The Socialist International (SI) is a worldwide organisation of political parties which seek to establish democratic socialism. It consists mostly of democratic socialist, social-democratic and labour political parties. SI currently includes 147 member parties and organisations from over 100 countries. The current president is the former Prime Minister of Greece, George Papandreou, re-elected in March 2017.
Two Mauritian political parties are full members of SI namely the Mauritius Labour Party (MLP) which joined SI in 1969 and the MMM (Mouvement Militant Mauricien) which was accepted as full member in 2003. These two parties have a similar ideology (democratic socialism) and are expected to make no concession to far-right parties which are racist and fascist. The Indian National Congress which was led by Mahatma Gandhi and which freed India from foreign rule, as well as the African National Congress which, under the leadership of Nelson Mandela, overthrew the South African apartheid regime, are in theory brother/sister parties of the MLP and the MMM but when we see how MLP is courting BJP, a far-right party, we have every reason to be alarmed. The racist and fascist regime of N. Modi is not condemned by either MLP or MMM. Not a word against Hindutva, a racist and fascist movement with a branch in Mauritius. Emphasis is on the generous gift from Mr. Modi. We seem to have forgotten the old adage: “Donn enn dizef, pran enn bef.”
This is what the scholar, Professor Radhika Desai, has to say on Hindutva: “fascism and its dangers have not always been easy to detect; they are not written on its forehead. Rather, though it exploits the possibilities of illegal activity to the fullest, it can and has in the most important cases, come to power through normal and legal electoral procedures, much as Modi’s BJP has in India today.” (https://www.academia.edu/30813538/Hindutva_and_Fascism)
Have the MLP and the MMM lost their identity?
The MLP is unable to distinguish between party and government. A party’s main duty is to ensure that its outlook is clearly spelt out and clearly understood by its members and the public at large and that its programme is in line with its vision of change. This helps it to win growing support and eventually general elections. In government, the party elected into power by universal suffrage, will govern and try to implement its programme. As government, it will have to face new situations as all countries are not governed by parties which share its views. It may have to deal with left wing, centrist, right wing or even far-right governments. Hence it will have to show diplomatic acumen. The confusion in the mind of the MLP leader, who behaves as if he is still prime minister, blurs the frontier between party and government duties and responsibilities.
As for the MMM, it is paralysed by the need to hide behind a dhoti and a pagri and Mr. N. Modi’s dhoti, pagri and his supposed 56-inch chest (some kind of divine power) bewilder all our purple lot.
The MSM government with the bulk support of Hindutva rank and file, is cleverly manipulating the population. It dishes out largesse to senior citizens and sabotages works that aim at developing a supraethnic identity. For example, it is trying to downgrade our national language, the mother tongue of 90% of the population, and treat it as the ethnic tongue of a minority. Helped by a few self-seekers who have donned academic paraphernalia, it tries to seduce and hoodwink a specific ethnic group so as to make inroads into the much-needed urban electorate.
As for the PMSD, it seems that the son is trying to re-edit the father’s dangerous demagogy, in vain. Fortunately, he lacks the father’s charisma and lustre.
To sum up, “Nou dan bez. Sap dan karay, tom dan dife.”