April 25, 2009


By B. Prasant

KOLKATA,14th April: A few statistics quoted would be good enough for the present ranks of ‘psephologists’ in the pay of the corporate media, print, as well as audio-visual, to go slightly berserk, if their collected memory remains intact after the impact.

In 2004, the ABP group, the Bartaman, and the Pratidin dailies plus news channels of the same mould of political orientation, had predicted a ‘severe decline in popularity and thus certain defeat for CPI (M) candidates’ in the following seats, each of which, incidentally, the Party candidate won with very impressive margins.

The constituencies are Krishnagar, Jadavpur, Nabadwip, Jalpaiguri, North-west Kolkata, Basirhat, Asansol, and Hooghly. In each case, the CPI (M) candidate scored electoral triumphs with bigger margins than those in the earlier Lok Sabha polls.

We recall in this connection how prior to the 2006 Assembly polls, the Trinamul supremo had, basing her knowledge on the ‘facts’ supplied by the corporate media, predicted with confidence that her outfit would win ‘99%’ of the 294 assembly constituencies. She ended up with 29. Earlier to that, during the 2004 Lok Sabha polls, her predictions of ‘winning’ had gone more horribly awry with the Trinamul-BJP combine having to be satisfied with just one seat.

As an aside, we may also bring to mind the sky-high praise the Trinamuli chief had for the Election Commission of India for free and fair polls in the 2006 Assembly elections. Following the winning of 235 seats by the Left Front, she quickly changed tack, and blamed everything on ‘high-tech, computerised’ rigging. The corporate media were quick enough in their undying loyalty to their political leaning, to take up the chant as well as the refrain.

Not content with the lessons that the people have taught them, the bourgeois political outfits, their left sectarian partners, and their minders in the corporate media are into the same game during the present polls even as the LF candidates’ campaign surge ahead with clear signals of increasing popularity.

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