Silchar: Amid the buzz that the opposition alliance might leave the Silchar Lok Sabha seat to the TMC, the Cachar Congress had sent its panel of candidates to the state committee which would meet tomorrow in Guwahati. The District Congress Committee (DCC), however, did not prepare any panels of its own but rather forwarded the panels collected from the 16 block committees of Cachar. Sources said the name of Surya Kanta Sarkar topped the list in 8 out of 16 panels, followed by Ashok Baidya.
In Karimganj, on the other hand, the name of eminent lawyer Hafiz Rashid Ahmed Chowdhury topped the panels, followed by Aminur Rashid Chowdhury and Sabur Tapadar.
Meanwhile, the buzz that the Congress might sacrifice the Silchar seat to the TMC has added a new and unexpected twist to this prestigious Lok Sabha constituency, which has been reserved for the SC in the recent delimitation exercise. After TMC supremo Mamanta Banerjee declared that her party would not forge any alliance in West Bengal with the Congress, the latter, in a desperate drive, might compromise in other seats. An APCC source said Rahul Gandhi had instructed the state committee to keep the TMC in good humour and even to sacrifice two seats if Banerjee demanded so. Since Karimganj, which has been unreserved for the first time since independence, seemed to be a winning seat with its considerable Muslim vote share, the APCC might sacrifice the Silchar seat. The SC reservation has left the Silchar Congress in a rattled state, as all six aspirants are virtually new faces. Interestingly, Susmita Dev, who represented Silchar in the Assam Assembly as well as in the Lok Sabha before joining the TMC, has done a little to build up the party base in her home constituency. In this situation, how the TMC will contest the Silchar seat against a strong BJP is a big question for both alliance partners. A TMC source said they are completely at their wit’s end as they cannot even understand whether Mamata Banerjee will remain in the I.N.D.I.A. alliance.