Hyderabad: Deciding on an alliance with the Congress party has never been an issue, Communist Party of India (Marxist), or CPM, general secretary Sitaram Yechury said on Thursday, indicating that lending outside support to a non-Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government at the centre remains an option after the 2019 general election.

Addressing the media during the second day of the party’s 22nd All India Congress, Yechury said discussions on whether to forge an alliance with the Congress party and other matters have just begun in the party’s highest-decision making forum.

Defeating the BJP remained the priority for the CPM, he added.

“There is a lot of speculation (in the media) on deciding the alliance. We have intellectual property rights over the term ‘outside support’," said Yechury, in response to a question on the alliance with the Congress. The CPM general secretary, however, emphasized that discussions are still on in the party’s five-day meet, and that the media will be informed once a decision is taken.

The CPM has seen differences emerge on whether to align itself with the Congress to defeat the BJP. While Yechury supports the idea of an alliance, the draft resolution presented two months before the All India Congress rules it out.

“There was a difference of opinion and both should be placed before the party congress and it will be discussed by members," Yechury said on Thursday.

“We are going through a process, so don’t preempt us. The CPM has to get stronger to forge a Left and democratic alliance," said Yechury. He added that the party will also review all of its activities taken up over the last three years and evaluate the last party congress’s direction and developments in its mass organizations.

The CPM also released a statement terming the Supreme Court’s rejection of petitions seeking a probe into the death of judge B.H. Loya as “unfortunate". It said the matter should be reviewed by larger bench of the apex court.