Kolkata, Jan 18: Top leaders of the CPI(M)-led Left Front and the Congress conducted a meeting here on Sunday to discuss the seat-sharing and other election-related strategies, leaders of both the parties said, adding that their candidates would be finalized by the end of this month.
However, both the Congress and Left leaders said that they would hold more such meetings this month to finalize the candidates' list for the upcoming Assembly elections, expected to be held in April-May.
Both the party’s leaders would meet again on January 25 and 28 to settle the seat-sharing and other poll-related issues.
In 2016 West Bengal Assembly polls, the two parties had forged an alliance and won 76 seats in the 294-member Assembly.
Post meeting, Left Front chairman and CPI-M politburo member Biman Bose said that their discussion with the Congress was cordial and fruitful.
"To defeat the communal force BJP and the fascist TMC (Trinamool Congress), the Congress-Left parties' alliance is must. The alliance would definitely thrash the binary rule in Bengal," the veteran Left leader told the media.
Bose said that leaders and workers of Left parties and Congress should fight against the BJP and the TMC shoulder to shoulder.
Party sources said that the Congress wanted to contest in 130 seats but the Left leaders did not concede the demand.
Bengal Congress chief and the party's leader in the Lok Sabha Adhir Chowdhury said that the seat sharing with the Left parties would not be completed in a single meeting, however, the seat sharing process would be concluded within this month.
CPI-M state secretary Suryakanta Mishra, Congress leaders Abdul Mannan and Pradip Bhattacharjee were present at the meeting. The Left and Congress parties are likely to hold a mega joint rally in Kolkata soon to kick start their election campaign.
The all important elections to the West Bengal Assembly are likely to be held in April-May along with Assam, Tamil Nadu and Kerala. - IANS