‘India ripe for revolution, Pakistan not’

Published: February 3, 2011

Panda predicts revolution in India, assails South Asian governments for repeatedly failing to deliver.

ISLAMABAD: Revolution has been a resounding word in Pakistan but no one is spearheading it, while India is ripe for it, veteran Indian politician and member of Lok Sabha (lower house of parliament) Prabodh Panda says.

According to him India was ripe for a revolution as the rulers were oblivious of the peoples needs and their demand. “I can see it happening in India, the process of revolt is already there,” Panda said in an interview with the The Express Tribune. Panda was in Islamabad recently to attend a two-day South Asian parliamentarians’ roundtable on food sovereignty.

Panda, who is President of the Communist Party of India (CPI), expressed harsh views on the global economic system and called for increased contact between ordinary Pakistanis and Indians.

“Revolution is a word that has a resounding quality in the political discourse of present day Pakistan, but no one willing to ‘spearhead’ such a movement seems to be in sight. When asked about his views on the matter, the Indian MP replied “I cannot say about Pakistan but the people in India are certainly ready for a revolution.”

Panda, who also presides over the Communist Party of India and the All India Kissan Sabha, could not say how long it would take for Indians to actually come out on the streets. “I cannot give a specific timeframe,” he said, but argued, “A government that does not bother to resolve the people’s problems does not retain the right to stay in power.”

The countries of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) pledged, in their Millenium Development Goals, to make the region hunger-free by the year 2013. It seems they are nowhere near achieving that goal. “These governments do not have the strength to create a self-reliant economy to support social sector development,” said Panda.

“There has not been a single visible initiative by any of the SAARC governments towards a viable alternative against the globalised West-oriented economy which has done more harm than good to the poor of our region,” added the MP, who was elected to the Lok Sabha thrice from West Bengal.

In his opinion, opening up economies to the process of globalisation, as initiated by the West, pushed the poor of the developing countries further below the poverty line and contributed to the riches of the rich. “We still have a large number of poor people on our soil. We are still confronting food scarcity. There are no jobs. GDP growth is deadly slow and inconsistent. Agricultural budgets are inadequate.

All this is mainly because we senselessly opened our economies to the developed countries,” he said, and further argued that the governments in developing countries like India and Pakistan should have exercised complete control over their respective economies for a certain period.

“This could allow us to stabilise our economies to a certain extent before we could become partners to equal share in globalization, like China did,” he added. “In the absence of any viable alternative to under-performing governments that have repeatedly failed to address people’s issues, the people will opt to revolt,” he warned.

“All political parties of the left should come and join hands to bring about a change that people now yearn for,” he said. He called it a pity that not a single representative of any left wing party was present in the Pakistani parliament.

His point of view on Indo-Pakistan relations was not very different from many of his contemporaries on either side of the border. He agreed the two nuclear-armed neighbours had no option but to cooperate and establish a sustainable peace.

“Governments in both countries must pledge to not allow their land to be used for cross-border terrorism. The people, at large, on both sides of the border want peace,” he said, agreeing, however,
that there was an unfortunate trust deficit between the two countries.

In order to increase trust and confidence in each other, he called for more contact between the people of both countries. He was hopeful that the current stalemate in relations would soon be broken.

“The major issue is terrorism. The current strain in relations owes a great deal to the Mumbai attacks. But, I believe we can still talk on other issues of mutual importance,” he opined

Panda said the two countries needed to come up with a common market and a common ‘river policy’. Elaborating on the latter, he said a common river policy would be beneficial for the two countries at both the national and domestic levels.

In other constructive suggestions, he demanded greater budgetary allocations for the agriculture sector which, he said, has enough potential to fulfil the food requirements of both countries.

Published in the Express Tribune, February 3rd, 2011.

Reader Comments (21)

  • M J Akbar
    Feb 3, 2011 - 11:33AM

    haha…typical Communist mindset.See the condition of communists in middle-east and here a communist is speaking…….can’t control laughingRecommend

  • Feb 3, 2011 - 1:10PM

    One should visit Calcutta to see what Mr. Panda’s govt has done in W.Bengal. The most inefficient, corrupt, inept government manned by a whole lot of lazy arm-chair revolutionaries. Recommend

  • Khalid Ahmed
    Feb 3, 2011 - 1:28PM

    Look who is talking! Communists are losing all sorts of support in India hence this latest rant from Mr.Panda.Recommend

  • sumit yadav
    Feb 3, 2011 - 3:32PM

    The only change that can happen in India , and i think it will is that BJP will come in power {full majority} . I do not agree with this pakistani site that India is ripe for revolution , however India is ripe to become a world leader.Recommend

  • Manoj
    Feb 3, 2011 - 8:02PM

    Probodh Panda is not the president of Communist Party of India (CPI). Actually CPI has no post of president. General Secretary of Party is head of Party and at present Mr. Bhardhan is general secretary of CPI and Mr. Prakash Karat is genearal secretary of Communist Party Marksist (CPM). Kindly correct the same.

    Regarding revoution in India or elsewhere, Mr. Panda is correct when he says “A government that does not bother to resolve the people’s problems does not retain the right to stay in power.”

    Govt of India and Pakistan both have been ignoring the people problem for the last 60 years. Huge corruption, birth of new brown sahib in the form of IAS and IPS,and politician, Growing population, unemployement, Tax payer’s frustration with the system. all these are right ingrdient to trigger the revolution. Only saving grace is universal democracy, which acts as a safety valves. But no one knows how long this safety valve will be able release the anger of common man. Growth of naxal and support they are getting in tribal and rural area is certain sign of anger not getting released and now it is turn of govt to take some revoutionary step to deliver thru democracy or be ready to face revolution.Recommend

  • simon
    Feb 3, 2011 - 8:29PM

    @Here come the Chinese sympathetics party in india,(Chinese party in india)
    Who were playing on chinese agenda.They tried to block nuclear deal.They are uprooted from bengal and kerela.They are responsible for poor masses in bengal.Recommend

  • Bambayya
    Feb 3, 2011 - 10:33PM

    The beating what they have got in India …. no wonder he has to speak like that ….
    Urs and ur party days are numbered ….hehehehehe …
    Next election … ur party will be routed …Recommend

  • Muchacho
    Feb 3, 2011 - 10:47PM

    A chinese communist conspiracy perhaps. Theres’ got to be a connection. I mean with a name like Panda!Recommend

  • G.Khan
    Feb 4, 2011 - 3:18AM

    @Prasad & Sumit Yadav
    Hahahahahha…
    Hey!!! have courage to listen to different viewpoints. Don’t we listen yours when you come here and post although sometimes its none of your Business Kind of thing? Have patience and grow up. What IF if Panda is right whatever he is predicting? What you are going to do then? Naxals are behind your Rear for quite sometime and it has become a wide spread movement by now. Maybe he is right? Recommend

  • Sobriquet
    Feb 4, 2011 - 4:05AM

    @sumit yadav: You are right. India is ripe to become a world leader—but it will not be alone. It will be joined by Pakistan and a few others, especially in state-tolerated corruption, incompetence, arrogance and missed opportunities. Good luck.Recommend

  • Chandra
    Feb 4, 2011 - 5:44AM

    I donot like the communists but I agree that it is time for revolting against the Government. All the parties have failed in providing quality governance across states. The political class is actually a bunch of criminals and it is time to clean them up!!Recommend

  • Singh
    Feb 4, 2011 - 6:59AM

    Left are cancer to politics & society at large. Left in India are traitor since british raj.Recommend

  • Raja
    Feb 4, 2011 - 7:07AM

    Veteran Indian Journalist Cho.Ramaswamy aptly said..something to the effect of Indian communists have no future in India…If they do India has no future…

    I thought Express Tribune has very high journalistic standards…why promote this communist clown?

    We tried keeping every one poor for 40 yrs…for 20 years some have gotten rich…we have to try finding ways to improve the lives of those who haven’t benefited from economic boom….

    Communist clowns have no solutions….just frozen like fossils with stupid old ideologies..Recommend

  • Anwar
    Feb 4, 2011 - 7:24AM

    79% of Indians live below $2 a day, what revolution are Indians speaking of? The Green card revolution? 45 million Indians have already left India. What a joke.Recommend

  • tamur
    Feb 4, 2011 - 9:50AM

    @Sumit
    India has a poverty rate of over 43% and is home to more poor people than the entire continent of Africa. The indian nation is so enslaved by poverty that it is impossible to have a revolution there. Plus, indians are by nature docile and would start shaking their heads in affirmation the moment they would try to challenge their govt. A bobbing head revolution?Recommend

  • sumit yadav
    Feb 4, 2011 - 3:48PM

    Naxal are gone man, I have been only reading and watching from last one year that naxals are dying in encounter, Gone are the days when they sed to bomm rail traks.Although it is extremely sad that we have to kill our fellow indians, but anything for free and fair democracy.

    Kashimiri terrorists, naxals have no place in great and might India.Remember Punjab, it took time to convince our fellow Sikh brothers that your minds are wrongly tuned.If they understood Kashmiris will and naxals have by the time i am writing this comment.Jai Hind.Recommend

  • sumit yadav
    Feb 4, 2011 - 3:54PM

    They have left to make money,They do celebrate independence day abroad and also get angered when a bomb blast kills humanity in India. Remember on one take Indian out of India but not India out of an India.They money they send to their families every month back home,is used to accelerate our economic growth.Jai HindRecommend

  • sumit yadav
    Feb 4, 2011 - 3:58PM

    you are exaggerating .Every great nation was poor someday.people fall but who stands up is called Indian. Recommend

  • Wellwisher
    Feb 4, 2011 - 4:53PM

    guys, indian hype is surely well over exaggerated but the matter of fact, as i understabnd, is – india is leap years ahead of Pakistan in every single aspect. This should have been the other way round. We should accept the reality though bitter but accepting it and formulating forward strategies is surely in our interest.
    Our biggest problem is the uneducated law makers / dishonest politicians who think more about themselves than the nation.
    just to quote the very latest … Pakistan being one of the poorest nations with least possible resources at it’s disposal has the biggest cabinet (52 members) in the world. Can india not beat this – surely they can but i suppose they are more realistic than us. Furthermore Gilani was referring to creating an underp pass/tunnell like in the USA which connects parliament to ministerial lodges. Why do we need that … where is the money gonna come from … why can’t we spend that money eslewhere and wisely ….. there are so many thing .. innumerable. …
    as i alwasy say …. solution to every problem is …… EDUCATE THE NATION ….. remember seek knowledge even if you have to go China …..!!!Recommend

  • Naik
    Feb 8, 2011 - 10:29PM

    Wellwisher, I agree with your assessment. But i would like to add that Pakistan should create investor friendly environment in its country. Pakistan should benefit from Globalisation. This can happen by equal co-operation from its countrymen. The citizens should develop an open mindedness/attitude in which they will not allow religion to come between them and prosperity/development. The terrorism in the name of religion should stop. The tolerance should be cultivated in everyone’s mind. Only this can take Pakistan forward. Else, Pakistan will get into self-destruction mode which i fear it already has. Recommend

  • Mar 1, 2011 - 8:48PM

    It should be like this Economy wise in our region.

    Pakistan —->Bangladesh —> India —>China —> America.Recommend

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