New Delhi, Mar 3 IBNS | 9 months ago

Janata Dal (United) [JD(U)] president Sharad Yadav on Monday said the Third Front will defeat the ruling Congress in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.

"The Third Front will definitely defeat the Congress. All 11 parties have united together to form the front and we will only strengthen it with time," said Yadav.

In an attempt to provide a secular alternative to Congress and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), 11 political party leaders announced their alliance as a Third Front for the upcoming elections on Feb 25.

The leaders of Left Front, Samajwadi Party (SP), Janata Dal (United), Janata Dal Secular and Jharkhand Vikas Morcha (Prajatantrik) among others came together to announce their alliance.

An amalgamation of 11 political parties, the Third Front on Feb 25 claimed that India was not a two-party nation and people were willing to try out an alternative.

"As u know these parties are the major non-Congress, non-BJP parties in the country. We had already held a convention in October last year against communalism and the 11 parties who are represented in Parliament, who participated in the convention, decided to carry this forward," Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) general secretary Prakash Karat said while addressing a press conference.

"In Parliament session we decided we will work together as a block, now after this Parliament is over and keeping in mind the Lok Sabha elections, we decided that the leaders of the 11 parties should meet and discuss about our co-operation and working together," he announced.

Leaders of the 11 parties were present on Tuesday except two party leaders-Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) president Prafull Kumar Mahanta and Odisha Chief Minister and Biju Janata Dal (BJD) supremo Naveen Paitnaik.

"As far as AGP is concerned, the President participated in October convention. He's unable to come today as his mother is unwell and he conveyed to us that he is fully with us but will not be present today," Karat clarified.

"Naveen Patnaik, the chief minister of Odisha informed us that because of prior engagements in Odisha he is unable to attend the meeting," he added.

Supported by SP chief Mulayam Singh and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, Karat challenged both the BJP and Congress for the upcoming polls saying that the Third Front will not allow BJP and its allies to come to power and will also ensure the defeat of Congress-led UPA government.

"Today we decided that in the light of the fact that the Congress party which has been leading the UPA government, its record of misrule, massive corruption, the fact that people have been subjected to unprecedented price rise under UPA regime, farmers faced acute distress and the policies have led to blaring inequality, therefore we do not want the Congress and UPA to continue in power, we will work for their defeat," Karat vowed.

He also slammed India's main opposition party - the BJP.

"As far as corruption is concerned, their record earlier in the central level and state level is as bad as Congress and the UPA government and today the challenge posed before us by the BJP and its PM candidate Narendra Modi is to challenge the very secular edifies of our state and society, the communal platform with BJP and its mentor RSS seeking to bring into our country under Mr Modi is something we will unitedly counter and make sure that the BJP and its allies will not be able to come to the Centre, therefore, we need an alternative to both the Congress and the BJP," he said.

Speaking on the PM candidate of the Third Front, Karat said, "Madam Jayalalithaa told us that no political parties should raise this matter now, these are issues which we will discuss later."

Speaking at the conference, Janata Dal (United) [JD(U)] president Sharad Yadav said, "Now that we have united it is actually the first front."

Samajwadi party supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav said the number of parties in the Third Front can go up to 15 from 11.

(Posted on 03-03-2014)

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