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CPI(ML) pitches for comprehensive opposition alliance in Bihar

twitter-logoPTI | December 21, 2018 | Updated 18:42 IST

Patna, Dec 21 (PTI) The CPI-ML (Liberation) Friday expressed intent to be part of broader opposition alliance to ensure "defeat" of the BJP in the 2019 general elections. CPI-ML General Secretary Deepankar Bhattacharya pitched for a comprehensive opposition coalition against the BJP to ensure its defeat in the next year national poll. The UPA coalition in Bihar which the CPI-ML (Liberation) wishes to be part of has RJD, Congress, RLSP and HAM as members as per now. On Thursday, Congress leader Ahmad Patel, RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav, RLSP leader Upendra Kushwaha and Hindustan Awam Morcha chief Jitan Ram Manjhi appeared together in the national capital in a show of unity. He said while the party was making preparation to contest six Lok Sabha seats out of a total of 40 in Bihar, it was ready to leave some seats "if any respectful agreement" is reached after talks with the opposition parties. "We are making our preparations to contest six Lok Sabha seats. But as I told you, committees have been constituted to hold talks with opposition parties for electoral alliance and if any respectful agreement is reached, we may consider leaving some seats in the larger interest," Bhattacharya told reporters. CPI-ML enjoys support particularly in the central Bihar areas and it has presently three MLAs in the 243-member state Assembly. Bhattacharya said a meeting of the party's central committee was held at Arrah on December 18-20 to take stock of political situation after results of Assembly polls in the five states and future political course of action in view of the next year Parliamentary election. He said the party has formed two committees-one each for Bihar and Jharkhand- to hold talks with the like minded parties for an electoral alliance. Bhattacharya made no bones in saying that "left alone is not sufficient enough to take on BJP and hence it (party) is in favour of a comprehensive and credible alliance especially in two states of Bihar and Jharkhand." "Democracy and the Constitution are under threat in the Narendra Modi regime. Though the recent poll results show a good omen for 2019 polls, there is a need for comprehensive and credible opposition alliance of which the party (CPI-ML) wants to be a part," he added. The opposition parties must take lessons from the past mistakes and should be cautious while welcoming parties from NDA fold, he said. "They (leaders) must apologise before joining the opposition bandwagon and should also explain why they are now switching sides," he said alluding to Rashtriya Lok Samata Party (RLSP) and the Hindustani Awam Morcha of former chief minister Jitan Ram Manjhi. He also announced that the party has given a call for two-day nationwide strike by labourers to press for their demands that included monthly minimum wage of Rs 18,000; abolition of contractual employment system; revival of old pension scheme, among others. Party leaders Kunal, Dhirendra Jha, Rajaram Singh, party MLA Mahboob Alam were also present during the press conference. PTI AR SNS CK

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