NATIONAL

“Congress is not the alternative to the BJP”

Special Correspondent

UPA failed to fight communalism: AIFB



Left should pressure Congress to re-arrange its priorities

Need to strengthen the unity of Left Front: Biswas



KOLKATA: The Gujarat election result is a reminder of the failure of the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance “to combat the forces of communalism” and has made it clear that the Congress is not an alternative to the BJP, All-India Forward Bloc general secretary Debabrata Biswas said here on Monday.

“The result also underlines the need for the Left parties to put greater pressure on the Congress to re-arrange its priorities,” Mr. Biswas told The Hindu.

Shift in focus

“Instead of combating the forces of communalism, the Congress has, over the past three and a half years, shifted its focus to other issues like appeasing the United States when it should be remembered that the Left parties extended their support to the UPA to ensure that the NDA does not come to power. This seems to have been forgotten.” Mr. Biswas also said it was imperative that the unity among the Left parties was strengthened in places like West Bengal “where there are differences among the partners of the ruling Left Front which are detrimental to the future of the Left forces in the national perspective.”

These differences had “unfortunately arisen” because of certain “unilateral decisions” by some of the constituents and “should be sorted out through discussions,” Mr. Biswas suggested.

Rural polls

The AIFB State unit had announced its decision to contest next year’s rural polls on its own, but this, according to Mr. Biswas, “is not the issue.”

“The major issue is questions being raised about the functioning of the Left Front government and misgivings on the matter should be resolved through discussions.”

Industrial policy

Addressing a rally at Nandigram on Sunday, veteran AIFB leader Ashok Ghosh regretted that his party was kept in the dark on the State government’s industrial policy. He said the developments at Nandigram had tarnished the image of the Left Front.

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