In red bastion Arambag in Hooghly, Pursurah assembly seat seems to be politically the toughest seat.
The fact became more obvious after Arambagh’s former CPI(M) MP Anil Basu kept Pursurah’s winning margin the lowest at 35,000 — half the margins when compared to the three other seats from the sub-division.
“We will win by 35,000 votes in Pursurah and the margin will not be less than 70,000 in Arambagh, Khanakul and Goghat,” said Basu.
When asked, Basu candidly said, “Are you not happy with 35,000 margin? You need more?”
On enquiring, HT found that the mere gentleman-like behaviour of Soumendranath Bera, better known as Anjan Bera — sitting CPI(M) MLA and the current minister of state for information and cultural affairs — is giving the extra edge to this seat.
“He is very receptive to all villagers irrespective of which party they belong. We had demanded a concrete bridge in Dhamsha and Bera made sure it was built. He had kept his promise,” said Mirza Gulam Mastafa, villager from Sitalpur, Arandi I gram panchayat.
A professor of communication and journalism at Calcutta University, Bera admits using his skills. “I am counting on my party’s positive image and then my personal communication skills,” says Bera.