CPI-M and Congress in crucial discussions on alliance in Bengal
| Friday, February 12, 2016 - 23:11
Kolkata: The West Bengal state committee of the CPI-M on Friday began a crucial two-day session in the presence of top party leaders on the issue of forming an alliance with the Congress in the coming state assembly polls.
Communist Party of India-Marxist state committee secretary Surjya Kanta Mishra presented a report on alliance strategy for the coming election, expected to be held in April-May, to set the discussions rolling.
CPI-M general secretary Sitaram Yechury and his predecessor Prakash Karat are attending the session, where the state leaders are expected to make a strong pitch for the alliance to give a tough fight to the ruling Trinamool Congress at the hustings.
The state committee's decision would be conveyed to the CPI-M central committee, which is scheduled to hold a three-day session beginning February 16 to take the final decision on the alliance.
On Thursday, the CPI-M-led Left Front - the state's main opposition - gave the stamp of approval on holding alliance talks with the Congress, but put the ball on the Congress court, saying it has to approach the combine first with the proposal.
However, around the same time the CPI-M state committee sat down to discuss the issue, Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee lambasted the alliance efforts, dubbing the proposed tie-up as a "mistake" and "devoid of any ideology" and said it would come a cropper.
"They are making a mistake. They have jettisoned their ideals. Those who forego their ideals, they lose their credibility," said Banerjee.
With the polls less than three months away, the state leadership of the CPI-M time and again made overtures to the Congress for a joint fight against the Trinamool.
Last week, a majority of state Congress leaders also conveyed to the party vice president Rahul Gandhi their desire to team up with the CPI-M.
Congress president Sonia Gandhi will take the party's final decision on the possible alliance.