LokSabha 2019: ‘CPM respects the voters’ support for Cong legacy’

Sakal Times
Wednesday, 17 April 2019

The Communist Party of India (Marxist-CPM) is a part of the Congress-Nationalist Congress Party (NCP)-led Grand Alliance in Maharashtra. Against this background, CPM Pune district committee Secretary Ajit Abhyankar shared his views with Sakal Times.

Right now there is a scenario in the State that leaders are leaving the Congress as differences have cropped up within the party. There is no strong leadership in the Congress in the State. Considering all of this, on what basis are you supporting the Congress?
Voters supporting the Congress are not voting for Sonia Gandhi but for the legacy of Pandit Nehru and Indira Gandhi. Therefore, they would not support recent turncoats from the Congress. Voters have a sense of differentiating between conspirators and secular Congress leaders. They have a bond with the party and not with its leadership. Voters are loyal to the party and not to the leaders. We respect this sentiment of these voters. We are supporting the rise of such voters in the country as politics is about people and not a party. We were supporting the Congress government at the Centre in 2004 on the common minimum programme. 

What is your observation about western Maharashtra in this election?
At present, there is a slight tilt in favour of the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) in some constituencies. However, the picture will change when Prime Minister Narendra Modi will campaign in western Maharashtra. Voters’ mind will change. Actually, Narendra Modi is a good campaigner for the Congress. There will be more repulsions in the course of Modi’s campaign.
  
What do you say about Vanchit Aghadi? 
The Bharatiya Janata Party is targeting polarisation. When Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) leader Asaduddin Owaisi starts his speech, the polarisation of Hindu votes starts. It is clear that the BJP is pushing the Vanchit Vikas Aghadi. If Owaisi wins the election, can you say that it is a secular win? Muslim voters are sensible. After the Nanded victory in civic elections, the MIM has not been successful anywhere in the State. Owaisi and Amit Shah are managers and they can manage crowds. They have money power. 

What is your view about this election?
This is an election against the lies and the threat of autocratic leadership and to save the secular and constitutional structure of the country. The election will decide whether it is of the people or money and muscle power. If Modi wins it, it will be no more a people’s government. The BJP is using huge money and muscle power in this Lok Sabha election. 

The BJP is welcoming into its fold parties and leaders on the lines of the auction conducted to buy the teams and players in the Indian Premier League (IPL). So, the new long form of IPL is the Indian  Political League. The BJP is sponsoring parties and literally buying candidates. It is the ‘IPLisation’ of the elections. Earlier, elections used to be contested on values. Now, they are contested on price tags.

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