cpim election 2014 manifesto

cpim election 2014 manifesto

Communist Party of India (Marxist)

Manifesto for the 16th Lok Sabha Elections, 2014

Part I


The people of India are going to the polls to elect the 16th Lok Sabha. These elections are being held at a time when parliamentary democracy is under onslaught from various quarters. Increasingly democracy is being undermined by the power of big money in politics. Rampant corruption at the highest levels of government and public life is corroding the vitals of the democratic system. The neo-liberal policies pursued by the Congress-led government for a decade has denigrated parliament with policies being determined by a nexus of big business, foreign financial institutions and pliant ruling politicians and bureaucrats. The communal forces headed by the BJP-RSS combine are making a bid for power which poses a threat to the secular –democratic values of the Republic.

The people, who have always vitalized the parliamentary system with their deep faith and participation in the democratic system, have to act. They have to assert their rights. They should fight to bring about a change in the policies, for ending the corrupt rule, for strengthening democracy and secularism.

Dismal Record of UPA Government

The two UPA governments have pursued neo-liberal economic policies which have led to a growing economic divide. This has resulted in pampering the rich and squeezing the people.

Effects on People’s Lives

Despite the so-called high growth achieved under the UPA government’s earlier years, the lives of the ordinary people have not changed:

36 per cent of women and 34 per cent of men are undernourished;

About half (48 per cent) of children under the age of 5 are under nourished and malnourished.

29 per cent of children drop out between class I and V and 46 per cent between class I and VIII.

80 per cent rural and 64 per cent of all urban households consume less than the recommended calorie norm.

Eighty per cent of out-patients and sixty per cent of in-patients have to resort to private medical services as India has one of the most privatized systems of healthcare in the world. Eight crore people are pushed below the poverty line every year because of the exorbitant costs of private healthcare.

Workers: Losing Out

Workers have been the main target of exploitation by the neo-liberal regime. The share of wages in net value added in the organized industrial sector is one of the lowest in the world. It was 30.36 per cent in 1981 and this came down to 10.6 per cent in 2007-08.

The growing contractualisation and casualisation of the work force is one of the main reasons for bringing down the share of wages enabling employers to increase their share of profits. The number of women workers have come down by nearly two crore during the period 2004-05 to 2001-12, as they cannot find work.

Non-payment of minimum wages, denial of equal wages and maternity benefits is rampant. The right to form trade unions is under attack as illustrated by the Maruti-Suzuki case. Both the Congress and the BJP governments in the states have a anti-working class record.

Farmers in Distress

The peasantry have borne the brunt of first the NDA government’s policies and later of the UPA government’s policies. Corporatisation of agriculture, cuts in subsidies and public investment in agriculture and trade liberalization have caused distress to large sections of farmers. Between 1996 and 2012, rural India witnessed the appalling phenomenon of more than 2.90 lakh farmers suicides. Reversal of land reform laws and forcible acquisition of agricultural land has driven away many farmers from agriculture. Fifteen million cultivators have quit the occupation since 1991 upto 2011. Without breaking from the neo-liberal policies, the farmers of India cannot be assured of a decent livelihood and a secure future.

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