KOLKATA, 13th March, 2011: 149 candidates out of total 294 seats are new faces, said Biman Basu while declaring the candidates’ list of the Left Front for the forthcoming assembly election in West Bengal. The introduction of these new faces is nothing new in left tradition, added Basu, mentioning that the number was 134 in the previous assembly election. However, names for two seats have not been declared today.
Basu declared the candidate list today (13th March) after the state Left Front committee meeting. The meeting of the CPI (M) state committee held on 12th and 13th March. CPI (M), the largest party of the Left Front is going to contest in 210 seats, Forward Block is going to contest in 33 seats, RSP is going to contest in 23 seats, CPI is going to contest in 15 seats, Socialist Party is going to contest in 5 seats, DSP is going to contest in 2 seats, Marxist Forward Block is going to contest in 2 seats. BBC and RJD are going to contest in 1 seat each.
The candidate list represents all sections of the society. There are 46 female candidates in the list. In the previous assembly election it was 34. There is considerable representation of schedule caste and schedule tribes. In totality there are 84 constituencies reserved for SC/ST candidates. The Left Front has nominated 11 more such candidates (including 2 OBC candidates) from the unreserved general seats. The list also reads the name of 65 minority candidates, among them 57 candidates come from Muslim community.
Seven ministers are not going to contest elections. ‘But they would concentrate on organizational responsibilities and the left front workers do not hanker for being candidates’, added Biman Basu. Moreover he said the ministers themselves were not keen enough to contest the election either due to health hazards or increasing organizational responsibilities.
Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee will be contesting from Jadavpur constituency, Nirupam Sen will be contesting from Burdwan South, Dr. Suryakanta Mishra from Narayangarh and Gautam Deb will be contesting from Dumdum.
Campaign Will Intensify: Biman Basu
Left Front will intensify its election campaign through street corners meetings and reaching out door-to-door. While announcing the list of 294 candidates Biman Basu, Left Front chairman declared that ongoing campaign from 8th March to 24th March will be intensified now. From 24th March onwards all street corners, local rallies, Jathas, Baithak Sabha (group meeting), village meetings would subsequently be organized extensively.
Basu alleged that Election Commission in these days is showing bias against Left Front. Cut-outs, banners, hoardings of the opposition parties are even evident when that of the Left parties are immediately removed. West Bengal has not witnessed such partisan culture where even Trade Unions can’t even use Red Flags, averred Basu.
Basu also announced that only three days available for open meetings and rallies before the first phase of Election would commence. On 13th, 14th, and 15th of April all district Left Front committees of North Bengal would decide campaign agenda for mass meetings, averred Basu.
When asked, Biman Basu staunchly clarified that the Left Front would publish the Election Manifesto in time within a couple of days that would clearly clarify the political agenda of the Left Front. Basu even clarified that Left Front leaders are not keen to become candidates; they have many other organizational responsibilities to perpetrate.