Gorkhatimes

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Cong wins three mahakuma parishad seats… … but blames break-up of pact for power loss

Posted by Ramesh Khati on July 2, 2009

Siliguri, July 1: The Congress managed to secure three of the seven berths in the Siliguri Mahakuma Parishad, the first time any party other than the CPM making an entry since the rural body’s inception in 1989.
The Congress, however, missed the chance to form the board because of lack of co-ordination with the Trinamul Congress.
The CPM has retained control by winning four of the seven SMP seats, much to the relief of the party unit in Darjeeling. For minister Asok Bhattacharya, the SMP fight was an acid test after the CPM’s miserable show in the general elections.
The Congress made further inroads into the panchayat samities by bagging Naxalbari and Phansidewa, both CPM bastions since 1989.
The SMP came into existence a year after the Darjeeling Gorkha Hill council had been formed, cleaving the district into two administrative zones at the panchayat level.
The Left Front, however, retained Matigara and Kharibari. Supporters of the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha and the Akhil Bharatiya Adivasi Vikas Parishad also cut into the Left votes, especially in the tea belt of Naxalbari and Phansidewa.
Shankar Malakar, the Darjeeling district Congress president, said: “Winning three seats is definitely a major achievement for us as for the first time, non-CPM representatives will step into the SMP.”
“We could have taken control of the board had we won one more seat. The Trinamul leadership will also have to take responsibility as they fielded two candidates, violating the alliance and did not work wholeheartedly for our candidates. None of their candidates could win the elections,” said Malakar.
Gautam Deb, the Darjeeling district president of Trinamul, said his party could not strike an absolute alliance in the SMP elections, leading to a close miss. “But I do not want to get into a blame game.”
Jyoti Tirkey of the CPM has won with the highest margin of 4,784 votes in Seat 1 of the SMP. Both Trinamul and the Congress had fielded candidates in the seats. The Congress secured 9,101 votes, while the Trinamul got only 975 votes. In the seat, the BJP secured 3,953 votes and an Independent, backed by the Parishad polled 2,433 votes.
In Seat 2, CPM’s Bikashkali Biswas won by a margin of 981 votes. The candidates of the BJP and the KPP secured 981 and 1,928 votes respectively. In Seat 3, the Congress candidate, Prerana Singha, has emerged victorious, beating the CPM candidate by 2,010 votes.
The CPM retained Seat 4 where Sudhir Burman defeated Trinamul candidate by 1,222 votes. Seat 5 and Seat 6 were won by the Congress with the margins being more than 3,000 votes.
The CPM managed to keep the seventh seat, where Pascal Minj, the sahakari sabhadhipati of SMP, won by 1,536 votes.
“We were confident of winning at least five seats as the contest was really tough in the SMP seats in Phansidewa and Naxalbari. We ended with four seats as the Congress had tied up with the Morcha and the Parishad,” said Bhattacharya.
He added that a decision was yet to be taken on the sabhadhipati.
Jalpaiguri results
The results of three byelections held in Jalpaiguri district on June 30 were also announced on Wednesday. In two panchayat seats of Churabhandar and Ramsai in Mainaguri block, the RSP and Trinamul emerged as winners. The BJP bagged a seat of the Dhupguri Panchayat Samiti, defeating the CPM and Trinamul.

A Congress victory celebration at Phansidewa on Wednesday.

A Congress victory celebration at Phansidewa on Wednesday.

Siliguri, July 1: The Congress managed to secure three of the seven berths in the Siliguri Mahakuma Parishad, the first time any party other than the CPM making an entry since the rural body’s inception in 1989.

The Congress, however, missed the chance to form the board because of lack of co-ordination with the Trinamul Congress.

The CPM has retained control by winning four of the seven SMP seats, much to the relief of the party unit in Darjeeling. For minister Asok Bhattacharya, the SMP fight was an acid test after the CPM’s miserable show in the general elections.

The Congress made further inroads into the panchayat samities by bagging Naxalbari and Phansidewa, both CPM bastions since 1989.

The SMP came into existence a year after the Darjeeling Gorkha Hill council had been formed, cleaving the district into two administrative zones at the panchayat level.

The Left Front, however, retained Matigara and Kharibari. Supporters of the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha and the Akhil Bharatiya Adivasi Vikas Parishad also cut into the Left votes, especially in the tea belt of Naxalbari and Phansidewa.

Shankar Malakar, the Darjeeling district Congress president, said: “Winning three seats is definitely a major achievement for us as for the first time, non-CPM representatives will step into the SMP.”

“We could have taken control of the board had we won one more seat. The Trinamul leadership will also have to take responsibility as they fielded two candidates, violating the alliance and did not work wholeheartedly for our candidates. None of their candidates could win the elections,” said Malakar.

Gautam Deb, the Darjeeling district president of Trinamul, said his party could not strike an absolute alliance in the SMP elections, leading to a close miss. “But I do not want to get into a blame game.”

Jyoti Tirkey of the CPM has won with the highest margin of 4,784 votes in Seat 1 of the SMP. Both Trinamul and the Congress had fielded candidates in the seats. The Congress secured 9,101 votes, while the Trinamul got only 975 votes. In the seat, the BJP secured 3,953 votes and an Independent, backed by the Parishad polled 2,433 votes.

In Seat 2, CPM’s Bikashkali Biswas won by a margin of 981 votes. The candidates of the BJP and the KPP secured 981 and 1,928 votes respectively. In Seat 3, the Congress candidate, Prerana Singha, has emerged victorious, beating the CPM candidate by 2,010 votes.

The CPM retained Seat 4 where Sudhir Burman defeated Trinamul candidate by 1,222 votes. Seat 5 and Seat 6 were won by the Congress with the margins being more than 3,000 votes.

The CPM managed to keep the seventh seat, where Pascal Minj, the sahakari sabhadhipati of SMP, won by 1,536 votes.

“We were confident of winning at least five seats as the contest was really tough in the SMP seats in Phansidewa and Naxalbari. We ended with four seats as the Congress had tied up with the Morcha and the Parishad,” said Bhattacharya.

He added that a decision was yet to be taken on the sabhadhipati.

Jalpaiguri results

The results of three byelections held in Jalpaiguri district on June 30 were also announced on Wednesday. In two panchayat seats of Churabhandar and Ramsai in Mainaguri block, the RSP and Trinamul emerged as winners. The BJP bagged a seat of the Dhupguri Panchayat Samiti, defeating the CPM and Trinamul.

Source: The Telegraph

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