CPI youth chief Kanhaiya Kumar’s Jana Gana Mana rally in Patna’s Gandhi Maidan on February 27 had two unlikely folks in attendance Congress MLAs Shakeel Ahmad Khan and Awadhesh Singh shared the dais with him. Khan, a former Jawaharlal Nehru College (JNU) college students union president like Kanhaiya, insisted later that their presence there was solely to help the trigger, the rally was a part of a marketing campaign towards the Citizenship (Modification) Act and the proposed-then-denied Nationwide Register of Residents (NRC) however he did admit the opposition wanted each like-minded get together and particular person on board if it was to finest the JD(U)-led NDA alliance within the meeting election this October.
The CPI was not a part of the RJD-led five-party alliance for the Lok Sabha ballot in 2019. Actually, the RJD had put up a candidate, Tanveer Hassan, in Begusarai, from the place Kanhaiya contested unsuccessfully. The RJD is probably not eager, however relating to Kanhaiya, the Congress seems to have a mushy nook for the ex-student chief. If the 2 do come collectively, as some sections are hoping, it may gain advantage each events in Bihar. Whereas the CPI doesn’t have a celebration organisation or a major cadre base, the Congress lacks a frontline chief, a reputable face in Bihar. Kanhaiya, along with his highly effective oratorical abilities, might be the reply if an arrangement could be labored out between the 2 events.
However whereas there are sufficient causes for a more in-depth working relationship, there’s already a spanner within the works. A prime Congress chief admitted that the AAP authorities’s latest sanction for the prosecution of Kanhaiya and 9 others in a sedition case might drive a rethink by the central management.
The utmost punishment for sedition is life imprisonment, the minimal three years. If convicted, an individual can’t contest elections for six years. Kanhaiya has welcomed the prosecution resolution, saying he desires a speedy trial in order that the nation will get to know the way a legislation like sedition is being misused. Not many count on a verdict within the case earlier than the Bihar meeting election however its shadow might nonetheless be too overbearing for the grand outdated get together.
A piece of Congress leaders believes it could be higher to ally with the Left than the undependable Jitan Ram Manjhi (Hindustani Awam Morcha) and Mukesh Sahani (Vikassheel Insaan Occasion). There are, nevertheless, sceptics who really feel Kanhaiya doesn’t convey a lot to the desk aside from the help of the Muslims, who’re already with the opposition.
The communication deficit between RJD performing chief Tejashwi Yadav and Kanhaiya might additionally make it tough to convey the 2 collectively. Whereas Tejashwi is unlikely to cede his management standing to anybody, Kanhaiya can be a giant marketing campaign identify, says a senior Congress chief. There may be additionally some reluctance to just accept Tejashwi’s management in some sections of the get together. We try to work out a center path. Tejashwi shall be instructed that Kanhaiya is simply focused on national politics. However to get him on our facet, the RJD scion might want to agree on whom to venture because the face of the grand alliance.
A senior Congress chief concedes that the cube are loaded towards the opposition with the NDA’s marketing campaign spearhead, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar of the JD(U), seemingly nonetheless having fun with the TINA (there isn’t any various) issue. Nitish has the picture of a performing chief minister, somebody who has delivered on a number of fronts, together with higher roads and electrical energy for all. That stated, the ideological faultlines between the JD(U) and BJP are additionally clearly seen. We are able to exploit the state of affairs, however solely by placing up a united entrance, he says. That’s simpler stated than achieved.