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Deepa throws AIIMS challenge

Raiganj, April 2: Deepa Das Munshi today filed her nomination to contest from Raiganj and threw a challenge to her opponents, saying she would retain her seat and ensure that an AIIMS-like hospital was set up in Raiganj.

Deepa said the North Dinajpur district Congress would launch a movement to demand the setting up of the AIIMS-like facility here as soon as the general elections were over.

“My ailing husband, Priya Ranjan Das Munshi, who won from Raiganj in 1999 and 2004 had seen the sorry state of health care facilities in North Dinajpur and surrounding areas. He then lobbied the Union government to sanction funds for the facility. However, the Left Front and the present Trinamul government have stalled the project for narrow political gains,” said Deepa.

“We are now busy with the upcoming elections and AIIMS is definitely an issue among other things. As soon as the elections are over, the Congress will re-launch a sustained movement to establish the super-speciality hospital here,” Deepa said after filing her nominations.

She said the CPM was “toying” with the sentiments of the people by dragging the AIIMS issue.

“The CPM is campaigning that we in the Congress are playing politics on the AIIMS issue. The CPM should know that they are insulting the sentiments of the people. The CPM is now claiming that they have been demanding that the hospital be set up when they did not arrange for the land after the project was sanctioned in 2009, when the Left was in power. The people know the CPM’s two-faced nature and they will reply to that at the right time,” she said.

Deepa also took a dig at her bete noir Mamata Banerjee and her Trinamul rival, Satya Ranjan Das Munshi, Priya Ranjan’s brother.

“The Trinamul candidate is carrying out a strange campaign. He is going around saying that he will fulfil his Dada’s dream of setting up an AIIMS through Didi. But it is clear to all that his Didi has kept the project stalled by refusing to acquire land and making one excuse after another to stall the project. The Congress will ensure that the hospital comes up here. That is a challenge,” Deepa said.

Both Satya Ranjan Das Munshi and Left Front candidate, Mohammad Salim, also filed their nominations today.

Raiganj will vote on April 24.