Democratic Socialism has come to be talked about all over the world as a possible alternative economic and political system. This perception has been bolstered by the events of the last few decades. First, after the disintegration of Soviet Russia the communist parties in many European countries transformed themselves into democratic parties, and then, more recently, after the US economy crash which was sparked off by the fall of Lehman Brothers, many started thinking about socialism. Unfortunately there has been no socialist party in India for many years. The Socialist Party, an independent incarnation of the Congress Socialist Party (CSP) formed in 1934 within the Congress, founded by J.P., Acharya Narendra Dev, Dr. Ram Manohar Lohia, had merged itself into the Janata Party in 1977 immediately after the independence.
The efforts of reviving the Socialist Party started after the disintegration of the Janata Party, however it got a boost with the Indian Socialist Meet held in Pune in 2002. The task of revival of the Socialist Party was entrusted to Surendra Mohan in the auspices of the Socialist Front. It took almost 8 years to take a final decision in this direction. In June 2010, it was finally decided, again in Pune, that the Socialist Party will be formed without further delay. Shri Surendra Mohan along with Panna Lal Surana tried very hard to bring together various socialist outfits till his untimely and unfortunate death. After a year-long deliberations undertaken through a series of meetings held in different cities of the country, several socialist groups and individuals met in a two-day foundation conference held in Hyderabad on 28-29 May 2011and formed the Socialist Party (India) to carry forward the legacy of Acharya Narendra Dev, J. P., Lohia, S. M. Joshi, Yusuf Meharally, Kishan Patnaik and other genuine socialist leaders and thinkers. Around 600 delegates from 19 states were present in the conference. Veteran journalist and writer Kuldip Nayar and Justice Rajinder Sachar were also there to grace the occasion.
The conference elected the following office bearers of the party: President – Bhai Vaidya, General Secretary and spokesperson – Dr. Prem Singh, Treasurer – Jayanti Bhai Panchal, General Secretary – Nurul Amin, General Secretary – Onkar Singh and 28 national executive members including Panna Lal Surana, Ptof. Keshavrao Jadhav, Dr. Sanmath Nath Ghosh, Sandeep Pandey, Balwan Singh Kheda, Shiva Tripathi and Sunita Bakshi. Sandip Pandey and Prof. Keshav Jadhav will be the Vice Presidents and Panna Lal Surana Chairman, Parliamentary Committee of the party.
A Coordination Committee, having Panna Lal Surana as its Convener and Lingraj, President, Samajwadi Jan Parishad, as member was formed to approach other radical socialist groups and individuals for joint actions and programs. Socialist Janata Party President Smt. Manju Mohan, and Loktantrik Samajwadi Party President Raghu Thakur have also given their consent to join the Coordination Committee.
Though there are a plethora of the political parties in India most of them including the Congress, the BJP and the regional parties are unfortunately committed to not only the market based education, health, mass media and even culture. The Western industrial model is being trusted upon the agriculture country like India at the cost of suicides of 2,50,000 peasants, malnutrition of millions of children and growing unemployment and disparity. The corporate sector is allowed to plunder jal-jungle -jamin and minerals at the cost of displacement of millions of adivasis. Globalization of investment and corporate-led so-called development is plying havoc in India during last two decades. Rs. 5000 crore family residence of Ambani is the glaring evidence of the concentration of the wealth of India vis-a-vis abysmal depth of growing poverty. India is on the top of the world in hiding black money which has out-spade the national income. The menace of globalization and neo-liberal policies has to be fought out on all fronts. The Socialist Party (India) is committed to challenge this onslaught of capitalists-led destructive policies.
The following policies are the distinguishing features of the Socialist Party (India)
(1) The party opposes the forced Western industrial model upon Indian peasants and pledges to develop agro-industrial model to benefit farmers.
(2) The party demands that a Land Use Commission should be formed and the colonial act on land acquisition should be abolished.
(3) The party is against FDI, particularly in the retail trade.
(4) The party adopts the objective the full employments to give every able hand a means of livelihood.
(5) Complete education from KG to PG be free, equal and qualitative. The party will oppose market based profit making education system.
(6) Health service is the right of every Indian and the state must spend enough on health.
(7) India must have national wage policy.
(8) Party is opposed to nuclear armaments and energy and it would pursue the policy of alternative energy development.
(9) The villages have the environments right s of jal-jangle-jamin and minerals
(10) The nomads of India have right of habitat.
(11) The party would strive to establish new common man oriented political culture with the help of elections reforms by abolishing money-muscle power and caste communal influence.
(12) Annihilation of caste system is the prominent objective of the party.
(13) The comprehensive social security for the unorganized section should be implemented urgently.
(14) The party will launch a struggle for food security.
(13 The party will mobilize public opinion for the Woman Reservation Bill.
(14 The recommendations of the Sachar Committee would be supported by the party.
(15 The party will support well-meaning civil society agitations against corruption but believes that the menace can only be removed by replacing the neo-liberal policies and capitalist model of development.
The party is committed to the new Indian social culture devoid of selfishness, consumerism and based on humanity, efficiency and work culture.