State Governments

The CPI(M) while working for the long-term objective of replacing the big bourgeoisie led bourgeois-landlord rule has been working out interim slogans to meet the concrete political situation. The CPI(M) has been participating in elections at various levels -- the national parliament, state assemblies, municipalities and other local bodies.

The first communist ministry ever to come to office through popular elections was the ministry headed by Comrade E.M.S. Namboodiripad in Kerala. In the 1957 elections the undivided Communist Party of India won the elections to the Kerala Legislative assembly. Though this ministry was later dismissed undemocratically by an authoritarian Congress regime ruling at the Centre, it drew world-wide attention. Presently, the CPI(M) heads three governments in the states of West Bengal, Kerala  and Tripura.

West Bengal, which lies in the Eastern part of India had a Left Front government headed by the CPI(M)  uninterruptedly in office from 1977 to May 2011. It has won elections for seven consecutive terms. Comrade Jyoti Basu, the longest serving Chief Minister of any Indian state, laid down office after being at the helm uninterruptedly for 23 years. Com. Buddhadeb Bhattacharya was sworn in the new Chief Minister on November 6, 2000. In the 2006 elections, the CPI(M) won 176 seats  and the total strength of the Left Front in an assembly of 294 was 235. There are ten parties in the Left Front coalition. The West Bengal Left Front government in one of its first major policy measures, implemented land reform legislation. 1.005 million acres of land were taken from landlords who had more than the ceiling set up by law and distributed to 2.35 million landless peasants. Another measure, Operation Barga, as it was popularly known, provided security to sharecroppers. Despite being discriminated against by the Central government, which was ruled by the Congress party for most of the time, in the matter of finances and allocation of industries, the Left Front government in West Bengal has tried to provide as much relief to the people as possible, within the constraints imposed by the Indian constitution. The Left Front lost power in the 2011 April-May assembly elections. It has currently 40 members in the Assembly.

In the south, in Kerala, the Left Democratic Front (LDF) headed by the CPI(M) has been in and out of office. In the 2011 assemgly elections the LDF lost power narrowly.  In a 140-member assembly, the Left Democratic Front has strength of 68 as opposed to 72 of the UDF. The CPI(M) alone has 45 members.

In the North-Eastern state of Tripura, the CPI(M) led Left Front first came to office in 1977. The Left Front was elected to office in the next election also . However, the Left Front was dislodged from power in the 1988 elections, through a rigged and manipulated verdict engineered by the Congress party which was in power at the Centre. The CPI(M) was during the five-year term of the Congress-TUJS regime in office, subjected to vicious attacks and semi fascist terror. Hundreds of its cadres were brutally killed, while hundreds of others were forced to leave their homes for safer places. In a fitting reply to these cowardly attacks to cow down the Party and the Left, in the 1993 elections, the CPI(M)- led Left Front, was put back in the saddle by the people of the state. It has been winning all successive elections since then -- 1998, 2003,  2008 and 2013.  Out of a total tally of 50 seats for the Left Front in the 60 member House, the CPI(M) alone has 49. Manik Sarkar, Member of the Polit Bureau of the CPI(M) is the   Chief Minister of Tripura.