Revised Edition, February 2018
The Hindustan Ghadar Party, which was formed by Indian immigrants in North America and dared to organise a revolutionary uprising that shook the British Empire in 1915-16, has inspired several generations of Indian revolutionaries. It inspired Shaheed Bhagat Singh and other revolutionaries during the twenties and the following decades. In the sixties and seventies, it inspired communists to organise among Indians abroad in support of the Indian revolution and against racist attacks. It continues to inspire and guide the work of the Communist Ghadar Party of India and others who are striving to liberate Indian society from all forms of exploitation and enslavement.
The centenary year of the founding of the Hindustan Ghadar Party was celebrated in many parts of India and abroad in 2013. All Indian communists participated in these celebrations. It is to be noted that a section within the communist movement continues to conciliate with the official narrative that the Ghadar Party and the Congress fought for the same aim while only differing in their methods. Some even conciliate with the branding of the Ghadaris as terrorists.
There are Indian Marxist scholars who have promoted the notion that the Ghadaris were very heroic but naïve in their thinking. This implies that as far as the theory and program of Indian revolution are concerned, there is nothing to learn from Hindustan Ghadar Party. Such an idea is not only wrong but also extremely harmful.
The Hindustan Ghadar Party was the first political party of Indians that was committed to bring workers and peasants to power. It stands in striking contrast to the parties whose formation was sponsored by the British rulers, such as the Congress and the Muslim League. Such parties worked to bring the capitalists and landlords to power so as to preserve the colonial system of plunder.
It is our sincere belief that serious study of the work of the Hindustan Ghadar Party and its followers is an essential component of political education for every Indian revolutionary at the present time. The present generation of communists must recognise and respect the fact that we stand on the shoulders of previous generations of Indian revolutionaries and the thought material they have bequeathed to us.
The analysis of the past, including every major revolutionary episode, the material changes it brought about and the thought processes it gave rise to, is an essential ingredient for developing Indian revolutionary theory. The elaboration of the theory of Indian revolution is essential to win victory in the struggle to smash the entire legacy of colonialism, including capitalism and all remnants of feudalism and imperialism.
This book is dedicated to the memory of those brave and wise souls who established the Hindustan Ghadar Party. It is dedicated to all those who have since then contributed to keeping alive the aim and movement for the liberation of Indian society. It is aimed at nurturing fresh generations of Ghadaris to ensure the victory of revolution on Indian soil.
The Communist Ghadar Party of India