Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Guha on the defeat of the communists in India

The artcle After the Fall is a few months old but I came across it only today. Guha makes many good points, particularly about the ideological rigidity of CPI(M), CPI (ML)...But sometimes they seemed to depend on Russisn or Chinese interpretations depending on their allegiance. Just like Guha's it is also my impression (from the its I know from coastal Andhra) that in general top communist leaders are less (financially) corrupt than the political leaders of other parties. However, I am not sure whether this is true of the middle level leadership. In the early days, the communists propogated their ideology through workshops and culural organizations like 'praja natya mandali' and communism provided a quick world view and perhaps a bit of a substitute for religion though I did not see the communists breaking off completely from religious practices. These worhshops etc more or less gone now whatever little communism there is in Andhra is inherited communism (it may be different in Telangana where 'jana natya mandali' seems to have some role). Another point that Guha does not mention is that party leadership came from the 'upper' castes. They had contacts with the less priviliged castes, but their children mostly married with in their castes and they were not able to develop leaders from the other castes. These are my impressions from coatal Andhra but I think that most of Guha's points are correct and the article, as usual with Guha, is very readale.
P.S. I have been sent these articles by A.G. Noorani containing "Extracts from interviews of India's first-generation Communist leaders throwing light on some turning points in the history of Indian communism."
Communist memories
Of Stalin, Telangana & Indian revolution
Of Quit India, Nehru &CPI split

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