Hailing the Samajwadi Party victory in the recent Ghosi bypoll , CPI national secretary Atul Kumar Anjaan said it is now time the INDIA alliance formulate a common minimum programme.
The Communist Party of India (CPI) leader lauded the opposition bloc’s performance in the recently-concluded bypolls in six states, saying the BJP would be found nowhere if a one-to-one fight was held between it and the INDIA alliance.
The by-election results for seven assembly seats in six states declared on September 8 were a mixed bag for the BJP and the opposition INDIA bloc.
With the saffron party winning three seats and one each going to its rivals Congress, JMM and TMC and Samajwadi Party.
Speaking to PTI on Sunday, Anjaan emphasised that the “Opposition has to now move towards a common minimum programme”.
“We have to frame a guideline on various social, political, and economic issues, and this will be the holy book for the 2024 Lok Sabha elections,” the leader said, that after the special session of the Parliament, the
“Opposition’s train will start moving in the country” and party leaders will begin reaching out to people on a mass level.
Anjaan also said that the win of the Samajwadi Party candidate in Ghosi is a “golden feather in the cap of the INDIA alliance”.
“This is a very opportune moment for the country as people have realised that change is imminent. It is because of this awareness among people that despite the presence of three dozen ministers in Ghosi, campaigning by two Deputy Chief Ministers, a visit by the Chief Minister and a battery of MLAs, people rejected the BJP in the bypoll,” the CPI national secretary said.
In the Ghosi bypoll, Samajwadi Party candidate Sudhakar Singh defeated BJP’s Dara Singh Chauhan by a margin of 42,759 votes. The Ghosi bypoll was necessitated after Chauhan, an Other Backward Classes (OBC) leader, quit the SP and joined the BJP.
The bypoll saw a 50.77 per cent voter turnout.
Anjaan said senior SP leaders Shivpal Singh Yadav and Ram Gopal Yadav had campaigned in the area for the Ghosi bypoll.
He added that local party workers of CPI also campaigned for the SP candidate.
Earlier, Anjaan had unsuccessfully contested the 2014 and 2019 Lok Sabha elections from Ghosi bagging 1.75 per cent and 1.28 per cent of the votes polled in the elections respectively.
Anjaan said Sudhakar’s victory has given the right stimulus to the CPI.
“Ghosi is a historical place for the CPI as Comrade Jharkhande Rai represented the seat as an MLA for three terms from 1957 to 1968 and was also a three-time Lok Sabha MP from here,” he said.
CPI leader Rai served as MP from 1968 to 1971, from 1971 to 1977 and from 1980 to 1984.
CPI’s Zafar Azami also represented Ghosi as an MLA from 1974 to 1977.
Hailing the results of the just-concluded seven assembly bypolls in various states, Anjaan said, “The bypoll results show three were won by the BJP (two in Tripura and one in Uttarakhand), while the INDIA conglomerate has won a seat each in 4 states — Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Kerala and Jharkhand. So, if there is a one-to-one fight between the BJP and INDIA, they (the BJP) would not be found anywhere (‘yeh kaheen nahi rahenge’).”
Echoing Anjaan’s views, CPI general secretary D Raja told PTI, “The tall claims of the BJP have fallen flat and other parties have also won.”
He added that the upcoming assembly polls in the states of Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, and Telangana will act as “litmus test for all political parties”.
“The SP has won in Ghosi, and this should be a lesson for all parties under the banner of INDIA alliance for working out their seat sharing arrangement in the forthcoming elections.”
“The non-BJP parties, which have come together, should be mutually accommodative to each other,” Raja said.