TMC, Congress seat-sharing talks inconclusive

Kolkata, Mar 15 (Calcutta Tube / IBNS): The Trinamool Congress (TMC) and the Congress on Tuesday failed to reach an amicable agreement over sharing constituencies to contest on for the coming state elections after a meeting between top leaders of the two awkward allies.
Trinamool’s fiery leader Mamata Banerjee and Congress stalwart Pranab Mukherjee met on Tuesday to chalk out a seat sharing formula but to no avail.
“We have discussed about seat sharing. The discussion is inconclusive. We shall discuss it again,” said Mukherjee after the meeting.
Analysts had predicted that the talks were unlikely to be very smooth with both the parties, who share an alliance at the Centre, wanting to play a hardball.
But differences between the Congress and the TMC appeared to have diminished following reports on Monday that both parties had softened over sharing the 294-member West Bengal Assembly.
While the Congress had backed down to a demand of about 75 seats from an earlier 100, the Trinamool had agreed to up its offer from 45 to 60, media reports said on Monday.
Meanwhile the Left Front, against whom the two parties will be batting, on Sunday announced 149 new candidates for the April-May assembly elections, dropping nine ministers from the list and fielding 46 women.
On its part, even without a seat sharing solution close at hand, the Trinamool is likely to play quite a few regional celebrities in the polls.
Actors Debasree Roy and Chiranjeet Chatterjee are likely to be candidates and pitted against Left giants, reports said.

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