Allies keep away from CPM rally | Kolkata - Hindustan Times

Allies keep away from CPM rally

Hindustan Times | By, Kolkata
Jan 14, 2008 02:28 AM IST

Leaders of the RSP, Forward Bloc and CPI stayed away from the rally at the Maidan in central Kolkata, reports Tanmay Chatterjee.

The feud within the Left Front over CPI(M)'s pro-capitalist stance was exposed on Sunday with leaders of the RSP, Forward Bloc and CPI staying away from a rally at the Maidan in central Kolkata.

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The venue was filled to its capacity with a few lakh CPI(M) workers turning up to listen to party stalwarts, yet the absence of other Left Front leaders proved to be a dampner. The CPI(M) had organised the rally as a show of unity and strength among the Front but the allies turned down invitations to attend it.

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The speakers, from party patriarch Jyoti Basu to general secretary Prakash Karat, were found appealing to the allies to maintain unity in the coalition even as they spoke in favour of the government's industrial policy opposed by them. The chief minister, who has drawn flak, however, evaded the issue. Instead, he emphasised on the sacrifices made by the CPI(M) during the turbulent 60s and 70s.

"Today the Left parties are symbols of power. Differences among us would create problems. The Front will become weak and our enemies will become powerful. We cannot let that happen," Basu added.

Though Karat spoke mostly on national issues he could not help talking about the allies. "Left unity is an absolute necessity. We are trying to unite all Left forces citing the unity in West Bengal. But all are equally responsible for keeping the unity intact. And as the biggest party we have the maximum responsibility. We want to work towards a secular democratic third alternative but that cannot materialise without strong unity in the Front."

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