Mamata to start election campaign in North Bengal today
Banerjee will address a workers’ conference in Malda, which is a Congress stronghold since 1970s when ABA Ghani Khan Chowdhury became the Irrigation Minister in Siddhartha Shankar Roy’s cabinet.
Afterwards, he became the Railway Minister and started developing Malda town. His house in Kotowali became Congress headquarters.
Former Chief Minister Jyoti Basu had visited his house in Kotowali to see ailing Khan Chowdhury. His legacy still continues and two MPs from Malda are from his relatives.
AHA Khan Chowdhury is his younger brother and Mousam Nur is his nice. His sister Rubi Noor was an MLA.
Trinamool insiders said the party had gathered strength in Malda and Banerjee wanted see how much strength the party had gained in the district. She would address a public meeting.
It may be recalled that she had warned party leaders Krishnendu Narayan Chowdhury and Sabitri Mitra to burry hatchets and work together. They said because of the administrative meetings, the projects had been carried out in the district properly and schemes like Kanyashree, Sabuj Sathi and Khadya Sathi had become very popular among people.
Though Kaliachowk incident early this year had put the Trinamool Congress in an embarrassing position, the BJP’s inciting of communal violence was not liked by people.
With this backdrop, Banerjee will be holding her meeting on Wednesday.
From Malda, she will go to Murshidabad and will hold two meetings. The district is the fiefdom of Adhir Chowdhury . Banerjee had made Subhendu Adhikari the leader to organise the party. Now she wants to see the strength of the party in the district. If she gets positive results, then her confidence level will go up.
On Friday, Banerjee will publish the election manifesto of the party and it is very important as it will give a guideline on which direction the party will move if voted to power. Party insiders said her main thrust area would be land and industry in the next five years.
Banerjee will leave for Junglemahal and will hold meetings there on March 12 and 13. In the past five years, phenomenal development work has been carried out in Junglemahal. A large number of projects were taken to develop the area which was a den of terror under the Maoists. The tribals were give patta of the land and under the Khadyasathi project the poorest of the poor tribals were brought under food security.
In the past four-and-a-half years, Banerjee had visited the area several times and supervised the projects personally. On her request, the Ramakrishna Mission is opening an English medium residential school for the tribals.
Her schedule for North Bengal would be announced next week.
Banerjee is likely to address more than 150 meetings. It may be mentioned that she had told party workers and leaders that it would not be possible for her to concentrate her constituency in Bhowanipore and has prepared a team comprising Sovan Chatterjee, Firhad Hakim and others to conduct election campaign in the area.