A day after the CPM rejected the West Bengal unit’s proposal to field General Secretary Sitaram Yechury for a third Rajya Sabha term from the state, the party on Wednesday said it will support an “acceptable independent” candidate for the third seat in the state. Yechury agreed with Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan that the party general secretary should not be in Parliament as he has to spent more time for the organisation.
“The Central Committee is of the opinion that an acceptable independent candidate by the opposition parties in West Bengal may be fielded, failing which the West Bengal Left Front Committee will consider contesting,” the CPM said. Meanwhile, the Left front met in Kolkata to discuss possible names of the independent candidate for the Rajya Sabha elections.
With the CPM rebuffing the Congress offer of extending support to Yechury, sources said Bengal Congress chief Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury met Congress vice-president to discuss the candidate. Meeting reporters at the end of the three-day meeting of the central committee, Yechury said he had in April said he would not seek renomination.
Elaborating on the committee’s deliberations, Yechury said proposal of the Bengal unit to field him with the support of the Congress was rejected on three grounds. “Taking the support of the Congress or having an alliance with it is not in consonance with the party stand. The general secretary should give more time to the party and normally he is not in Parliament. There is also the two-term norm for Rajya Sabha MPs in the party,” he said.