LOK SABHA ELECTIONS: The party has failed to decide on candidates for Murshidabad,Malda North and Darjeeling constituencies
Even though three days have passed since its alliance partner Trinamool Congress announced its list of candidates,the Congress is yet to release its own list. The reason: Bickering within the party over the probable candidate in the three seats namely Murshidabad,Malda North and Darjeeling.
According to party insiders,while External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee is contesting from Jangipur constituency,Subrata Mukherjee is set to contest from Bankura seat. Raiganj seat is likely to go to Priya Ranjan Dasmunsis wife Dipa Dasmunshi and the party will field Adhir Chowdhury from Berhampur and Abu Hasem Khan Choudhury,brother of late Ghani Khan Choudhury from Malda South.
So far as other constituencies are concerned,Asit Mal is expected to contest from Bolpur,Shantiram Mahato from Purulia,Nargis Begum from Burdwan-Durgapur,Amrit Hansda from Jhargram,Sukh Bilas Verma from Jalpaiguri.
The fate of Rahul Gandhis Aam Admi Ka Sipahi,Mahua Moitra is also hanging in balance as Congress is yet to decide over allotting her a ticket. Congress sources said chances are bleak that she will be able to contest on a Congress ticket.
Congress leaders in Delhi are yet to decide on three seats till last reports came in. Mannan Hussain,who won last time from Murshidabad,was the first choice from that constituency but the man who stood in his is his bete noir Adhir Choudhury who recently sent a report against him to the partys central leadership. At the Malda North seat,the Congress is yet to decide between Sabitri Mitra and Mousam Noor,now an MLA.
Meanwhile Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee held a closed-door meeting with party candidates at her Kalighat residence on Sunday. She,however,refrained from making any public comments. Though,Congress workers and leaders at some seats are co-operating with each other,there are a number of seats where disharmony is conspicuous. For example in Krishnagar,where Trinamool candidate and Tollywood star Tapas Pal has started campaigning no Congress worker or leader was seen anywhere near him. An exasperated Pal had to take a break in his campaign schedule and visit the chairman of Krishnagar municipality and Congress leader Asim Saha. But the impasse continued.
There have been no instructions given to us by the district Congress leadership regarding the alliance. If that does not come we cannot work for the Trinamool, said Asim Saha.
In seats like Kolkata North East and Diamond Harbour,where Sudip Bandopadhyaya and Somen Mitra are contesting on Trinamool tickets,Congress workers are expected to remain aloof,since both leaders broke away from Congress recently to join Mamata Banerjee.
Interestingly,on Saturday Abdul Karim Choudhury,the Trinamool chief of North Dinajpur district,sent his resignation to Banerjee. He has decided to contest the Lok Sabha polls as an independent candidate. My workers have built a strong base in Raigunj in the past few years. I have been with Mamata Banerjee since the formation of the Trinamool in 1999. In Raiganj we had a good chance on our own and I cannot support Dipa Dasmunshi a candidate from Congress, Choudhury said.