In his first extensive interview after the arrest of Trinamool minister Madan Mitra and the rally of BJP chief Amit Shah in Kolkata, Left Front chairman and CPI(M) politburo member Biman Bose tells Saubhadra Chatterji that the CBI must quiz Mamata Banerjee to unearth the entire conspiracy.
The BJP or Trinamool, who’s the Left’s bigger concern in West Bengal?
Both of them are major concern for us. The BJP poses a threat to the political ideology as it divides people in religious line and Trinamool is out there to demolish democratic values. The BJP’s affiliates and the RSS help it to propagate these divisive tactics while the Trinamool does not have any ideology, policies and development agenda.
Will Saradha lead to Trinamool’s downfall?
Yes, at least partially. This party had claimed to be the epitome of honesty. Trinamool chief acted as if she is honesty personified just because she wore sandals and simple sarees. But people have understood that Trinamool is involved in the scam. CBI must quiz Mamata Banerjee to unearth the entire conspiracy. She had a meeting with Sudipto Sen and other chit fund in 2012.
The Left’s vote share in Bengal declined by almost 10% in the last three years while the BJP grew remarkably.
After 2011, a large section of our workers and leaders became inactive. As we did not reach out properly some votes may have been swayed elsewhere. The BJP’s national-level campaign and the RSS’ networking also helped the BJP to grow. That situation is changing but the Left’s future will depend on its ability to connect to the people.
BJP chief Amit Shah said, winning West Bengal is his biggest target.
I would not like to comment on what is his life’s target. But we are reaching out to people with our points of view. I cannot set a time limit but we will definitely recover our lost ground and even create a new support base.
Unlike the Congress or the BJP, why the CPI(M) has failed to grow new leadership?
You will soon see a new breed of leadership in the party at different levels including the Central Committee. We are promoting new, young leaders through a 3-in-1 policy in committees. One person will be very experienced, the second person is relatively less elder and the third person will be young. The same formula was also used by the Communist Party of China.
Is joining hands with the Congress an option?
It was never an option for the Left parties in Bengal. Only the Left has the ability to stop the BJP’s growth. The other party, Trinamool, follows a soft communal line and confuses people by falsehood.
What is your prediction for upcoming municipal polls?
We have not done any assessment yet.