- The Congress-Left alliance, ie the Third Front, was the worst in the Bengal assembly elections.
- 85% of the candidates of the coalition lost their deposits, only 49 candidates were able to save their bail
- Where Rahul Gandhi held rallies, Congress could not save even those seats, candidates’ bail was seized
This time in West Bengal, the main fight was between Trinamool Congress vs BJP, but in this match, the condition of Congress-Left alliance ie Third Front was worst. Even 85 per cent of the coalition candidates lost their deposits. Even more
Left-Congress does not have a single seat after independence
Only 49 candidates of the third fronts were able to save their deposits in the elections held in Bengal on 292 seats (2 elections were not held). According to the rule, if a candidate does not even get 16.5 percent of the vote, then his / her bail is considered forfeited in that seat. With this, for the first time after independence, the Left-Congress could not win a single seat in Bengal. At the same time, the Indian Secular Party (ISF), the third component of the Third Front, could win only one.
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Congress’s bail confiscated in Naxalbari and Goalpokhar
The most embarrassing thing for the Congress is that its candidate had to face defeat in Matigara-Naxalbari and Goalpokhar where Congress leader Rahul Gandhi held a rally on 14 April. The bail amount of both the candidates was forfeited. Matigara-Naxalbari remained the Congress stronghold for a decade but sitting MLA Shankar Malakar came third this time. He got only 9 percent of the vote.
Congress candidates could save bail in only 11 seats
In Goalpokhar too, the Congress candidates finished third and got only 12 per cent of the votes. This seat was held by the Congress from 2006 to 2009 and again from 2011 to 2016. If we assess the three different parties of the Third Front, only 21 out of 170 seats left candidates could save their deposits, Congress 11 seats out of 90 and ISF got more than 16.5% votes in 10 out of 30 seats.
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The ISF won one seat while four other seats — Haroa, Basirhat North, Deganga and Kanning Purba – came second. On these seats, the ISF was successful in pushing the BJP to the third position. Left candidates finished second on four seats while Congress finished second in just two seats (Joypur and Raninagar). The fall of the Third Front in Bengal directly benefited the Trinamool Congress, which won 213 seats. In this election, the vote share of the Congress was 2.94 per cent and the Left 5 per cent.
Rahul Gandhi’s rally in West Bengal (File photo)