100 Years of Communist Party of China (CPC)

June 29, 2021

Sitaram Yechury

Communist Party of India (Marxist), conveyed fraternal communist greetings to the Communist Party of China (CPC) on the occasion of the centenary of the foundation of the CPC.

The Communist Party of India was founded a few months earlier in October 1920 outside of the Indian territory which was then ruled by the ruthless British colonial power. Since then, during the course of this century, both parties have maintained fraternal relations, through ruptures, ups and downs.

The CPI(M) underlines that Marxism-Leninism is a creative science. It is supremely anti-dogmatic. It can never be reduced to a set of formulae. As a creative science, while strictly adhering to its revolutionary principles and emancipatory objectives, it has to be adapted to the concrete conditions
obtaining in every country at every point in time. As Lenin had said, “concrete analysis of concrete conditions is the living essence of dialectics”.

The history of the last century of the CPC is a testimony to the manner in which this creative science of Marxism-Leninism was adapted to the concrete conditions obtaining in China. By such an application, learning from the inspiration and experience of the Russian revolution, the CPC adopted a course innovating both the application of theory and practice to successfully assume the leadership of the national liberation struggle. This
led to the eventual establishment of socialist China – the People’s Republic of China.

This was the third among the history-changing events of the 20th century
following the 1917 October revolution, the 1945 defeat of Hitler and fascism in World War II, leading to decolonization and the 1949 founding of Socialist China. These three events together shaped the contours of human civilization in the 20th century.

During this long history, at every twist and turn, the CPC had to undergo many trials and tribulations. Many a mistake was committed which were identified, located and corrected, steering the consolidation of socialist China. There were many bitter struggles, including instances that caused social turmoil, but the CPC emerged victorious correcting these mistakes ensuring that such mistakes are not repeated.

The CPC’s experience confirms that mistakes identified, corrected and conditions for their repetition erased, is the essence for carrying forward the people’s movement for emancipation into the future.

Through this process of innovation, self-critical evaluation and correction, CPC embarked upon a bold trajectory of reforms in 1978. The stupendous results of this are there for everyone to see and for the whole world to stand up and notice.

In 1987 I had the opportunity to visit China accompanying the then General Secretary, EMS Namboodiripad. Deng Xiaoping had by then relinquished party positions and was not receiving foreign delegations. However, for EMS, he made an exception and hosted a luncheon banquet. Com. Deng was a chain smoker. He shared a great rapport with Com. EMS. As he lit a cigarette Deng told EMS that “you will not live as long as I will”. Then with a big laugh, he continued, “you neither smoke nor drink hence will not live as long as I will”.

As we made efforts to understand the unfolding of the reform process in China he asked his associates to bring a map of China. He spread out the map on the large table pointed towards Guangzhou (popularly known in India as Canton in South China) and said this is from where the transformation of China will begin. In the South, in the 1980s; the east in 1990s; North between 2000 and 2010 and Central between 2010 and 2020 and West by 2030. In the next 20 years by 2050, China will emerge as a prosperous socialist country. In retrospect, that blueprint which Deng outlined is being implemented to the dot.

This process of reforms and opening up, we are sure will be guided by the revolutionary tenets of Marxism-Leninism and not give opportunity for the enemies of socialism who are eager to pounce on every possible opportunity to weaken and undermine socialism. During these decades of reforms and opening up, CPC confronted successfully all adversaries who in pursuance of imperialism’s objective of undermining socialism targeted the
PRC. These class battles continue in imperialist efforts to shape the post-Covid world with the USA seeking to strengthen its global hegemony pursuing its strategic goal of ‘containment of China’. CPI(M) wishes the CPC all success in meeting these challenges.

Today’s world has confirmed the Marxist-Leninist understanding that capitalism, inherently inhuman, can never be a system free from human exploitation and systemic crises. Its rationale of existence is profit maximisation and hence intensified exploitation. The first two decades of the 21st century have shown that global capitalism is incapable of emerging from the crisis it itself created particularly since the global financial meltdown of 2008.

As the global economy was slowing down and moving towards a recession, came the Covid pandemic that devastated the already faltering global economy. International finance capital led imperialist neoliberal globalisation is showing its total bankruptcy in providing any solution.

The exemplary manner in which the PRC tackled and contained the Covid pandemic reopened its society and economy with the requisite precautions and put back the economy on a growth trajectory is a lesson for the world establishing the superiority of socialism as a system over capitalism.

Through these years of reforms, China could eliminate absolute poverty by 2020, reduce unemployment by creating millions of jobs every year, strengthen its health care system and build world-class infrastructure and educational institutions. China is reaping dividends from the investments made in research and development in the form of science and technological
advancements. The efforts to eliminate inequalities and corruption, raising the quality of life have put PRC on the path to achieving the centennial goal of building a ‘modern socialist country that is prosperous, strong, democratic, culturally advanced and harmonious’ by 2049.

Progressive people look forward to the PRC under CPC’s leadership pursuing a peaceful foreign policy, consolidating good neighbourly relations, contributing to peace and stability in South Asia and in the world.