Satyanarayan Singh (Bihar politician)

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Not to be confused with Satyanarayan Singh (U.P. politician).

Satyanarayan Singh (Hindi: सत्यनारायण सिंह, commonly known as SNS[1]) was an Indian communist politician. Singh was one of the early leaders of the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist), being its secretary in Bihar.[2]

Satyanarayan Singh hailed from Bhojpur, Bihar. As of 1948 Singh was an underground cadre of the Communist Party of India.[3]

Singh supported the line of annihilations of class enemies of Charu Majumdar, and implemented it to a certain degree in Musahari and other areas in Bihar.[4] However he disagreed with Majumdar on the issue of killing rich peasants.[4] In 1968-1969 the Musahari Naxalite movement grew from seizures of food crops to guerrilla struggle and killings of landlords. By May 1969 the movement encompassed 50,000 people.[5] As of 1969 Singh argued that rejection of the annihilation line meant advocating co-existence between landlords and the village peasantry.[5] Singh recorded his analysis of this phase of struggle in the document Musahari and its lessons.[6]

Singh emerged as the leader of dissent inside the party against the party general secretary Majumdar. By July 1970 he had rejected Majumdar's policy on annihilation as 'individual terrorism'.[7] In September 1970 Singh charged the CPI(ML) Central Committee with following a left sectarian line.[1] Singh led the revolt against Majumdar inside the CPI(ML), setting up a parallel Central Committee.[8] In November 1971 the new Central Committee officially declared Majumdar expelled from the party for having adopted a 'Trotskyist adventurist line' and elected Singh as the new general secretary.[9][10] His party would be known as the Provisional Central Committee, Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist), and would reject Majumdar's annihilation line.[1][11]

Singh's CPI(ML) supported the anti-Emergency struggle launched by Jayaprakash Narayan in 1974.[12] Singh's CPI(ML) opposed the Gang of Four and gave support to Hua Guofeng's leadership in the Communist Party of China.[1]

With the lifting of the Emergency in 1977 Singh began to favour a more conciliatory approach to the state, for example negotiating for the release of prisoners.[13] In the same year Singh's CPI(ML) decided to participate in elections for the first time.[14] Singh's CPI(ML) presented three candidates in West Bengal, one in Bihar and one in Punjab.[15] For the Andhra Pradesh legislative assembly election, Singh toured ten constituencies during the electoral campaign.[14]

Satyanarayan Singh died in a cardiac attack in 1984.[16] A few months before his death, his party had split with most of the Provisional Central Committee members siding with Vaskar Nandy.[17]


  1. ^ a b c d Lahiri, Asisha. Naxalbari and after: a Frontier anthology, Vol. 2. Kathashilpa, 1978.
  2. ^ Roy, Asish Kumar. The Spring Thunder and After: A Survey of the Maoist and Ultra-Leftist Movements in India, 1962-75. Calcutta: Minerva, 1975.
  3. ^ Liberation. Comrade Ram Naresh Ram Will Always Remain Alive in Ours Hearts
  4. ^ a b Dasgupta, Biplab. The Naxalite Movement. Bombay: Allied Publishers, 1974. p. 153
  5. ^ a b Dasgupta, Biplab. Naxalite Armed Struggles and the Annihilation Campaign in Rural Areas
  6. ^ Ashwani Kumar. Community Warriors: State, Peasants and Caste Armies in Bihar. London: Anthem Press, 2008. p. 199
  7. ^ International Socialism. The ironies of Indian Maoism
  8. ^ Economic and Political Weekly, Vol. 8. Sameeksha Trust, 1973. p. 1954
  9. ^ Banerjee, Utpal K. Operational Analysis and Indian Defence. New Delhi: Concept, 1980. p. 66
  10. ^ The Marxist Review, Vol. 8. Ajit Roy, 1974. p. 330
  11. ^ Karat, Prakash. Naxalism today
  12. ^ Judge, Paramjit S. Insurrection to Agitation: The Naxalite Movement in Punjab. Bombay: Popular Prakashan, 1992. p. 142
  13. ^ Basu, I.. Security and Development - are they two sides of the same coin?
  14. ^ a b Krishna Rao, V. Communism in Andhra Pradesh: Rise & Decline. Hyderabad: Cauvery Publications, 1989. p. 107
  15. ^ Jaffrelot, Christophe. L’Etat face au défi maoïste en Inde
  16. ^ Myrdal, Jan, and Bjørn Bergstrøm. Indien väntar. Stockholm: [Norstedt], 1985. p. 414
  17. ^ The Marxist, Vol. 3. Communist Part of India (Marxist). p. 62