Saturday, December 6, 2008

No opportunistic alliances, Declares Lok Satta

The Lok Satta Party will rather go it alone than enter into opportunistic electoral alliances in the ensuing elections to the Assembly and the Lok Sabha.

Stating this unequivocally in a political resolution, the Working Committee of the party, which met today, said that any alliance should be based on policies that would change politics and improve people’s lives. "The party extends its hand of friendship to any party, including Praja Rajyam, which are prepared for policy-based alliances. But under no circumstances will the party enter into an opportunistic alliance with an eye on winning a few more seats."

Lok Satta Party President Dr. Jayaprakash Narayan and General Secretary D. V. V. S. Varma conducted the proceedings.

In its analysis of the current situation, the Lok Satta Party said politics in the State are caught up in a dangerous, vicious cycle. First, the most pernicious element is the play of money power. Parties are getting ready to field candidates who can spend at least Rs.5 crore- Rs.6 crore each to get elected. Already parties have been spending money like water to mobilize people for meetings and road shows. Second, the main parties have become private estates of certain families and their followers. Third, the parties are focusing their attention on caste-based mobilization of votes. Fourth, the parties are trying to encash the glamour and charisma of movie stars instead of engaging themselves in a discussion on political policies. Fifth, the parties are offering sops, freebies, subsidies and concessions all of which turn people into mendicants rather than on policies that make people self-reliant. Sixth, the parties are reciting social justice mantra to masquerade their bid to give tickets to multi millionaires belonging to weaker sections.

The Lok Satta said that it would not like to get sucked into the vicious political cycle. Instead, it aimed at breaking the cycle by providing an alternative platform. "The party is aware that unshackling politics from money power is not easy but there is no alternative. If only people will it, the change can be effected in the coming elections itself," the party said. "The party, however, firmly believes that vast expenditure for buying votes and influence of ill-gotten wealth on politics are the root causes of monumental political corruption. The Lok Satta has emerged as a people’s platform to root out corruption and bring in clean politics."

The Lok Satta Party pointed out that a solution to the present political crisis lay in a moral revolution which it is spearheading.

The party sees many silver linings in the present dark political horizon. First, thanks to the likely multi-cornered contests in the State, one can win a seat with a share of 25-30 percent of the polled votes. Second, money and liquor influence only 40 percent of actual voters. If three or four parties share such tainted votes , each party gets only 10-15 percent. Third, 60 percent of actual voters are not vulnerable to money power and most of them happen to be employees, middle classes, farmers, youth and those who are concerned about the country. In addition, there are nearly 15 percent of voters who do not go to the polling booth because of their revulsion for the present-day politics. They will be ready to exercise their franchise if they see a party wedded to moral values.

Against such a backdrop, the Lok Satta Party felt it has a bright future if it mobilizes all people who stand for new politics. "If we engender confidence among all such people that they can open a new chapter in State politics with their vote, there will be a silent revolution."

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