Recollections and reflections

Reminiscences, Rafi Ahmad Kidwai

I first came in contact with Subhas Bose in 1923 at Delhi when the Congress was divided into two groups over the question of what was known as 'Council Entry.'...Subhas Babu, as the favourite lieutenant of Deshabandhu, was playing a prominent part in the controversy. more>>

Statement on Disciplinary Action

I welcome the decision of the Working Committee virtually expelling me from the Congress for three years. This decision is the logical consequence of the process of "Right-consolidation” which has been going on for the last few years and which has been accentuated by the acceptance of ministerial office in the provinces. The action of the Working Committee has served to expose the real character of the present majority party in the Congress and the role they have been playing. The punishment accorded to me is, however, thoroughly justified from their point of view. By trying to warn the country about the continued drift towards Constitutionalism and Reformism, by protesting against resolutions which seek to kill the revolutionary spirit of the Congress, by working for the cause of Left-Consolidation and, last but not least, by consistently appealing to the country to prepare for the coming struggle — I have committed a crime for which I have to pay the penalty. The sentence meted out to me may have come as a shock to the vast majority of our countrymen, but not to me. It has appeared as a. perfectly logical development in the struggle between Constitutionalism and Mass Struggle and as an inevitable phase in our political evolution. Consequently, I do not find within myself the slightest trace of bitterness or anger. I am only sorry that the Working Committee did not realise that this sort of action should hurt them more than it should hurt me.

To members of the Forward Bloc, to Leftists in general and to the public at large I would appeal to remain calm and collected in face of the above provocation and to continue working with increasing patience and perseverance. What does it matter if I am victimised today? I shall cling to the Congress with even greater devotion than before and shall go on serving the Congress and the country as a servant of the nation. I appeal to my countrymen to come and join the Congress in their millions and to enlist as members of the Forward Bloc. Only by doing so shall we be able to convert the rank and file in the Congress to our point of view, secure a reversal of the present policy of Constitutionalism and Reformism and resume the national straggle for Independence with' the united strength of the Indian people.

In conclusion, I would request the public not to forget that what has happened today is but a repetition of history. Years ago, Left-wingers were once expelled from the Congress, but they came back in larger numbers before long and the Congress then had to accept their policy and programme. I feel no doubt in my mind that the cause which we Leftists represent is a just cause and it will prosper more through such Action on the part of the Working Committee than otherwise. The wonderful response that the Forward Bloc has received from one end of the country to the other makes me feel confident that before long we shall be able to rejuvenate the Congress, restore to it its revolutionary character and role and resume the struggle for Independence in the name of the Indian National Congress.