A self-destructive consensus explains the CPI(M)ís West Bengal disaster

Started by devikad, May 06, 2021, 11:21 PM

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A self-destructive consensus explains the CPI(M)'s West Bengal disaster

The Communist Party of India (Marxist) or CPI (M) has failed to open its account in the West Bengal assembly. The party-led Left Front (LF) ruled the state from 1977-2011. For an established political party within a democratic set-up to atrophy within a decade, is a rare, if not an unprecedented, political event.

To be sure, the CPI(M)'s decimation in West Bengal should not come as a surprise. It has lost ground in the state in every election since the 2009 Lok Sabha. That this could not be arrested in time in what is a Stalinist organisation -- the CPI(M) still adheres to the principle of democratic centralism where the lower leadership is constitutionally bound by the decision of the higher leadership -- entails that the buck, when it comes to the CPI(M)'s decimation in West Bengal, stops right at the top.

The history of decline

A brief recap of the West Bengal CPI(M)'s recent history is useful for this discussion.

In 2006, the LF under the leadership of Buddhadeb Bhattacharya scored a massive victory, winning 236 out of the 294 assembly constituencies (ACs) in the state. It interpreted this victory as an endorsement of its line of krishi amader bhitti, shilpo amader bhobishyet (agriculture is our base and industry will be our future). The 2006 victory was followed by announcements of large-scale industrial projects, including the ones in Singur and Nandigram.

Source: https://www.hindustantimes.com/

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