India: Modi victory underlines need for real socialist fightback
India's general election has returned the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to government. Confounding expectations, the far-right, Hindu-nationalist force even increased its vote.
BJP leader Narendra Modi has presided over brutal repression, in particular of oppressed castes. His economic policies have not delivered jobs for workers and youth, or relief for struggling farmers.
But rather than presenting a clear alternative to these failures, opposition parties limited themselves to simply contradicting Modi's bigoted scapegoating and strongman methods. In the vacuum right populism can make gains.
The traditional left - Stalinists, Maoists and social democrats - has all but disappeared. Years of 'lesser evil' support for 'progressive' capitalists have discredited them and obscured any elements of a socialist alternative.
A powerful, mass, working-class and poor people's party, with a fighting, socialist programme based on an independent class alternative, is yet more urgent.
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