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Saturday, October 3, 2009

My ultimate ambition is Lok Sabha: Susmita Dev

SILCHAR, Oct 3: The post of Silchar Municipality Board Chairperson is just the stepping stone for Susmita Dev who has her eyes set on the Lok Sabha from Silchar seat which her father Sontosh Mohan Dev had represented for the last three decades.

In an exclusive interview with The Sentinel, Susmita, a practising lawyer in the Supreme Court who turned 36 last week, has made it clear that she has never had any fascination for State politics like her father, and she has groomed herself for the national politics. She had little chance of contesting the civic body polls this year had her father not been defeated in the last general elections.

“See, my father was an MP, my mother an MLA, and if I contest in municipality elections, then our family would have been branded as power-hungry. I did not want to make my entry into politics with such a tag on my back,” Susmita argued. She further said even when her father was defeated, she did not want to contest the civic body polls this time as it would have hampered the party as a whole. “But later some of my well-wishers argued that I was thinking very negative on my candidature. And they proved right,” Susmita said.

State’s Urban Development Minister Dinesh Prasad Goala had sought party ticket for the Lok Sabha elections from Silchar this time. When asked what she will do if he repeats his plea next time, she said: “Goala is a senior leader and he had every right for seeking nomination. I am just 36, I have enough time to jump in the fray,” Sushmita said. She, however, hinted that in the 2014 general elections, Rahul Gandhi would take the final decision in selecting party candidates, and for Rahul Gandhi, candidate’s past is less important than his future and winning prospects. She further hinted that she had been keeping close relations with the Youth Congress in Delhi.

Susmita made it clear that whoever gets the ticket for Silchar seat, she will work for him. “If even Gautam Roy gets the nomination, our entire family will stand by him, as he will be the Congress candidate”.

Susmita said Excise Minister Gautam Roy has been keeping regular contact with her and assured her of all sorts of cooperation. However, Goala has not even congratulated her after she assumed the change of Municipality Board though it was directly under his Urban Development Ministry. Susmita said she has a consultancy firm in Delhi — Dev and Associates — of which she is the proprietor, while four more lawyers are associated with it. “I have chalked out a plan that I will plead for at least six to seven cases a year. And the rest of the time, I will devote myself for municipality work”. She further said she has no plans for marriage as she is preoccupied with politics at present. THE SENTINEL

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