Rahul’s flip flop: on one hand lends support to Mamata, on the other approves tie up with the CPI(M) in West Bengal

While the state unit of the Congress has been keen on this tie-up for a long time the central leadership has been equivocal on this arrangement.

The Congress and the CPI(M) in West Bengal appears to be heading for a ‘tactical tie-up’ ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.

The aim of the said understanding is to “pool anti-BJP, anti-Trinamool” votes, as per reports.

While the state unit of the Congress has been keen on this tie-up for a long time, the central leadership of both parties have been equivocal on this arrangement.

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However, after a CPM Politburo meeting in Kolkata and a parallel meeting that Rahul Gandhi held with state Congress presidents, Somen Mitra, the President of the West Bengal Congress said that his party was willing to tie up with the Left.

The West Bengal unit of the CPI(M), that had a similar understanding with the Congress for Assembly elections, has again sought a tie-up, which it sees as essential for the CPI(M)’s survival in the State.

Meanwhile, Rahul Gandhi who has been ogling at the PM seat in the upcoming 2019 elections, and putting in his blood, sweat and tears trying to wipe out BJP from the dash, is ready to muddle through the most outrageous things possible under the sky.

Though the Congress state party head, Somen Mitra had ruled out the possibility of a tie-up with the Trinamool Congress, Rahul, necessitated by his impulse of flip-flopping at every given possibility, was seen extending his patronage to the TMC leader Mamata Banerjee, be it during the Mahagatbandhan rally on January 19 or Mamata’s dharna during the CBI row.

It is pertinent to note here that the Congress President, Rahul Gandhi, who was standing ‘shoulder to shoulder’ with Mamata Banerjee seems to have forgotten the fact that it was the UPA government in 2013 which had first registered a case against the Saradha chit fund scam and had accused Mamata Banerjee of ‘looting’ the money from the public.

And now, not surprisingly though, Rahul Gandhi has taken a complete U-turn and declared a ‘tactical tie-up’ with the left front which is supposed to be TMC’s political rival.

The Polit Bureau is also feeling the need to increase the strength of the CPI(M) in the Lok Sabha, since the party is down to nine MPs in the House and even its national party status is threatened if the tally goes down any further, and has taken the ‘Rahul’s trajectory’. The Kerala unit of the CPI(M), which had resisted any alliance or understanding with the Congress has reduced its tone considerably.

“The BJP has to be ousted from power in the next Lok Sabha elections. And all tactical steps required for that would be taken. This the Party Congress had already unambiguously declared,” Politburo member and Kerala state CPM secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan said.

However, this arrangement between Congress and the CPI(M) has not yielded results in the past. In the West Bengal Assembly elections of 2016 also, the CPI(M) and the Congress had a pre-poll alliance. In terms of numbers, though, the alliance didn’t favour either as the Congress won 44 seats and the CPI(M) 28, as opposed to the Trinamool’s 211 seats in the 295-seat state assembly.


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