Parties need to come together to restore democracy in Bengal: Somnath

Kolkata, June 20 (IANS) A day after a CPI-M leader fuelled speculation of a possible tie-up with the Congress to oust the Mamata Banerjee led Trinamool Congress from power, former Lok Sabha speaker Somnath Chatterjee on Saturday endorsed the view saying parties need to come together to restore democracy in West Bengal.

“It is about time that democracy is restored in Bengal. To achieve this goal if two or three parties come together then it would be a positive development,” said Chatterjee.

His remarks came after Communist Party of India-Marxist leader Gautam Deb on Friday stressed on the need to walk the extra mile to defeat the Banerjee regime.

Admitting that the Left Front was not in a position to defeat the ruling Trinamool on its own strength, Deb – a former state housing and public health engineering minister – hinted at a possible tie up with the Congress for the 2016 assembly polls in the state.

“There is a need for a grand alliance with like-minded political parties to defeat the Trinamool regime,” Deb a CPI-M state secretariat member had told media persons.

Giving his views on the issue, CITU leader Shyamal Chakraborty said: “There is still time for the elections. Thousands of options are opena”.

State Congress president Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, however, preferred to remain non-committal.

“Deb is just a leader, decision on alliance is a policy matter that needs endorsement by the party. As regards Congress, I am only a foot soldier, it’s the party high command that is equipped to take a call on any prospective alliance,” said Chowdhury.

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