With the parliamentary election inching closer, state Congress leadership has convened a two-day meeting at Bidhan Bhavan, state party headquarters, from 13 November seeking suggestions from leaders of frontal organisations and district party units on poll strategy.
Apart from the election game plan, the PCC leadership will also seek to sound out the participants on the choice of alliance partners for the next year’s election.
The organisational report about the rank and file of the party received by PCC so far has not given any indication to the state unit to go it for the elections. Except for scattered pockets, results of rural poll have been overwhelmingly in favour of Trinamool Congress, the ruling party in the state.
The spate of defections to the ruling party from Congress have made matters worse. Things have come to such a pass that PCC leadership found it difficult to replace the leaders who have changed sides.
Chalking out a poll strategy in this backdrop would be an unenviable task in the agenda of next week’s meeting. For there would not be too many constituencies in which the party can consider to be its bastions from which its candidate can expect to win easily.
With such odds heavily stacked against it, it would be difficult for the PCC to draw up an outline for next year’s election. Even if it is in the nature of a feasibility study, the PCC will be faced with the harsh reality of vastly reduced organisational strength vis-a-vis the 2014 parliamentary elections.
The party seems to be a divided house on the issue of a choice of probable poll partners. PCC chief Somen Mitra have welcomed support from the Left Front after CPI-M state secretary Dr Surjakanta Mishra offered it at a rally in the city.
The state Congress chief, however, pointed out that such support should not be withdrawn sans rhyme or reason. But after Malda (north) MP Mausam Benazir Noor spoke of an electoral understanding with Trinamool to stop BJP, it did not find favour with Mitra.
The PCC chief was quick to point out that deciding on such an arrangement does not rest either with him or the Malda (north) MP. The AICC will take the final call in this matter, he pointed out.
Next week’s meeting would have to iron out organisational weaknesses and intra-party differences before it goes ahead with the election strategy. No plan would take off unless these differences are set aside.