UPA and NDA will be defeated: CPI

Bhubaneswar: Both Congress-led UPA and BJP-led NDA would be defeated in the next general elections slated for 2014, CPI said on Sunday and voiced optimism about the emergence of a programme-based alternative of the Left and democratic forces.

“BJP’s dream of regaining power will be shattered mainly due to infighting in that party,” CPI General Secretary S Sudhakar Reddy and senior leader A B Bardhan said here.

“Though BJP seems to be presuming that it would come back to power at the Centre in the polls, it must realise that people will reject the party as several of its leaders are embroiled in corruption,” they said.

The Congress-led UPA on the other hand would fail miserably to retain power as people are fed up with rampant corruption, faulty economic policies involving permission for FDI in multi-brand retail and sky-rocketing prices of essential commodities, Bardhan said.

Under the circumstances, people are desperately looking for an alternative which would emerge when Left and democratic forces come together to provide a programme-based option, the CPI veterans said.

On CPI’s possible tie-up with parties like BJD, Bardhan said “the question of alliance is still far off. When the time comes appropriate decision will be taken. It is not just a question of some political parties sitting together and distributing seats. If a new alternative has to emerge, people must know about it. It will not happen through talks across the table but by participation in an intensive struggle.”

The struggle by the Left and other parties besides a wide range of forces has already started against corruption, price rise and the harmful economic policies of the government and it needs to be intensified in order to bring about change, they said while expressing optimism about a positive outcome.

CPI General Secretary S Sudhakar Reddy criticised the UPA government for allowing FDI in retail and hiking prices of diesel and demanded their immediate rollback.

The CPI leaders accused the Centre of extending concessions and subsidies of Rs 24 lakh crore to the corporate sector in the past four years and said poor people were being burdened in order to sustain this. They said Kelkar Committee’s reported recommendation of withdrawal of subsidies on foodgrains, petroleum products and other articles was “totally unacceptable” as the poor would be hit hard.

If the government is courageous and determined, it can take concrete steps to bring back the Rs 71 lakh crore black money stashed in Swiss banks instead of taxing the people, they added. Speaking against FDI in retail sector, they said if it was allowed the livelihood of millions in over four crore outlets would be at stake. “Contrary to the government claims the move would snatch away more jobs than FDI would create.”

FDI in media would have an adverse impact on the sector and the same in airlines would put country’s security in jeopardy, Reddy claimed. Reaffirming CPI’s opposition to UPA’s economic policies, they said leaders of Left parties would meet on October 6 in Delhi to chalk out the future course of action on FDI in retail and increase in prices of diesel.

Opposing the decision on disinvestment in aluminium major Nalco, Reddy said it is “shameful” to disinvest the profit making Navaratna PSU. Reddy and Bardhan asked BJD to involve other parties and forces in the fight against disinvestment of Nalco and said it should be made a people’s movement.

On the coal blocks allocation controversy, Reddy and Bardhan said no captive mine should be given to private companies and all natural and mineral resources should be with the state agencies.