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Vote out UPA govt in general elections: Prakash Karat

Communist Party of India (Marxist) general secretary Prakash Karat today said continuation of the Congress-led UPA government at the Centre would "harm" the country and appealed to the people to vote it out in the general elections.

india Updated: Apr 21, 2009 10:47 IST

Communist Party of India (Marxist) general secretary Prakash Karat on Monday said continuation of the Congress-led UPA government at the Centre would "harm" the country and appealed to the people to vote it out in the general elections.

Addressing a public meeting by the Grand Alliance in this temple town, Karat however maintained, UPA ceased to exist as an alliance, with the partners leaving one after the other.

"Since the Congress is being rejected across the country, the allies are deserting it. Lalu Prasad Yadav, Ramvilas Paswan left the UPA and are fighting the Congress in Bihar, while Sharad Pawar too is not with the UPA," Karat said.

Hence, he added, the Left parties have joined hands with regional parties in Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Orissa and other states to form a third alternative.

"TDP founder-president late N T Rama Rao showed us the way 25 years ago by forming a strong alternative to the Congress. We shall follow the same path, with the support of incumbent TDP chief N Chandrababu Naidu and build a formidable alternative to the Congress and the BJP," Karat said.

Both the BJP and the Congress are attacking the Third Front because they know we are the real alternative to them. As a third alternative, we have agreed to that we should have a new set of policies that will benefit all sections of the society including farmers, workers, women and the downtrodden, the CPM leader said.

"We will stand for firm defence of secularism and communal harmony. We will have an independent foreign policy and policies to ensure social justice to all," Karat said.

Stating that the Telugu Desam Party and the Left parties always stood for the rights of the states, he promised that the Third Front would work for a more federal system in the country.

Lashing out Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy, the CPM general secretary said the former set a 'new record' by 'enriching himself and his family' to become the richest person in the state.

"It would be a big danger not only to Andhra Pradesh but also to the country if a corrupt leader like Rajasekhara Reddy was re-elected," he said.

Karat also spit fire on actor Chiranjeevi and asked the people not to vote for the Praja Rajyam Party.

"Voting for PRP is nothing but helping the Congress. Chiranjeevi has joined hands with the likes of Lalu Prasad Yadav, Mulayam Singh Yadav and Ramvilas Paswan who are working to bring back Congress to power and make Manmohan Singh the Prime Minister again. So, do not vote for the PRP," Karat appealed.

He said the Grand Alliance of TDP, CPI, CPM and TRS would secure a thumping majority in Andhra Pradesh and dislodge the Congress from power.

CPI deputy secretary D Raja said people of the country had seen both the BJP-led NDA and the Congress-led UPA governments so far.

"Now, people are looking for a change, and the change is the Third Front," he said, addressing the rally in Tamil.

TDP chief Chandrababu Naidu, his brother-in-law and film star Nandamuri Balakrishna, CPM and CPI state secretaries B V Raghavu lu and K Narayana and the Grand Alliance candidates contesting the elections from Chittoor district attended the rally that marked the culmination of the Grand Alliance's poll campaign in Andhra Pradesh.

First Published: Apr 21, 2009 10:45 IST