Left could join government at the centre: Buddhadeb (Roundup)

May 11th, 2009 - 9:23 pm ICT by IANS  

Bharatiya Janata Party Kolkata, May 11 (IANS) West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee Monday said the Left parties would join a non-Congress, non-BJP government at the centre after the elections if they could play a “meaningful role”.
“If an alternate government is formed according to a unified agenda, there is a change in the country’s internal, economic and foreign policies, and we can play a meaningful role to achieve that, we will join that government,” Bhattacharjee told reporters at a meet-the-press programme here.

He said his party’s aim was to form an alternative government, without the two major national parties - Congress and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). “We are sincerely trying to form a government without Congress, without BJP. This is our basic objective at this moment,” he said.

Questioning the political standing of the Trinamool Congress, Bhattacharjee said: “I cannot presume that Trinamool will stay with the Congress after the elections. I have also asked (external affairs minister) Pranab Mukherjee whether he was sure Trinamool will not switch its allegiance from his party to some other banner after one month?”

He said the BJP’s prime ministerial candidate L.K. Advani had not uttered a word about Trinamool Congress or its supreme Mamata Banerjee during his visit to West Bengal for election campaigning.

“It’s also surprising that Trinamool Congress has not mentioned anything about the BJP in its party’s election manifesto.”

Accusing the opposition of being politically bankrupt, Bhattacharjee said it was extremely unfortunate that they were silent about the separatist movements in the northern and western parts of the state.

“Neither Trinamool Congress nor Congress has protested against the movement for a separate Gorkhaland state. They are also not saying anything when a political party is trying to include three of our western districts in neighbouring Jharkhand.

“Cashing in on this opportunity, a national party (BJP) has fielded their candidate in Darjeeling declaring they would consider this demand if they come to power at the centre. It’s a dangerous sign,” the CPI-M leader and party’s member said.

The chief minister also declined to apologise for auto major Tata Motors shifting the Nano plant from Singur. “Why should I seek apology for the Singur issue? The state government has no responsibility behind the decision of Tata Motors to pull out from Singur. It happened due to the directionless agitation by the opposition Trinamool Congress,” Bhattacharjee said.

“If I do something wrong I make it a point to apologise for it. But we were right on the Singur issue. So there’s no question of seeking apology from anyone.”

He, however, felt remorse over the police firing in Nandigram two years back. Eight people had died of police firing and six others in clashes on March 14, 2007 in Nandigram.

“But I condemn the police firing in Nandigram. It’s absolutely undesirable. If I knew such a situation could happen, I would never have sent the police force to Nandigram. Our government had earlier declared that land would not be acquired there.”

Bhattacharjee accused the Trinamool of playing with the sentiments of the Muslims to strengthen their vote bank.

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