Talk of tie-up with Congreas premature, Trinamool tells ally (Lead)

January 20th, 2009 - 8:59 pm ICT by IANS  

Kolkata, Jan 20 (IANS) West Bengal’s main opposition Trinamool Congress’ bid to forge an electoral tie-up with the Congress for the coming Lok Sabha polls has hit a roadblock after an alliance partner threatened to snap ties if the Trinamool went ahead. “We’ll break ties with the Trinamool if it forms any political alliance with the Congress in the coming election,” Socialist Unity Centre of India (SUCI) state secretary Prabhas Ghosh told a press conference here.

He said the Trinamool would never be able to fight the state’s ruling Left Front major Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) properly if it sided with the Congress.

“The Congress and the CPI-M were running the government together at the centre till some time back. Now of course they are not friends. But already there is talk of a renewal of the alliance between these two forces after the Lok Sabha polls,” Ghosh said.

The four Left parties were lending crucial outside support to the Congress-led UPA government at the centre since the 2004 general elections. But the two sides parted ways after the UPA operationalised the Indo-US civil nuclear deal last year.

The SUCI leader said as per an agreement between his party and the Trinamool, the latter had agreed to maintain equidistance from both the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party.

However, the Trinamool termed Ghosh’s comments as “premature”.

Iterating that even the discussions on any alliance between Trinamool and the Congress had not yet taken off, Leader of Opposition in the state assembly Partha Chattopadhyay said: “How can one decide the date of the annaprasan (first rice eating ceremony of the child) even before the child is born?”

“Whatever Ghosh has spelt out is his party’s stand. It is not proper for us to comment on it. I will only say let the child be born first,” he said.

When a scribe remarked that the party seemed to be ignoring Ghosh’s remarks, Chattopadhyay replied: “That’s again a matter of perception on your part”.

The SUCI has pockets of influence in the state with the key district of South 24-Parganas as its stronghold.

Having taken a staunch anti-CPI-(M) stand ever since the Left Front came to power in the state in 1977, the SUCI formed a political coalition with the Trinamool in March last year to unitedly fight the ruling Left Front and the centre’s ‘anti-people’ policies.

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