Millennium Post

Trinamool MPs’ report card: What you can expect in 2015

All of them will surely be spending their MPLADS funds in their constituencies in an effort to deliver some of the promised goodies. Millennium Post’s Nandini Guha gives you a low down on what some of the MPs are planning to deliver in the first few months of 2015…

MP:  Sougata Roy
Constituency: Dum Dum
A seasoned Parliamentarian who once taught in a college and worked in a bank, Roy is currently serving his third term in the 16th Lok Sabha. Though the winter session of Parliament is over, this veteran politician will have to travel to the capital every week to fulfil his parliamentary responsibilities as a member on the Standing Committees on Finance, Public Undertakings and Rules.
In his constituency, Dum Dum, Roy will be overseeing development projects and increasing people-to-people contact.

Pet project:
A flyover on VIP Road connecting Kestopur and Baguiati (costing a Rs 6 crore) will be thrown open to the public soon easing rush hour traffic and enabling commuters to make it to the airport on time. A water supply project is also on cards.

MP:  Suvendu Adhikari

Constituency: Tamluk
This twice-elected MP from Tamluk in Purba Medinipur, Suvendu Adhikari led from the front in the Nandigram farmer’s struggle of 2007 under the umbrella of the Bhumi Ucched Pratirodh Committee. Son of veteran Trinamool leader Sisir Adhikari, who was the Rural Development Minister (of state) in the UPA government, Suvendu also served as MLA from Contai since 2006 and took on CPI(M) strongman Lakshman Seth whom he defeated by a whopping margin of lakh plus votes.
The young MP was heading the Trinamool Youth Congress till May this year.

Pet projects:
Adhikari wants to achieve 100 per cent utilisation of MPLAD money during this term. He says his poll performance has been better because of his dedication to his constituency. There are multiple facilities that he has planned for his electorate — fortifying drinking water supply, building concrete roads, and funding primary education in Contai schools. As a member of the Standing Committee on Personnel, Public Grievances, Law and Justice, he will be travelling to Delhi for meetings in the next few months.

MP: Sugata Bose

Constituency: Jadavpur
Sugata Bose, Gardiner professor of History at Harvard and grand nephew of Netaji Subhas Chandar Bose, takes his work in Parliament as well as his constituency (Jadavpur) — pretty seriously. Bose, as member of the standing committee on External affairs, has been fighting for ratifying the LBA (Land Border Agreement) in the 2014 Winter Session. This pact — involving the exchange of exclaves on both sides — is expected to solve the India-Bangladesh border dispute to a great extent. But the Bill was not introduced and ratified in the winter session of Parliament, despite political consensus and Bose’s efforts.

Pet projects: Back home in his Jadavpur, Bose will be supporting some institutions of higher education, like an industrial training college at Ramakrishna Mission(Narendrapur) and The Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, a premium research institution. Apart from this, he will spend time and MPLADS funds on improving the road network of Jadavpur, which criss-crosses “some very deprived rural pockets”. Aim: to transform the local economy by ensuring better road connectivity.

In Parliament, Prof Bose will be preparing for the Budget session of 2015 where he will demand better allocation for sectors like Education and Health from the BJP Government. Will also play an active role in debating Bills like GST(Goods and Services tax) and LBA in the House in the coming sessions.

MP: Derek O’Brien (Rajya Sabha)

In 2004, India’s number one quiz-master joined the All India Trinamool Congress, and is currently the vice-president of the All India Trinamool Congress. In 2009 he was already heading the Passenger Services Committee of the Indian Railways under the Railways Minister and Trinamool Congress leader Mamata Banerjee. He loves Twitter.

He was sworn in as Member of Parliament on August 19, 2011 and is perhaps one of the most vocal of the 16 MPs elected to the Rajya Sabha from West Bengal.

In 2012, O’Brien cast a vote in the presidential election to elect the 13th President of India. His vote is believed to be the first presidential vote cast by an elected member of the Anglo-Indian community.

He is trouble-shooting for his party all the time.

MP: Jogen Chowdhury (Rajya Sabha)
Eminent artist Jogen Choudhury, who was nominated to the Rajya Sabha by Mamata Banerjee, is having a “rewarding first time” in Parliament. He is learning the inner workings of the Parliament: the whole process of legislation, the tabling of a Bill, the debates and so on. But Choudhury believes that the whole process must take place within the framework of the welfare state.

The other side that he is getting used to is of course the political side of Parliamentary activities. “Protest is also important but you have to maintain a  balance”, he told Millennium Post.”When the BJP was in power they wasted a lot of time, protesting against the Centre’s policies”, he said, justifying the Trinamool’s agitation against the BJP’s stand on the Saradha scam in the just concluded winter session of Parliament…

Pet project: He initiated the reconstruction of an important bridge that was holding up traffic in Bolpur.

MP: Sisir Adhikari
Constituency: Kanthi
The rural face of the TMC, ex-minister in the UPA government, Kanthi played a crucial role in the anti-land acquisition movement by Nandigram farmers which ultimately led to the Trinamool Congress wresting power from the CPI(M) in 2011. Leader of the masses with great organisational skills, Adhikari is serving his second term in the 16th Lok Sabha. He’s a member of the Standing Committee on rural development.

Pet project:
A deep sea port in his constituency will keep him on his toes in 2015.
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