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CPI(M) rules out tie-up with Congress

By Our Special Correspondent

GULBARGA, JAN. 17. Leaders of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) have said that the party is not pursuing an alliance with the Congress at the national level.

The Vice-President of the Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU), V.J.K. Nair, and three State Secretariat members of the CPI(M), Gurushant, Prasannakumar, and Maruti Manpade, told presspersons that the party was not pursuing alliance with the Congress as an alliance would have strong ramifications in West Bengal and Kerala, where the Congress was its main rival.

Mr. Nair said the CPI(M) would however extend its support to a Congress-led front where there was a direct fight between the front candidates and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), to avert a split in anti-BJP votes.

He said that the initiatives taken by the CPI(M) General Secretary, Harkishan Singh Surjeet, and talks with the President of the All-India Congress Committee, Sonia Gandhi, and leaders of other secular parties opposed to the BJP were to help to create a conducive atmosphere to form a front against the BJP. However, the CPI(M) would not be a part of the front, he added.

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