Differences were discernible in the state Congress on Thursday after Malda (north) MP, Mausam Benazir Noor made a strong pitch for an electoral alliance with Trinamool Congress to check the influence of BJP in the state. With the parliamentary elections scheduled to be held next year inching closer, his party MP’s proposal was cold-shouldered by PCC chief, Somen Mitra during the day after having welcomed an offer of support from CPI-M recently.

The BJP is practising communal politics in different parts of the country and to hold it back an alliance with Trinamool is necessary, the Malda (north) MP said. This is not the first time she has voiced her support for an alliance with Trinamool.

Meanwhile, the PCC chief despite not ruling out the possibility of an electoral understanding with Trinamool put the Malda MP in her place. Neither I nor Mausam will take the final call on this issue, Mitra said during the day.

The AICC will take the final decision on this issue, the PCC chief said. The decision of going with the Trinamool or against it in the parliamentary elections does not rest with either of us, he pointed out.

So many things are required to be done, Mitra said after it was pointed out that Noor had underscored the necessity of an electoral pact with Trinamool.

The PCC chief setting aside the viewpoint of his party MP from Malda, a bastion of Congress assumes significance in the backdrop of his welcoming CPI-M offer of support for his party.

Only days before, the PCC chief was quite forthcoming about accepting support from CPI-M which had been his party’s principal political opponent during the 34-year long Left Front regime. But senior state Congress leaders were not taken by surprise at Mitra placing the ball in the AICC’s court on the issue of an alliance with Trinamool in the next year’s parliamentary elections.

After all, ever since he replaced Adhir Chowdhury as the PCC chief, Mitra had weighed up the pros and cons of electoral alliances with Trinamool and CPI-M. An alliance with Trinamool will be politically beneficial to the party but spell a disaster for it in terms of the organisation, Mitra who had been a Trinamool MP said.

The PCC chief’s apprehension gains credence as several Congress MLAs have been lured to the Trinamool benches in the state Assembly since the results of the 2016 elections. With no such exodus to the CPI-M camp from the Congress benches, his reluctance towards an alliance with Trinamool is understandable.