Mamata Banerjee took oath today, again after five years in chief minister’s office of West Bengal, for another five years.
It was a historic mandate in 2011 when she unseated the Left Front in a state that had become synonymous with the presence of the Reds in India, the Communists, with 34 years of unbridled run. It was a comfortable majority then – 184 seats in a House of 294.
It is even better this time – with more seats and a greater vote share.
And this brilliant victory, we can say, has effectively countered the last (and the foremost) claim of the Reds – that they represent the proletariat against everything that is bourgeoisie.
In this election, Mamata simply outdid the Left Front by stripping it of that ideological plank.
She got wide support of the proletariat as well as the bourgeoisie class.
To sum up symbolically, Mamata won all 11 assembly constituencies in Kolkata (like 2011) – and she swept the Jangalmahal region also, the rural belt of Maoist insurgency in West Bengal.
She won 211 of the 294 assembly constituencies the election was fought for – winning 45% of votes – 6% more than the last time.
While the Left Front, with all its constituents, could win just 32 seats.
How ironical that is!
The Left Front’s vote share last time was around 32%. It has drastically come down to some 20% in 2016.
Meanwhile, Mamata Banerjee has kept her winning spree on in the state – winning Panchayat, civic bodies and 2014 Lok Sabha polls in the state since 2011 – in spite of – first the Saradha scam – and now the Narada taint.
Yes, it is premature to write off the Left Front yet. It is, in fact, not a good sign for the health of Indian politics that is already reeling under the crisis of the absence of a powerful political opposition. After all, a true democratic spirit cannot flow unless there is an influential and responsible political opposition in a country.
But, for the moment, it is like a hara-kiri moment for the Left Front.
The country will watch how they survive this turn of events, something that they themselves are responsible for – allying with a party, Congress, the opposition of which was the driving force behind the Left Front’s citadel in West Bengal.
And the irony is – the Left Front was fighting against a Congress – with another Congress’s support!
After all, Mamata Banerjee was a career Congress politician from West Bengal before she formed her own political outfit – the All India Trinamool Congress (AITC or TMC as we say it). Whether Congress remained in her DNA or not we cannot say but she chose to include Congress in her party’s name.
West Bengal’s proletariat and bourgeois simply didn’t buy this sham symbolism.
Instead, they chose to go for painting the Red Road Blue, once again, and with a more profound writing on the wall.
Have the Left Front comrades started reading it? Because if they don’t – they’ll soon be a closed chapter in India’s political annals!
©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/
Featured Image Courtesy: AITC’s Twitter page