The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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CPM rail stand earns ally ire

Balurghat, Jan. 14: The South Dinajpur unit of the CPM has decided to oppose the proposed link train of Gour Express from here.

“We shall stop the link train before it can reach Balurghat. We want a direct express train from Calcutta and we will accept nothing short of that,” CPM district secretary Manabesh Chowdhury told newspersons after the decision was taken at a district committee meeting of the party today.

The district CPM’s unilateral announcement has not only drawn angry protests from the Opposition, but its partners in the Left Front have also voiced their resentment.

“The CPM has not taken any lesson from the Nandigram incident. They have no regard for public sentiments or popular demands,” state committee member of the RSP Bimal Sarkar told The Telegraph. “If the CPM makes any attempt to resist the introduction of the train, the residents of Balurghat would oppose it at any cost. The Nandigram issue was born out of this autocratic attitude.”

CPI veteran Kalipada Basu echoed Sarkar as did Chittaranjan Das, the district secretary of the Forward Bloc. “We also want a direct express train from Calcutta, but till we get that why should we deprive the residents of the facility available for the present,” Das asks.

“The CPM is exposed as people know that it was Priya Ranjan Das Munshi’s intervention which helped us get the link train. This is why they are protesting the move,” said Congress leader Swapan Biswas.

Even apolitical organisations like the South Dinajpur Chamber of Commerce, Balurghat Traders’ Association and the Eklakhi-Balurghat Rail Unnayan Committee are opposed to the CPM’s move.

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