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Revolutionary Socialist Party (RSP)

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August 04, 2015 06:07 PM
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Revolutionary Socialist Party Symbol

About Revolutionary Socialist Party

The Revolutionary Socialist Party (RSP) is a regional political party, as approved by the Election Commission of India. Its mass base is primarily in the state of West Bengal, though it has a visible presence in the states of Kerala, Tripura and Tamil Nadu, along with branches in 18 other states.
In Bengal and Tripura, whereas it is part of the Left Front, in Kerala it is part of the Left Democratic Front. The RSP has a left political position, and operates on the political ideology of Socialism and Marxism-Leninism.

The Revolutionary Socialist Party was formed in March 1940, largely as a political manifestation of the Anushilan Samiti or the Liberation Movement in Bengal. It also draws its roots from the Hindustan Socialist Republican Army. The youth who were members of the Anushilan Samiti took active part in reading Marx-Lenin manuscripts, and were jailed a number of times for being radical freedom fighters. Though many young members of the Samiti broke away from the Anushilan movement to join the CPI, which was the oldest existing political party to begin the communist movement, most stayed attached to the movement itself, indulging in copious readings of Marxism-Leninism.

The RSP is one strand of the many Indian political parties with a communist ideology. It was born at a time when India was facing the severest colonial oppression. Inspired by the Great October Socialist Revolution in Russia in 1917, and the victory of the working-class under the leadership of the Bolsheviks guided by Lenin, this group of young Indian freedom fighters wanted to utilize the ideal of Marxism to the Indian anti-imperialist struggles. They also questioned the growing buzz of ‘Socialism in One Country’. They exposed the hypocrisy of the ‘national-reformist leaders’, and branded the Communist Party of India as a group of ‘Social Fascists’. Their militant and revolutionary spirits were inclined towards improving the dismal conditions of the working-class of the country. Many of these communists worked together with the workers, peasants, trade unions and labourers, as part of a class-struggle against imperialist forces. Their rallying Marxian outcry was “Workers of All Lands Unite”. Though they rejected the fascist mentalities of Stalinism, they did not automatically embrace Trotskyism. In Ramgarh, Bihar in 1940, the members of the Anushilan Samiti, including the Forward Bloc supremo Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, met at a historic conference and formed the RSP.

The RSP’s strong agendas were to study and struggle together — study in order to enhance ideas, and struggle in order to liberate the nation from imperial forces, thus changing the movement into a civil war cry. In the post independent Indian set up, a number of splits and factionalism took place within the RSP. Presently, the RSP is part of the Left Front government in Tripura, having two seats in the Legislative Assembly. It has 7 assembly seats in the West Bengal Vidhan Sabha and 2 seats in the Kerala Vidhan Sabha.

Election Symbol of RSP

The Election Symbol of the Revolutionary Socialist Party, as approved by the Election Commission of India, is “spade and stoker”. This election symbol is usually depicted on a red-coloured flag, which is the colour of struggle symbolizing a communist party. Red is the colour of revolutionary zeals and ideas, and the spirit to “never say die”. Red is also the colour of blood, indicating a class struggle. The spade and stoker are individually very significant. Seen as intersecting each other, these motifs help the election symbol depict that the RSP is a party of the peasants, farmers, labourers, the workers who work in the fields and industries to earn a living. It depicts the conditions of the working class. The hammer is used to dig the ground in the agricultural field, or in the industries. The worker or the farmer toils in the industry or the land and at the end of the day gets a meagre amount as pay. This is represented by the RSP. It is a party of the poor and the oppressed in society. The RSP, through its Marxian ideologies and practices, in support with the trade unions present across the country, addresses the issues of the working class. It is symbolic of the anti-capitalist and anti-globalization policies and schemes across India. The symbol is therefore very prominent in the role the RSP plays as a significant left political party. Unlike the other left parties which use a different set of pictorial imagery in their election symbols, the RSP uses a starkly different combination — the hammer and the stoker. This is also a sharp retaliation to the theories used by other left political organizations. The RSP adheres to the singular Marxian concept of “Continuous Revolution”, until, as expressed in the famous words of Karl Marx, “all more or less possessing classes have been forced out of their position of dominance, the proletariat has conquered state power, and the association of proletarians, not only in one country but in all dominant countries of the world, has advanced so far that competition among the proletarians of these countries has ceased and that at least the decisive productive forces are concentrated in the hands of the proletarians.” In this sense, the Election Symbol of the RSP is more significant compared to other left parties.

National Executive of RSP

The leaders of the Revolutionary Socialist Party, who are also the national executives of the party, are listed below:
  • T. J. Chandrachoodan, National General Secretary of the RSP: He is a member of the Kerala Legislative Assembly, representing the Ariyanad Assembly constituency in Thiruvananthapuram.
  • Manohar Tirkey, Member of Parliament, 15th Lok Sabha: Tirkey is a member of the West Bengal RSP and represents the Alipurduar constituency of West Bengal in the 15th Lok Sabha.
  • Prasanta Kumar Majumdar, Member of Parliament, 15th Lok Sabha: Majumdar is a member of the West Bengal RSP, representing the Balurghat constituency of the state in the Lower House of Parliament.
  • Abani Roy, Member of Parliament, Rajya Sabha: Roy is a member of the West Bengal RSP.

Achievements of RSP

As a regional political party, the Revolutionary Socialist Party has had a number of significant achievements. Some of these are listed below:
  • The RSP has a number of principal mass organizations under its banner. These work for the betterment of the sections of the society they fight for. These are the workers union called the United Trade Union Congress (UTUC), the peasants' organization called the Samyukta Kisan Sabha or SKS, the youth organization called the Revolutionary Youth Front (RYF), the students’ wing called the All Indian Progressive Students Union (AIPSU), the women’s wing called the All India United Mahila Sangh (AIUMS) and the Nikhil Banga Mahila Sangha, which is the West Bengal branch of the women’s wing. These organizations have individually achieved enormous success so far as they cater to the demands of the working class.
  • The RSP as part of the Left parties in India, has raised its voice against a number of agendas of the Congress-led UPA government. According to the RSP, many steps of the present UPA government, such as disinvestment of the profit-making PSUs, introducing FDIs in finance sector, and MNCs in retail sector, are anti-people policies.
  • The RSP supported the presidential candidature of Lakshmi Sehgal in 2004, as opposed to A.P.J. Abdul Kalam’s. Sehgal got around 10% votes in the elections.
  • The RSP has made its strong presence felt in the states of West Bengal, Tripura, Kerala and Tamil Nadu.
  • The RSP opposed the recent government approval for the creation of the separate state of Telangana.

Address and Contact details

  • Official Website of RSP: http://rsp.org.in
  • Head-Office Address of RSP: 17, Firoz Shah Road, New Delhi 110001
  • Contact number: 011-23782167
  • Email id: contact@rsp.org
Last Updated on March 10, 2015

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