Talks only after Mani group leaves UDF: Kodiyeri

The Left Democratic Front (LDF) will engage the Kerala Congress (M) faction headed by Jose K. Mani only after evolving a consensus within the front and the faction clarified its political stance, Communist Party of India (Marxist) State secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan has said.

Briefing reporters about the deliberations at the State secretariat here on Friday, Mr. Balakrishnan said neither the party nor the front had held any discussions with Mr. Mani so far. The onus was not on the CPI(M) for resolving a crisis in the United Democratic Front(UDF). The LDF was capable of winning the local body and Assembly elections on its own, but was not averse to widening its mass base, he said.

He termed reports of the CPI(M) working to expedite the ouster of KC(M) from the UDF baseless. Mr. Balakrishnan said talks would be opened only after the KC(M) came out of the UDF and specified its political stance. Mr. Balakrishnan also said that he did not foresee the possibility of the KC(M) contesting the local body elections on its own.

On CPI view

The Communist Party of India (CPI) had the freedom to profess its views on all issues, including the induction of new allies to the front. It would never develop into a dispute with the CPI(M). He accused the Congress and other allies of acting in arbitrary manner in the case of the KC(M), a stance which the front did not adopt when the Indina Union Muslim League (IUML) bargained for the fifth ministerial berth in the previous UDF government. The KC(M) is a party with a mass base and defeat in the Pala Assembly by-election need not be construed as an indicator of its dwindling support base, he said.

Against communalism

The UDF was aligning with the Jamaat-e-Islami and the Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI) in blatant violation of the secular credentials being claimed by the Congress and IUML. The LDF would take a strong stance against the minority and majority communalism being projected by the UDF and the Bharatiya Janata Party respectively, he said.

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