RSP rules out leaving Left Front

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Kolkata, March 22 (IANS) The Revolutionary Socialist Party, which has been lamenting the electoral arrangement with the Congress, on Tuesday asserted it will not walk out of West Bengal’s Left Front but instead consolidate the Leftist coalition.

The RSP, a prominent Left Front partner since its formation in 1977, had initially opposed the arrangement with the ‘old foe’ for the state assembly polls and had even threatened to walk out of the Front. However, it later relented, forgoing four of the 23 seats it had been contesting for years.

But with the Congress’s recent decision to field candidates in several constituencies where Left Front candidates are already in the fray, the party again has been up in arms.

Singing a different tune, RSP state secretary Kshiti Goswami on Tuesday asserted that the party will not walk out of the Left Front, even as he accused the Congress of giving a jolt to the electoral understanding.

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“We have already sacrificed four seats for the sake of this arrangement. But the Congress has given a jolt to this arrangement by fielding candidates in at least 23 seats where Left Front candidates including nine from the RSP are already in the fray.

“They (Congress) are saying there will be a friendly contest, but can an electoral contest remain friendly?

“Compromises work out only when both sides exist. How can there be a compromise when attempts are being made to put a question mark on the existence of a party?” said Goswami, referring to the nine seats in Murshidabad, Malda and South Dinajpur districts.

Asked if the RSP would walk out of the Left Front if it is asked to forgo some of the nine seats in question, Goswami said: “We are not rigid. If we were so, then we would not have talked about discussing the issue within the Front. There has to be flexibility.

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“We are the Front’s disciplined soldiers. So if proposals over these seats come, we will discuss within the Front, we will put forth our arguments and whatever will be the decision will be the Front’s decision,” said Goswami.

He iterated the RSP’s commitment towards consolidating the Leftist coalition.

“There is no question of walking out of the Front. Our main agenda is to consolidate the Front.

“We are also being wrongly projected as the villains to this arrangement with the Congress.

“It is being projected as if the RSP is throwing the spanner on the seat arrangement. This is not the case,” said Goswami whose party had won seven of the 23 seats it had contested in 2011.

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