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Bloc’s solo campaign

Balurghat, April 6: The Forward Bloc in South Dinajpur has decided to campaign separately for the RSP candidate in Balurghat, Bimalendu Sarkar, “in the larger interest of the poor and middle class people”.

The Bloc has till now refrained from canvassing for the RSP nominee as the Left Front was refusing to engage the party, especially the district secretary, Swapan Tarafdar.

The decision by the Bloc to seek votes for Sarkar was taken at a convention in Gangarampur yesterday. Around 300 Bloc supporters took part in the convention attended by the state committee member, Naren Chatterjee, and Tarafdar.

Tarafdar said today: “It seems the Left Front leaders are not ready to accept the Bloc in the district. We are not invited to attend the meetings of the Front. So, we decided to hold a convention and listen to the views of the workers. It was decided that the Bloc would campaign for the RSP candidate in Balurghat, though separately from the Left Front, in the larger interest of the poor and middle class people.”

Sources said the relationship between the Bloc and other partners of the Front was not “smooth” over Tarafdar. He had been expelled from the RSP about 10 years ago and joined the Bloc and became the district secretary. Later, Tarafdar was thrown out of the Bloc by the then secretary, Chitto Sarkar, and he formed the Janabadi Forward Bloc.

“But after Chitto joined the Congress, Tarafdar returned to the Bloc and became the district secretary again. The RSP is still miffed with Tarafdar and he is not invited to Left Front meetings,” said a source.

Balurghat votes on April 24.