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Left Front likely to field more youth, women
The Left Front is considering more women to woo sections inclined towards TMC.
Kolkata: Women and fresh faces are likely to feature prominently alongside seasoned politicians when West Bengal's ruling Left Front on Sunday announces its candidates for the upcoming April-May assembly polls.
The Front's constituents are scheduled to meet here on Sunday, as it aims to retain power in a state it has ruled uninterrupted since 1977.
The Communist Party of India-Marxist led Left Front, facing its stiffest electoral fight in 34 years, has opted to give nomination on the basis of the winnability of the candidates, sources in the Front said.
The Left Front is toying with the idea of nominating more women to woo a section which it feels could be inclined towards the Trinamool Congress, which is led by a woman - Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee.
"Candidates with a clean image will be preferred. There will be a stress on youth, but experienced politicians will also be there in the list," Communist Party of India (CPI) national council member Swapan Banerjee told IANS.
"Be it in West Bengal, or any other part of the world, the trend is 54-56 percent of the population belong to the young generation. So, our aim is to ensure majority representation," he said.
"Our effort is to field those candidates about whom the first impression of the voters will be positive," said Banerjee.
Recently, Left Front chairman Biman Bose said the list will see the right mix of youth and veterans.
Another Left leader, however, said whatever might be the broad principle of choosing candidates, exceptions have to be made taking into account the organisational issues - like the clout of a particular nominee in a constituency.
Another factor likely to influence the candidates list is whether some ministers opt to stay out of the race citing poor health.
The opposition Trinamool has been claiming that some Left Front stalwarts are trying to "chicken out" of the contest fearing defeat.
Also, many legislators who have been contesting from the same seat for quite some time may be replaced by greenhorns.
In the 294-seat assembly, the CPI-M is likely to contest around 211 seats, leaving the rest to other Left Front partners, some of whom may get one or two more seats compared to their quota last time around.
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