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Swimmer, academician make it to Bengal assembly

Written by: Staff

Kolkata, May 11 (UNI) Acclaimed swimmer and world record holder for crossing seven seas Bula Choudhury today once again danced into the record books of the state's electoral history by becoming the first MLA from the sporting arena.

Ms Choudhury overcame her strong AITC rival Nanda Kumar Mishra by a margin of 3858 votes to win the Nandanpur seat from West Midnapore for the CPI(M).

''After winning the seven seas, I have won over the people of Nandanpur. I am grateful for the love they have showered on me,'' she told UNI.

''It is a great feeling swimming among the multitudes of people and getting drowned in their love,'' she said.

Asked if she would get a berth in the ministry, she said, ''That is my party's decision. I will accept any decision wholeheartedly.

But if I am able to give back something to the people who have voted for me I will be thankful.'' She also expressed her desire to do something for sports in the state.

Another first timer and largely tipped for a ministerial berth was Pursura seat's winner Saumendranath Bera of the CPI (M).

Talking to UNI after his landslide margin of 34,962 votes, he said, ''I am grateful to the people of Pursura for reposing faith in me.'' A former journalist and academician, he said, ''I am very happy to be a part of the CPI(M)'s huge victory in this election. This is also a reflection that elections have always been fair in the state, contrary to the scene created by the Election Commission with huge clamping of para-military forces across the state.'' A former Head of Department of Journalism and Mass Communication, Calcutta University, he said he would be happy to serve the people in whatever way he could.

Groomed under the able hands of departed CPI(M) state secretary Anil Biswas during his days as a scribe with 'Ganashakti', the party's mouthpiece, he paid his tribute to the former leader.

Asked if he expected a ministerial berth, he quipped, ''That is absolutely up to the party.'' UNI BA PL AK RS1823

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