New Delhi: The Left front, if the exit polls are to be believed, has seen its worst performance in history in the just concluded 17th Lok Sabha elections, with the party facing a near wipeout in West Bengal.
According to four different exit polls, the Left front will draw a blank in West Bengal where they won two seats of 42 in 2014. In Kerala, where the Left Democratic Front is in power in the state, exit polls say their numbers will be reduced to three to five seats. Kerala sends 20 representatives to the Lok Sabha.
The Communist party of India (Marxist) or CPM, which is the largest party in the Left front, has seen a massive electoral decline.
In the 2018 assembly elections in Tripura, the CPM lost after being in power for almost 25 years. Though in power in Kerala, they saw their worst performance in West Bengal assembly elections in 2016. Once the strongest party in West Bengal, the party is now struggling to retain its vote share in the state with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) making huge inroads.
“The reason advanced for the long-drawn seven phases was “free and fair" polls. This has been the most disappointing overseeing of polls in independent India by the Election Commission," CPM general secretary Sitaram Yechury said on the conduct of polls. West Bengal voted across the seven phases.
In the 2014 general elections, the party managed a win nine seats across the country. In 2009, the CPM won 16 seats. Their vote share also declined from 5.33% in 2009 to just 3.2% in 2014. The Communist Party of India or CPI, the second largest party of the Left front, has one member in the Lok Sabha.