The Communist Party of India (CPI) today said it has initiated a dialogue with other “secular and democratic” Opposition parties for putting up a common candidate in the forthcoming Presidential election. Senior CPI leader and Rajya Sabha member, D Raja said there is a need for all Opposition parties to come on to a common platform to fight against the Narendra Modi-led NDA government’s “anti-people policies”.
“We have been speaking about putting up a common candidate in the Presidential election. We are talking to the NCP, the Left parties and even the Congress. I met Soniaji (Congress President Sonia Gandhi) also on this issue. She agrees that there is need for a common candidate. All of us think (in that way).
“Since elections are held in July, in May (month) things may move forward. We also do not know what the BJP thinks. It floats many names. As of now, I understand that there is consensus emerging among the Opposition parties (democratic and secular parties),” Raja told PTI.
Criticising Modi, Raja said the ruling BJP is behaving like a political arm of the RSS rather than working independently. “During the past three years, the RSS has come into the forefront. Its agenda is implemented. Atrocities have increased against Dalits in the name of cow protection. Marginalised sections are being terrorised. These incidents should become eye-openers for people,” he said. He said the CPI is in constant touch with like-minded parties on the current political situation in the country.
There is an urgent need for all democratic and secular parties with a broader perspective to come on a common platform to fight with the government, he opined. On the Kashmir issue, he said both the state and Central governments should hold discussions with stakeholders to bring the situation to normalcy.