April 25, 2014
In conversation with… Kalyan Banerjee
Mr Banerjee is a renowned senior advocate and the sitting MP from Serampore. He is seeking re-election from the same constituency. Trinamool web team had an interactive session with him during his campaign:
Question: How would you rate yourself as an MP?
Kalyan Banerjee: I have spent a major portion of the MPLAD fund for the development of my constituency. From roads to drinking water, I have taken several initiatives for the service of the people. I have even spent funds on building swimming pools in my constituency. I have donated money to several schools to boost the infrastructure.
I have also helped in setting up computers at many schools. I have also helped in improving the infrastructure at the local hospital so that people do not have to rush to Kolkata for every ailment. I have helped in the construction of a bus stand for a cost of Rs 50 crore. I have also used my funds for building old-age homes. Since it is impossible to talk about all of them, I am distributing a booklet with the complete list of work done by men.
As a Parliamentarian too I have discharged my duties well. I have participated in debates and discussions. When there was a need, we also stalled the House to put our voice across. Overall, I have carried out my duties well. I have never neglected my Constituency. I have visited my area every week, even from Delhi.
Question: How are you using social media for your campaign?
Kalyan Banerjee: I have formed a small team to handle social media. This is a great platform to interact with the young generation. I take time out to visit the pages myself every day. People write in to us about their problems and suggestions. It is a great interactive platform.
I have also formed my website. I have placed ads on Google and radio channels. I have Twitter and Facebook pages. I am using all means of communication to connect to the people.
Question: What is the response you are getting from people during campaign?
Kalyan Banerjee: The response has been phenomenal. I am overwhelmed by the positive feedback. Specially the women have been proactive in the campaign. This is the best proof that I have done some good work in my constituency. In the last five years, I have visited many schools and interacted with many students. Now whenever they see me on the roads, they come to me and exchange greetings. They request me to visit their schools again. They consider me as a dependable guardian.
Question: How would you respond to the malicious campaigns of the Opposition?
Kalyan Banerjee: I have nothing to say to them. They can do whatever they like. My work for the last five years will speak for me. I can vouch that I have been able to bring the number of the criminal activities in this area. Criminals here have a nexus with politicians. These criminals are a bit angry for my proactive work. But people of this constituency are with me. I am always at their service.
Question: There will be a four-cornered fight this time in Serampore. What is your take on that?
Kalyan Banerjee: There is nothing to worry about. BJP and Congress have no infrastructure here. In my constituency, a few gram panchayats and panchayat samitis are with the CPI(M). BJP and Congress have not even been able to win Panchayat elections in this area. Their acceptability to people is nil. They cannot be seen in the region all the year round.
For the last two and a half years, Ms. Mamata Banerjee has worked hard for the people. She has led the state on the path of progress. Her credibility and acceptability among the people is immense. People are convinced that Ms. Mamata Banerjee will be able to help Bengal reach heights of glory. People believe in Trinamool Congress. They are ready to give a chance to us for deliverance. Every municipality and panchayat is doing good work for the people. People will surely vote for us.
Question: What will be your main focus if you are re-elected?
Kalyan Banerjee: My focus would be to provide drinking water to everyone. Also, improving the roads is topmost priority for me. In 34 years, the Left has destroyed whatever was left in the State. In the last two and a half years, new work has started. We have to take that forward. I also want to upgrade schools to Higher Secondary level.
Question: Any message for the party workers?
Kalyan Banerjee: Without the grassroots party workers, we would not have existed. They are the backbone of the party. I am just a representative. They are working hard, day in and day out for the elections. They are passionate. They love and respect our Chairperson. They are our biggest assets.