Such are the ways of communists that ?barely a year separated highest honour from deepest disgrace?. Ryazanov was implicated in the Menshevik trial of February 1931. He was charged of being a Menshevik at heart. He protested vehemently and cried out one of his old outbursts in 1924??I am not a Bolshevik, I am not a Menshevik, and not a Leninist, I am only a Marxist and as a Marxist I am a Communist.? But Stalin'sregime did not go by logic or facts. Ryazanov was arrested and exiled to Saratov. In 1937 he was arrested again and charged with involving in a ?right opportunist Trotskyist organisation.? On January 21, 1938, the Military Collegium of USSR Supreme Court condemned him to death by firing squad. The sentence was carried out the same day.
During Khruschev era he was posthomously rehabilitated in 1958 and in political terms by the CPSU in 1989 just before the collapse of communism and disintegration of the USSR. The Institute of Marx-Engels was purged and in November 1931 was merged with the Lenin Institute. Adoratsky, a Stalin loyalist who declared Stalin to be ?the best disciple of Lenin was installed as its director.? The Institute was given a new nomenclature, ?Marx-Engels-Lenin-Stalin Institute?. This nomenclature continued until Stalin'sdeath in March 1953 because the preface of the 1953 Russian edition of Marx-Engels: Selected Correspondence, ?Gospolitizdat? proudly claims its production by the Marx-Engels-Lenin-Stalin Institute of the C.C., CPSU (p. 17). In 1956 its nomenclature was changed to Institute of Marxism-Leninism (henceforth IML).
Significantly, this anthology published from Moscow in 1953, does not include in full or in extract any letter exchanged between Marx and Engels on 1857 Indian Revolt, while it reproduces in full the four letters exchanged by them in June 1853 concerning social and economic institutions in India and Orient (pp 95-104). This correspondence is reflected in the two signed articles of Marx published in the NYDT under the titles, ?The British Rule in India? (June 10, 1853) and ?The future Results of British Rule in India? (July 22, 1853).
The 1953 edition of the Selected Correspondence informs us that ?the anthology of letters appeared over twenty years ago in 1933 before IMELS was rechristened and before there was a Russian edition of the works of Marx and Engels? (ibid, Preface, p. 18). It was in 1933 that a collection of Marx and Engels? historical writings, though begun earlier by Ryazanov, was published in two volumes with a preface dated February 6, 1933 signed by V. Adoratsky. (First Indian edition printed by the People'sPublishing House, Bombay in November 1944 as Marx-Engels-Lenin-Stalin Series, Nos. 26 and 27).
In these volumes also are included only the above mentioned two signed articles by Marx on India (dated June 10 and July 22, 1853). Here also not a single article from the series of 28 articles on 1857 Revolt published from Moscow in 1959 find a place. Adoratsky in his preface, makes special mention of the 1853 articles ?as an example of his (Marx?s) judgement on the social order in the oriental agrarian countries and his altitude to British colonial policy? (Indian edition, Bombay 1944, Vol I p. xiii). Why no left scholar raised the question that there is no mention of 1857 articles which present just an opposite view?
The latest edition of the Collected Works of Marx and Engels published in 50 volumes between 1975 and 2005 from Moscow, London and New York informs us that ?in 1927, the Marx-Engels Institute in Moscow launched the publication in the original languages of Marx/Engels, Gesamtausgabe, initially under the general editorship of D. Ryazanov and later under the editorship of V. Adoratsky, a project that was never completed. A Russian edition was commenced and published between the years 1928 and 1947 under the comulative title ?Werke? (General Introduction to Marx and Engels: Collected Works: Vol I, Moscow 1975, p. xviii). The Marx-Engels Correspondence covered nine volumes in this first edition and the correspondence for the period 1857-58 was covered in the volume xxii published in the year 1929. Elsewhere we are told that this first edition of the Collected Works edited by Ryazanov ?complies completely with all scientific demands. Each volume contains a detailed index, and voluminous critical annotations and notes… Almost every volume contains previously unpublished material or material never before published at all.? (Franz Mehring, Karl Marx: The Story of his life, 1918/1936 Bibliography p. 557). Naturally, this edition of the collected works was prepared under the guidance of Ryazanov, who had full command over all the available Marxian literature of his times.
In 1927, much before his arrest and exile Ryazanov had intended to publish a biography of Karl Marx. It had emerged out of a series of lectures delivered by Ryazanov to the Soviet working class. The biography carries a stamp of authenticity because of Ryzanov'sdeep studies and understanding into the lives and thought of Marx and Engels. But this was not allowed to be published in the USSR and could be published abroad in 1937. After being long out of print it has now been reprinted by the Monthly Review Press in USA and is available on internet also. This biography written by an authority like Ryazanov also does not refer to any article written by Marx or Engels on 1857 Revolt.
It is really puzzling that in face of the testimony of Franz Mehring and D.B. Ryazanov, the two authortative biographers of Marx and who had delved thoroughly into the Marx-Engels correspondence and all other papers in Moscow dare to attribute the authorship of unsigned articles on 1857 Revolt published in the NYDT to Marx and Engels almost after a century in the year 1953? How could these spin masters use Marx-Engels correspondence and some mysterious notebooks of Marx in support of their claim?
(To be continued)