Left Front Can't Accept Congress' Unjustified Demands On Seat Sharing In West Bengal: CPI

Elections

CPI General Secretary Suravaram Sudhakar Reddy on Monday said the Left Front cannot accept Congress' "unjustified" demand on seat-sharing issue in West Bengal, and it now looks like that the two would fight the Lok Sabha polls in the state separately.

Written By Press Trust Of India | Mumbai | Updated On:

CPI General Secretary Suravaram Sudhakar Reddy on Monday said the Left Front cannot accept Congress' "unjustified" demand on seat-sharing issue in West Bengal, and it now looks like that the two would fight the Lok Sabha polls in the state separately.

He termed as "unexpected" the West Bengal unit of the Congress calling off on March 17 seat-sharing talks with the CPI(M)-led Left Front for the Lok Sabha polls.

West Bengal has 42 Lok Sabha seats.

"They (Congress) were asking 17 seats. Left Front offered them 12 seats. They are asking for five more seats which are Left front seats... (it is) unjustified. In some of these seats they got two to three per cent votes (in the previous elections)," Reddy told PTI in Hyderabad.

He said in Basirhat Lok Sabha seat of West Bengal, CPI got four lakh votes in the previous elections, and the Congress one lakh votes.

"But still they demand that the seat should be given to them. This type of demands cannot be accepted by the Left Front. They are asking for one All India Forward Bloc seat, and three CPI(M) seats. So, it will be very complicated," Reddy said.

Now, it looks like the Left Front and the Congress would fight the elections in West Bengal separately, the veteran communist leader said.

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According to the Left Front's seat-sharing formula, CPI(M) would contest in 22 seats, the CPI and AIFB three each and the RSP two, with the remaining 12 to be left to the Congress.

With the Congress deciding to go solo, the Left front is meeting on Monday to decide how to distribute the 42 seats among the partners, Reddy said.

The West Bengal unit of the Congress on March 17 called off seat-sharing talks with the CPI(M)-led Left Front for Lok Sabha polls, after weeks of hectic parleys failed to resolve the impasse over distribution of seats.

"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," state Congress chief Somen Mitra said in Kolkata after closed-door party meet on March 17 evening.

The Congress' decision on Sunday paved the way for a four-cornered contest in Bengal involving the Trinamool Congress, the BJP, the Left Front and the Congress.

READ | CPI Wades Into DMK-Congress Lok Sabha 2019 Polls Alliance In Tamil Nadu; Here's The Seat-sharing

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