Trinamool ignores Congress’ call to keep doors open for seat-sharing talks

Kolkata, Feb 24 – Congress’ desperate attempts to convince the Trinamool Congress to keep the doors for seat-sharing negotiations open do not seem to be cutting any ice with the ruling party of West Bengal.

After Congress General Secretary in-charge of communication, Jairam Ramesh, told mediapersons in Delhi that the doors are still open for negotiations with the Trinamool Congress, the latter’s national spokesperson and Rajya Sabha member Derek O’Brien on Saturday spoke on exactly the opposite lines.

According to O’Brien, Trinamool supremo and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has already made it clear that the party will contest all the 42 Lok Sabha seats in West Bengal, besides fielding candidates in some constituencies in Meghalaya and Assam.

That stand remains intact, O’Brien said.

Now the question that is doing the rounds in the political circles of West Bengal is that why despite repeated rejections from the Trinamool, Congress’ central leadership is going soft towards West Bengal’s ruling party, even going against the hard-core anti-Trianmool stand of the majority members of the West Bengal Pradesh Congress Committee (WBPCC).

Political observers feel that this might be a tactical approach on the part of the Congress, which is to remain flexible with regard to seat-sharing negotiations with the Trinamool, despite the latter’s repeated rejections.

“In my opinion, this soft stand of the Congress will continue till the time Trinamool announces candidates for all the 42 Lok Sabha seats in West Bengal, conforming the party’s present stand. In that case, the Congress can claim that it cannot be blamed for the failure in seat-sharing talks,” said a city-based political observer.

He also pointed out that even after Rahul Gandhi’s Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra faced administrative hurdles one after the other during its West Bengal leg, Congress’ central leadership was not vocal against the Trinamool.

Even the Chief Minister’s jibe at Rahul Gandhi over the latter’s interaction with the local ‘bidi’ manufacturers, no strong counter came from the Congress.

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