Must Ensure Anti-Incumbency Doesn’t Help BJP In West Bengal: Sitaram Yechury

Kolkata: Having been thrown out of power after ruling the state for 34 years, the Communist parties in West Bengal are keen to regain lost ground and prove to the electorate that they are a sound alternative to the ruling Trinamool Congress.

CPI(M) Politburo member Sitaram Yechury, who was in town for the first physical meeting of the state committee since the pandemic struck, emphasized that CPM’s bigger enemy is the BJP and the party is working on a strategy to ensure the saffron party doesn’t form the next government in Bengal.

He said the angst of the people has to be channelized in such a way that the combined force of Left Front and Congress benefits.

He warned that Bengal is in a similar situation as Bihar, where the mahagathbandhan proved counterproductive and helped the BJP-JDU retain power.

Yechury said there is a situation of bipolarity that is being created between the BJP and TMC.

“This suits both of them. The basic issue of people’s livelihood is interconnected with the farmers’ agitation near Delhi. The unity displayed at the rally is unparalleled and a reflection of the discontent of the farm bills, against all the economic policies followed by the central government,” said Yechury.

“This discontent is also the basic issue for the people of Bengal. The procurement price of paddy is Rs 1,888 and kisans in Bengal are getting Rs 1200-odd, much less than the declared price. These are issues along with unemployment, the issue of migrant labourers returning to Bengal. The rising prices of commodities, petroleum prices are on top of every one’s mind. Our agenda is to take up the issue of people’s livelihood, with focus on jobs, food, health and education – these are the issues on which the thrust of our campaign will be all over the country and also here,” said the central leader.

Yechury asserted that the CPI(M), along with like-minded parties, will break the bipolarity.

“The anti-incumbency against this government is so strong that any unity of anti-BJP forces is compared to the mahagathbandhan in Bihar. We won’t allow a situation to arise where it helps the BJP,” he claimed.

Stating that their primary objective is to defeat the BJP, Yechury said that the anti-incumbency vote should not go to the BJP as a whole and that is the only way the BJP can be weekend and defeated.

“Everyone knows the track record of the TMC and their relation with the BJP, how they were part of the NDA at one time. What will be their role post-elections is also suspect,” Yechury said.

Pointed out that some in the Congress want MP Adhir Choudhury as their chief minister candidate, Yechury said: “First the issues have to be decided on which we will jointly fight the election and then will think of a CM face.”

On the entry of AIMIM in Bengal politics, Yechury said: “This is democracy. Everyone is welcome here. What role they will play here has not been clear till now. What is their policy and what is their agenda has to be clear first. Let them clear their stance first, if they want to defeat or aid the BJP.”

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