Tinkering is not enough— the Left in Kerala may have to do something close to reinventing itself, to survive its near-decimation this Lok Sabha poll. It is no longer just its interminable inner contradictions, or its warlords locked in turf battles, that it needs to deal with. The Left’s very fundamentals were on the dissection table this poll.
It is no coincidence that this followed an inevitable corrosion, eating through almost the entire Left edifice in the state for sometime now. Never before was the Kerala CPM and the Left Front jolted so hard by inner dissent, never had it suffered a crippling credibility crisis of the kind it now faces. The CPI, which was blanked out this poll, is in immediate danger of ceasing to be a national party; the Janata Dal (U) has withdrawn its lone minister from the Left cabinet and technically walked out of the Left camp. The miffed RSP had famously used its clout this poll to get back at Big Brother — and the ragtag bunch at the rump are also far from amused.