Somen Mitra breaks away from Congress, decides to float new party

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Kolkata, Jul 19 (UNI) Former state Congress president Somen Mitra today broke away from the Congress and decided to float a new party which would have an alliance with the Trinamool Congress.

''In order to defeat the CPI(M) in West Bengal, a strong secular anti-Left alternative is required. The Congress has failed to provide a strong opposition to the Left Front. Therefore, I have decided to form the new party and fight the elections in coalition with the Trinamool,'' Mr Mitra stated.

However, he refused to disclose the names of the other members in his proposed new party, which was tentatively titled the Progressive Indira Congress. The names of the party members would be announced within a month, he informed.

''I am in the process of talks with some of the district Congress leaders. The names of the other members in my new party will be announced soon,'' he said.

He alleged that the people had lost faith in the Congress because it was in coalition with the Left parties at the Centre.

''I am not in the rat race for the Chief Minister's post. I have never indulged in any bargaining politics,'' he claimed.

UNI AKM DPM ADG/src1712

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