Union finance minister and Jangipur MP Pranab Mukherjee on Tuesday attacked the Left Front government for the deteriorating law and order situation in the state in his election campaign for Congress candidates. He said the alliance with the Trinamool was the need of the time. He also asked voters to ignore Independent candidates. Mukherjee on Tuesday participated in three election campaigns and in a road show in his constituency.
"This year, the assembly election will be held in a completely different political situation. The election will bring back a democratic atmosphere in the state and will throw up an alternative policy, an alternative path to the people," Mukherjee said. "To form a government or to win in any seat we need a 51% verdict in our favour. But so far we were in the team of 49%. In the Lok Sabha election of 2009, we (read Congress) got six seats but collectively Trinamool and Congress got 26 seats. Since then the people of Bengal have started believing that the Left Front rule can be changed here."
He said, "The Congress has on several occasions tried to bring the desired change. Had we achieved what our objective was, we would not go for an alliance with the Trinamool. I know Congress is very strong in Murshidabad, Malda and Dinajpur. But the number of seats in the three districts is 45 and we need a minimum 148 seats to form the government. I know in Murshidabad we don't need any alliance. But Murshidabad is not West Bengal in its totality. So we went for the alliance to defeat the Left Front."
The finance minister said, "We haven't given a call for 'change' because the Left Front is ruling Bengal for the last 34 years but for its failure to carry out any development work. They have been given the chance on seven occasions to rectify themselves and now do not deserve any more chances. During the Left Front regime Bengal has witnessed a marked deterioration of law and order, a spurt in torture of women and other anti-social activities. Around 50,000 Congress workers have been killed here since 1977. Their only crime was that they were supporters of our party. At the same time, we have regressed in development works, the implementation of Rajiv Gandhi Rural Electrification Programme, setting up new rural health centres etc.
"Every year, a lump sum allotted for developmental work is returned to the Centre because of sheer negligence of the state government. The Teesta project was sanctioned in 1972 and the Left Front is ruling the Bengal since 1977 till date but the project report hasn't yet been submitted. Even the AG Bengal report says this government has gobbled up 14 lakh quintal of foodgrains allotted for West Midnapore, North 24-Parganas and Nadia districts."
Mukherjee also attacked Independent candidates and the BJP. He said, "In our state the lotus flower blossoms only in ponds. There is no scope of their blossoming in our 'political pond'. In our state politics there is no importance of Independent candidates. Do they have any ability to form the government? I am also sure the Left Front will hardly get 50-55 seats."