Bengal Congress extends alliance offer to Left

Bengal Congress President Somen Mitra (PTI File Photo)

Despite its failure to enter into an alliance with the Left Front in West Bengal in the Lok Sabha elections the state Congress leadership has once again urged the Left Front to join forces for the upcoming civic polls in the state.

The development comes after the Left and Congress decided to part ways ahead of the Lok Sabha elections failing to reach an agreement with regard to seat sharing. The elections to Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) and other municipalities in the state are scheduled to be held next year.

At a recent party meeting, state Congress president Somen Mitra made it clear that they are keen on striking a deal with the Left Front in the upcoming civic polls. “ So far Congress and Left Front have taken up some joint programs. We want a seat sharing arrangement with the Left in the upcoming civic polls,” said Mitra.

Congress sources revealed that the leaders of both sides have already started discussions over the issue. They also said that the Congress’ offer was not just limited to the civic polls but the party also wants to hold hands with the Left Front.

CPI(M) Politburo member Md. Salim has made it clear that they are not averse to renewing their alliance with Congress to face the twin challenge of the Trinamool Congress (TMC) and a resurgent BJP.

“We want to work with Congress to keep TMC and BJP at bay in the state. The seat sharing agreement can be finalised closer to the elections.

He indicated that CPI( M) is ready to hit the streets with Congress in protest against the abrogation of Article 370 and the bifurcation of Jammu and Kashmir. However, Salim added that first Congress has to make its stand clear over the issue.

“Let them (Congress) first decide their stand on the issue and then the future course of action will be decided,” said Salim.

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