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Hill Trinamool Congress base claim, optimistic of producing MLAs in 2016 polls

Hill TMC president Rajen Mukhia at the press meet in Darjeeling
The hill Trinamool Congress today expressed optimism of its capability of not only fielding candidates from the three hill sub-divisions for the 2016 assembly elections, but also ensuring their victory.
After the debacle in the Lok Sabha election from the Darjeeling parliamentary constituency, the TMC is eyeing the 2016 state assembly election to make further inroads into the hills. TMC candidate Bhaichung Bhutia had managed to garner more than 90,000 votes from the hills in the general election.
Asserting that all the communities of the hills and not only the Lepchas and Tamangs had voted for Bhutia in the Lok Sabha election, the hill TMC unit intends to send this message to its high command in Kolkata.
“Kolkata keeps saying that it was the Lepchas, Tamangs and the Gorkha National Liberation Front (GNLF) who voted for the TMC in the Lok Sabha election. However, this is not true as other communities including our supporters had a big role in ensuring Bhutia polled such a high number of votes. We want to tell our high command our organisation (hill TMC) is strong and capable of creating MLAs in the 2016 polls,” said Darjeeling District hill TMC president Rajen Mukhia today after a meeting in Darjeeling.
The TMC leader, however, admitted the party was facing problems organising its base in the hills as the high command was still to approve the portfolio of the new district committee members.
“We already submitted the district committee list to Kolkata some months ago, but it has not been given approval. This is proving to be a problem for us in the hills. We want the party high command to immediately approve the list to ensure the party’s better functioning,” said Mukhia.
The hill TMC president also alleged the GJM was heaped in corruption and nepotism in terms of distributing the Centre’s 100 days work project in rural areas. The Morcha is depriving TMC supporters in block areas where they have strong bases, he said.
“There is an ongoing scam in the MGNREGA scheme and we have evidence of GJM sabhasads being involved in connivance with block development officers. For example, no tenders are being floated for supply of materials despite work being in progress. This is just the tip of the iceberg. Under such circumstances, we want the Hills Affairs Department to be overseen by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee herself,” demanded Mukhia.
The day’s meeting was convened by inviting the presidents and secretaries of blocks to discuss ways of strengthening the party by remaining vigilant ahead of the 2016 election.
“We have asked block presidents and secretaries to submit weekly reports of activities undertaken by them. These will be forward to Kolkata. Any indiscipline within the party will be strictly dealt with,” Mukhia said.
The Darjeeling district TMC president, admitting the organisation was weak in the sub-divisions of Darjeeling and Kalimpong, said efforts will be made to mobilise more people to join the party. At the same time, he said party units have been formed in all the 20 wards of Kurseong sub-division.(EOIC)


Trinamul base claim


Darjeeling, Aug. 5: Hill Trinamul leaders today said they wanted to “tell their leader ship in Calcutta” that the votes cast in favour of Darjeeling Lok Sabha candidate Bhaichung Bhutia were not only from the Lepchas, Tamangs and GNLF supporters but also from the ruling party.

Rajen Mukhia, president of Darjeeling district (hill) Trinamul, said: “We want to tell the leadership that the votes polled by Bhaichung in the Lok Sabha elections were not just from the Lepcha, Tamang (communities) and GNLF. Our party also has a base in the hills. They (the leadership in Calcutta) think that the party has not managed to garner substantial votes on its own.”

Mamata Banerjee had formed development boards for the Lepchas and Tamangs and the initiatives are believed to have attracted votes from the two communities.

Bhaichung had bagged around 90,000 votes from Darjeeling, Kalimpong and Kurseong Assembly segments. “A large number of votes of the 90,000 was from our party cadres,” Mukhia told journalists after a meeting with hill party leaders here.

BJP’s S.S. Ahluwalia won the Darjeeling seat by around 2 lakh votes. He was backed by the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha.(TT)

Trinamul takes steps to strengthen base in Hills


Darjeeling, 5 August: The Hills unit of the Trinamul Congress at its district level committee meeting today directed the party's frontal organisations to prepare a report explaining the status of their activities, which the leaders said would be forwarded to the party's higher authorities in Kolkata.
The committee has fixed a deadline for the youth, women's and trade wings of the party to submit the report within a week. "This had become necessary to check and balance the work and function of the party's at block level, gram panchayat level and also at district level," the president of the hills unit of the TMC, Mr Rajen Mukhia, said.
The meeting held at Gorkha Dukha Niwarak Sammelan hall of Darjeeling was attended by nearly all the leaders from the blocks and district.
Mr Mukhia asserted that such step had become necessary to check corruption in the government schemes at different levels, especially in the rural areas.
"It has come to our notice that government schemes at block level have been initiated without publishing a tender notice," Mr Mukhia said.
The step by the unit has also been taken with a view to strengthen the party's base in the hills, Mr Rajen Mukhia said. "In the recent Lok Sabha election the higher authorities at Kolkata were complaining that the votes from the hills of around ninety thousand had come mostly from the Lepcha and the Tamang community and the Gorkha National Liberation Front. They have pointed out that the party's base in the Hills did not contribute much for the election,".
"Through the report we want to evaluate our strength and will take necessary steps to strengthen our base," the leader said. Meanwhile, the working president of the Hills TMC, Mrs Shanta Chhetri, is set to leave for Kolkata soon and would meet Mr Mukul Roy.     SNS

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