KOLKATA, May 14, 2011: Pointing out that a thorough analysis had to be done of the “unexpected debacle” suffered by the Left Front in the West Bengal Assembly elections, State Left Front Committee chairman Biman Basu said on Friday it was evident that the “Opposition's slogan for change has received the endorsement of the people.”
“The reasons for the debacle will have to be reviewed in detail. From a preliminary assessment, it can be said we did not understand the mindset of the people, who have endorsed the slogan for change,” said Mr. Basu, who is also the State secretary of the Communist Party of India (Marxist).
Asked about the confidence with which he had predicted a win for the Left Front, Mr. Basu admitted that “our assessment was not right.”
Refusing to comment further on where the Left had gone wrong, Mr. Basu said that only a detailed review could reveal the reasons for its defeat.
A joint statement issued by Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee and Mr. Bose earlier in the day said the Left Front had humbly accepted the verdict of the people and assured them that it “will fulfil the duty of a responsible and constructive opposition.”
“In the last 34 years under the rule of the Left Front, the poor have earned their rights. Workers, farmers and the lower classes have earned their dignity. Left-minded people hope that in the coming days, the common people will try to preserve their rights and dignity,” said the statement.
In the evening, senior leaders of the Left parties met at the State headquarters of the CPI(M).
“The Left parties have not been born in this world to remain in government. They must wage the struggle for the people and will continue to do so,” Mr. Bose told journalists after the meeting.
Asked about the role the Left parties would play as an Opposition, he said: “We will fight the anti-people policies of the government tooth and nail.” But “if the government takes pro-people measures, we will definitely cooperate.”
Mr. Basu said he attached “no special significance” to the defeat of Mr. Bhattacharjee in Jadavpur at the hands of the Trinamool Congress' Manish Gupta.
“Other ministers have been defeated, other candidates have been defeated and he [Mr. Bhattacharjee] has also been defeated.” Even as news trickled in of local offices of the CPI(M) being attacked by Trinamool supporters, Mr. Bose said it was unfortunate.