Pranab appeals to rebel leaders to withdraw candidature

Jalpauguri: After expulsion of 15 rebel candidates from the party for contesting against its official nominees for the West Bengal Assembly polls, Congress today appealed to the remaining dissidents to withdraw their candidature to defeat the ruling Left Front.

"I appeal to those (partymen) contesting as independents to withdraw their candidature. There is still time.

Self-interest has to be sacrificed for the greater interest," Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee told an election rally in presence of AICC President Sonia Gandhi.

On April 13 Congress expelled 12 rebel candidates, including three sitting legislators, who defied the party line and filed nominations against official candidates of the Congress-Trinamool Congress combine.

The move came just a day after Mukherjee`s warning that the rebels would face strong action, including expulsion, if they did not withdraw from the poll fray.