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Congress will have to be realistic and reasonable in Bengal, says D. Raja

D. Raja. File Photo:   | Photo Credit: K. Gopinathan

Ahead of the West Bengal Assembly elections, for which the Congress and Left parties are discussing a possible electoral alliance, Communist Party of India’s (CPI) general secretary D. Raja said that the Congress would have to be realistic and reasonable.

The Left front, led by the Communist Party of India-Marsixt (CPI-M), has already announced that it is ready for an electoral alliance with the Congress. The Congress however, so far, has maintained that its central leadership would take a final call on the issue.

Mr. Raja said that the Left did not have any hesitation in a tie-up up with the Congress and that now was now up to the Congress to join forces with the Left. He said that the Congress needed to introspect on its ideological, political and economical policies. “They should not succumb to the ideological bullying of the BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party). The current soft Hindutva line will not work. They have to take genuine secular positions and reintroduce the Nehruvian line of thought within their party,” Mr. Raja added.

There have been murmurs that the Congress, with 44 seats, wants to take a leadership position in the alliance, since in the present West Bengal Assembly, the party far exceeded the total strength of the Left, which stands at 32 seats. However, though the vote share of Left parties put together was 26% in the last Assembly elections, the Congress got a little over 12% of votes.

“The Congress must be realistic and reasonable. It can not live the illusion of the past. Even in Bihar, everyone admits that the Congress should not have been given 70 seats,” Mr. Raja said.

He said that unnecessary controversy is being stoked over whether the BJP or TMC (Trinamool Congress) was the key political adversary in the upcoming Assembly election. “To fight the BJP, it is only imperative that the TMC is defeated. After all, the BJP in West Bengal is entirely made up of ex-TMC leaders. West Bengal needs change and it can be provided by the Left alone,” Mr. Raja said.

It had been nine years since the Left government was thrown out of power by Mamata Banerjee in 2011, and Mr .Raja said that in the interregnum period, the Left too had learnt from its mistakes.

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Printable version | Jan 24, 2021 8:33:58 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/congress-will-have-to-be-realistic-and-reasonable-in-bengal-says-d-raja/article33194199.ece

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