Parties against communalism or Third Front in the making?

Parties against communalism or Third Front in the making?

Parties against communalism or Third Front in the making?

A group of non-BJP and non-Congress parties, including UPA constituent NCP, today came together on a common platform to fight communal forces in what is seen as a first step towards possible formation of a Third Front for the next Lok Sabha elections.

Significant among those present at the "Convention for People's Unity Against Communalism" sponsored by the Left parties here were Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, SP Chief Mulayam Singh Yadav and representatives of ruling AIADMK and BJD in Tamil Nadu and Odisha respectively.

Notwithstanding denials of leaders participating in the 14-party convention, there was a clear sense of expectation among them that this could become a platform against BJP and Congress in the Lok Sabha elections.

Nitish Kumar, who snapped his 17-year-old ties with BJP on the issue of Narendra Modi, made it as much clear when he raised the question himself.

"We are being asked whether a new front is being formed. As of today, there is nothing. But, we will have to think and unite against communalism, terrorism and fascism," he said.

Conscious of the pitfalls in forming a front, he said pointing to the leaders, "You know while getting together one or the other leader gets lost. I am talking of whatever unity is possible, maximum possible...

While complete unity is not possible, we should work together with unity and coordinate. Complete unity is neither possible nor proper. A new morcha at this moment is neither possible nor valid."

For the record, NCP leader D P Tripathi, who attended the convention, and CPI-M leader Sitaram Yechury denied the convention was aimed at forming a Third Front.

But another NCP leader and Heavy Industry Minister in the UPA government Praful Patel said, "This is an era of coalition politics and in such a situation, you need to keep options open to work with other parties."

Yechury himself used a cricketing term to say, "There is nothing like a Third Front but this is a 'doosra' of Indian politics."

"If you know cricket, there is a delivery called 'doosra'," he said hinting at the possibility of parties getting together later.

SP leader Ramgopal Yadav said, "This is the beginning... you will see a lot in the coming days." 

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