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March 6, 2000
AP Left to hold protest rally against Clinton visit
Syed Amin Jafri in Hyderabad
Nine Left parties, including the Communist Party of India and Communist Party of India-Marxist, have decided to organise a massive protest rally in Hyderabad as part of their "Clinton go back" programme during US President Bill Clinton's proposed visit to the city on March 24.
The Left parties, which held a meeting in Hyderabad on Sunday to work out the protest programme, also resolved to organise protest conventions on March 15 at all the district headquarters in the state to mobilise public opinion against Clinton's visit.
Moreover, on March 19, these parties will organise demonstrations in all the villages and municipal wards in the state and burn the effigies of Clinton.
CPI-M state secretary B V Raghuvulu told rediff.com after the convention that the Left parties were opposed to Clinton's forthcoming visit to India, particularly Andhra Pradesh, because "the US president wants to push through his economic and political agenda".
"Clinton's visit will weaken our sovereignty -- both economic and political. Clinton wants to internationalise the Kashmir issue and wrangle an open invitation from India to accept its mediatory role. Already, the US is interfering in our security matters. It has plans to open an FBI office in Mumbai," he explained.
Raghavulu expressed apprehensions over the economic agenda that Clinton would pursue. "The US president is pursuing the interests of the multinational corporations. Clinton is pressurising us to accept many conditions through the World Trade Organisation, International Monetary Fund and World Bank. Clinton's visit has to be viewed in this perspective," he said.
Coming down heavily on Chief Minister Nara Chandrababu Naidu for making hectic preparations to accord a red-carpet welcome to Clinton, Raghuvulu took "serious exception to the attitude of the chief minister. He is throwing beggars out of Hyderabad. He should initiate steps to eradicate beggary if he is sincere. But throwing out beggars for the sake of Clinton's visit is objectionable."
He said that Chandrababu Naidu was also opening up the agriculture sector in the state to MNCs by granting them concessions.
The CPI-M leader said that apart from his party and the CPI, other Marxist-Leninist groups which are organising the protest programme against Clinton's visit include the Marxist-Communist Party of India, Communist Party of India-Marxist-Leninst-New Democracy, Communist Party of India-Marxist-Leninst-Unity Initiative, Communist Party of India-Marxist-Leninst-Liberation, Communist Party of India-Marxist-Leninst-Jana Shakti, Socialist Unity Centre of India and Communist Party of India-Marxist-Leninst-Jana Shakti-New Initiative.
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