Demise of the Left? Congress’ Jairam Ramesh pitches for strong ‘rivals’
Thiruvananthapuram, March 5: It was a shocking defeat for the previous Communist Party of India (Marxist) (CPI-M)-led Left Front government in Tripura after the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) won the state elections with 35 seats in the 60-member Assembly on Saturday. The CPI-M got only 16 seats. In fact, the saffron party created history by demolishing the Left regime which was in power for the last 25 years in the northeastern state. In the 2013 Tripura Assembly polls, the BJP did not even get a single seat.
With its defeat in Tripura, considered to be one of the last two citadels of the Left, the communist-ruled government remains only in Kerala. Over the years, the communist parties have been witnessing their steady decline. Many fear that the defeat in Tripura is the final nail in the coffin of the Left parties.
Amid growing concern about the Left's massive defeat in Tripura, senior Congress leader Jairam Ramesh on Sunday said that its "demise" was a disaster for India. He added that a strong Left was necessary for the country. "The Left has to be stronger in India. The demise of Left is a disaster for the country", Ramesh said referring to the setback for the CPI-M-led Left in the Tripura elections.
"We are going to fight the Left and we are political rivals", he said, adding, "but I would say that India cannot afford the demise of the Left".
Left has to be strong in India, the demise of Left will be a disaster for India.We are political rivals but I am the first to say that India can't afford demise of the Left.The Left also has to change its mind,people's aspirations and society are changing: Jairam Ramesh,Congress pic.twitter.com/HPCfCuV2nz— ANI (@ANI) March 5, 2018
The Left also should change and learn people's aspirations, Ramesh said while delivering the keynote address at the centenary celebration of iconic architect Laurie Baker in Kerala's capital city, Thiruvananthapuram. He made these observations in the presence of CPI-M leader and Kerala Finance Minister TM Thomas Isaac.
However, Ramesh did not say anything about the "demise" of Congress in the Northeast region. In Tripura and Nagaland Assembly elections, the Congress did not even get a single seat. In Meghalaya Assembly polls, in spite of winning 21 seats, the highest by any party, the Congress has failed to form its government in the hill state.
The Assembly elections for Tripura, Meghalaya and Nagaland were held last month. The results were declared on Saturday (March 3). With its latest failures in Northeast India, now, the Congress is in power in Mizoram only. Once upon a time, the Northeast was considered as the Congress bastion.