The Bengal Pradesh Congress leadership has once again claimed that there is no possibility of any alliance with the Trinamool Congress in the State. However, they have not ruled possibilities of electoral adjustments with the Left Front if a proposal comes from the other side.
“It is clear that there is no possibility of any alliance with the TMC in Bengal as we have been continuously fighting against them in the State. Our workers will simply not take the alliance and may not come out for campaigning or even go hostile during the elections if any alliance is imposed from above,” a senior PCC leader said adding “even our PCC president Somen Mitra had gone on record on this issue.”
Mitra had earlier said that there was no question of any alliance with the Trinamool as “no proposal has come from that side.” The PCC seems to be vertically divided over the issue with leaders like Behrampore MP Adhir Chowdhury, AICC member OP Mishra, former Minister Manoj Chakrabarty, former MP Deepa Dasmunshi opposing the alliance and those like Subhankar Chakrabarty, Pradip Bhattacharya and others preferring a softer line.
“How shall we convince our grassroots workers about the alliance after almost seven years of sustained struggle against the TMC highhandedness?” a PCC member said adding “our workers are getting targeted, by the Trinamool, many leaders have been forced to join them. Even during the Left rule we did not face this kind of persecution from the ruling party. So it will not be possible for the two parties to work together in near future.”
The leaders however said that “there are two options: either go it alone or consider a pre-electoral understanding with the Left Front if any proposal comes from that side.”
The CPI(M), the biggest partner of the LF has however gone silent in the past few weeks after initial curiosity about the Congress. According to inside sources a majority of the LF leaders are not averse to leaving a few seats for the Congress or going for a “friendly fight” in some seats like that of Adhir Chowdhury, but in general they are in favour of going it alone.
“The recent Brigade rally has shown the kind of support base we still have in Bengal. The TMC does not allow our voters to vote but they allow the BJP to vote in many places projecting them as the biggest Opposition party. By any standards our Brigade rally was much bigger than that of the TMC. Most of the workers want to go it alone,” said a CPI(M) central committee member.