The CPI-M in Tripura today said Manik Sarkar would return as chief minister for the fifth consecutive term, if the ruling Left Front wins next year’s 60-member state assembly elections. “We have no doubt about forming the next government. Manik Sarkar would be the chief minister of the eighth Left Front Government in Tripura. He is physically strong and capable of running the government efficiently,” state CPI-M secretary Bijan Dhar told reporters here. The state assembly elections are scheduled to be held in February next year.
Replying to a question, he said there is no bar in the party constitution that a person would not be able to contest elections or hold the post of chief minister for more than two or three terms. When his attention was drawn to the fact that senior party leader Sitaram Yechuri was not allowed to contest in the Rajya Sabha for more than two terms, Dhar said it is the convention in CPI-M that one member would not contest from from the RS for more than two terms. “Moreover, a party general secretary cannot hold any parliamentary post because he is supposed to concentrate more on party building. Harkishen Singh Surjeet was elected as party general secretary and never contested for a Rajya Sabha seat,” Dhar said.