Cong’s last bastion Kandi goes to TMC
The Trinamool Congress got a major shot in the arm as Congress Councillors of Kandi municipality joined the party on Saturday afternoon.
With this, all the municipalities and the zilla parishad in the district came under Trinamool Congress. The party took just four months to wipe out Congress and its leader Adhir Chowdhury. The latter may not even have dreamt that Trinamool would take control over his fiefdom in such a short time.
Abhishek Banerjee handed over the party flag to the new entrants and welcomed them during a function at Trinamool Bhavan.
Earlier, Trinamool Congress took control over five municipalities —Azimgunj-Jiagunj, Bendanga, Berhampore, Murshidabad and Jangipur. It already had Dhuliyan municipality under its control.
Coming down heavily on West Bengal Pradesh Congress president Adhir Chowdhury, Abhishek Banerjee said the alliance with CPI(M) was made just to satisfy the vested interests of some leaders before the Assembly election. But the people of Murshidabad did not want an alliance with the CPI(M).
Trinamool got 31 per cent votes in the Assembly election in Murshidabad. But instead of organising the party, Chowdhury went on criticising Mamata Banerjee and Trinamool Congress. He failed to realise that the he did not have any control over his own party in the district.
The erosion began some years ago. “He continued to shout and criticise us, forgetting that his followers in Murshidabad had left him quietly. He is alone now,” said Abhishek.
Asked if more leaders from Congress are expected to join Trinamool, Banerjee said: “Wait for some more days and see what happens,” he said, adding: “Those with vested interests will hang on to Congress.”
Referring to a statement made by Manas Bhunia who recently joined Trinamool, he said Bhuniya had said that “Trinamool had become the real Congress as the party works for the poor and stands by the poor and needy.”
Congress Councillors who joined Trinamool on Saturday said they had not been swayed by any emotion.
“We had talked to the people of the area and discussed the issue for the past few months. They all want development and asked us why only Kandi should be kept out of the net of development that is taking place in Bengal. So we decided to join Trinamool.” Banerjee said as the party on Saturday established total control over the district it would be easier to carry out development projects under the leadership of Mamata Banerjee.
The Chief Minister had been to the district earlier this week and announced Rs 429 crore package for Kandi.
The Kandi municipality is 150 years old. It was under control for generations. The famous Sinha family, to which Atish Chandra Sinha belonged, hailed from Kandi.
The incorruptible Sinha was the leader of Opposition and was respected by one and all. To establish his control over Murshidabad, Adhir Chowdhury began to criticise Sinha openly and had lambasted him for his closeness with CPI(M). After Sinha’s death, Chowdhury became the “one and only leader” in Murshidabad.
In 2011 Assembly polls, Trinamool which was Congress’ alliance got only one seat here. Chowdhury had said over and again that it was impossible for Trinamool to establish its control over the district.
Mamata Banerjee appointed Suvendu Adhikari, state Transport Minister to look after Murshidabad. The move paid dividends as the party bagged four seats in the Assembly polls and within four months, took control over the entire district.
When contacted, Adhir Chowdhury said: “It was foolish to think that Congress is dead in Murshidabad. If there is a by-election then Congress will win in all the seats.” He said Mamata Banerjee had paid lakhs of rupees to Congress leaders to join Trinamool.
Political experts said after getting control over Murshidabad, Mamata Banerjee had conveyed the message to Chowdhury that development was the key word in winning election.