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Teary entry for Bose

Calcutta, March 31: Biman Bose took charge of the CPM today with his eyes welling up with tears as he remembered predecessor Anil Biswas who died last Sunday.

After a two-hour meeting of the leadership, Bose was unveiled by chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee as the Bengal party’s new secretary.

Later at a condolence meeting for Biswas, Bose broke down while recalling how they used to work together. “We should now complete the unfinished work of Anil. Let that be our pledge.”

At the party’s state committee meeting held to formalise Bose’s appointm- ent, the chief minister proposed his name and industries minister Nirupam Sen seconded it.

Soon after, flanked by the new incumbent and Sen, Bhattacharjee said: “Our party’s state committee has unanimously decided that Biman Bose will be the new CPM secretary. There will be collective functioning under the leadership of our new secretary. We need to strengthen and improve our organ- isation and make our elec- tion campaign more focused.”

The chief minister said Bose would also continue as Left Front chairman.

“We are missing Anil Biswas. But we had to choose our secretary,” Bhattacharjee said.

That Bose, 66, would be anointed had become clear when general secretary Prakash Karat announced after Biswas was admitted to a hospital following a massive cerebral stroke that, along with Bhattacharjee, he would guide the party’s election campaign.

Speaking at the condolence meeting, Jyoti Basu said: “I had asked Anil about the feedback he was getting (about poll prospects) from the districts. Anil had said this time the number of seats would increase but there was no room for complacency.”

He said Biswas had dreamt of a stronger Left government, which the party should try to achieve now.

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