Behind urge to ally with Congress, CPM outfits’ dwindling numbers

Membership of the Kisan Front decreased 47 per cent from 2010 to 2014, that of the Women’s Front decreased 15 per cent and of the Youth Front 30 per cent.

Written by Aniruddha Ghosal | Kolkata | Updated: March 22, 2016 1:53 am

Efforts at an understanding between the Left Front and the Congress, old foes in West Bengal, have raised many questions from within the CPM and without. A clue to the possible answer lies in the membership records of the CPM’s frontal organisations.

West Bengal has been the state where membership has declined most sharply since 2010. Membership of the Kisan Front decreased 47 per cent from 2010 to 2014, that of the Women’s Front decreased 15 per cent and of the Youth Front 30 per cent. In comparison, these three key CPM organisations saw a surge in membership in three other states where the party has had a traditional presence — Kerala, Tripura and Tamil Nadu — the only exception being the Tamil Nadu Youth Front.

Bengal’s Kisan Front lost 72,000 members from 2010 to 2014, the singular reason for the All India Kisan Front falling 40 per cent from 2.25 crore to 1.60 crore. The Left Front’s cadre base was instrumental to its three-decade, unchallenged dominance in Bengal.

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On record, the Left has stressed the “state’s need to drive Mamata out of power”. On the ground, the depletion continues. Sitting MLA Tajmul Hussain of the Forward Bloc joined the TMC in December and MLA Udayan Guha did so in October. “It can’t be denied that our presence in North Bengal is much weaker after these defects. The Congress obviously wants to press home their advantage,” said a senior CPM leader.

At the CPM plenum in December, party general secretary Sitaram Yechury had hinted at the need for an alliance with the Congress. On Sunday, Left Front chairman Biman Bose admitted some “confusion” remains and hoped things would “be sorted out” before the polls. CPM state secretary Suryakanta Mishra too admitted there are “problems”. “We have already completed the seat adjustment process in 90 per cent of the seats,” he said. “We can’t let the Opposition votes get divided.”

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  1. K
    Mar 22, 2016 at 3:43 pm
    There is no alliance between Congress and Left Front. It is only alliance between Adhir Choudhury(to save his kingdom of Murshidabad) and CPI(M), who has sacrificed their front allies ( who supported CPI(M) for 40 years. People of West Bengal do not understand how Sonia and Rahul forgot few thousand congress supporters killed by CPI(M) in past.
    1. Venkatraman Shenoy
      Mar 22, 2016 at 5:56 am
      Ha ha ha ha!!!!!!! Looks like the country will become "Left-Mukt" before it becomes "congress mukt"!!!
      1. V
        Mar 22, 2016 at 4:13 am
        CPM is now Congress Party Marxist. verywhere in world communism is depleting so in India. here they do not want to do anything but only anarchism with their so called intellectual power.. this is seen from the behaviour of yetchuri in rajyasabha
        1. A
          Mar 22, 2016 at 4:35 am
          no doubt CPM needed Kanhaiya to campaign for their dwindling strength. In next 2 elections, this party would be history.
          1. S
            Mar 22, 2016 at 5:16 am
            comminists terrorists will loose like this. they shouldn't be spared for their crime. they have killed lacs of rss bjp membersbin last 70 year. like of karat yechuri d raja should be arrested n send to gallows. their agents in media like ndtv indian express also should be punished. they r ppl who abuse hindus india n its culture. they destroy great india
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