Former Left Front minister Rezzak Mollah’s short-lived honeymoon with Trinamool Congress would not make it a cakewalk for the eight-time MLA in getting a backing from the CPI(M), his former party, in the coming Assembly polls. Most of the CPI(M) leaders are reportedly against offering any warm welcome to Mollah, who had publicly criticised the party’s top leadership even before the 2011 Assembly elections.
Mollah, the 71-year-old politician, had sprung a surprise on January 11 when he called on chief minister Mamata Banerjee at Nabanna, the state secretariat. It was later decided that Mollah will officially join Trinamool on February 12. But the ties broke even before the pact was inked.
“Trinamool has ditched me. It refused to give me nomination from Canning East, the seat I have been representing since 1972,” Mollah told HT on Monday, adding that he has changed his mind and would not join Trinamool. Mollah said Trinamool offered him a ticket from the Bhangar Assembly constituency, or any seat from Hoooghly and Burdwan districts. But Mollah rejected the offer.
“I had a talk with CPI(M) state secretary Surya Kanta Mishra and informed him that I have snapped ties with Trinamool,” Mollah said. While the two had no discussion over his former party supporting him in getting a ninth term in the Assembly, Mollah still hopes he may get their backing.
Mollah was expelled from the CPI(M) in February 2014. He formed his own outfit, Bharatiya Nyayvichar Manch, in October that year. Sources in the CPI(M) said the party is reluctant to welcome Mollah, who made the party face a series of embarrassment by publicly criticizing the party and its top leaders, including former chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee and former industry minister Nirupam Sen.
“Despite being cautioned a number of times, he never stopped criticizing the party in the public. He tried all means to establish that he was different than all other leaders of the party. It is only when he has been snubbed by the Trinamool that he is trying to hobnob with us once again,” a senior CPI(M) leader said, describing Mollah’s move as ‘utmost opportunist.”
“He once thought he would be able to win the next elections contesting on a CPI(M) ticket. So, he tried to make a different image for himself. Now that he has realised he can’t win the election on his own, he’s trying to comeback. All he wants is to be reelected,” another CPI(M) leader said.