THE LONDON District of the New Communist Party last week marked May Day with a meeting in Marx House on the topic of “Smashing the Chains of Capitalism”.
The meeting was chaired by Neil Harris, who gave a brief history of the celebration of May Day as International Workers’ Day.
Comrade Tushar from the South Asia Forum spoke on the development of the working class struggle in India and how it has taken 87 years for the Indian Communist movement to realise that it needs its own strategy for revolution.
He said that society in India is divided along four fundamental lines: caste, class, ethnicity and gender and that the communist movement must address these issues.
Comrade Taimur Rahman from the Communist Workers’ and Peasants’ Party of Pakistan (CMKP) spoke of the parallel development of the communist movement in Pakistan and Bangladesh, working for much of the time in conditions of illegality where suspected communists could be arrested, tortured and murdered by the state.
He spoke of the damaging divisions that arose from the split between the Soviet and Chinese parties in the 1960s and how in the end they too concluded that revolutionary strategy must be built on the conditions prevailing in Pakistan rather than trying to copy too closely the example of other parties.
Michael Chant of the Revolutionary Communist Party of Britain (Marxist-Leninist) spoke on fight wage slavery and on the illusions of bourgeois “representative democracy”.
NCP general secretary Andy Brooks wound up the speeches with a detailed history of May Day. He recalled the struggles in 1856 for the eight-hour day; the struggles for trade union legality in Toronto in 1872 and the fight in Chicago in 1886 for the eight-hour day, which led to violence, the framing, imprisonment and legal murder of six trade union leaders.
This was followed by informal socialising and discussion and a collection which raised £45 towards the cost of the meeting.
photo: Taimur Rahman makes a point