The 2016 assembly polls might be the immediate focus, but the Left Front-Congress seatsharing understanding might go beyond the state elections, the CPI(M) politburo and Lok Sabha member, Md Salim, said.
His clear hint is towards forming a joint government in case the loose alliance manages to defeat the Trinamool Congress. Salim is even eyeing the 2019 Lok Sabha elections when such a tieup may resurrect the fortunes of the Left.
“We are looking for a longterm, agenda-driven understanding with all democratic and secular forces except the Trinamool Congress. Of course, this unity of the Left and democratic and secular forces short-term aim is to counter the Trinamool Congress at the state level and BJP at the national level,” Salim said.
When asked about the possibility of the understanding going beyond the ensuing state assembly elections, Salim said that it is up to the media to draw their own inferences. “The 2016 state assembly election is our immediate focus and as I have already said that our target is to attain a bigger unity among all Left, democratic and secular forces, except the Trinamool Congress and the BJP,” he told reporters.
In fact, the draft Left Front election manifesto also hints at a joint platform grabbing power. Instead of a Left government, the document asks voters to elect a “Left, democratic and secular” regime.