Vol. XLIII No. 14 April 07, 2019

Left Exposes TMC-BJP Mock Fight

From our Special Correspondent

WHILE the media in Bengal is desperate to frame a Modi-Mamata binary, the Left parties are breaking new grounds with intensive campaign. As the campaign gained momentum, it is amply clear that there is deep resentment, even anger, against TMC government amongst the people. The eight years of stagnation of economy, deep agricultural crisis, lack of jobs and loot by ruling class leaders at every level has sharpened anti-TMC mood. People from different walks of life, particularly the poorer sections are expressing their grievances to Left candidates and activists when they are going for door to door campaign. 

In the first two phases, the elections will be held mostly in northern Bengal. Left Front has already completed first round of public rallies in these constituencies. The CPI(M) state secretary Surjyakanta Misra addressed big rallies in Raiganj, Alipurduar, Jalpaiguri, Cooch Behar and Siliguri.

In Cooch Behar, apart from TMC’s misrule, the role of BJP, particularly concerning NRC(National Register of Citizens) and Citizenship Bill has created alarm among people. Being a neighbouring area of Assam, many from Cooch Behar have first hand experience of harassment in the name of NRC. Utterances of BJP president, Amit Shah have only accentuated the fear among them.

In the three constituencies of Darjeeling, Jalpaiguri and Alipurduar, tea workers constitute considerable numbers. Tea workers are facing acute problem, the state government has virtually refused to declare minimum wages, ration system has collapsed and starvation deaths have been reported. Left parties have played leading role in ongoing joint struggle of trade unions. This election will reflect the anger of tea workers. In Darjeeling, the CPI(M) candidate, Saman Pathak himself is one of the leaders of that movement. Left has also received warm response in hill areas, where TMC has played with fire by division of Nepali speaking people. The CPI(M) consistently stood for constitutionally guaranteed maximum autonomy of hill areas within the state. This demand is reverberating in hills once again. In Jalpaiguri and Alipurduar too, Left Front is emphasising on the need of unity of the people.

Throughout the state, one of the major components of Left campaign is the ‘mock fight’ between TMC and BJP. While Mamata Banerjee is posing herself publicly as ‘champion’ of anti-BJP forces, the understanding between two parties for political polarisation is clear. Candidate list of both parties showed virtual walk over in selected seats. The central government under BJP has refrained from taking any steps against culprits in chit fund scam during last five years. The TMC and BJP are exchanging their leaders too. At least four turncoats from TMC were selected by BJP for candidature. On the question of attack on democracy, the TMC and the BJP stand on the same platform. While there is an all-out onslaught on democracy in West Bengal for last eight years, BJP has only copied it in Tripura.

Left Front is also placing before people the Left alternative. The necessity of strengthening Left in parliament is being explained with past records and sharpening needs of changing policy directions of the central government.

In his address to the people in public meetings, Surjyakanta Misra has asserted that there would be no Modi government after the elections and that would make Mamata government weakened in the state. He said, the political situation in the state will take a new turn after the elections.