'Congress in its death bed in West Bengal, will soon cease to exist'

Kolkata, Feb 18: Congress, weakened by regular desertions to ruling TMC and a resurgent BJP eating up the opposition space, is fast waning into a non-entity in Bengal politics leading to a chorus from within the party for an organisational revamp.

Knives are out in West Bengal Congress
The grand old party, which once used to make a significant impact in the state polls, has virtually been an also-ran in the past few years. The voices of discontent have come to the fore after the party not only lost its deposit in the February 13 by-elections to Bongaon Lok Sabha and Krishnaganj Assembly seats, it only managed to get a paltry 2.35 per cent vote and 2.41 per cent vote respectively.

The successive defeats have not only given momentum to the demand for a change in the state Congress leadership but have also put a question mark over the decisions of the Congress high command regarding West Bengal.

"Why will people support Congress or vote for it when time and again we have either sided with TMC or with CPI(M) for forming the government at the Centre? Wrong decisions of the Congress high command and lack of proper state leadership has finished the party in Bengal.

"The party is in its death bed in Bengal and will soon cease to exist in Bengal politics," veteran Congress leader Abdul Mannan told PTI.

Mannan, whose PIL in Supreme Court led to the CBI investigation in the Saradha scam, felt that the "ignorance" of the central leadership about the party's state unit has virtually turned it into a mere 'signboard' as claimed by TMC.

"I have been saying this since the debacle in the state in the last Lok Sabha polls that there is need to change the state leadership but the high command has plans of its own," he rued.  

The Congress which was fighting on its own had won just four seats in the last Lok Sabha polls and lost deposits in more than 32 seats out of the total 42 in Bengal.

Recently, a section of Congress leaders of West Bengal wrote a letter to party high command demanding removal of Adhir Chowdhury as its state president. State Congress leader Manas Bhunia, under whose leadership Congress won 40 seats in 2011 assembly polls in alliance with TMC, said there is a need for serious introspection within the party.

Congress Rajya Sabha MP from West Bengal and a former PCC president Pradip Bhattacharya said "Congress is facing a very tough time in state politics. There is immediate need to revamp the party leadership and organisation in order to infuse fresh energy in the party."


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