Kolkata: The Left Front would win by a 'comfortable majority' to form the eighth government, said Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee here on Wednesday.

Unfazed by political rivals Trinamool Congress and Congress coming together to fight the Assembly election in West Bengal, Buddhadeb said, "Politics is not a simple arithmetic and two plus two is not always four."

Addressing media persons here, the Chief Minister tried to boost the morale of Left Front workers in the state.

When asked what made him predict a comfortable win, particularly after the humiliating defeats the Left has suffered in the recent elections, he said, "You should keep in mind that those who voted against us in the last Lok Sabha and municipal elections have changed their mind."

Bhattacharjee claimed that no anti-incumbency factor would be able to work against the Left Front and cited previous elections in which it had successfully overcome anti-incumbency.

He said that despite the "big hype" Trinamool had no chance of wresting power.

Asked if he was taking the onus upon himself for the mistakes committed by his government in the acquisiton of farmland for industry and the high-handedness of a section
CPI-M leaders, the Chief Minister said, "When there is a criticism, I cannot be left out because I have a role in policy making."

He said there was some confusion in the acquisition of land because of some policy loopholes which, he pointed out, had later been corrected.

Meanwhile, he reserved his comment on the fielding of former state chief secretary Manish Gupta against him in the Jadavpur Assembly seat.

‘No lull of industrialisation’

Scotching speculation that his government would go slow on industrialisation if it returns to power, Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee emphasised that the process of industrialisation cannot be reversed.

He said there was apprehension in the minds of people and in the corridors of industry post Singur and Nandigram about the future of industrialisation in the state.

"It is a must for creation of jobs. In fact, we have to give more thrust to industrialisation. We have to do it by consolidating the agricultural growth," he said.

Dismissing suggestion that industry has stopped coming to the state, the Chief Minister said the state on the contrary had received the highest amount of investment last year in the
last five-year span.
An amount of Rs 15,000 crore had been invested in the state, most of it in the steel sector followed by petrochemicals, IT, food processing and others, he said.

He said about 8,100 acres of land had been acquired for industry since the agitation at Singur, alleging that an atmosphere of fear had been created by opposition parties who are 'getting impatient to come to power' and resorting to violence to do so.

"We want to defeat Maoists who are causing harm. But the main opposition party is co-operating with them. Many people have talked to me and they are fearful of any prospect of
Trinamool Congress coming to power.

Rejecting suggestions that Muslims are better off in Gujarat than in West Bengal, he said the two states cannot be compared.

He was also emphatic while answering a question on Singur that a factory would indeed come up there once the Left Front government returned to power.

"The land at Singur, where Nano project was to come up, still belonged to the Tatas. We will decide at the appropriate time," he said while answering a question whether there is a
possibility of the Tatas setting up an automobile factory at the site.

He said the Tatas and the state industries department maintain contact with each other. Though admitting that West Bengal was facing a serious debt burden to the tune of Rs 2
lakh crore, he wondered why his state was being singled out.

Rice at Rs 2/kg for families

The Left Front is committed to keeping its election pledge of providing rice at
Rs two per kg for the families having a monthly income of less than Rs 10,000, Chief Minister said here.

"We will make available rice at Rs two per kg to those families earning less than Rs 10,000 per month," he said here, reiterating the promises made at the Left Front
manifesto in this regard.

He said that APL or BPL criteria would not be applicable and all those families earning Rs 10,000 per month would be entitled to get rice at Rs two per kg from ration shops.

(JPN/Agencies)