Rahul has no clear idea on communism & socialism, mocks CPM

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Agartala, Feb 12: Tripura state chief of CPI(M) Bijan Dhar rebutted Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi after the latter criticised the ruling party during his election rally in the state on Monday. In reply to Gandhi's allegation that the Left Front government in the state was involved in neck-deep corruption and it was siphoning off central funds, Dhar on Tuesday asked if the state government had indeed embezzled central funds, then why did the Congress-led Centre rewarded the Tripura government in various sectors, a report in Bengali daily Anandabazar Patrika said.

Gandhi had earlier attacked the CPI(M) and said the time has come to oust it from the country. He said during his visit to China, the Chinese communists asked him why the Indian communists do not change according to the situation.

Taking a dig at Gandhi, Dhar said the latter did not have a clear idea about communism and socialism. "He should have done more homework on this," the report quoted him as saying. He said the CPI(M) talked about betterment through democratic means by working within the given framework of market economy and the constitution of the land.

According to the CPI(M) leader, his party has acknowledged the compulsion of market economy and accordingly sought foreign direct investment in infrastructure and bigger fields of production. He said the CPI(M) only opposed entry of foreign capital in key fields like agriculture, education, national security, technology, small-sclae industry and retail sector.

He also said Gandhi did not understand the Chinese economic scenario. The state controls 72% of the economy in China while foreign investment has been given entry in the remaining 28% and even there, the state takes the call, Dhar said, adding that the Indian government is wanting to open up all profitable sectors for foreign investment. "We don't want foreign capital to dominate our entire market. It is better to allow foreign investment in some defined sectors," he said.

Dhar criticised the economic policies of the Congress-led UPA government and said the Congress sought no opposition to US imperialism. Refuting the Congress's charges that the CPI(M) toes the line of China blindly, he said it is crystal clear who is blindly toeing whom.

The campaigning for the February 14 election in Tripura concluded on Tuesday. All 60 constituencies of the state assembly will go to the polls on that day. Results will be declared on February 28.

Meanwhile, news of political clashes were heard from various parts of the state. Tension prevailed in Khayerpur constituency after local Congress leaders alleged that supporters of the ruling party ransacked one of their poll campaigning vehicles and also assaulted two of their supporters and shattered shops. The angry Congress supporters also gheraoed a police station on Tuesday afternoon, said the report.

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