KOLKATA: With Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury taking charge as the Bengal Congress chief, the Left Front parties are gearing up for an alliance ahead of the 2021 Assembly elections to battle against both the ruling TMC and the BJP. Chowdhury, known to be a bitter critic of CM Mamata Banerjee, was one of those in favour of an alliance with CPM in 2019 Lok Sabha elections. He has said that Congress is ready to join hands with the Left Front.
Describing the TMC and the BJP are two sides of the same coin, Chowdhury said, "Given the present political situation in the state, Left Front is a natural ally of the Congress. The fight in 2021 election will be primarily between secularism and communalism. Secular ideology of the Congress will defeat the communal rhetoric of BJP and TMC. In alliance with the Left parties, Congress wants to put up a spirited battle against the misrule in the state."
The Congress and Left Front had fought together in 2016 assembly polls but the tie-up fell apart during the Lok Sabha elections polls over the Raiganj seat. While the CPM wanted to field the then sitting MP Mohammad Selim, Congress insisted on Deepa Dasmunshi. In 2016, Congress had emerged as the main opposition party in the assembly. Though, the 2016 alliance did not help the party to get its desired seats, the CPM was keen to fight with Congress in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
"In 2019, we suffered a drop of around 13 per cent in out vote bank and the BJP enjoyed a gain of same vote share. A large section of our supporters, who were against Mamata, shifted their allegiance to the BJP. So alliance with the Congress will definitely help to bring back a section of our supporters," said a CPM leader. Welcoming Chowdhury’s induction, CPM politburo member Mohammad Selim said, "His appointment would ensure our alliance. The unity of the Congress and the Left is essential to protect the secular fabric of the state."
‘Rhea a victim of BJP’s vote politics’
KOLKATA: Congress workers took out a protest march against the alleged politically motivated attack on actor Rhea Chakraborty in Kolkata on Saturday. Earlier, state Congress chief Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury had criticised the Centre for targeting Rhea. The decision to support Rhea is said to be a move to woo Bengali sentiments ahead of the assembly elections. A senior Congress leader said that it was clear how Rhea is a victim of BJP’s vote-bank politics using Sushant Singh Rajput’s image as ‘son of Bihar’ to benefit in the state elections.