It is undeniable that there is going to be a change of government in Tamil Nadu and the people have been waiting for the opportunity (to usher in the change), Brinda Karat, politburo member, Communist Party of India-Marxist, said here on Saturday.
Accusing the AIADMK government of being subservient to the Bharatiya Janata Party government at the Centre and toeing its “anti-people” policies, Ms. Karat predicted that the AIADMK-BJP combine will be “soundly defeated” in the election.
It is shameful that the AIADMK government, which claims to be pro-farmer, has not come out in support of farmers fighting against the three new farm laws, which are “designed to benefit a few corporates,” she said.
Flaying the Centre for reducing funds for Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme in its Budget this year, Ms. Karat claimed that Tamil Nadu fared poorly in implementing the scheme during the pandemic last year when the rural workers were badly in need of a “livelihood lifeline.”
“The Union government has cut funds for MGNREGS by 34.5%. While there has been strong criticism against the Centre’s move, the AIADMK government was conspicuously silent on the issue,” Ms. Karat said addressing a press conference.
“The average workdays under the scheme in Tamil Nadu last year during the pandemic was just 45. The average wage was ₹191, which was among the worst in the country, against the centrally notified wage of ₹256 a day,” she said.
In Tamil Nadu, 26% of the MGNREGS workers belonged to Scheduled Castes and 86 % were women. The poorer sections were the worst hit.
At a time when the pandemic has resulted in job loss in organised and unorganised sectors, the Tamil Nadu government has failed to act to “fill 2.88 lakh vacancies in government departments,” she said.
Answering a query, Ms. Karat said the alliance formed in the previous Lok Sabha election continued in Tamil Nadu and it would usher in a secular, progressive and progressive government. She, however, declined to answer questions on seat sharing.
Responding to another query, Ms. Karat said the CPI(M) had taken the initiative in West Bengal to bring together all secular, democratic forces on a broad platform to provide a stable and secular alternative to the Trinamool Congress and “its policies of loot” on the one hand and the BJP and “its communal and neo liberal policies” on the other.
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