Sunday, February 10, 2013

Kolkata: Rally


The growing influence of the Left, in organising urban protest was strongly felt from around 1957. The old institutions of mass mobilisation were strengthened to suit the agitation-oriented strategy of the left parties. A particularly significant expression of this agitation-oriented form of opposition to government policies was the way in which massive demonstrations of tens of thousands of people were organised in the heart of the city. Various administrative steps were taken to impede or disrupt large public rallies. Esplanade East, the Monument, and Brigade Parade ground, lying just outside the cordon thrown around the citadels of power, were the new rallying points of mass protest.

With the Left Front in power for decades, the opposition has picked up similar agitation-oriented tactics quite often bringing different parts of the city, including the Espalanade to a halt. Even the ruling party in the state continues to organise rallies sometimes against the policies of the Central Government. Nobody wants to miss the limelight of a busy street junction.
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