gfiles magazine

March 18, 2013

Finally, Buddha is fighting

panchayat polls west Bengal
Finally, Buddha is fighting
Just for one-third of the panchayat pie, the Congress and CPI-M
have come to a secret understanding
by Diptendra Raychaudhuri
Buddhadeb Bhattacharya is back. After a long stupor, the former Chief Minister is again making his presence felt by hurling accusations against the Trinamool Congress party and its government. He has even raised questions, albeit indirectly, about the integrity of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. It is for the first time since the washout of the Left in May 2011 elections that the man, who paid so dearly for his misrule by losing even his own constituency, has amassed courage to launch a counter-offensive.
This is the most appropriate moment for the leaderless and radarless flock called the CPI-M. Panchayat elections are due in May and two-thirds of the electorate will ink their opinion in favour of or against the two-year-old government of ‘change’. Obviously, Bhattacharya and his colleagues would try their best to take their tottering ship to the shore. Exactly five years ago, the countdown to the downfall of the Left had started with panchayat elections. Next three years only upped the graph for Mamata Banerjee, culminating in her sweeping victory in the assembly election of 2011. The last two years have been marked by innumerable faux pas by the Mamata-led government. The Left therefore feels that from its old base it would be able to make some sort of comeback to the state politics.
Quite strangely though, the once-mighty Left has become modest enough to eye only one-third of the seats at the gram panchayet level, and seeks taking control of three to four districts at the zilla parishad level. If they can do it, the Lok Sabha election 2014 would become a goldmine for it as even 14 seats out of 42 from the State would be rejuvenating. To make that happen, the tally in the panchayat elections has to be one-third of the gram-level seats...Read More 

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