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By A Newsman

Siliguri, 25 January: DARJEELING-based Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) is willing to tie up with the CPI-M and Congress to defeat Mamata Banerjee’s Trinamool Congress in the coming West Bengal Assembly polls.

On the side line of the party’s Terai-Dooars organisation meet at Darjeeling More in Siliguri today, GJM supremo Bimal Gurung said that his party would go to any extent to ensure Trinamool’s defeat.

“We are ready to tie up with any party to defeat the Trinamool. We are willing to join hands with the CPI-M and Congress to oust Mamata Banerjee government,” Gurung told journalists.

The announcement is significant as the GJM had backed BJP candidate SS Ahluwalia in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, and the party enjoys a close relationship with the saffron party.

CPI-M state secretary, Surjya Kanta Mishra, who is touring north Bengal now, reacted to Gurung’s announcement saying that all “secular democratic forces” were welcome to join the fight to defeat the authoritarian regime of Trinamool Congress.

“We are not speaking about parties; all secular democratic entities are welcome to this people’s alliance. But it is our ideological constrictions that we cannot have a tie up with any party that is in alliance with the BJP,” Mishra told reporters in Siliguri.

“If they (GJM) severe ties with the BJP, they will be welcome to fight the Trinamool united in the Assembly polls,” he added.

A tie up with the GJM can prove extremely beneficial for the CPI-M in the Siliguri, Matiagara-Naxalbari, Phansidewa, and Rajganj Assembly seats as these constituencies have a sizeable number of Nepali-speaking population. The most beneficial will be CPI-M leader Asok Bhattacharya as GJM’s backing will make his win double-sure.