Like father, like son

May 5th, 2009 | By Elections2009 | Category: Campaign trail

Indrani Dutta, Kolkata

Suvendu and Sisir Adhikari have become the two trump cards for the Trinamool Congress

As a small boy, he spent hours at the Ramakrishna Mission, leading his parents to worry that he would become a monk. Today, Suvendu Adhikari is a name to reckon with in Nandigram. Along with father Sisir, the duo is providing serious opposition to the CPI(M) in two constituencies in Purbo Medinipur in West Bengal. The Trinamool Congress considers the two as its trump cards.

Credited as the man who galvanised the people of Nandigram under the umbrella of the Bhumi Ucched Pratirodh Committee, when rumours of land acquisition for a chemical hub had triggered a movement, Mr. Suvendu, a sitting MLA, says people will give a fitting reply to the CPI(M)’s sitting MP from the Tamluk constituency Lakshman Seth, who is seen as the main architect behind the Nandigram episode. Nandigram is one of the Assembly segments under Tamluk.

“I am not an astrologer,” says the 39-year-old Mr. Suvendu when asked if he will win against the CPI(M) strongman. “But I am asking people to vote for me, for a stable Centre and a peaceful Nandigram.”

Over 30 people died and scores have gone missing in the last two years of strife over land acquisition in this predominantly rural and semi-rural area.

And the Nandigram cauldron still seems to be boiling over even a year after Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee announced his government’s decision to shift the proposed project.

Part of a family of zamindars (feudal landlords), his father Sisir was with the Congress before shifting to the Trinamool. The 69-year old Sisir will take on Prashanta Pradhan of the CPI(M) in Kanthi in an effort to wrest a seat that has been a red bastion since 1980 barring two interruptions.

The father sees himself and his son as the torch-bearers in the struggle against the CPI(M).

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