OTHERS

CPI flays BJP's claim of stable Govt.

NEW DELHI, NOV. 1. The Communist Party of India today ridiculed the BJP's claim of providing a stable Government in the country stating that the change of Chief Ministers mid-course punched holes in it.

On the recent developments in the BJP-ruled States of Gujarat and Uttaranchal where the BJP replaced Chief Ministers, the CPI general secretary, Mr. A.B. Bardhan, felt the party which boasted of providing a stable Government and wanted to amend the Constitution to give the Lok Sabha a five-year term, was not able to run the Government in States where it had a clear majority.

``The change of Chief Ministers in three States (U.P., Gujarat and Uttaranchal) clearly shows that BJP fortunes are on the decline and the party was now trying to handover charge to RSS pracharaks and hardliners'', Mr. Bardhan told The Hindu.

The CPI general secretary said the party's national executive and national council, meeting here between November 3 to 5, would discuss the current political, economic and international situation including the dangers of communalism in the context of the U.S. action in Afghanistan.

Elaborating on the BJP's style of functioning, he said, the party was tightening its hold and this was evident when the Prime Minister reshuffled the Cabinet to mark the BJP's supremacy and then gave up moral pretensions by re-inducting Mr. George Fernandes as the Defence Minister.

The CPI leader was also critical of the Vajpayee Government's foreign policy, especially the post-September 11 attack on the U.S. and retaliatory action on Afghanistan.

``The Government policy is Pakistan-centric and it has been pleading with the U.S.'' even though it cannot influence any decision in the region which can wrench Pakistan out of the U.S. fold, he said.

The CPI also said the latest move by the Prime Minister to write letters to 12 heads of State was ``too late'' and that the Government was ``now trying to get into the game having lost it'' by writing to the U.S. President, Mr. George W. Bush, after the suicide attack inside the J&K Assembly.

The other issues that would come for threadbare discussion was the economic policies, the attempt to push ``so- called reforms'' such as disinvestment, down-sizing, changing labour laws under the pretext of the forthcoming Doha meeting of the WTO and the dismantling of the Public Distribution System.

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