The Bengali new year has brought some cheer for the CPI(M) cadres. From its office in Nandigram, which was closed since March 2007, to those in Khejuri, Keshpur and Dhaniakhali, the party has been able to reopen its offices that were closed for seven to 10 yearswith arch-rival Trinamool looking away.
Be it the 2013 panchayat poll, the 2014 Lok Sabha election or the 2016 assembly and 2018 panchayat polls, CPI(M) workers were attacked whenever they tried to reopen their offices. The situation seems to have changed now.
The Nandigram office, for instance, was vandalised, set on fire and locked up by the Trinamool at the peak of the agitation led by Mamata Banerjee.
Surprisingly, the move to open the office this April had the support of Trinamool’s Suvendu Adhikary. Apparently, it is the ruling party’s strategy to show no resistance, because if the CPI(M) can hold on to its voter base, the BJP will gain less.
The TMC is allowing the Left political space so that it can stand as a strong competitor to the BJP in staking a claim on the anti-incumbency votes. In fact, Mamata is heard requesting all anti-BJP forces to unite in her campaigns aired on television channels.