'Left debacle cloud over third front, but should stay united' | delhi | Hindustan Times
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'Left debacle cloud over third front, but should stay united'

delhi Updated: May 24, 2011 23:38 IST
Prasad Nichenametla

The downfall of the Left in West Bengal and Kerala is discouraging for third front revival, Telugu Desam Party chief N Chandrababu Naidu said on Tuesday.

“But despite the outcome of the recent assembly elections, the logic is to stay united on one plank. The continuing vulnerability of Congress and a weak opposition BJP still leaves a large space for third front in the country,” he told HT.

Though not sure if AIADMK chief and Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa would not lean towards the Congress, Naidu, convener of the united front of 1997 — the last loose cohesion of parties — predicted a reorientation in political alliances in run up to the 2014 Lok Sabha polls.

Naidu, twice a “kingmaker” at the Centre, was here to meet agriculture minister Sharad Pawar to demand a hike in the minimum support price for paddy. The last time Naidu called the shots in New Delhi was during the NDA regime when the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government was in power with TDP support. The last time a third front — alternative to the Congress and the BJP — appealed to voters was during UPA 1 rule — from 2004 till mid-2008. Under the banner of the United National Progressive Alliance, the Left parties, Samajwadi Party, TDP, Asom Gana Parishad (a faction) and the Indian National Lok Dal had numbers that mattered most.

However, the trust vote over Indo-US nuclear deal pushed the Left into irrelevance and distanced the Samajwadi Party, which went on to assure continuation of the UPA government. Though the front tried to bring in Mayawati, the UP chief minister maintained her distance.

On political turbulence in Andhra Pradesh, Naidu said the situation was worrisome “with issues taking up place of governance”. “Experience says there is a particular time for every move in politics,” Naidu replied to question on whether the TDP would move a no-confidence motion against the Kiran Reddy government.