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Posted at: Jul 17, 2017, 1:52 AM; last updated: Jul 17, 2017, 1:52 AM (IST)WEST BENGAL

Before retiring, Pranab ‘secures’ Jangipur for son

Before retiring, Pranab ‘secures’ Jangipur for son
Pranab Mukherjee’s daughter Sharmistha and son Abhijit.
President Pranab Mukherjee had five stints in the Rajya Sabha and two in the Lok Sabha. His last stint in the Lok Sabha was cut short as he became the President in 2012. Pranab’s son Abhijit won the byelection from Jangipur by a mere 2,500 votes despite the hype about his father being the first Bengali President. He won the seat again in 2014, this time the margin rose to 8,000 votes.

Pranab is spending his last working days in his old constituency with son Abhijit by his side. Locals have been approaching Pranab with their problems. Evidently, before he formally retires from public life, he is trying to make Jangipur a “secure constituency” for Abhijit.

President’s daughter Sharmistha, it is rumoured, may be fielded by the Congress for a Rajya Sabha seat from West Bengal and Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee will help her win the seat. Pranab has been praising Mamata at various public events lately and the latter will return the favour by coming to Sharmistha’s aid.

Political switch

Speculation is rife that Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, Lok Sabha member and president of the West Bengal unit of Congress, is planning to switch over to the BJP.

Political circles are also intrigued by a letter written by Adhir to PM Narendra Modi recently asking the latter to intervene in Darjeeling where the Gorkhaland agitation has thrown life completely out of gear. BJP leaders of West Bengal are pleased with what he has done.

If Adhir leaves the Congress, he will not be first Congress leader in the state to do so. Manas Bhuyan, CLP leader, also left the Congress to join the ruling Trinamool Congress. Bhuyan is now set to become a TMC member in the Rajya Sabha.

Karnan’s loyalist

Karna, the tragic character from the Mahabharata epic, translates into Karnan in Tamil. Like Karna was abandoned by his mother, his namesake CS Karnan has been abandoned by the judiciary, despite he being one of them. The controversial Calcutta High Court judge is now doing time at the gaol here after being sentenced by the Supreme Court for contempt of court.

However, everyone has not deserted Karnan. Nazrul, who helped Karnan with his domestic chores here, continues to serve his master.

When Karnan was on the run, Nazrul stayed put at Karnan’s official residence and looked after his belongings. Nazrul now visits the Presidency Jail frequently to meet Karnan.

“Sahebdoes have some medical issues, but he does not want to get admitted to the prison hospital without sufficient reason. He has started liking the prison,” Nazrul told this reporter.

Honey trap

Young Ananda Mandal of Kakinara, near Barrackpore, in West Bengal is an expert motorcycle thief. A four-member gang specialised in stealing motorbikes. The police were unable to nab them. Perhaps, gang leader Mandal had a sixth sense about arrival of the police and would always give them the slip.

After many botched attempts, Sanjib Chakraverti, inspector at the Jagaddal police station, set a trap to net Mandal. He had Ananda’s mobile number. A woman constable was asked to assume a fake identity and call up the number and befriend Ananda. The plan worked. After couple of phone conversations, Ananda turned up at a mutually agreed spot to meet the girl. All four gang members came on two stolen motorcycles and were caught by police. Mandal was carrying a red rose and chocolate bar to make a present to his “ladylove”.


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