The CPI-M is in choppy waters as the Left Front continues to struggle with its decision surrounding an alliance with the Congress in the upcoming civic polls due to opposition from parties such as the Forward Bloc.
After the state committee meeting failed to take a final decision towards the alliance with Congress, the party leaders sat for a fresh discussion to convince parties inside the Left Front to opt for the alliance which may benefit the Front in terms of votes.
Front chairman Biman Bose has clarified that talks will continue and at present no definite decision could be taken. The CPI-M, leading the Front, is keen on the alliance as it believes that it will improve chances of winning given support amnesia over the years, said party sources.
The Left Front Kolkata district committee has instructed its workers to carry out a survey to determine its support base ahead of the civic polls. However, it is learnt that the Front has reasons to heave a sigh of relief as majority of parties have agreed with the alliance after much discussion.
Even as the talks are ongoing, the Forward Bloc leader Naren Chatterjee has clarified to the media that the party, if needed, will contest individually if the Left goes ahead with the ties with Congress. At present, it has further increased the pressure on the Front as it has demanded that it be allowed to contest from ward 29 of the KMC which has been a Congress stronghold. The councillor of the ward is the veteran Congressman Prakash Upadhyay. This has put the Left in further discomfort.
The Forward Bloc’s opposition to Congress first surfaced in the 2021 assembly elections when Congress was spared some seats which the Forward Bloc claimed were their stronghold but eventually gave up after being convinced by senior leaders.
The CPI-M party leaders have been firm on their decision. Party sources said that it would spare most probably 20 to 25 seats for Congress and field its candidates in the rest where it has a good support base. The CPI-M will support Congress in its campaign even if they don’t directly participate in the campaign.