The Left will endure
- Proponents of Article 370 should say how it has helped J&K: Rajnath Singh
- 1984 riots: Akalis protest over Capt Amarinder Singh's clean chit to Jagdish Tytler
- Supreme Court issues notice to Goa Police, agrees to hear Tejpal's bail plea in sexual assault case
- SC allows annual cap of 20m tonnes of iron ore mining in Goa
- Elections 2014 LIVE: Pt Channulal Mishra backs Modi but Bismillah's family won't
The severe electoral defeat of the CPM and the Left Front in West Bengal will have dismayed and disappointed well-wishers of the Left, while some of its critics and opponents have already written its epitaph. If in Bengal, as happens in other parts of the country, the Left had lost every alternate election, perhaps the kind of fundamental questions on the ideology of the Left and its very existence would not have been raised. The change of governments, as in Kerala, would then have been taken as part of a "normal" democratic cycle. The mistake, it would appear, is to have won elections seven times in a row!
It is not inconceivable that after 34 years, the slogan of change should have found resonance as it did in West Bengal — more so in the context of the coming together of a largely disparate range of political forces, from extreme Left to Right, with a little help from some in the media who played as opening batsmen in the team. According to provisional figures put out by a TV channel, while the index of opposition unity (IOU) in Bengal against the Left was as high as 84 on a scale from 1-100 where 100 represents total unity, in Assam the IOU against the Congress was much lower, at 60.
At the same time, as the leadership of the Left has repeatedly stated, the subjective factors for the huge reduction in seats, the weaknesses and shortcomings, the various factors that have played a role will not be brushed aside, but identified and addressed. Intrinsic to the structures of a communist party is the culture of open and frank debate, criticism and correction. Unlike in most other parties, there is little room here for sycophantic choruses or a one-leader-decides-all syndrome in the decision-making and accountability processes at different levels in the party. These discussions take place within party forums and the conclusions are publicly reported. It is curious how contemptuous mainstream commentators are in their reference to this uniquely democratic process as being regimented.
- 21-year-old dies in road mishap, one injured
- Ask Badals where is Ludhiana Metro: Bhattal to locals
- Arrests in priest murder case divide Catholic Church
- Short Change: EPFO to allot permanent account number to active subscribers by Oct 15
- India Inc profit set to grow, but margins under pressure
- Mulayam: Will amend Constitution for Muslim quota