CPI-M to review West Bengal Left Front unity

May 26th, 2008 - 5:26 pm ICT by admin  

Kolkata, May 26 (IANS) After suffering a setback in the just-concluded three-tier panchayat elections in West Bengal, the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) has called a meeting of the Left Front (LF) here Tuesday to iron out differences with its partners in the alliance. “We have called a meeting on Tuesday to sort out the issues within the Front. We will discuss the problems that we faced in the panchayat elections,” CPI-M spokesman Shyamal Chakraborty told IANS.

He said the CPI-M had already met all its constituents individually ahead of the meeting.

“We have talked to the CPI (Communist Party of India), the Forward Bloc (FB) and RSP (Revolutionary Socialist Party) and called the meeting to come to a political consensus,” Chakraborty added.

“We have no problem, so far, within our Front. We have already asked all district party offices to submit a detailed report (on the panchayat polls) within a month. We will examine those reports and take further decisions in consultation with our partners,” he maintained.

The Left Front suffered an erosion of its rural base though it managed to retain its domination in 13 of the state’s 17 districts in the panchayat polls.

The Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress that had failed to win even one zilla parishad five years ago made inroads into the Front’s much-vaunted rural base, capturing the zilla parishad in South 24-Parganas district in addition to its success in East Midnapore.

In the last panchayat polls in 2003, the Left Front had gained control of 15 of the 17 zilla parishads, while the remaining two - Murshidabad and Malda - went to the Congress.

The CPI-M has a two-thirds majority in the 294-seat West Bengal assembly. Its three smaller partners have been sharing an uneasy existence with the “big brother” for about a year after some of the regions in the state, like East Midnapore’s Nandigram and Singur in Hooghly district, flared up over the state government’s land acquisition process as part of its industrialisation drive.

“Lack of unity in the Left Front has been a major reason behind this panchayat result. There were problems over the state government’s industrial policy which the opposition parties could capitalise in the polls,” CPI state secretary Manju Kumar Majumdar said.

“We will review all related issues, including Left Front unity, and why we lost seats in the panchayat polls. We are hopeful of arriving at a solution in the meeting,” he added.

“We should consider what kind of development people want and we should proceed accordingly,” Majumdar maintained.

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