April 25, 2009


KOLKATA,14th APRIL: General Secretary of the CPI (M) Prakash Karat firmly nailed the lies about a bi-partisan contest in the 2009 elections to the Indian parliament. The UPA was unravelling. The NDA was missing its partners. Only the Third Front was growing in strength. There was another imperative. The strength of the non-BJP, non-Congress forces could never be judged until the election results were declared.

Very many of the political parties outside of the two main bourgeois formations, in government in states yet not officially declared constituents of the Third Front, would then firm the ground on which the Third Front stood. Prakash Karat was in address to an impressively arrayed corps of the Kolkata media at the Press Club that stands right amidst the green of the summer maidan on a pleasant breezy afternoon of 14 April.

The CPI (M) Polit Bureau member said that the Third Front was as far from the ‘illusion’ that the corporate media would describe it as possible. The contest would be a three-cornered fight in most seats, indeed in the bulk of the constituencies. Of the UPA partners, most were in contest against the Congress bar the DMK.

The Third Front is made up of ten political parties and they have come to a political understanding regarding the Lok Sabha polls. Following the elections, more parries would join in, a common minimum programme drawn up, and the prospect of forming a government at the centre would all the time become more and more of a realistic proposition. The Third Front emphasises four principles, viz., pro-people economic policy, secularism, independent foreign policy, and strengthening of the federal structure.

On the understanding at the present juncture, the speaker pointed out citing Jaya Jayalalitha’s recent statement that the regional parties would much prefer to form state government on their own, of their own without tailing the two big political formations, the BJP and the Congress. Regional parries already have excellent record of accomplishment in running state governments in Andhra Pradesh, Tamilnadu, and Orissa besides in the three Left-led states. There was no doubt that such regional parties, coming together, would be able to run a government at the centre, and with pro-people efficiency.

On being repeatedly probed for the name of the prospective prime ministerial candidate of the Third Front once it would win the polls, Prakash Karat said that such a question could only be raise and mitigated once the leaders of the Third Front sat together post poll. Prakash Karat also said that the Left had had good relations with the regional parries earlier as well as in 1996, and the principal aim of the Congress and the BJP had been, and still is, to destabilise such alliances. Prakash Karat also pointed out that the question whether the left would be able emote the correct role, come a Third Front government would be far more important than the numerical strength of the Left in the new parliament.

Dismissing any political understanding post poll with the Congress, Prakash Karat said that the presence of the Third Front was also politically antithetical to the communal forces as the BJP-RSS combine. The moving away of the BJD from BJP in Orissa has isolated the communal forces there in that state. An alliance with Left participation was fighting the Congress and the BJP in Andhra Pradesh. Kerala witnesses the usual fight out between the LDF and the UDF with the communal forces losing ground.

On Kerala, Prakash karat said that there was no alliance between the LDF and Madani-led PDP, the latter being engaged in supporting the LDF on its own initiative. Madani has been acquitted of all charged slapped earlier on him in the Coimbatore case. The Congress and the UDF keeps in close touch with the real terrorist organisation with the innocuous name and style of the NDF.

Dismissing as useless the ‘debate’ on who is a strong prime minister and who is not, Prakash Karat said that the more important thing to remember was that the strict stance of the Left in and out of parliament on the so-called reforms had saved the nation from the disastrous after-effects of the great depression spreading across large parts of the world. The Congress was unable, thanks to the left opposition, to expose the sectors of the economy vital to the nation and the people like the pension funds and insurance as well as banking fully to the forays of international finance capital.

Nailing the so-called ‘clean’ Singh governance, the CPI (M) leader pointed to the missile deal with Israel even as the investigation into the earlier Barak missile deal was not complete, the telecom scandal involving upgradation of the cell phone network to 3G, and the instance of bribery in the parliament for purpose of winning the confidence motion. All this will be featured in the election campaign of the Left and of the Third Front, the CPI (M) general secretary assured. He pointed out that there was also need to increase international political pressure on Pakistan so that it was willing to take effective steps against terrorism.

Describing the upcoming Bengal polls as a tough fight, Prakash Karat said that the Left Front would win a decisive electoral triumph, he had no doubt. Nandigram or any other single issue would not come up as an issue of importance in the Bengal polls. The vote will be conducted based on all-India issues in the main. Prakash Karat condemned the move of the BJP to run its candidate from Darjeeling with help from the separatist GJM.

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