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Congress calls off seat-sharing talks with Left Front, to go alone in WB

West Bengal becomes a new addition to the list of states where the Congress failed to clinch a seat-sharing deal to take on the BJP

Press Trust of India  |  Kolkata 

Congress calls off seat-sharing talks with Left Front, to go alone in WB

The unit of the Congress on Sunday called off seat-sharing talks with the CPI(M)-led for polls, after weeks of hectic parleys failed to resolve the impasse over distribution of seats.

becomes a new addition to the list of states where the Congress failed to clinch a seat-sharing deal to take on the

CPI(M) state secretary said he will not make any comment until and unless he gets to know anything official from the Congress.

The has called a meeting Monday to decide its next course of action.

"It has been decided by our party unit that we don't want any adjustment or alliance by compromising our dignity. The Left can't dictate us on who will be candidate and who won't. We will fight alone in Bengal," Mitra announced after closed door party meet on Sunday evening.

The decision by the Congress Sunday paved way for four cornered contest in Bengal between the Trinamool Congress, BJP, and the Congress.

"I will be going to New Delhi tonight with names of three probable candidates for every seats for the first three phases for clearance from our high command," Mitra said.

A section of the Congress leadership felt insulted over the Left Front unilaterally announcing its list when the talks were on between both the parties, party sources said.

The Left Front in its list announced Congress leader Rezaul Karim's, chairman of the state medical cell of the party, from Birbhum seat.

The Left's candidate list mentions Karim as their candidate from Birbhum, but did not mention which party he represents.

"How can they decide who will be our candidate? Our medical cell chairman's name was declared as their Birbhum candidate without taking due permission from our side. This is absurd. So what's the use of negotiations if Left front declares candidates on our behalf?" Mitra asked

"We wanted this alliance, but unlike the CPI(M) we didn't want it to be a marriage of convenience. We wanted a credible alliance where both had equal respect, but the CPI(M) was unwilling to do that," senior state Congress leader Subhankar Sarkar said.

The Left Front announced its first list of candidates for 25 seats in for the upcoming Lok Sabha polls Friday leaving 17 constituencies for the Congress.

According to sources, the state Congress is not happy with the seats that were left for the party. Since the beginning of seat-sharing talks between both the parties, there have been several issues which had cropped up time and again.

Initially, the impasse over Raiganj and Murshidabad Lok Sabha seats were resolved after intervention of Congress president and CPI(M) general secretary

The Congress later decided to leave those two seats for the CPI(M) as it had won those two seats last time.

First Published: Sun, March 17 2019. 22:50 IST
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