Raiganj, Sept. 10: The Congress members of the North Dinajpur zilla parishad today said they had forged an alliance with Trinamul to contest the posts for sabhadhipati and the saha-sabhadhipati, although the district Congress leadership denied the news of such a tie-up.
Of the 26 zilla parishad seats in the district, the Left Front won 13, the Congress eight and Trinamul five.
With the Congress and Trinamul joining hands, the alliance has 13 members, the same number that the Left Front has.
If the votes are tied, the posts would be filled up by a lottery tomorrow.
Today, the eight elected Congress members arrived at the zilla parishad guesthouse around 10am to meet the five elected Trinamul candidates who were at the Circuit House in the adjacent building.
Around 3.30pm, the Congress members informed the press about an alliance with Trinamul.
The PCC had directed the party leaders not to join hands with Trinamul.
“Despite our party high command instructing us not to forge an alliance with Trinamul, we forged the alliance to keep the Left out of the zilla parishad. We have decided to join hands and put up candidates for the posts of sabhadhipati and saha-sabhadhipati. This is in the interest of the people who expect a stable zilla parishad,” said Afzal Hossain, the Congress zilla parishad member from Goalpokhar.
Itahar MLA and Trinamul district president Amal Acharjee, who was present at the meeting, said his party had always kept the door open for the Congress.
“They have agreed to support us to keep the Left Front away. I welcome their decision,” he said.
Deepa today warned that the alliance would be harmful for the Congress in the district.
“We have always stated that the PCC does not want any alliance with Trinamul. I have heard that our elected zilla parishad members have forged an alliance with the Congress. I have tried my best to prevent them from doing so as it sends a wrong message to the public. I have left the matter to the district party leadership,” she said.
When asked about the alliance, Mohit Sengupta, the district Congress president, said the eight members would fight the elections tomorrow without any alliance.
“We are not in favour of any alliance and we will fight the elections on our own. Our eight members will arrive at the zilla parishad tomorrow and put up our candidates for the posts of the sabhadhipati and saha-sabhadhipati,” he said.
Additional district magistrate Sonam Bhutia said: “If the votes are tied, the presiding officer will write the names of the winners in two chits, drop them in a box and the winners would be decided after a draw.”