The Communist Party of India: A Short History


The contemporary history of Asia is strongly dramatic. In the two great land masses, India and China, new orders of government and society came into existence within two years of one another. In India, the Congress State succeeded the British Raj in 1947. In China two years later the Communist party became masters of the whole country, and dedicated it to the principles of Marxism, Leninism and Stalinism as interpreted by Mao Tse-Tung.

The systems in India and China are opposite poles. The rule of law genuinely prevails in India. The subject enjoys the right not to be ordered about arbitrarily by the government; and the courts zealously uphold his right when he has recourse to them. There are no armies of forced labour. The press is free as the wind (notwithstanding certain reserve powers taken by the government two or three years ago for use in case of emergency because of communal feeling, and as yet not employed). The government, in the provinces and at the centre, is responsible to parliaments elected freely and honestly by the huge populations on the basis of universal suffrage.

China on the contrary is a totalitarian dictatorship under which the people are considered as so much raw material to be moulded according to the doctrine, passing ideas and needs of the Communist government.

Though India and China are thus in contrast -- India the great example of liberalism in Asia, China the first full-fledged example of Asian communism -- they have one characteristic in common. In neither can it be the aim of government simply to keep an existing social machine in smooth function. In each country the urgent need is for a radical transformation; and the governments are under immense pressure to make themselves responsible for bringing this about. The bane of both countries is poverty and technical and . . .

Additional information

Publisher: Place of publication:
  • New York
Publication year:
  • 1954


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