India: Fifty years of a state-led murder

by Asok Chattopadhyay

Frontier | November 14, 2018

A minstrel of Indian revolution, a dream-haunted for the emancipation of mankind sang in his Maluku Maluku:
Lo, the Sun line red is physically seen in the East, a call for rendering a radical change is winding; lo, the downtrodden are crying for, it’s the time to respond to them…

These lines are more than enough to have the translation of the philosophical outlook of the poet. And this poet was none other than Subbarao Panigrahi.Read More »


India: A Forgotten Hero: Remembering Ashfaqullah Khan

by Nikhat Fatima

Frontier | Vol. 51, No.20, Nov 18 – 24, 2018

October 23, 2018 marked the 117th birth anniversary of Ashfaqullah Khan, one among the many forgotten heroes of India’s Freedom fighters. Born to Shafiqur Rahman and Mazharunissa in the year 1900, in Saharanpur, Uttar Pradesh, Ashfaqullah showed a keenness to join the freedom movement of India right from his school days. He was in school when Gandhi made a public call for people to join the Non-Cooperation Movement and many youths with a fire for independence in their bellies wanted to join this movement to free India.

During this time, the unexpected firings and death of civilians at the Chauri Chaura incident, resulted in Gandhi calling off the Non-Cooperation action disappointing many among whom was Ashfaqullah. His dismay at events transpiring around him, and his dwindling faith in non-violent strategies, led to his affiliation with the revolutionary group, Hindustan Republican Association (HRA), led by Ram Prasad Bismil.Read More »

A Curious Coincidence: Frontier, Samar Sen, Manu Kothari

by Sthabir Dasgupta

Frontier | Autumn Number 2018 | Vol. 51, No.14 – 17, Oct 7 – Nov 3, 2018

Frontier started its journey with Samar Sen as its founder-editor, in April, 1968; but this essay is not a customary remembrance of that event. Samar Sen was already well known in our intellectual world. This essay however, is to draw the readers’ attention to a mutually unrelated, but a very curious coincidence.

If we recall, the year 1968 was witness to a number of historical events, social and political, having far-reaching consequences across the globe. In the very beginning of that year North Vietnam launched the ‘Tet Offensive’ against South Vietnam and the United States. It has been regarded as the onset of the end of American involvement in Vietnam war. In the same month, i. e. in January, North Korea captured the American surveillance ship and refused to free the crewmen, until the United States acknowledged that it was a spying ship and promised not to spy in the future. The year 1968 was indeed a year of nightmare for the US.Read More »

Growing with Frontier

by Sandip Bandyopadhyay

Frontier | Autumn Number 2018 | Vol. 51, No.14 – 17, Oct 7 – Nov 3, 2018

Many of us who were in their teens in the 1960s, grew up with Frontier. Leftism was the hallmark of intellect and sensitivity in those days. Developing leftist leanings was as natural as, say, fondness for football. And reading Frontier in the 1970s was as essential as reading the daily newspaper. We would rely on the dailies for news and look forward to the weekly Frontier for its views. News without views makes no sense, we had learnt meanwhile.

But Frontier was important for us for another reason. There was a time when the guardians and teachers would advise the youth to read The Statesman to have an idea of good English. We learnt about Frontier‘s brilliant linguistic style from some of our teachers. We would try to emulate Frontier‘s English. We, of course, failed but would boast of some words and phrases picked up from Frontier‘s editorials. Interestingly, we loved Samar Sen’s poems as much as Samarbabu’s style of English. He seemed to be two selves combined into one.Read More »

Frontier at 50

by Gayatri Chakravarty Spivak

Frontier | Autumn Number 2018 | Vol. 51, No.14 – 17, Oct 7 – Nov 3, 2018

In 1968, as the liberal plans made immediately after Indepen dence seemed well and truly gone, and in the shadow of Naxalbari, Samar Sen founded Frontier, a journal for socialism and democracy.

Samar Sen died in 1987. Timir Basu had already started working at Frontier before that date. After Sen’s death he has kept Frontier going almost singlehandedly. We celebrate Sen and Basu as we celebrate Frontier.Read More »

50 Years Later

Frontier editorial | Autumn Number 2018 | Vol. 51, No.14 – 17, Oct 7 – Nov 3, 2018

That Frontier has survived to celebrate 50 years of publication is a puzzle. But there are people who are not in favour observing anniversary ritual. They think rationalists should not indulge in such ritualistic exercise. Then there are people who would like to observe anniversary. They think it is an occasion to reflect on the past. As for Frontier the past is riddled with too many odds. The long journey has never been a smooth one. Over the years Frontier has demonstrated what press freedom means. Frontier is in crisis. But the print media in general is in crisis. The world is changing very fast. This is the age of robotics and artificial intelligence. Advanced communication technology has opened up new fields of capital accumulation in culture and the arts and in the privatisation of public services, including health and education, and in the commodification of human sociality by way of mobile devices and social networking. All these trends are in turn accompanied by the dramatic restructuring of work rearrangement, paving the way for emergence of new contradictions, affecting the print media.Read More »

Fifty Years of Frontier

by Santosh Rana

Frontier |Autumn Number 2018 | Vol. 51, No.14 – 17, Oct 7 – Nov 3, 2018

In 1967, in the fiftieth year of the Great October Revolution, the Spring Thunder over Naxalbari created a revolutionary upsurge among the workers, the peasants, the students, and youth and revolutionary intellectuals all over India. The peasants were in revolt against the exploitation and tyranny of the landlords, money-lenders and other exploiters. One could hear the resonance of Naxalbari in far-off Srikakulam, Mushahari, Lakhimpur-Kheri, Debra-Gopiballavpur, Birbhum and other places. The students, many of them with brilliant academic achievements, abandoned their career and went to the villages, forests and mines to integrate with peasants, adivasis and workers and build the revolutionary movement.Read More »