As they warm up for the third round of seat-sharing talks on Sunday, Congress and Left Front leadership faces a snag. The recently floated Indian Secular Front (ISF) is seeking 44 seats as a pre-condition for a poll understanding with the Congress-Left combine.

Headed by Pirzada Abbas Siddiqui of Ghutiari Sharif, the ISF is seeking to make its presence felt in the state. And the impending state Assembly polls is an ideal opportunity for it. Leader of the Opposition, Abdul Mannan, along with some Left Front leaders are holding talks with Siddiqui.

Though he has written to party chief Sonia Gandhi seeking her nod, neither PCC chief Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury nor any senior Left Front leader have laid their cards on the table.

The talks between the Congress and Left have progressed smoothly so far with an understanding being reached on 193 seats. But with the seat sharing understanding yet to be finalised in 101 seats, the ISF’s demand for its seat share has queered the pitch for both the parties.

Things have not been made easier for the Congress and the Left owing to the demand of RSP and Forward Bloc for seats for their nominees in Murshidabad.