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We are in it together

While reaffirming its pledge to fight BJP-NDA's communal agenda, the AICC on Sunday delivered two very significant messages to its UPA allies and partners: One, they are equally responsible for the success of the coalition and, two, it will not hesitate to expand in states and areas in the control of allied parties.It underlined the "collective responsibility'' of coalition partners and the absence of any ``contradiction'' between maintaining a coalition at the Centre while trying to revive itself or seek a political space in states dominated by allies.

india Updated: Jan 23, 2006 00:52 IST
Saroj Nagi

While reaffirming its pledge to fight BJP-NDA's communal agenda, the AICC on Sunday delivered two very significant messages to its UPA allies and partners: One, they are equally responsible for the success of the coalition and, two, it will not hesitate to expand in states and areas in the control of allied parties.

It underlined the "collective responsibility'' of coalition partners and the absence of any ``contradiction'' between maintaining a coalition at the Centre while trying to revive itself or seek a political space in states dominated by allies. As for the BJP-NDA, it urged the UPA government and the people not to be lulled into a false sense of security that the BJP has been ousted from power. ``In some states, power still remains in the hands of people who perpetrated or inspired violence. In others those forces are lying low, looking for any opportunity to ignite passions,'' it said.

Claiming that the party was poised for its ``tryst with destiny,'' the Political Resolution -- moved by senior leader Arjun Singh and unanimously adopted by the over 2000 AICC delegates after a three-hour debate -said the UPA was not born due to ``narrow minded pursuit of power'' or even as a ``desperate move to stall the communalist forces'' but as a ``wholesome desire'' to bring development and distributive justice to people.

While Pranab Mukherjee described `coalitions as a give and take,'' the Resolution called on all ``UPA partners to be ready to give so that all Indians are able to take. The alternative is too dangerous to even countenance.''

It stressed that the differences between coalition partners can be resolved through dialogue and discussion---a point manifest by the party's efforts to talk to the Left on various issues or to resolve the Karnataka imbroglio.
``The Congress is conscious of its responsibilities as leader of the coalition.

However, the contribution of all other partners is also significant and so are the gains to them,'' it said, stressing that coalition partners follow a basic discipline, specially in public. ``There is a thing like collective responsibility to be adhered to at all times,'' said the 16-page document without, of course, referring to the tendency of allies like the TRS to speak out of turn.

The party also announced it's ready for the forthcoming state polls by telling its workers that there was ``no contradiction'' in its stand of maintaining its coalition at the Centre and in some states (like J&K or Maharashtra) while trying to revive itself in states dominated by allies. "National challenges demand cooperation and coordination among secular parties. But in states like Kerala, West Bengal and Tripura, there is no question of any understanding or compromise. The Congress will aggressively confront and fight the Left in these three states. It welcomes an alliance with any party that has no truck, direct or indirect with the BJP.''

If this was a rejection of Trinamool leader Mamata Bannerjee's proposal of a grand alliance against the Left, Union Minister P R Dasmunshi sounded the battle cry against the Marxists while speaking on the Resolution.

First Published: Jan 23, 2006 00:49 IST