Cong gets another booster, CPI (ML) – HSDC join hands to fight LS polls together

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16 left leaning social bodies to support Biren Singh Engti

HT Bureau

DIPHU, April 12: In a significant development, CPI (ML) Liberation and Hills State Demand Council (HSDC) Friday decided to extend their support to the Congress in No 3 Autonomous District (ST) Parliamentary Constituency in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections slated on April 18.

The decision will also be followed by 16 other social organisations, including KNCA and KSA.

The sitting MP and Congress candidate Biren Singh Engti is fighting against BJP candidate Horensing Bey and Autonomous State Demand Committee (ASDC) candidate Holiram Terang in the elections.

The decision was taken only to defeat the ruling BJP, which is planning to bring back Citizenship (Amendment) Bill 2016 if it is voted back to power, the secretary of Hilla Party Committee of CPI(ML) Liberation Rabi Kumar Phangso  said while addressing a press conference at District Press Club here on Friday.

“In its manifesto, the BJP has clearly stated that it would bring back the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill if it comes back to power. The Bill will be a threat to the identity of the indigenous communities in the state,” Phangso said.

“BJP is silent on issues such as construction of Ram Temple and Article 370 of the Constitution of India on Jammu and Kashmir. The RSS-BJP is trying to convert India into a ‘Hindu Rastra’, he said.

“Knowingly the BJP this time also ignored Article 244(A) of the constitution for granting Autonomous State to three hill districts. They are silent about ST status to six communities in Assam, but sought interest for granting ST (H) status to Bodos living in the hill districts, which is a policy to create mistrust and conflict between various tribes and communities in Assam,” he said.

“BJP is in power in Delhi, Dispur, Diphu and Haflong. But there is suppression of the common man. BJP is working only for the benefits of the corporate groups and not for the commoners,” Phangso said.

“BJP government has snatched away land rights of the Dalits, Adivasi and ST (H) people. Due to demonetisation drive, daily wagers and pity traders have suffered. The prices of all essential commodities have gone up,” Phangso added.

Earlier, the HSDC-CPI (ML) combine appealed to all the like-minded parties to field a consensus candidate who can defeat the congress in the elections.

“But no one came forward on our plea. The HSDC and CPI (ML) have decided to support Congress candidate to defeat BJP. We urged all anti-BJP parties and organisations to come together to defeat the fascist BJP,” he said.

Replying to a query on whether there is any condition to support Congress, the CPI (ML) leader said, “We don’t say Congress is good, but they are not as anti-tribal as BJP.  The BJP if it comes to power will pass CAB and introduce Uniform Civil Code in the country which is against the tribal people. We have no pre-condition to support Congress.”

HSDC general secretary Laichan Engleng said the party has more than 50,000 supporters. “In the last Lok Sabha elections, CPI(ML) secured 12,000 votes. Apart from HSDC-CPI(ML), other 16 social organisations are also with us against BJP. The vote would be more than 50,000,” Engleng said.

HSDC president Selawor Bey and Karbi Nimso Chingthur Asong (Left faction), President Pratima Enghipi were also present during the meet where the election manifesto of CPI(ML) Liberation was also released on Friday.

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