The 15th Lok Sabha elections have resulted in the success of the Congress and its allies and they are in a position to form the government. The Congress party has won 61 more seats than the 2004 elections and has got an increased vote share of around 2 per cent according to provisional figures. The BJP has suffered a comprehensive defeat after failing for the second successive time in its bid to come to power with its allies. The BJP tally has come down by 22 seats and its vote share has fallen by over 3 per cent. Thus the loss suffered by the BJP vote share has more or less gone to the Congress. It should be noted that both the parties together have polled less than 48 per cent of the vote, which is less than the 2004 elections.
What stood the Congress in good stead were some of the measures adopted by the UPA government like the NREGA, the Forest Tribal Act and other social welfare measures which were pushed through under Left pressure.
The Congress party also gained more support amongst the minorities and sections of secular minded people who were keen to ensure that the BJP does not make a comeback.
The BJP has been rejected by the people as it could not offer anything beyond its communal agenda combined with rightwing economic policies which the people had already spurned in 2004. The rabid communal rhetoric of the likes of Varun Gandhi and Narendra Modi dominated its election campaign.
The Left parties had allied with certain non-Congress, non-BJP parties in various states. This was required so that a secular electoral alternative emerged. However, these alliances forged in some states on the eve of the elections were not seen by the people as a credible and viable alternative at the national level.
The serious reverses suffered by the CPI (M) and the Left parties in West Bengal and Kerala are of deep concern. The CPI (M) has lost 25 sitting seats from these two states. The CPI (M) has won 16 seats with a vote share of 5.52 per cent, which is marginally less than the 5.66 per cent it got in the 2004 Lok Sabha elections. There should be a serious
examination of the reasons for these reverses. Both national and state specific factors are responsible for the poor performance. A self-critical review will be conducted by the concerned state committees and the Central Committee, which should form the basis for corrective steps. The Party will make all out efforts to regain the support and confidence of those sections of the people who have been alienated.
The Polit Bureau congratulated the people of Tripura for giving a massive victory to the two CPI (M)-Left Front candidates for the Lok Sabha. It is remarkable that the Left Front could establish a lead in all the 60 assembly segments of the state.
Accepting the people's verdict, the CPI (M) and the Left parties will work as a responsible opposition in parliament. The country is faced with serious economic difficulties, which have a direct bearing on the people's livelihood and well-being. The new government has to address this issue urgently and squarely. The CPI (M) will be vigilant in defending the interests of the people. It will work for strengthening the unity of the Left parties and will continue the cooperation with other secular parties in the opposition.