Cong tieup to be key fo­cus of CPM congress?

The Asian Age - - Nation - SREEPARNA CHAKRABARTY

As the CPI( M) congress kicks off on Wed­nes­day, a sec­tion of the lead­er­ship is of the view that more than ide­ol­ogy, the party needs to go down to the brass tacks and de­bate on whether hav­ing no elec­toral un­der­stand­ing with the Congress will not wither away its mass base fur­ther. There seems to have been much in­ter­nal de­bate within the party since the cen­tral com­mit­tee in Jan­uary adopted a draft po­lit­i­cal res­o­lu­tion which rules out any elec­toral un­der­stand­ing with the Congress.

The lead­er­ship is split on whether or not in such a sce­nario the com­mit­ted anti- BJP vote will swing to­wards the Congress any­ways.

Sources said there is a strong feel­ing among a sig­nif­i­cant sec­tion that the party should be prag­matic enough to re­alise that in the post- Modi era, it can lose its com­mit­ted vote base to the Congress if they think that the Rahul Gandhi- led grand old party is in a bet­ter po­si­tion to de­feat the BJP.

“And in such a sce­nario, if the Congress emerges stronger and there is a pos­si­bil­ity of a coali­tion govern­ment like in 2004 or 2009, then it be­comes very dif­fi­cult for our party to bar­gain for or in­flu­ence any pol­icy de­ci­sion as we would not have had any pre- poll al­liance with the Congress. If they ( vot­ers) go with the Congress, then we don’t get any­thing. So the of­fi­cial sanc­tion ( of a pre­poll al­liance) needs to be there,” a se­nior polit­buro mem­ber of the Party told this news­pa­per.

The Polit Bu­reau mem­ber re­called that dur­ing UPA- I, many sig­nif­i­cant pro- poor pol­icy de­ci­sions were brought in like the Rural Em­ploy­ment Guar­an­tee Scheme, Right to In­for­ma­tion Act and the Land Ac­qui­si­tion Act. “We got all this be­cause of de­clared sup­port. If we do not go into any pre- poll al­liance with the Congress, then we will not be in a po­si­tion to put pres­sure like in UPA- I and might end up los­ing our own voter base to the Congress as well.”

Sources said that it is with these ar­gu­ments in mind that mem­bers are plan­ning to move a large num­ber of amend­ments to counter the ma­jor­ity draft which was adopted at the com­mit­tee meet­ing in Kolkata.

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