On the 92nd anniversary of the martyrdom of Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev:
The dream of the martyrs has to be realized in practice to make India free from exploitation and oppression!

Statement of Mazdoor Ekta Committee, March 20, 2023

On March 23, 1931, Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev were murdered by hanging by the British rulers. They were labelled as “terrorists”. They and countless other revolutionaries sacrificed their lives to overthrow the British colonial rule and free their fellow working people, from slavery and all forms of exploitation and oppression. The British rulers wanted to destroy their revolutionary thoughts and actions by murdering them, by hanging them. But the British rulers did not succeed in their objective. Even today, the vision and death-defying courage of Shaheed Bhagat Singh and his companions continues to inspire the workers, peasants, women and youth of our country to fight against exploitation and oppression.

Shahidi-DiwasShaheed Bhagat Singh and his comrades had given a call to build such an India, in which every worker would be free from exploitation and oppression. An India where every hard-working person will get the fruits of his labour. An India where the peasants who provide food to the country will not be forced to commit suicide. An India where the future of the youth will not be so uncertain, grim and dark. An India where our women, the mothers of the new generation, can move without fear. An India where people will not be divided in the name of religion and caste and where those who create the country’s wealth will themselves be the masters.

Our ruling capitalist class and its political parties claim that we had achieved independence in 1947. But the reality is that today even after 76 years, the workers and peasants of the country are victims of exploitation and oppression. Today the youth, who have a job, do not get a living wage to lead a dignified life even after toiling for 12-16 hours every day. There is no guarantee that tomorrow they will have a job. Even today most people are victims of unemployment. People are victims of starvation, malnutrition, and illiteracy even today. Thousands of deaths occur every day due to even those diseases which are completely curable.

Harassment in the name of caste and religion and increasing violence on women, are everyday occurrences. The country is not free from communal massacres and terror, organized by the state.

What do we have to do today to make the dreams of our martyrs come true? To get answers to these questions, we have to understand the history of the freedom struggle of our country.

In the struggle to end the British rule, there was a clash between two opposite visions on what the new India would be like. There was a vision of the working class, toiling peasants and revolutionaries. The second point of view was of the big capitalists and big landlords.

The workers, peasants and revolutionaries of our country were inspired by the heroic declarations and actions of the Hindustan Ghadar Party and of the great Ghadar of 1857. They were inspired by the victory of the Great October Socialist Revolution in Russia and the establishment of workers’ rule there. They were organizing workers, peasants, women and youth for revolutionary changes in the society. They believed that as long as the institutions of the state established by the British to suppress the people of the country remain intact, we will not be able to achieve real freedom. The revolutionaries categorically declared in so many words that “our struggle will continue as long as a handful of people, Indian or foreign or a combination of both, continue to exploit the labour and resources of our people. No one can divert us from this path”.

They gave a call for a struggle for the complete overthrow of the British state and the creation of a new state, in which there would be no exploitation of man by man and the state would ensure happiness, security and prosperity for all.

The British rulers brutally suppressed the revolutionaries. At the same time, the land and industrial licenses were awarded to those loyal to the British. The development of the capitalist class and landlords was promoted. With the aim of dissuading the workers and peasants from taking the path of revolution, the British rulers formed the Indian National Congress party as the representative of the richest and the most influential sections of the Indian capitalists and landlords. Capitalist industrial houses and big landlords were included within the British State Machinery, while the majority of the hard-working people were kept out of the state power. These loyalists of the British government had fully cooperated with the British in attacking the revolutionaries and their murder by hanging them.

In 1947, the British rulers, after making separate agreements with the Congress Party and the Muslim League, partitioned the country on communal lines and transferred power to the class they had nurtured. All the institutions of the British colonial rule and the entire system of oppression and plunder were retained after 1947.

This was a big fraud perpetrated on the working people of our country. The vision of our revolutionary patriots to completely break away from the British colonial legacy through the revolutionary struggle, was razed to the ground.

The same loyalists of the British rule are ruling the country today, who cooperated with the British in getting thousands of our revolutionaries hanged. They are the ones who are preserving the institutions of the British rule, making them even more efficient. This truth is suppressed and the workers, peasants, women and youth are being misled to believe the contrary. Every effort is made to forget and mislead the people about the real purpose of the struggle of Shaheed Bhagat Singh and countless revolutionaries.

The state power of the capitalist class has replaced the British rule. The big monopoly capitalist houses – Tatas, Birlas, Ambanis, Adanis, etc. – who lead the capitalist class, decide the agenda of the country. The brutality with which the British government used to torture and crush those who challenged them, continues. Today those who oppose the agenda of the capitalists are crushed with equal ferocity and more brutality. Our people are being locked up in jail indefinitely under harsh black laws like UAPA.

Even today, 76 years later, the exploitation and plunder of the labour and resources of our people by domestic and foreign capitalists continues unabated. The capitalist ruling class, with the intention of achieving their own imperialist designs, are selling off the precious assets and resources of the country for pittance. They are strengthening strategic alliance with US imperialism and other imperialist powers and putting the country in grave danger.

In our country, which is called the “world’s most populous democracy”, elections are held from time to time. The illusion is spread that “the people choose their government”. In reality, the monopoly capitalist houses invest crores and crores of rupees to form the government of the political party or coalition, which is loyal to them and which will implement their agenda in the best way possible under the circumstances and, at the same time, fool the people. The working people do not have the power to take any policy decision and make or change laws. We can neither hold our elected representatives accountable nor can we recall them.

Comrades and friends,

Remembering the martyrdom of Shaheed Bhagat Singh and his comrades will be a true homage to them only when we march forward on the path shown by them and succeed in building the kind of India they aimed for.

Indian society is yearning for profound social change. In place of the existing capitalist economic and political system of exploitation and oppression, there is an urgent need to establish a new system in which the working class, in alliance with all the exploited and oppressed people, will establish its rule, its new state power and set the country’s agenda. The working class and all working people will then be able to take all the important decisions affecting the society. The major means of production will be taken out of the hands of the capitalist class and placed under social control. The aim of the economy will be to satisfy the needs of all working people to the greatest extent possible, not the greed of a few capitalists.

Shaheed Bhagat Singh and countless other revolutionaries sacrificed their lives for this lofty goal.

Let us unite to make that dream of our martyrs come true!

Let us intensify our struggle against the rule of the capitalists!

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