With hardly a month left for the Assembly polls in West Bengal, CPI-M is desperate to speed up alliance talks with Congress to keep pace with running time, leaving the other Left Front partners fuming.
A day after the announcement of six-phase poll dates in the state by the election commission, particularly after the ruling Trinamul Congress announced its candidate list shortly thereafter, CPI-M mandarins are believed to have hastened the process of talks it has already initiated with the Congress.
A front source said that while the WBPCC chief Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury has expressed himself for one-to-one contest in the Assembly polls as the lone option by clinching the alliance with the Left, CPI-M eadership is working out modalities at a breakneck speed to respond.
“Talks have made a headway between CPI-M and Congress in last fortnight with regard to seat understanding”, the source said without quantifying the seats “on which bargains have been made”. According to sources, the CPI-M state committee, meeting on monday, is likely to finalise its candidate lists which will be made known to the left front partners CPI, Forward Bloc and RSP at the front meeting that day itself.
“By tomorrow, first list of CPI-M candidates is expected to be finalised,” he said.
However, the front partners, expecting the CPI-M to pressurise Congress to make formal offer to the front on alliance issue, have been resenting the “unilateral” stand of the front major.
“By all means, complications remain on alliance issue in the absence of transparent deal with the Congress,” the source said, adding that it was high time that a clear picture should have emerged to remove the cloud of uncertainty in the interest of left unity.
According to CPI, it has nothing more to bargain, while for RSP, the issue of seat understanding may prove thorny particularly in reaching a consensus on its prospective seats in North Bengal.
For Forward Bloc, the source said, death of Ashok Ghosh as the patriarch of the party may prove difficult and the party may like to remain confined to its limited strongholds. “Now that the ruling party is in full gear with its candidate lists to launch campaigns, the cloud of uncertainty should be removed for the effective and acceptable poll alliance between the left and Congress, besides the democratic forces,” the source said.
CPI-M general secretary Sitaram Yechury has said that people’s unity has taken a concrete shape in West Bengal against the Trinamul Congress. “Such unity has emerged from the ground level and it will have the direct reflection of mass resentment against Trinamul misrule’, he said.