Launching the Left Front's campaign for the coming West Bengal Assembly elections, Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee on Sunday invoked the sacrifice of 377 martyrs of the Left parties since the 2009 Lok Sabha polls. He pledged that “we shall fight and win the coming elections” — a call that met a resounding response from lakhs of supporters at a rally here.

“We have emerged victorious in seven previous elections and in the coming battle we shall again have to fight hard and win. This is our call,” he asserted.Mr. Bhattacharjee questioned “the change” that was being offered by the Opposition parties and the “foreign forces” sponsoring it.

“There are some foreign powers which are scared of the red flag. They are attempting to remove the red flag from country after country. We know who they are and are warning them not to raise their heads in this State,” he said.

There was no alternative to the Left in West Bengal. The Congress was evicted by the people 35 years ago and the Trinamool was “yet another Congress party.”

Mr. Bhattacharjee dismissed the Trinamool as a “party of disorder and destruction,” and expressed confidence that people would not err in judgment and would vote for the Left Front.

Alleging that the Trinamool “is supplying oxygen” to Maoists in Bankura, Purulia and Paschim Medinipur districts, Mr. Bhattacharjee said that while the government was trying to contain left wing extremists to these districts, the Trinamool wanted their influence to spread across the State.

“The Congress is unable to run the government at the Centre and now wants to interfere in West Bengal,” he said, criticising the Union government on for corruption and the recent controversy over its reluctance to reveal the names of Indians holding accounts in Swiss banks.

“In a situation where the poor are dying for want of food, they [the Congress] believe in giving more money to the rich in the hope that it shall trickle to the poor.”

“No time to rest”

Urging the Left supporters to swing into action for the elections, Left Front Committee Chairman Biman Bose said, “Now there is no time to rest.”

“We must pledge that in the coming elections, the eighth victory of the Left Front will definitely be ensured. The foundations of the eighth Left Front government will certainly be laid,” he added.