Marcus Dam

Kolkata: The leaderships of the Trinamool Congress and the Congress may have agreed to fight the forthcoming Lok Sabha elections jointly in West Bengal but the road ahead to resolve the thorny issue of seat adjustments could be a bumpy one.

Though it had bagged more seats (six) than the Trinamool Congress (one) in the 2004 Lok Sabha polls in the State, which has a total of 42 seats, the Congress is ironically destined to be the junior partner in the electoral tie-up between the two parties.

The Trinamool Congress stands to gain more from the electoral understanding and will be contesting in a larger number of seats than the Congress by virtue of its strength in the Assembly where it is the principal Opposition party.

The two parties will be throwing a combined challenge to the Left Front in an election for the second time since 2001 when the Congress and the Trinamool Congress had agreed on seat adjustments in the Assembly polls but ended up winning less than a third of the total seats.

The thumping victory of the Trinamool Congress candidate in the by-poll in Bishnupur (West) Assembly constituency, from where the Congress had withdrawn its nominee, has strengthened the plan for an electoral understanding in the Lok Sabha polls.