Revolt brews in Bengal Cong

The risk of rebellion has compelled the Congress high command to postpone twice, the release of the list of candidates after regional Trinamool Congress allotted 65 out of 294 Assembly seats to the national party. The AICC top brass will be hard put to ward off a crisis.

In sharp contrast to the situation in the south where the Congress could extract what it wanted because its ally DMK has been embroiled in a mind boggling scam, Mamata Banerjee in West Bengal has proved a tough nut to crack.

Political observers feel that an ‘anti-Left wave’ in Bengal might end the  the six-decade rule of the Marxists and the that Congress could ill-afford to miss out on a historic coalition that could uproot the Left in its citadel. The party therefore could hardly antagonise Mamata Banerjee as the support of her 19 MPs is critical to the Congress in the Lok Sabha. She has used the seat-sharing deal to make it clear that she would dictate the terms of the alliance.

The outcome has been predictable. In Nadia, Murshidabad, North Dinajpur and Malda districts, regional satraps have raised the flag of revolt and vowed to put up candidates against Trinamool, with Murshidabad strongman Adhir Choudhury leading the onslaught.
With a number of sitting Congress MLAs being denied tickets and many loyalists left out, the party seems to be paying a price for its alliance with the Trinamool Congress.

Six-time MLA Ram Pyare Ram, who was overlooked to accommodate a Trinamool nominee, has declared that he would contest as an independent from Kolkata Port constituency.  The Garden Reach constituency, from where Ram got elected on five successive terms, has been renamed as Kolkata Port after delimitation. Mamata Banerjee rejected the Congress claim to allocate Ram that seat and instead, fielded her own nominee.

Abdul Khalek Molla, another Congress MLA denied a ticket, has also decided to contest from Metiabruz as an independent.

Congress MP Adhir Chowdhury too has virtually raised the banner of revolt, pledging to put up ‘independent’ candidates wherever Trinamool Congress candidates have been fielded in Murshidabad district.
DH News Service

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