South Asia

Sham character of Maruti Suzuki workers’ trial further exposed

By Keith Jones, 23 March 2017

The presiding judge had to admit police colluded with Maruti Suzuki and fabricated evidence, but even as he did so, he downplayed the significance of these crimes.

Support grows for framed-up Maruti Suzuki workers in India

By Jerry White, 21 March 2017

Opposition to the brutal life sentences meted out to 13 Maruti Suzuki workers is growing in India and around the world.

Thirteen sentenced to life imprisonment in India

Free the framed-up Maruti Suzuki workers!

By International Committee of the Fourth International, 20 March 2017

Thirteen Maruti Suzuki workers have been condemned to life in prison as the result of a monstrous frame-up mounted by the automaker, the police and judicial authorities, with the full complicity of India’s principal political parties.

Indian court to hear sentencing arguments against framed-up Maruti Suzuki workers

By Shannon Jones, 17 March 2017

Thirteen autoworkers could face the death penalty in a case that has seen blatant collusion between company management, police and Indian state officials

IMF demands “decisive action” on Sri Lankan austerity cuts

By Saman Gunadasa, 16 March 2017

The global institution has ramped up its pressure on the government to further slash social spending and speed up the privatisation of state-owned enterprises.

Nationalist groups in Tamil diaspora seek deal with Trump at UN

By Athiyan Silva, 16 March 2017

While the US has abandoned its call for investigation of Sri Lankan civil war atrocities, the Tamil nationalists continue to promote Washington as an ally of the Tamil people and aid its anti-China war drive.

BJP gains in Indian state elections leave opposition Congress reeling

By Deepal Jayasekera, 15 March 2017

The BJP exploited popular anger with the Congress and various caste-ist and regional parties that have implemented pro-investor “reforms” and presided over mass joblessness.

ICFI supporters in India hold public meeting on “World War and the Russian Revolution”

By our correspondents, 13 March 2017

The Chennai meeting was part of the ICFI’s commemoration of the centenary of the October 1917 Revolution and promoted its online lecture series.

India: BJP-backed student union unleashes violence at Delhi University

By Pradeep Ramanayake, 8 March 2017

The ABVP’s attack on left-wing students at Delhi University is part of a concerted, government-supported campaign to stamp out political dissent at India’s universities.

Sri Lanka asks UN to delay human rights inquiry

By W.A. Sunil, 8 March 2017

The appeal to the UN Human Rights Council is another attempt to manipulate or suppress any investigation of war crimes in Sri Lanka.

US Congress members visit Sri Lanka to boost US interests

By Saman Gunadasa, 3 March 2017

Visits by delegations of senior officials from the US, India and China indicate intensifying strategic tensions.

IMF head to visit Sri Lanka to demand more austerity measures

By K. Ratnayake, 2 March 2017

Christine Lagarde will use the financial crisis faced by the Colombo government to dictate terms.

South Asian nuclear arms race accelerates amid India-Pakistan standoff

By Sampath Perera, 28 February 2017

India and Pakistan are rapidly expanding their nuclear arsenals and proclaiming adherence to aggressive military strategies that increase the prospect of nuclear war.

Sri Lankan elite discusses “frightening economic situation”

By Saman Gunadasa, 22 February 2017

The country has been severely hit by the continuing global downturn and a prolonged drought that has destroyed key crops and driven up the prices of staple foods.

A wave of class struggles in Sri Lanka: Workers must fight for a socialist program to defend their rights

By the Socialist Equality Party, 18 February 2017

The series protests of private and public sector workers are a sign of the mass social upheavals to come against the pro-US government and the capitalist class as a whole.

Trump administration to expand India-US military-strategic alliance

By Deepal Jayasekera and Keith Jones, 15 February 2017

The Trump administration is intent on using India as a frontline state in a drive to thwart China through economic and military pressure and, if need be, all-out war.

Sri Lankan president insists on retaining emergency powers

By Vijith Samarasinghe, 14 February 2017

The government’s decision underscores its readiness to use draconian measures against political opponents, workers and the poor.

Sri Lankan foreign minister raises concerns over Trump’s economic policies

By Minusha Fernando, 11 February 2017

Harsha de Silva told a Colombo meeting of business chiefs that the US president’s trade policies would drastically impact on the Sri Lankan economy.

Former diplomat admits India’s role in Sri Lankan communal war

By Vijith Samarasinghe, 10 February 2017

Shivashankar Menon’s account confirms the political and military support given by India to the Colombo government to crush the LTTE with large-scale civilian casualties.

Sri Lanka: Tamil parties launch communal campaign to divert social tensions

By Subash Somachandran and S. Jayanth, 9 February 2017

The political aim of the Batticaloa protest is to divide Tamil workers and the poor from their class brothers and sisters in Sri Lanka’s south.

Sri Lankan riot police attack Colombo port workers

By our reporters, 7 February 2017

The police set up barricades and used tear gas and water cannon to disperse a protest of port workers against privatisation.

Bangladesh government continues repression of apparel workers

By Sarath Kumara, 4 February 2017

International retail corporations are concerned that the government’s actions will spark industrial struggles and impact on investor profits.

Indian budget tabled amid demonetisation shock, mounting economic uncertainty

By Kranti Kumara, 3 February 2017

Ignoring mass joblessness and plunging exports and business investment, Finance Minister Jaitley claimed India is the “bright spot on the world economic landscape.”

Former Sri Lanka president intensifies efforts to resume power

By K. Ratnayake, 3 February 2017

The escalating conflict reflects deepening political instability within the ruling elite.

India: Tamil Nadu police brutally attack Jallikattu protesters

By Arun Kumar and Yuvan Darwin, 1 February 2017

Indian authorities were taken aback by the mass character of the protests, which had erupted outside the traditional political parties.

Sri Lanka: Pseudo-left NSSP celebrates alliances with capitalist parties

By Pani Wijesiriwardane, 1 February 2017

The NSSP has intensified its campaign to defend the current government as the government implements the IMF’s austerity demands and faces growing opposition from workers.

Central Bank governor says Sri Lankan economy “hospitalised”

By Saman Gunadasa, 27 January 2017

The bank chief, whose remarks exposed the depth of the country’s economic crisis, urged the government to step up IMF austerity measures.

Nepal-China military exercises: Another sign of rising geo-political rivalry

By W.A. Sunil, 18 January 2017

India considers increased military cooperation between China and Nepal will further undermine its influence in Kathmandu and a threat to its strategic ambitions.

Government and employers attack striking apparel workers in Bangladesh

By Wimal Perera, 13 January 2017

The repression is aimed at preventing a broader eruption by workers against their appalling living and working conditions.

Former Sri Lankan president threatens to topple government

By Pradeep Ramanayake, 10 January 2017

Rajapakse hopes to return to power in 2017 by exploiting the growing political and economic crisis facing the government.

Insider’s book sheds light on Sri Lanka’s regime-change operation

By Vijith Samarasinghe, 20 December 2016

A parliamentarian’s recent book contains some inside information on how leading figures in the country’s ruling elite conspired to oust Rajapakse.

UN agency says government torture and abductions continue in Sri Lanka

By Saman Gunadasa, 19 December 2016

Seven years after the defeat of the separatist LTTE, Colombo’s huge police-state apparatus is being used against the working class and oppressed masses.

To target China, US further enhances military-strategic alliance with India

By Keith Jones, 15 December 2016

The last days of the Obama administration have seen a concerted, bi-partisan drive of the American political elite and the Pentagon to further cement the Indo-US “global strategic partnership.”

Sri Lankan SEP and Deeside Workers Action Committee call meeting to defend plantation workers

15 December 2016

The meeting will discuss a program to defend plantation workers’ jobs, wages and social rights.

Sri Lankan unions agree to impose share-cropper system on plantation workers

By W.A. Sunil, 15 December 2016

The new collective agreement is a prelude to a productivity-based payment regime proposed by the plantation companies.

Sri Lankan port minister threatens to sack striking workers

By our reporters, 14 December 2016

The government’s repression of the Magampura Port workers is a warning to the whole working class.

Sri Lankan government sends navy to suppress striking port workers

By our reporters, 12 December 2016

The Sirisena-Wickremesinghe government has sent a message to the entire working class that it will use police-military methods to suppress their struggles.

Sri Lankan president asks Trump to end war crime investigations

By K. Ratnayake, 10 December 2016

Sirisena’s appeals to Washington expose the anti-democratic character of the Sri Lankan government and its determination to cover-up the military’s atrocities.

Indian defence minister visits Bangladesh

By Sarath Kumara, 8 December 2016

The visit underscores India’s growing efforts—backed by Washington—to bring Bangladesh into its orbit, undercutting China’s influence.

India rebuffs Pakistan’s “peace” overtures

By Keith Jones, 6 December 2016

India has demonstrably rebuffed Pakistan’s attempts to initiate a dialogue aimed at defusing the almost three-month-long war crisis between South Asia’s rival nuclear-armed states.

SEP meeting in Colombo discusses Trump’s election

By our correspondents, 6 December 2016

Speakers explained the far-reaching and reactionary implications of Trump’s victory for workers and young people globally.

US Pacific commander visits Sri Lanka, praising new regime

By K. Ratnayake, 3 December 2016

PACOM chief Harris’s visit was part US efforts to boost military ties with Sri Lanka after President Maithripala Sirisena became president in early 2015.

Sri Lankan workers and students discuss Trump’s election

By our correspondents, 29 November 2016

Many people were keen to discuss with SEP and IYSSE campaigners the shift in world politics reflected in Trump’s victory.

Sri Lankan SEP holds meeting in Jaffna on the socialist alternative to nationalism and war

By our correspondents, 28 November 2016

Speakers explained the dangerous political agenda of the incoming Trump administration in the US and the necessity for workers and youth to mobilise on a revolutionary program.

Sri Lankan president orders arrest of “inciters of racism”

By W.A. Sunil, 23 November 2016

Under the pretext of “curbing racism,” the government is preparing for a broader crackdown not only on opposition parties but against the working class.

Indian government’s demonetisation causes mass hardship and economic chaos

By Kranti Kumara and Arun Kumar, 21 November 2016

The true aim of the Indian government's demonetisation scheme is to shore up the country's fragile banking system.

Indian rail accident kills more than 120

By Arun Kumar, 21 November 2016

Sunday’s disaster is a direct result of poor safety standards and the run-down of essential maintenance throughout India’s extensive rail network.

Indian elite welcome Trump’s election

By Deepal Jayasekera and Keith Jones, 19 November 2016

India’s elite calculates Trump’s hardline positions vis-a-vis China and Pakistan will provide New Delhi with a strategic boost over its principal Asian rivals.

SEP public meeting in Colombo: The international implications of Trump’s election

19 November 2016

The meeting will explain the political factors behind Trump’s election and outline the program of socialist internationalism that the working class must adopt.

Sri Lankan budget deepens austerity offensive

By Saman Gunadasa, 15 November 2016

The government has drastically increased taxes on working people while slashing funds for health, education and welfare.

Diplomatic row erupts between Sri Lanka and China

By W.A. Sunil, 12 November 2016

The public squabble between Colombo and Beijing over loans is another indication of rising geo-strategic tensions in the region.

Indo-Pakistan tensions escalate

By Wasantha Rupasinghe, 8 November 2016

The ongoing clashes along the Line of Control between India and Pakistan highlight the dangerous standoff that has brought the nuclear-armed rivals to the brink of war.

Sri Lanka: Deeside plantation workers form action committee

By our correspondents, 4 November 2016

The committee’s establishment is an important step toward breaking from the trade unions, which function as industrial police for big business and the government.

SEP public meeting in Jaffna: Imperialist war, Tamil nationalism and the fight for socialism

By the Socialist Equality Party (Sri Lanka), 2 November 2016

The Tamil nationalist parties support Washington’s war drive in Asia and have pleaded for US backing to secure privileges for the Tamil elite in Sri Lanka.

Sri Lanka: New anti-terror measures lay foundations for police state

By Nanda Wickremasinghe, 31 October 2016

While President Sirisena postured as a champion of democracy in 2015, Sri Lanka’s planned anti-terror act is a major assault on the basic rights of the working class.

US SEP presidential candidate addresses Sri Lankan audience

By our correspondents, 31 October 2016

Yesterday’s meeting in Colombo unanimously adopted a resolution supporting the socialist anti-war conference to be held by the US SEP in Detroit on November 5.

Terror attack on Pakistani police academy kills more than 60

By Keith Jones, 26 October 2016

The attack on the Balochistan Police College is said to be the deadliest terrorist attack ever mounted on Pakistan’s security forces.

General strike in northern Sri Lanka over police killing of students

By our correspondents, 26 October 2016

The death of two Tamil students is a continuation of the police-state methods developed during the war and now increasingly being used against working people throughout the island.

Sri Lanka assists India to isolate Pakistan by not attending SAARC summit

By Pradeep Ramanayake, 25 October 2016

The Sri Lankan prime minister has unequivocally backed the Indian government’s efforts to exploit the Uri military raid to undermine Pakistan and boost India’s great power ambitions.

Police murder of two Jaffna University students exposes Sri Lankan Tamil nationalists

By K. Nesan, 24 October 2016

The police murder exposed the Tamil nationalists’ collaboration with Washington and Colombo in setting up police-state forms of rule in northern Sri Lanka.

Sri Lankan plantation workers protest union wage deal

By W.A. Sunil, 24 October 2016

The union-plantation association deal locks workers into increased productivity rates for the next two years in exchange for a negligible wage rise.

US SEP presidential candidate Jerry White to address Sri Lankan public meeting via Internet

21 October 2016

The US presidential elections are of enormous political significance for working people and youth in South Asia and internationally.

Sri Lankan president warns of autocratic measures

By K. Ratnayake, 18 October 2016

Sirisena, who won office on bogus slogans of good governance and fighting corruption, has moved to halt even the limited actions of the Bribery Commission and police.

Indian Stalinists aid BJP’s bellicose anti-Pakistan campaign

By Wasantha Rupasinghe and Keith Jones, 14 October 2016

India’s principal Stalinist party, the CPM, is playing a foul role in the reckless, bellicose offensive India’s ruling elite is mounting against its nuclear-armed arch-rival, Pakistan.

Sri Lanka: Chauvinist response to large Tamil protest

By Pani Wijesiriwardena, 12 October 2016

The protest in Jaffna over the continued military occupation and abuse of democratic rights was denounced in chauvinist terms by the entire Colombo establishment.

Amid war crisis, Pakistani actors hounded out of India

By Kranti Kumara, 4 October 2016

The Indian Motion Pictures Producers’ Association has passed a resolution banning Pakistani actors, singers and technicians from Bollywood productions.

India and Pakistan teeter on the brink of war

By Keith Jones, 3 October 2016

In anticipation of a possible Pakistani counter-strike, or to facilitate their own war preparations, India is evacuating tens of thousands of people living near the border.

Sri Lankan president at the UN prostrates himself to Washington

By Pradeep Ramanayake, 1 October 2016

The accolades he received simply reflected that fact that Sirisena has dutifully toed the US line against China since coming to power in January last year.

Sri Lankan regime, Tamil nationalists reject ex-LTTE members’ poisoning allegations

By K. Nesan, 1 October 2016

The Tamil nationalist parties, like the Sri Lankan regime and its imperialist backers, are desperate to cover up the crimes of the Sri Lankan civil war.

After Kashmir attack, US media threaten to support India in war with Pakistan

By Kumaran Ira, 29 September 2016

Washington’s anti-China “pivot to Asia” is fueling war tensions between Pakistan and India, which have escalated since Islamist militants attacked an Indian military base in Kashmir.

India launches campaign to “punish” Pakistan

By Wasntha Rupasinghe, 28 September 2016

The publicly announced steps India has taken against Pakistan are of a diplomatic and economic character. But behind the scenes feverish preparations continue for a lethal “counterstrike.”

Indian workers and students speak out against US war drive

By our correspondents, 28 September 2016

Indian workers and students discussed mounting global tensions and New Delhi’s role in the US military preparations against China.

Pakistan replies with belligerence to Indian threats

By Sampath Perera, 27 September 2016

The Pakistan Air Force conducted war exercises last week, including over the skies of the national capital, Islamabad, and on the highway connecting it to Lahore.

Workers and youth at Jaffna protest speak out against US-backed Sri Lankan regime

By Subash Somachandran and K. Nesan, 27 September 2016

There is growing anger among Tamil workers and youth against the Tamil nationalists’ support for US imperialism’s foreign policy and for its client regime in Colombo.

Sri Lanka government raises VAT following IMF demands

By Saman Gunadasa, 26 September 2016

The increased taxes highlight the International Monetary Fund’s control over Sri Lankan financial and economic affairs.

Public meeting in Chennai, India: Oppose the imperialist war drive! Fight for socialist program!

21 September 2016

The Indian government’s deepening involvement in the US preparations for war against China is occurring behind the backs of the Indian working class and poor.

War danger surges as India blames Pakistan for attack on Kashmir base

By V. Gnana, 19 September 2016

Seventeen Indian soldiers were killed yesterday morning in Indian-administered Kashmir when fighters assaulted a military base at Uri.

UN chief praises pro-US Sri Lankan government

By Pradeep Ramanayake, 17 September 2016

Ban indirectly admitted that the UN did nothing to stop the wartime massacres in Sri Lanka, saying the world body had made “serious mistakes.”

Protesters continue to defy Indian state violence in Kashmir

By Kranti Kumara, 16 September 2016

India’s government is resorting to increasingly desperate measures to quell the popular protests that have convulsed the Kashmir Valley for the past ten weeks.

Death toll rises in Bangladesh factory fire

By Sarath Kumara, 16 September 2016

The Tampaco Foils disaster highlights the unsafe conditions and shoddy construction for which Bangladesh is now notorious.

Opposition plots regime change in Maldives

By Wasantha Rupasinghe, 6 September 2016

The US and its allies are hostile to President Yameen, not because of his record of human rights abuses, but his ties to China.

Tens of millions strike against Indian government’s right-wing economic policies

By Deepal Jayasekera, 3 September 2016

The strike is an expression of mounting opposition in the working class internationally against assaults by governments and corporations on jobs and working conditions.

Rana Plaza disaster case postponed in Bangladesh

By Sarath Kumara, 3 September 2016

The court delay further underscores the indifference of all sections of the ruling elite for the plight of garment workers.

US war planes and battleships to start using Indian bases

By Deepal Jayasekera, 31 August 2016

With the signing of the basing agreement, India is being transformed into a “frontline” state in the US drive to isolate, encircle, and prepare to wage war on China.

Tens of millions of Indian workers to join one-day protest strike

By Sathish Simon and Kranti Kumara, 31 August 2016

The widespread support for the strike is an expression of mounting working-class anger and militancy and part of a global resurgence of class struggle.

US deepens military ties with Sri Lanka

By Vilani Peiris, 31 August 2016

Washington wants to use Sri Lanka as one of its bases in the event of war with China.

India: Kerala’s Stalinist-led government pursuing pro-business agenda

By Kranti Kumara, 17 August 2016

Kerala’s chief minister has appointed a neoliberal economist with close ties to the US financial elite and Federal Reserve as his top economic advisor.

Sri Lankan government imposes IMF privatisation demands

By Saman Gunadasa, 13 August 2016

The IMF regards Sri Lanka’s state-owned enterprises as a burden on the economy as well as a potential source of profit for investors.

Sri Lanka’s National Unity Government alliance extended

By Vilani Peiris, 29 July 2016

The deal is aimed at establishing a strong regime committed to Washington’s geo-political strategy and the imposition of the IMF’s austerity demands.

Arch-rivals India and Pakistan take opposed stands on Hague court’s anti-China ruling

By Deepal Jayasekera, 22 July 2016

While India has lined up behind Washington in supporting the provocative ruling issued in The Hague, Pakistan has backed China’s rejection of it.

US and Chinese officials visit Sri Lanka, highlighting growing regional tensions

By K. Ratnayake, 22 July 2016

China has attempted to strengthen its relations with Sri Lanka since the US-inspired regime-change that ousted former President Mahinda Rajapakse.

Foreign minister resigns as Maldives political crisis intensifies

By Wasantha Rupasinghe, 18 July 2016

Bitter infighting, driven by the geo-strategic demands of the US and India, is deepening within the Maldives ruling elite.

Indian troops kill dozens of protesters in Kashmir

By Kranti Kumara, 16 July 2016

The past week of mass protests in Kashmir has rattled India’s Hindu supremacist BJP government and laid bare Kashmiris’ deep disaffection from the Indian state.

Amid Brexit shocks, Indian elite seeks “new opportunities”

By Wasantha Rupasinghe, 14 July 2016

The Indian government is attempting to use Britain’s exit from the EU to pursue its own economic and strategic interests.

Halt the attacks on living conditions! Fight for socialist policies!

By the Socialist Equality Party (Sri Lanka), 12 July 2016

The mounting strikes and protests in Sri Lanka can only be advanced through a break from the entire ruling class and the fight for a unified international and socialist movement of the working class.

India and Iran approve Chabahar corridor, amid heightening tensions in South and Central Asia

By Wasantha Rupasinghe, 7 July 2016

To access energy resources and strike a strategic blow against China and Pakistan, India plans to build a transport corridor via Iran to Afghanistan and Central Asia.

Brexit to intensify Sri Lankan economic crisis

By Saman Gunadasa, 6 July 2016

The British vote threatens to exacerbate Sri Lanka’s balance of payments crisis and deepen the widespread discontent over the government’s austerity measures.

US attempt to hustle India into Nuclear Suppliers Group stalls

By Wasantha Rupasinghe, 5 July 2016

US officials have vowed to work with India to secure its entry into the NSG, while joining India in suggesting that Beijing was responsible for its rebuff.

Dhaka hostage crisis ends in a violent military assault

By Deepal Jayasekera, 4 July 2016

Whoever the perpetrators of Dhaka hostage-taking, this type of terrorism has been fomented by the US-led wars in the Middle East.

Indian Stalinists try to paper over deep rift over tie-up with Congress Party

By Deepal Jayasekera, 28 June 2016

The CPM leadership has effectively given its West Bengal unit the green light to continue its alliance with the big business Congress Party.