news Monday, January 05, 2015 - 05:30
The News Minute| August 19, 2014| 7.00 pm IST Politics makes the strangest of bedfellows and even stranger noises, it seems.  Last weekend, M.A. Baby, Politburo member of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) CPM in Kerala said time may have finally come to merge with its comrade in arms the Communist Party of India (CPI) ahead of a major CPM conference next year and assembly and presumably state assembly elections in 24 months. Speaking at a public function in Thrissur, Baby said despite practical and other impediments which have kept the two parties apart, time was now to sink differences and rise to the challenge.  The first of that challenge for the Left parties is to remain afloat and relevant, in that order. In the last Lok Sabha elections, the CPM won 9 seats and the CPI 1.  Later, Baby ‘clarified’ that he was not talking about a merger, but mutual understanding. On Tuesday, Baby reiterated that it’s time the two parties worked together. Baby’s suggestion has been endorsed by some other Left leaders in Kerala. At a time when the Congress in Kerala is facing a crisis with Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and Pradesh Congress President V M Sudheeran warring openly over the issue of re-opening closed liquor bars in Kerala, political hands believe it will be shrewd on the Left’s part to try make a strong comeback Baby has tried to pitch an idea that’s decades’ old; but many leaders believe redrawing alignments may help the Left to reclaim the Kerala bastion. A merger or more tacit understanding will serve the Left’s purpose, but the parties surely need to revisit some of their archaic stands on issues, and find its footing again.

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