Chapra, Feb. 17: Amid the ongoing talks over seat-sharing with the Left Front and the Congress, Abbas Siddiqui, chief of Indian Secular Front announced on Wednesday announced that his party would field candidates in all the 294 assembly seats in Bengal unless his demand for at least 80 seats for his party is accepted by the two big partners.
“I have sent a list of about 80 seats spreading across North 24 Parganas, South 24 Parganas, Nadia, Murshidabad, Malda and in some other areas. I can agree to some minor adjustments in numbers. But if the demand of seats are not largely agreed upon as per my demand, I will not go for any negotiation rather nominate candidates to all the seats”, Abbas Siddique said.
“Nijerder sansar ghuchiye newar khamata amader achey”, he added.
“Time is very limited and I will not remain at the mercy of Left Front or Congress. It is a matter of rights being a political party like any other”, Siddique told news persons in Chapra before held a series of meetings with community leaders hoping that two big partners would try to maintain “friendly relations” with his party.
“Our objective is to ensure the democratic and constitutional rights for the minorities and the downtrodden people…We have demanded some seats and assured our support to the Congress and Left Front in the remaining seats. We will also campaign for them. Our intention is to build a strong partnership. But they are dilli dallying. It appears that leaders like Adhir Babu has not understood my words”, Siddiqui said.
The Congress and Left Front announced finalization of seat sharing in Calcutta on Tuesday after a meeting at CPM office on Alimuddin Street, but refrained from announcing the name and numbers seats each of the constituents of the alliance would fight.
This angered Siddique as he alleged that the two big partners have not bothered to leave seats for his party.
“I am not begging…who is Congress and Left Front to give me seat…They are also a political party like ours. We have begged for past 74 years. Now we want right”, a visibly angry Siddiqui said in Chapra.
“They announced finalization of seat sharing..but deliberately avoided to announce the number of seats. It appears that they have not left seats for us…
So we have to take our decision fast as time is very limited”, Siddique said while claiming to have sent his representative for a meeting with the two big partners scheduled in Calcutta on the day.
“I have told my representative to reiterate our demand categorically in the meeting..and to.make it clear that only a minor reduction in number of seats can be accepted. We have also like minded organisations in our fold, whom we need to accommodate as well”, Siddiqui said.
Sources said that the Congress and Left Front apparently delayed announcement of seat numbers as they found the demand quite ‘illogical’ to concede. Siddiqui’s ISF have demanded almost all the seats in North 24 Parganas Basirhat Sub Division as well as large number of seats in Baruipur and Diamond Harbour sub division. It also demanded big number of seats in Nadia’s Krishnagar and Tehatta sub division as well as in Murshidabad and Malda district, which put both Congress and Left in a difficult situation.