1990s >> 1996 >> no-1105-september-1996

Party News: Visit from India

Binay Sarkar, from the World Socialist Party (India) in Calcutta, visited Britain in July mainly to speak at the Socialist Party Summer School in Birmingham.

Speaking before an audience of 60 or so, he traced the origins of Marxism in Europe and of the anti-reformist but pro-electoral stance of the parties of the World Socialist Movement. He explained that the “Marxism” which spread to Asia after the First World War had not been genuine Marxism but Leninism; which meant that those there who called themselves Marxists thought that Marx really had stood for the formation of a minority, vanguard party to lead the workers and take power in their name, and they regarded the Bolshevik coup in Russia in November 1917 as a model socialist revolution and accepted Lenin’s theory of imperialism according to which the struggle in the world is not between workers and capitalists but between imperialist and anti-imperialist states. This was beginning to change slowly, with the growing realisation that not only had Russia and China been state capitalist but also that the Russian and Chinese Revolutions had been state capitalist revolutions; one sign of this was the emergence of the WSP (India) from people who had previously been in the Communist Party and in Left Communist groupings.

Comrade Sarkar spoke at other meetings in London and Manchester, on the results of the recent elections in India (no real change, even though there were now some “Communist” ministers) and on the development of capitalism in India (not doing very well). He also met members and sympathisers in Bolton, Glasgow and Edinburgh.

 

When he returned to India on 18 July after his successful speaking tour, he took with him a collection of books and pamphlets, gifts from the Socialist Party and members for their party library.

We take this opportunity to thank those who responded to our appeal and donated a total of £454, which made this tour possible.