The Guardian June 14, 2000


Spectacular Red victory in W Bengal

The CPI(M)-led Left Front has scored a stunning victory in the West 
Bengal municipal elections. The Left Front retained the support of the 
middle classes and the working class to win an absolute majority in 33 
municipalities and emerge as the single largest group in six others.

These results have nailed the lie of the bourgeois media that the Left 
Front was losing popular support. In the 1995 elections, the Congress 
(party) had secured a majority in 32 of the 79 municipalities that went to 
vote. This time around, the Congress secured only 13, while emerging as the 
single largest party in two municipalities.

Even if one were to add the eight municipalities won by the Trinamool 
Congress and the BJP combine, the total comes to 23, far less than the 32 
the Congress alone won last time. Clearly, the combination of all 
reactionary forces put together does not come anywhere near the Left 
Front's tally.

The people of Bengal who have seen in practice the work of the Left Front 
government in the state, and who, over the years, have been steeled in the 
struggle against the reactionary forces, have reasserted their progressive 
character in these elections.

The CPI(M) says the West Bengal election results "serve as a warning to the 
BJP and its allies. Indian people stand completely opposed to the anti-
people policies being pursued by the NDA government at the Centre."

The drubbing that the BJP also received in by-elections elsewhere in the 
country, particularly in Uttar Pradesh, reflects the steady erosion of its 
base in the country.

* * *
Ganashakti Newspaper, newspaper of CPI(M)

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