A day before the results of the byelections to Bongaon Lok Sabha and Krishnaganj Assembly seats, West Bengal Congress president Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury admitted that the party was “on a weak pitch”, saying the fight now is to “save the deposit amount”.
“We are not making any tall claims and saying that we will win any of the two seats. For us, it will be an achievement if we can prevent the forfeiture of the deposit money of our candidates,” Chowdhury said Sunday at a press conference where about 60 TMC workers — including Rabiul Islam, mayor in council of the Asansol Municipal Corporation, and Javed Iqbal, general secretary, district minority cell — joined the Congress.
Chowdhury said in the last assembly elections, out of the 1,800 hundred booths in Bongaon, the Congress could send polling agents to just 500.
“It is an achievement in itself that we had our agents at 1200 booths this time and at about 80 per cent booths in Krishnaganj. Knowing it full well that the future of Trinamool Congress (in Bengal) does not seem to be very bright at the moment, people are switching to the Congress. This shows people still believe the Congress has the capability to bounce back. What is flickering today will illuminate tomorrow,” Chowdhury said and added that in order to make a turnaround, the party would have to take its four-point agenda to the leadership across the country.
“Our agenda would be secularism which is non-negotiable; how the organisational structure would be — through vote or consensus; what would be the medium of communication to connect with the people in general — print, electronic or social media; and what would be the political strategy of the Congress,” he said.