Thursday, February 6, 2014

The Old Game

Yes, it's that time of the year again when the losers' club comes together and stake their claim to nothing. The Third Front is being formed by the biggest losers of all - the Left Front - and is mostly composed of parties which are looking at a downward fall in their respective states, with the exception of the BJD and the AIADMK. Of course, all of them believe that they will win a majority of seats in their states and thus form a majority in the next Lok Sabha, beating the Congress and BJP down to a combined tally of less than 272.

It's an old script now. All these parties pretend to form a grand pre-poll alliance when the reality is that this alliance is an eyewash because there is almost no overlap in their constituencies. All of these parties with the exception of the Left are restricted to one or two states and none of them have any states in common. So the SP can freely join up with the BJD and AIADMK because none of these parties was going to contest each other's seats in any case. Some alliance!

However, this is actually a win-win situation for them. For one, it enthuses the cadres to make them believe that their little party can actually be a big player nationally. In addition, it leaves the scene open-ended after the polls. Because these parties are not really sharing any seats, they are free to leave at will, which means that they are free to join the UPA or the NDA depending on what the voters decide. None of them except the Left Front has any other reason to join the Third Front.

On that note, the Left Front paints the most pathetic picture. A group that allowed one man - Prakash Karat - to burn it into oblivion, holding on to its only state government in Tripura, and now trying desperately to stay relevant in an India that by and large rejects its politics and vision for the nation. The Left Front is the classic case of a dying force desperate to stay alive in some way or the other and the Third Front is just a convenient means to that end.

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