PCC wants one-third of seats in tie-up with TMC in WB

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New Delhi, Feb 17 (PTI) West Bengal Congress today saidthe party should get one-third of the seats it will contest inalliance with Trinamool Congress in the state assembly pollsdue in May, replicating the formula adopted during the LokSabha polls in 2009.

"We have placed recommendations to Sonia Gandhi to followthe same formula adopted in 2009 Parliamentary elections inrelation to the partnership with TMC," state Congress chiefManas Bhunia told reporters after a meeting with the UPAChairperson here.

He said the TMC-Congress alliance in West Bengal is the"most rational way" to repeat the performance of the Lok Sabhaelections, in which the combine gave a drubbing to the rulingLeft Front.

"In the seat sharing formula, two-thirds of the seatsmust be alloted to TMC, and one-third to Congress. This, Ifeel, is the most rational suggestion," Bhunia said. Thestrength of West Bengal assembly is 294.

The WBPCC chief said he also urged the Congress highcommand to discuss the seat-sharing formula as early aspossible, but hastened to add that it was upto Sonia Gandhi totake the final decision.

Gandhi, he said, also gave directions to the state unitto form monitoring and vigilance committees in the block,district and state levels to look into the "misuse of thefunds given by the Centre".

"In addition, she asked us to report to her at 15 days''interval to ensure that the UPA flagship programmes arepromoted even in rural areas," he added.

Bhunia expressed confidence that the Trinamool-Congresscombine would trump the Left in the polls as this was "thelong-felt aspiration of the people."

"The people must be freed from the bondage and politicalslavery of the Marxist-Communist government. I also discussedthis issue with Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukerjee lastnight," said Bhunia.

The CPI(M)-led Left Front has been at the helm of WestBengal for over three decades now.

"The state has suffered under the Left for decades now.

The state is in a wretched condition. Everything has gone downexcept probably torture on women which is on the rise. (ChiefMinister) Buddhadeb (Bhattacharjee) deserves a gold medal forthis achievement," he said.

After his meeting with Gandhi, Bhunia also met UnionPower minister Sushilkumar Shinde to discuss the alleged"non-implementation" of power schemes in the state.

"Schemes like the Rajiv Gandhi Grameen VidyutikaranYojana isn''t implemented in the state. Out of the 1,03,90,270families in the state, only 40 lakh have electricity. I askedShinde to talk to departments like NTPC, REC and NHPC toensure that power schemes are implemented in underdevelopeddistricts like West Midnapore and Bhirbhum," he said.

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