Kolkata: With the Trinamool Congress deciding
not to support Congress in the Rajya Sabha elections, senior
Congress leader Abdul Mannan on Monday filed his papers giving
rise to another bone of contention between the two allies.
Trinamool Congress has renominated union minister Mukul
Roy and given tickets to three journalists.
Mannan, a former MLA from Champdani in Hooghly district,
filed his nomination papers in the presence of AICC observer R
C Khuntia, WBPCC chief Pradip Bhattacharya, CLP leader in
Assembly Md Sohrab, West Bengal ministers Manas Bhuniya, Abu
Hena and Sabina Yasmin, besides a number of party leaders.
On whether the Congress with 42 MLAs in the 294-member
House would have enough numbers to see its candidate through,
Khuntia said, "West Bengal has 26 per cent minority votes.
"Abdul Mannan has been nominated to give them
representation. Those who are secular-minded and those who
want him to go to the Rajya Sabha will surely vote for him. In
the Rajya Sabha elections, there are second and third
preference votes," he said.
Ruling out the possibility of Mannan withdrawing his
nomination, Khuntia said his party would neither indulge in
horse trading nor take support from the Left Front.
Asked how then the Congress hoped to see its candidate
win, Kuntia said, "every election has a strategy. We are also
following a strategy for this election. But we are not going
to discuss our strategy with the press".
Meanwhile, the number of Trinamool Congress MLAs came
down to 183 with the death of senior party MLA Ajit Bhuniya
during the day, while another party MLA Kashinath Mishra has
sought leave of absence.
The three members of the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha and
the independent candidate supported by it have boycotted the
Rajya Sabha elections.
The Opposition Left Front has renominated CITU general
secretary as its candidate for the Rajya Sabha.