'Pinarayi’s attitude hindering RSP’s return to LDF'

Newly elected RSP national general secretary Kshiti Goswami

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s “stubborn attitude” is the main hindrance to the return of the Revolutionary Socialist Party (RSP) to the CPM-led Left Democratic Front (LDF), newly elected national general secretary of the RSP, Kshiti Goswami told DH.

Goswami, who became the RSP general secretary earlier this week, also holds the post of the party’s state secretary in West Bengal.

“ CPM general secretary Sitaram Yechury is much more flexible when it comes to accommodating the RSP in Kerala. But Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan is a stubborn person and still holds a grudge against us for the defeat of CPM candidate M A Baby from the Kollam Lok Sabha in Kerala at the hands of RSP candidate N K Premachandran in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections,” Goswami said.

The veteran leader was also a minister in the erstwhile Left Front government in Bengal.

Accusing the CPM's Kerala leadership of suffering from a “jealousy complex”, Goswami said that since the 2014 Lok Sabha elections there has been no request from the CPM-led LDF urging the RSP to return to the front.

“Since the last Lok Sabha election, the LDF has largely been ignoring us. Forget requesting us to return to the LDF, so far Pinarayi has not even bothered to sit for a discussion with us and we have reciprocated the same attitude,” Goswami said.

Even as he is hopeful that an “ amicable settlement” can be reached through discussion between the RSP and the CPM in Kerala, Goswami said that it is very unlikely that the CPM will be able to change Pinarayi’s attitude.

“The differences between the RSP and the CPM have still not reached a stage where it is beyond settlement, but I don’s think the CPM leadership will be able to change Pinarayi's mindset,” Goswami said.

The RSP leader, who is known for not mincing his words, said that even though the Trinamool Congress (TMC) cannot be ignored as a “key power” against the BJP in Bengal, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s opposition to the BJP is questionable.

“TMC’s actions in Bengal are semi-fascist. Just giving long speeches on democracy does not make them a champion of democracy. It is very likely that there is a covert understanding between the TMC and the BJP,” he said.

Goswami also said that “excessive Muslim appeasement by the TMC” hasn't gone down well with the majority community in Bengal.

“The TMC’s excessive Muslim appeasement has annoyed the majority community in the state and they are starting to loose their trust in Mamata," he said.

Goswmi also ruled out any possibility of a “collaboration between the Left and the TMC” to keep the BJP at bay in Bengal.

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