacuity. I am sure you can do better to support some outfit you like so much.

Monday, February 7, 2011

West Bengal or Pakistan?

There is an uncanny parallel between Maoists in West Bengal and the Taliban in Pakistan. Both want to overthrow the constitutional state power to establish their own version of utopia, and both are getting help from mainstream political parties. In Pakistan, the key backers of the Taliban have traditionally been the ISI, the Jamiat, and Imraan Khan's outfit along with occassional sympathetic outbursts from the PML group led by Nawaz Sharif.

Yes, both are homegrown movements that capitalize on lack of development and resot to violence to achieve their goals. But you may think that Maosists are nowhere comparable to the Taliban, right? The Taliban are an international menace threatening to tear apart two countries like Afghanistam and Pakistan, and simultaneously is holding off the USA in Afghanistan. Apparently, they have sleeper cells all over the world, and, most perniciously, they have recruits joining their ranks every year because of a seductive ideology.

Are Maoists comparable with them? Look closely. There is a lack of clear policy articulation for countering the Maosists from no less than the central government. In West Bengal, Trinamool has deliberately fostered an ambiguity to shore up its electoral fortunes. The Left Front in unambiguous in its denouncement of the Maoists, which makes all other political parties go the other way for political expediency.

There are high-profile recruits to the Maoist cause and we see multiple media outlets soft-pedalling the issue. When Mamata Banerjee terms Buddhadeb Bhattacharya "the father or Maoist" (sic), she is not only deflecting blame from herself, she is also giving the Maoists some breather but focusing on the Left Front instead of the Naxal terror. Pakistan sees similar burlesque when political parties and media houses denounce Taliban killings but finally fix blame on the government to score political goals.

Dear dear dear Bangali Populace, let's understand very clearly in our mind: you cannot ever control an extremist, totalitarian ideology. Those in Pakistan who think Taliban are their assets are paying the price with the lives of common people who are killed in markets, shopping malls, and places of worship. Dear Miss Banerjee, Maoists are not an asset to you either. You who are playing with fire, should know that the same fire can burn your palms tomorrow. If you think that Maoists will spare your cadre when you come to power tomorrow, you are wrong. They will want their pound of flesh, their version of the Pakistani no-war pact, and they will want their version of Pakistani FATA, an area where the state's writ does not work at all.

Are you planning to create a free-land for Maoists in West Bengal Miss Banerjee? Perhaps, that is not in your Manifesto, but what you are doing will definitely lead to that. And those who do not learn from the mistakes of others, they pay with their own. However, in our case, the people of West Bengal will pay the price, while you, Miss Banerjee, will be ensconced in your RPF security ring safely somewhere in Delhi or Calcutta.

Do we want to pay this price?

Monday, January 24, 2011

The Sacred Hand as Seen by Abhirup Sarkar

So now we have a sacred hand making the act of land acquistions pure and blameless. According Abhirup Sarkar, the land acquired by railways, or the projects done on them, are blameless because they are done by a public enterprise as opposed to the private enterprise in Singur. Agreed that the Indian Statistical Institute is a center of excellence, but it is difficult to imagine some of its luminaries strive for excellence in casuistry of the worst kind. Now, in 2010, a statistician from a premier institution is saying that government efforts are somehow "purer" than private enterprises. It will be completely unfair to speculate about how Mr. Sarkar got his appointment at the institute (his academic credentials could be way better than his mumbling on public policy on TV screens), but to any objective bystander this seems going way beyond the basics of objectivity. Nobody should have any quarrels with Mr. Sarkar when he finds out the faults of the Left Front government, but his credentials and media-posturing as a "bidojjon" come under a rather darkish penumbra of doubt when he forwards such specious arguments.

Is it now, "Krishio chai, Shilpo chai, Trinamool'er i shilpo chai"? If you are following the footsteps of a supposedly partisan government and fowarding the thesis of "amder shilpo" (our industry) and "oder shilpo" (their industry), then how better are you, sire, than those who you are fighting against?

If it is difficult to bite the hand that feeds you, please don't bite any. Or, stop using the brand of ISI to varnish the shoddy structure that is Trinamool's industrial policy.

Monday, December 27, 2010

The Unbearable Lightness of Bargaining

So Mr. Chidambaram has sent a letter to the West Bengal government about the "misuse" of the Joint Forces. Oh, really Mr. Home Minister? How come you come out with a public posture when you have acheived part of what this "joint force" wanted to do? Now that you have pushed back the Maoists a little bit, suddenly you feel you do not need any more support? Suddenly the bargaining chip on the shoulder of an ally looks too big to ignore? Now that your government needs shields from what has been called a "radia-active" issue, you bargain away the morale of the people who are pushing back the people who your government categorizes as the number one threat to the Indian union?

I guess that was easy. You calculate that the Left government is anyways going to lose and you won't need any of their administrative support anymore. The bargain doesn't seem too heavy, does it?

Would you, pray, also bargain away the justification for having Central Forces in all other Maoist dominated areas? Or, would you now criminalize Salwa Judum? Come on, dear Minister, you who have supped with the Judum now have problems with villagers arming themselves to do what your forces should have done in the first place? Or do you still think that the State Government is responsible for all the mess and will send more stern letters asking for "development" in the region and placate your ally?

Please do remember Mr. Home Minister, the Union of India is not being harmed by villagers arming themselves against the Maoists. If you sincerely believe so, then please take away the Central Forces you so kindly lent. Then let the word go out to the Maoists and separatists that they can continue with their plan if they can gain the sympathies of one of your allies by promising to work against the Left government in West Bengal. It is easy for your ally to bargain away the concept of unity of India to acheive some legitimate political goals. What the country needs to see is the compromises you make to secure the support of that ally and the unbearable lightness of your bargaining away a bulwark, small but nevertheless a bulwark, against the forces who want to break up India.

Great work, indeed!