Leader of the Opposition Oommen Chandy on Wednesday alleged that the Communist Party of India (Marxist) resolution against the United Democratic Front was a panic reaction to the political and social isolation the party was facing in the State.
Reacting sharply to the CPI(M) resolution at the Vijayawada meeting of the party's Central Committee, Mr. Chandy said the CPI(M) had blatantly courted communal forces in the 2006 and 2009 elections. In 2006, it had used PDP leader Abdul Nasir Maudany's photograph to garner votes, while in the 2009 Lok Sabha elections, it provided him a platform, besides seeking the support of the Jamaat-e-Islami.
The party had isolated the Dalit and Adivasi communities among which it had a dominant presence, as indicated by the Chengara and Wayanad agitations. It had isolated minority communities through its intolerance and attacks against religious leaders.
In political terms, the Janata Dal(S) and the Kerala Congress (Joseph) and the Kerala Congress (Secular) of P.C. George had quit the LDF. “It is this socio-political context that has prompted the CPI(M) to accuse the UDF of having ties with communal forces,” he said.
In reply to a question, he said he did believe that the Church was interfering in politics. “In a democratic country, every one is free to hold opinion. One is free to either accept such opinions or reject them. But the key point is such expressions should be viewed with tolerance, something which the CPI(M) lacks,” he said.
Referring to the Attappady land alienation and lottery cases, he wanted CPI(M) general secretary Prakash Karat to examine his party's ties with the land lobby and corrupt elements.
Local body polls
On the panchayat elections, he said the UDF would not oppose any proposal of the government for postponing the elections by a few days. But the coalition was particular about conducting it in a single phase. It was for the government and the State Election Commissioner to work out the modalities.
The government had committed a serious lapse by creating a situation that led to an adverse High Court decision against ward delimitation in as many as 22 local-self governments. Even at this late moment, the government appeared to be indifferent, he said.
He expressed concern at the huge expenditure that would have to be incurred and the difficulties faced by political parties if the elections were to be held in two phases.
Mr.Chandy said the government had failed to respond to some of the promises it made in the Assembly when the UDF raised these issues. There was no action to ensure distribution of textbooks even though the Minister said it would be completed by July 30.
A resolution was nowhere in sight to problems related to admissions to the self-finance colleges that had signed an agreement with the government. The Chief Secretary's committee was yet to launch a probe into allegations of land alienation at Attapady even though it had now become clear that the Adivasis were taken for a ride, as revealed by the District Collector's and tribal project officer's reports, he said.