1. Home
  2. Politics
  3. National
  4. Cong-Trinamool Seat-Sharing To Be Decided In

Cong-Trinamool Seat-Sharing To Be Decided In Delhi

KOLKATA: The Congress high command in Delhi may have cautioned dissidents within the West Bengal state Congress against creating too much of a fuss over seat sharing in the Assembly polls but this in no
PTI September 12, 2010 15:48 IST
PTI
KOLKATA: The Congress high command in Delhi may have cautioned dissidents within the West Bengal state Congress against creating too much of a fuss over seat sharing in the Assembly polls but this in no way means that the Trinamool Congress will succeed in flexing its muscles on the issue. Sources revealed that the matter of seat sharing will be decided in Delhi and not in Kolkata this time round. The Congress high command has apparently made it clear that the party would prefer to go it alone unless offered at least 90 seats in the 2011 elections, says a Times of India report.

"The Congress top brass is all for seat sharing with the Trinamool in West Bengal. However, leaders including Sonia Gandhi has taken note of the fact that the party has been reduced to playing a poor second fiddle in West Bengal in the last couple of years. The Trinamool, which is the largest constituent of the UPA after the Congress, would like to continue with its pressure tactics but if all of Mamata Banerjee's demands are met, the very existence of the Congress would be at stake in the state. This is something that Delhi does not want," a senior Congress leader said.

Sources revealed that leaders like Sonia and Rahul Gandhi would have a say on the issue. Rahul's visits to various parts of the state will stand him good in determining exactly where the party stands. Insiders believe that the Congress will initially ask for 120 of the 294 Vidhan Sabha seats in the state. The Trinamool will certainly raise objections and there will be bargaining. Under no circumstances, will the Congress accept less than 90 seats.

In the civic polls held earlier this year, the two parties failed to reach an understanding and fought against each other. While the Trinamool pulled off a great victory, winning 97 of the 141 Kolkata Municipal Corporation seats by itself, the Congress actually lost ground.

"Assembly elections are not fought on the same lines as civic polls. The issues are different. There is no doubt that people have got tired of the CPM but this does not mean that they have supported the Trinamool everywhere. While the Congress has lost some ground, it has made inroads into new territory as well," another leader said.

According to him, if matters come to a head and Mamata refuses to yield the desired number of seats, the Congress will go in for an all out campaign. Being at the helm of affairs at the Centre, the Congress has some aces up its sleeve that may put the Trinamool in an uncomfortable situation, he hinted.