Left moots unity among Left, regional parties

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New Delhi, Aug 9 (UNI) Ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, Left parties today advocated the need for forging a viable ''third front '' with regional parties which could keep the imperialistic and communal parties at bay.

''Expansion of the Left base at the state level, forging of allies with like minded parties especially regional parties and inclusion of extremists, by asking them to come back to the main fold, are some of the required steps to strengthen the Left movement in the country,'' said CPI (M) General Secretary Prakash Karat.

He was speaking in a national convention on ''The role of Lefts in the changing political scenario in India'' organised by the Revolutionary Socialist Party here.

The Left needed to rethink its strategy and policies and fight against forces of communalism and imperialism, he said.

''We would see what policies are being taken up at all the three Left ruling states so that our base could be strengthen up at the grassroots level,'' Mr Karat said, talking about their role in improving state politics.

On being asked about the role of regional parties in the Left Democratic Alternative, Mr Karat said, ''We should accept some social realities of these region in which these parties are rooted, as caste discrimination is also a reality of India.'' ''There are issues on which Left parties can cooperate with regional parties but that does not mean we are putting all these regional parties in the Left Democratic basket. Left needs to draw strength from these parties on issue to issue basis,'' he said.

Stating that present regime of Dr Singh stands for open invasion of economy by big corporate sector and the last NDA rule had promoted communal divisions among society, the CPI(M) leader said the country needed a third front to fight imperialism and communalism and ''we would work-out our strategies at the state and national level.'' Citing the example of Nepal Maoists, CPI(M) leader said'' we need the same kind of efforts to bring back our lost prodigal sons who had gone to jungles and strengthen our base.'' Meanwhile, echoing the same sentiments, CPI General Secretary A B Badhan said mere slogans and dogmas would not work.

Left parties had to work on shaping India's destiny and fighting three issues namely imperialism, communalism and injustice to common mass as it was evident from the latest Amarnath row , rising prices of essential commodities and subservient foreign policies that the present UPA government had failed on all accounts, said Mr Bardhan.

When asked are they being soft on extremists, General Secretary RSP T J Chandrachoodan told UNI,'' We just want a bilateral understanding with our extremists brethren and yes we want them to give up arms and adopt parliamentarian means to fight their battle in which all Left parties will be united.'' However, one of the cardre from CPI(ML), Kavita Krishnanan said instead of ''telling us our own compulsion to to take up the arms and their compulsions to run a state government under neo-liberal policies we want these parties to adopt a new agenda and work at grassroots level.'' Other participants who were present in the convention included General Secretary AIFB Debabrata Biswas, columnist Praful Bidwai, Dr N A Karim, P Vishambharan former MP and Devrajan, member of Central Secretariat of the Forward Bloc.

UNI GT RP KN1823

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