Our allies will decide on Congress after polls: Karat (Lead)May 9th, 2009 - 8:44 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, May 9 (IANS) Appearing to soften his stand on allying with the Congress, Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) general secretary Prakash Karat has said that a decision on this issue will be taken jointly by Third Front partners after the Lok Sabha elections.
Speaking on the “Devil’s Advocate” programme on CNN-IBN telecast Sunday evening, Karat said whether to ally with the Congress if nothing else worked out would be a “joint decision by the Biju Janata Dal (BJP), JD-S (Janata Dal-Secular), AIADMK (and Left parties)”.
Karat had so far adamantly refused a possible tie-up with the Congress, whose government lost the support of the four Left parties including his Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) in July 2008 over the Indo-US civilian nuclear deal.
Asked if the CPI-M-led Left Front would abide by such a united decision, he replied: “Yes, we will go with the decision of this combination of 10-12 parties.”
He added: “The Congress will have to deal with a combination of these parties.”
He, however, felt that the Congress could not make it to power because “they have very undependable allies” and “there can’t be a secular government supported by the Bharatia Janata Party (BJP)”.
He also said that the Third Front would remain “steadfast in having a non-Congress government at the centre.
“The United Progressive Alliance (UPA) is already in the process of disintegration; the Congress will find itself totally isolated”.
Karat said “it will be for the Congress to take a decision whether they facilitate the formation of a secular government at the centre.
“The Third Front is going to do well; if you take into account the BSP (Bahujan Samaj Party) also, we will match the Congress or the BJP easily.”
Karat said his party was in talks with allies of the Congress and the BJP to form a Third Front government.
“We are looking at the JD-U (Janata Dal-United), the NCP (Nationalist Congress Party) and such parties,” Karat said. The JD-U is an ally of the BJP in the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) while the NCP is with the Congress in the United Progressive Alliance (UPA).
Karat said his party was not considering the Samajwadi Party “since it is with the Congress”.
“We may be number one. Don’t forget the UPA ceased to exist, the struggle is between the Congress and its remaining allies and other non-BJP parties. The BJP is not going to be in the reckoning,” the CPI-M leader said.
Karat had special praise for JD-U leader and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.
He said: “Nitish Kumar has carved out a very strong position in Bihar and independently today, he is a major force. He can take the plunge like Naveen Patnaik (of the BJD).” And he added: “We have been talking to the JD-U.”
Earlier, Karat spoke on similar lines in Kolkata when he was asked if there was a possibility of the Left backing the Congress: “Let the elections be over first. Let the results come. After that we will see.”
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