‘Only seat-sharing, no official alliance with Cong’
After publishing a list of 116 candidates, Left Front chairman Biman Bose said that as the election would be held in phases so it was decided to bring out the lists in two if not three phases. He further said that the election manifesto of the party which was put up on the website was withdrawn as some important issues had not been addressed. Moreover, the Left Front would seek the opinion of people and it would take another three to four days to firm up the party’s final manifesto.
Meanwhile, the infighting in the Left Front over it’s alliance with Congress came out in the open with the partners refusing to sacrifice their seats for the tie- up.
The trouble started when Left Front chairman Biman Bose urged the Front partners to sacrifice seats for the alliance. The partners refused to accept the proposal and said that the issue of seat sharing should have been discussed in the Front.
The Front allies alleged that CPIM had taken the decision of seat sharing with Congress without consulting them. It was decided that CPIM leaders will sit with Left partners on Tuesday and give final shape to the list of candidates that will be published in the second phase.
The Front has fielded 68 new faces while the number of women and minority candidates in the list list remained at 16 and 25.
In preparing the list the Front has paid heed to Congress’ demand and only three candidates have been fielded in Murshidabad including Anisur Rahman from Domkol.
CPI(M) heavyweights Surya-kanta Mishra and Ashok Bhattacharya will contest in the polls from Narayangarh and Siliguri constituencies.
Party veterans Rabin Deb and Kanti Ganguly will be contesting from Sinhur and Raidighi. While Deb used to contest from Ballygunge, Ganguly lost to Trinamool candidate Debasree Roy from Roydighi in 2011 Assembly election. The party has fielded two former MPs– Jyotirmoyee Sikdar and Shamik Lahiri from two constituencies in South 24 Parganas. Shatarup Ghosh who lost to Javed Khan in Kasba in 2011, will be contesting from the same constituency this time. Amiya Patra who contested in 1992 and 1997 from Bankura has been made a candidate. Anjan Bera will contest from Bali in Howrah.
Gargi Chatterjee and Kaustav Chatterjee will be contesting from Naihati and Behala ( west) constituencies. Out of 11 seats in Kolkata, Left Front has fielded three candidates while Congress will fight in 8 constituencies. It was learnt that Om Prakash Misra is likely to be fielded against Mamata Banerjee in Bhowanipore. Koninika Ghosh will contest from Cossipore- Belgachia seat.
The RSP has demanded 23 seats while Forward Bloc and CPI have demanded 34 and 14 seats respectively. Front insiders said that it would be difficult for CPIM to accommodate the demand of partners and problems would invariably crop up.