Opposition combine in trouble in Andhra over seat sharing

March 25th, 2009 - 4:45 pm ICT by IANS  

Hyderabad, March 25 (IANS) There is trouble ahead for the four-party opposition combine in Andhra Pradesh as the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) Wednesday unilaterally declared it would contest 20 seats in the next month’s assembly elections.
CPI-M, one of the constituents of the Telugu Desam Party (TDP)-led alliance, denied that the seat sharing agreement with TDP was finalised. CPI-M state secretary B.V. Raghavulu told reporters that the agreement was “yet to be reached”.

He also released list of 20 assembly constituencies where the CPI-M would field its candidates. “We have sought 20 seats and hence (are) releasing the list. There may be few changes if the agreement with TDP is finalised,” he said.

The move by the CPI-M has come as a blow to the alliance which is facing an uphill task in seat sharing. It came even as TDP and Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) claimed to have finalised an agreement.

TRS, which will be contesting 48 assembly and nine Lok Sabha seats in the Telangana region, Wednesday announced candidates for 15 assembly constituencies. Party leader E. Rajender told reporters that more names would be announced shortly.

The TDP-TRS agreement came after serious differences between the two parties which had threatened to tear apart the alliance. However, the agreement has led to lot of dissidence in TDP camp. As TDP leadership agreed to leave few seats where the party is believed to be strong, its cadres and ticket aspirants have taken to streets.

Two protesters doused themselves with kerosene and tried to immolate themselves Wednesday morning outside the residence of TDP chief N. Chandrababu Naidu here.

They were protesting the decision of the party to leave Mancherial assembly seat in Adilabad district for the TRS. Angry TDP workers also ransacked the party office in Mancherial.

While the TDP and the TRS have finalised the agreement, it is not yet over between TDP and the two left parties. CPI-M is seeking 20 assembly and two Lok Sabha seats. CPI also wants almost an equal number of seats.

Simultaneous polls to 294-member assembly and 42 Lok Sabha seats in the state are scheduled to be held April 16 and April 23.

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