Toronto: Hailing Mamata Banerjee's historic victory over the Left Front in West Bengal on Friday, Bengali NRIs in Canada wanted industrialisation of the state to top her agenda.
Toronto-based Molly Banerjei said, "People in West Bengal have voted against decades-old corruption and oppression. They have voted for hope and a brighter future. They have voted for change. Her biggest challenge will be in attracting industry back to West Bengal."
However, she struck a note of warning to Mamata. "It will be prudent of her not to take her voters for granted. They want to see results."
Jay Sarkar, president and chairman of Sartrex Corporation, told IANS, "It is about time. West Bengal needed a change and change has occurred. The new government must move swiftly to ensure people's concerns are heard."
He said Mamata "must work for new ideas, innovation and creativity in order to move West Bengal out of the dark and bring energy to the people. I wanted to set up an industry in West Bengal and am still working towards that. But I was afraid of the situation in West Bengal. Hopefully, the situation may be better for industry now."
Tapan Sen, an IT professional who came to Canada 28 years ago, said he welcomed the change of guard at Writers' Building, but was skeptical about Mamata's vision for the state.
"Change was needed badly because the CPM was not performing, but I have not seen Mamata perform either. I don't know how she has handled the railway ministry. And her stand on the Nano plant was just unacceptable. Hopefully, she will change her thinking now as the state needs industry back."
For Rathin Ghose, who left West Bengal 50 years ago to settle here, more than three decades of CPM rule have 'ruined West Bengal.'
Recounting the 'damage' inflicted on the state by CPM rule, Ghose told IANS, "Because of corruption under CPM rule, all industries fled from the state. All airlines used to touch Bengal, but they too left."
Congratulating Mamata, Ghose, who is the founder of the Prabasi Bengali Cultural Association of Canada, said, "It was just unimaginable whether the Left Front will ever be routed. But Mamata has done it. People trust her and she must now show a vision by bringing industry back to the state."
However, Dhruv Ghosh, marketing manager with the Toronto Star media group, said Mamata's victory is "definitely not a good thing for the state. Nano would have the best thing to happen to West Bengal, but she drove them out. This speaks volumes about her vision and intentions.''
Ridiculing the fiery leader, he said, "The only vision she has is to oppose...and the Trinamool Congress is a one-person show. What can you expect from her?"