Bengal: 'Boosted up' Left aims to make understanding with Congress in upcoming civic polls
Kolkata/IBNS: Buoyant by its reasonable success over the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) elections, the Left in West Bengal is aiming to replicate its tested strategy to corner the saffron brigade and ruling Trinamool Congress (TMC) in the upcoming civic polls.
In the recent civic polls, the Left, which may have won only two seats, has managed to empathize with its disastrous 2021 assembly election results by emerging as the prime challenger to the TMC, pipping the BJP in terms of the voter share.
Despite winning one seat less than the BJP, the Left improved its vote percentage to 12 in the KMC elections held on Dec 19.
"Boosted up" Left now aims to replicate its same strategy of fielding no candidate in some seats for the Congress to fight out the BJP and arch-rival TMC in the upcoming civic polls, which will be held in Bidhannagar, Asansol, Chandernagore and Siliguri on Jan 22, 2022.
Speaking exclusively to India Blooms, CPI-M leader Rabin Deb said, "In the parliamentary and assembly elections, the party's central committee takes decisions on policy and all. But in municipality elections, the concerned district leaderships take the decision because they know who would be the formidable candidate to defeat the BJP and Trinamool.
"As we have achieved our target (in KMC polls) to some extent, we are trying to accommodate other forces also besides the Left like in Kolkata polls, where we had not fielded candidates in 17 seats."
The BJP's nosediving in terms of vote share in Kolkata is not something which overjoys the Left instantly as the saffron brigade, the only legitimate opposition force in the state, has poor organization in the city, that has remained the stronghold of the TMC for years.
Deb feels the BJP's "sorry figure" in Kolkata may not automatically turn them into the third player in all future elections.
"We are not undermining the BJP because it may have a sorry figure in the Kolkata Municipal Corporation elections but the same thing may not happen easily in other districts.
"Our endeavour is to fight the BJP and Trinamool both. The Left leaders, cadres and activists are now boosted up and they are confident to fight out both the forces," the veteran Communist leader said.
In the KMC polls, the results of which were declared on Dec 21, the TMC won 134 of 144 seats to return to civic administration for the third straight term and the fourth in total.