Abbas Siddiqui’s ISF releases first list of 26 seats for Bengal polls

The announcement comes amid an ongoing tussle between the ISF and Congress over seat-sharing

Abbas Siddiqui
Siddiqui is an influential cleric of the popular Furfura Sharif shrine in West Bengal's Hooghly district | File Photo: PTI

The Abbas Siddiqui-led Indian Secular Front (ISF) on Friday released its first list of 26 constituencies it will be contesting in the upcoming assembly elections in West Bengal, though it is yet to name the candidates in fray from these seats.

The announcement comes amid an ongoing tussle between the ISF and Congress over seat-sharing. The Left Front, Congress, and ISF have tied up for the Bengal election.

The seats the ISF will be contesting are Mahisadal, Canning Purba, Bhangar, Metiabruz, Panchla, Uluberia Purba, Basirhat Uttar, Ashoknagar, Amdanga, Asansol Uttar, Entally, Madhyamgram and Khanakul. Party sources suggest that the ISF has an alliance with the Left Front in these 26 seats.

“The 26 seats are out of the 30 constituencies that we got from the Left Front. Our alliance partners will contest the remaining four seats. We decided to announce the names of the seats so that there is no confusion among our supporters,” ISF leader Simul Soren told PTI.

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He said that by announcing the names of the seats, ISF has sent a message to Congress, with whom the seat-sharing talks have not been smooth, that they’d be contesting from those constituencies so that there is no duplication of alliance candidates.

The Congress and the ISF had last week managed to break the ice between them over seat-sharing but talks are still underway for some constituencies.

The newly floated ISF had initially demanded 15 seats from the Congress, but the grand old party has agreed to give it only eight. The Left Front has given 30 seats to the ISF from its kitty.

Siddiqui is an influential cleric of the popular Furfura Sharif shrine in West Bengal’s Hooghly district.

Elections to the 294-seat West Bengal assembly will be held in eight phases beginning March 27 and votes will be counted on May 2.

(With inputs from agencies)

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