TMC-GNLF join hands to fight municipality election
With the official notification for the municipality elections in the hills out today confirming the day as May 14, the Trinamool Congress and the Gorkha National Liberation Front announced an alliance in Kurseong. The two sides said they would field respective candidates in the places where they were in a strong position.
The alliance was announced in the presence of GNLF president Mann Ghising and senior TMC leaders Gautam Deb and Arup Biswas. They also appeared to hint there could be some sort of an internal adjustment between the Jan Andolan Party and the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha.
Arup Biswas said, "We have decided to forge an alliance between the TMC and the GNLF for the municipality elections on a seat sharing understanding. Wherever the GNLF has a stronghold they will field a candidate, and wherever we feel our party is strong we will put up a candidate. This time, the TMC-GNLF will bring about a change as we will win the elections."
It may be mentioned here that the GNLF and the TMC had an alliance in the Lok Sabha and the state assembly elections but lost out to the GJM in both elections. In fact, the JAP was also an alliance partner in the assembly elections. But this time it won't be so as JAP president Harka Bahadur Chhetri has stressed repeatedly his party would fight the civic polls alone.
Asked whether the TMC was mulling a meeting with the JAP for an alliance, Biswas said, "Our doors are open for everyone who is against the Morcha and their corrupt ways. But we do not know if there is any secret adjustment between some parties."
He said in the past five years, the GJM-run board of Darjeeling municipality had done no development work despite getting lots of funds from the state government. Branding the GJM as corrupt, the TMC leader said his party wanted development in the hills and they would work hard for this.
Asked about the stand of the TMC to the GNLF's demand for Sixth Schedule, Biswas said, "All political parties have different agenda and issues. Our alliance is for the municipality elections to address issues of water, road connectivity and other local problems."
GNLF president Mann Ghising said, "The municipality elections are for local issues. The state government has always been saying they will bring development in the hills and work for the people." (EOIC)