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CPM plans rally to gear up for polls

“We are in favour of the elections and we want the civic polls to be held at the earliest. The SMP polls should also be held on time. We have started preparations for the elections and in view of that, we will organise a grand rally for the Siliguri Assembly on 3 October,” Siliguri MLA and veteran CPI-M leader Asok Bhattacharya said.

SANKHA GHOSH | Siliguri |

The CPI-M is issuing letters to party members, asking them to be present in its first central rally as part of preparations for the elections in Siliguri early next month.

Party leaders said the letters were being especially served to members who have become inactive for the past few months in the wake of the pandemic.

The Darjeeling district Left Front is set to organise a ‘grand rally’ on 3 October for the Siliguri Assembly Constituency as part of preparations for the elections to the Assembly, Siliguri Municipal Corporation and the three-tier Siliguri Mahakuma Parishad (SMP). The polls for the Siliguri SMC could not be held in view of the pandemic, and the state government has nominated a board of administrators to run the civic body, while the tenure of the Left run SMP will end in November. The Assembly polls in the state are due for next year.

“We are in favour of the elections and we want the civic polls to be held at the earliest. The SMP polls should also be held on time. We have started preparations for the elections and in view of that, we will organise a grand rally for the Siliguri Assembly on 3 October,” Siliguri MLA and veteran CPI-M leader Asok Bhattacharya said.

“At the same time, our party is serving letters to members, asking them to attend the rally, while the party is also requesting them to bring their family members in the programme,” he added.

“Many of them are not attending party programmes due to the present situation. As we are in election mode, their presence is required for us,” a senior party leader said.

Siliguri has been a stronghold of the CPI-M, and despite being in power, the Trinamul Congress has failed to defeat them in elections in the last five years. Campaigns for the rally are being organised in slum areas and ward-wise by all the frontal organisations of the party, while house-to-house leaflet distribution programme is underway.

Mr Bhattacharya said the party had formed four committees Assembly-wise.

“We will highlight the discrimination of the state government on the people of Siliguri, its denial to implement a mega drinking water project, non-approval of the underground drainage system, and non-execution of the solid waste management project. We will demand the completion of the Mahananda Action Plan and introduction of job oriented projects in Siliguri,” he added.

District party secretary Jibesh Sarkar said they have appealed to all democratic forces to join hands to defeat both the Trinamul Congress and the BJP. Mr Sarkar said joint programmes with the Congress will be taken up. He added that forces with volunteers will be constituted for democratic movements.

“Asok Bhattacharya will be in-charge for the Siliguri Assembly Constituency, Gautam Ghosh and Jharen Roy for Matigara-Naxalbari, Sudip Dutta and Jharen Roy for Phansidewa, Dilip Singh for Dabgram-Fulbari, Saman Pathak for Kurseong, KB Watter and Gautam Rajrai for Darjeeling and Tara Subndas for Kalimpong,” Mr Sarkar said. Party secretary Surjya Kanta Mishra is scheduled to visit north Bengal on 6 October for election preparations, the party said.

Call for GTA elections

The CPI-M also stressed on early elections to the Gorkhaland Territorial Administration (GTA). “The elections to the GTA should be held soon. We will approach the regional parties for talks for consensus candidates for the development of the Hills to defeat BJP and Trinamul Congress,” Mr Sarkar said.