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Congress support for Somen

Calcutta, March 29: State Congress leaders have shed their earlier inhibitions and decided to campaign for Somen Mitra, who had split the party only six months ago to launch his own outfit.

Mitra is Mamata Banerjee’s candidate from Diamond Harbour now.

“We shall campaign for Somen regardless of the fact that he had deserted us. After all, we will have to respect the alliance that was forged with Mamata for the ensuing elections. Somen is a candidate for the alliance,” state Congress working president Pradip Bhattacharya said.

Legislature party leader Manas Bhuniya, who was instrumental in Mitra’s disqualification as a Congress MLA after he quit the party, also promised to join the campaign.

Hooghly leader Abdul Mannan, who had earlier opposed the alliance, organised a convention today to speak in favour of it. “I was pained by the way the deal was struck. But as our leaders have firmed it up, we must ensure that it works everywhere,” he said.

The Congress today ruled out fielding a candidate in Joynagar, a seat Mamata has offered to her other partner, SUCI.

It had earlier mulled fielding the candidate to rebuff the SUCI, which is fighting the Congress in nine seats.

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