Economy

Pranab’s son Abhijit Mukherjee may contest Bengal Assembly elections

PTI Suri (West Bengal) | Updated on March 09, 2011

The Union Finance Minister Mr Pranab Mukherjee’s son Mr Abhijit Mukherjee has quit his job in Steel Authority of India to contest the coming Assembly elections in West Bengal on a Congress ticket.

On Monday, his resignation was accepted by the SAIL board and he would be relieved in a day or two, according to sources in the public sector giant.

Though Mr Abhijit, who held the post of General Manager (Corporate Social Responsibility) in SAIL, refused to comment on his political future, well-placed sources said he is expected to contest from Nalhati Assembly constituency in Birbhum district.

Birbhum is the home district of the Finance Minister and has remained a stronghold of the Congress long after it was replaced by Trinamool Congress as the principal Opposition party in the state.

Speculation over his joining politics was rife ever since he actively participated in some public welfare programmes in the district in the past three months.

Political observers got a scent of his intention to join politics when recently a branch of a public sector bank was inaugurated at Nalhati which is widely believed to be an initiative of Mr Abhijit, though he himself was not present at the inaugural.

Congress sources said Mr Abhijit might start his election campaign from next Thursday or Friday at Nalhati.

Mr Tarun Ghosh, a close aide of Mr Abhijit and the likely election agent for him, said: “Arrangement for his stay at Nalhati has been made. A draft programme for filing nomination by him has also been prepared by district Congress leaders.”

Though Nalhati at present is represented by Forward Bloc MLA Mr Dipak Chatterjee, in the last Panchayat election Congress had a good showing there. Interestingly, local Trinamool Congress leaders took exception to the possibility of Mr Abhijit’s candidature, but soon they changed their opinion.

According to Congress sources, the party may get three tickets in Birbhum as the alliance partner of Trinamool Congress. There are a total 11 Assembly seats in Birbhum.

Hasan constituency, which is adjacent to Nalhati, is now represented by Congress MLA Mr Asit Mal.

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Published on March 09, 2011
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