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TMC's takes up new initiative to reach out to SC/ST community


Press Trust of India Kolkata
In a bid to reach out to the Scheduled Caste (SC) and Scheduled Tribes (ST) communities of the state, the ruling Trinamool Congress leadership has asked party MLAs to submit names of five SC and ST members from their respective constituencies.
The TMC, which has 211 MLAs in the 294 member strong assembly, has asked all its MLAs to submit the names within next few days, TMC sources said on Wednesday.
They said the initiative was part of the party's programme to reach out to the citizens of the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe community of the state, where the BJP has made deep inroads in last few years.
"All our MLAs have been asked to submit names of five individuals each from SC and ST community. The party leaders in respective areas would reach out to them and explain our policies and programmes," TMC secretary general Partha Chatterjee said.
"The recent Lok Sabha poll results have reflected how BJP has made deep inroads in our SC and ST mass base. We lost most of the SC, ST seats in the state. There is a need to change the perception of the masses," said a senior TMC leader.
In the last few years, the saffron party has made deep inroads in Bengal and emerged as the main challenger to the ruling TMC by pushing the Congress and the Left Front to distant third and fourth positions respectively.
Out of the 12 SC/ST Lok Sabha seats in the state, seven have been won by BJP in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.
The BJP, in the general election this year, bagged 18 of the 42 seats in the state, four less than the ruling TMC. The TMC's tally came down from 34 in 2014 to 22 seats.
"The entire Junglemahal area in South Bengal and some seats in North Bengal, which have considerable SC/ST population, have completely shifted towards BJP and the saffron camp. These areas used to be our strong base but due to some reason or the other BJP has made inroads. We need to win back those areas," said a TMC leader.
On advise of poll strategist Prashant Kishor and his firm 'Indian Political Action Committee' - appointed by the Trinamool Congress (TMC) after its Lok Sabha poll reverses - West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had on July 29 launched a helpline number 9137091370 and a website as a part of "DidiKeBolo" to enable people have a direct interface with the party and its functionaries.
The digital platform was a hit among people as over two lakh calls were received in the first two days of the launch.
Banerjee had also unveiled the massive public outreach programme under which over 1,000 party leaders will visit 10,000 villages over the next 100 days to understand people's problems and redress their grievances.

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First Published: Aug 28 2019 | 9:45 PM IST

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