As India turns Right, nothing’s left of the Left
The poll results routing the Left parties including CPI (M), CPI, RSP and Forward Bloc clearly shows that it’s time for them to down their shutters in the national capital. CPI (M), considered the face of the Left in the national capital, was decimated with its worst electoral performance by winning only nine seats.
In West Bengal, where the CPI-M has ruled for 35 years, it got only two seats out of 42, while in Tripura and in Kerala it won two and five seats respectively. Nationally, the overall seats secured by the Left parties are only 10, which is short of 14 seats as compared to the previous election.
In Kerala, the Revolutionary Socialist Party (RSP), which has joined hand with the Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF) just ahead of the poll, won a single seat by defeating senior CPI (M) leader and former MP M A Baby.
The total vote-share of CPI (M), CPI, RSP and Forward Bloc has witnessed a massive plunge from 7 per cent in 2009 to 4.5 per cent in 2014. Individually, the CPI (M)’s vote share also declined by 3.2 per cent from 5.33 per cent in 2009 and the CPI’s from 1.43 per cent in 1999 to 0.8 per cent in the 16th Lok Sabha.
The other struggling Left party including Forward Bloc got marginally 0.2 per cent vote share. Overall, with the existing situation, the Left leaders need a re-evaluation to get back on track but before that they have to think seriously on how to save their ‘leftover’ base in Delhi.
In West Bengal the total Left vote share was 29.5 per cent, the CPI (M) got 22.7 percent. The CPI got 2.3, RSP 2.4 and Forward Bloc 2.1 percent. In 1999, the total number of Lok Sabha seats was 15 and now it was restricted to only two from Bengal.
More shocking was the fact that Left stalwarts like Basudeb Acharia, Pulin Behari Baske, Sheikh Saidul Haque, Prabodh Panda, Sushmita Bauri and others lost to Trinamool Congress’s debut candidates.
Only in Tripura, people’s mandate went in favour of the CPI (M) which won both the seats with margins of over five lakh votes. The party’s vote-share in the state was 64 per cent and its time for the Left parties to consider Tripura as their base instead of Delhi, Kerala or West Bengal.
Though party leaders like CPI (M) general secretary Prakash Karat has termed the poll result ‘distorted’ alleging large-scale rigging, the ground realty is that people of India has completely rejected them in the national political platform and they want ‘development’ under BJP prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi.