Industrialisation needed in rural Bengal for overall dev: CM

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Egra (East Midnapore) Apr 26 (UNI) West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee today said with the help of the Left Front's understanding of the needs of the rural poor, his party is aiming at development of industries and greater connectivity in the state.

Addressing a Panchayat election campaign meeting here this afternoon, Mr Bhattacharjee said the Front's understanding in fulfilling the needs of the rural poor has helped set up the country's most effective Panchayat system.

He further pointed out that along with agricultural development, the people in the rural areas also need development in industries.

''In spite of self-sufficiency in agriculture, the people know that 16,000 peasants have committed suicide and there is a tendency of diminishing returns in agriculture throughout the country,'' the CM said, and added that the peasants here want more engineering colleges and industries in the rural areas besides continuing with their farming.

Coming down heavily on the All India Trinamool Congress (AITC) and Congress parties, he said, ''the two parties do not stand a chance in the state as the rural people are no longer happy with farming.'' ''They want more industries, highways, hospitals and electricity,'' he said, but also lamented that the electorate are not clear about what they really want and this has led to all the confusion.

Criticising the ''Mohajot'' (fusion) among the Congress AITC, Socialist Unity Centre India (SUCI) and even the naxalites against the CPI(M), the Chief Minister said this fusion has no future and is not based on any strong principle.

''The naxalites are alleging that we will be taking away rural lands belonging to the minority communities. But such communal propaganda is not cutting any ice,'' he maintained and said, ''We are in favour of unity of all caste and creed.

Talking about the present price hike of essential commodities in the country, Mr Bhattacharjee said both the UPA and the NDA governments were responsible for the situation.

''This is the reason we are trying to build up a third alternative at the Centre,'' he said and remarked that our country need not be controlled by the US anymore.

Admitting that in some places, unity among the Left Front constituents was lacking, he said he was still on the path to achieving the goal.

Meanwhile, heavy security arrangements have been made in view of the meeting. The Chief Minister later left for Heria to attend another election meeting there.

Official sources said he will be staying at Haldia Bhawan and go to Kanktia and Radhamoni tomorrow to address a meeting there.

However, sources added that Mr Bhattacharjee does not have any plans to go to Nandigram where AITC supremo Mamata Banerjee recently claimed dominance.


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