The poll-bound state of West Bengal is witnessing high-decibel electioneering for the Fifth Phase of Assembly Elections. The polling process is already over in respect of 135 out of the total 294 Assembly seats in the earlier four phases.
A total of 319 candidates are in the fray in the fifth phase of assembly elections. 45 seats spread across 6 districts, including 16 seats of the North 24 Parganas will go to polls on 17th of this month.
Bidhannagar, named after the former chief minister of West Bengal Bidhan Chandra Roy and the prestigious planned town in the suburbs of Kolkata, is set to witness the high voltage contest between the sitting MLA and state minister Sujit Bose with the former mayor of the township Sabyasachi Dutta.
The rift between the two prominent leaders of the Trinamool Congress, Bose and Dutta became public during the 2019 Loksabha elections and later Mr Dutta had joined the BJP and now he has been fielded by the party for the seat.
Sujit Bose is seeking a successive third term as the Trinamool Congress candidate while Sabyasachi Dutta, MLA of two terms, is contesting as the BJP candidate from Bidhannagar this time. Avishek Banerjee, employee of an MNC and the namesake of the Trinamool Congress MP is contesting as the congress candidate on behalf of Sanjukta Morcha for the seat.
Apart from beautification of the banks of the canal, a replica of the Big Ben of London on the way to the airport made the TMC candidate a household name but the opposition parties are pointing fingers on him for ignoring basic problems like stagnation of water due to siltation. On the other hand, the BJP candidate is trying to put forth the overall development work done by the Bidhannagar Municipal Corporation.
Interestingly, two independent candidates, namesakes of Sujit Bose and Sabyasachi Dutta are also in the fray which may mislead the electors.
The election campaign is also on for the simultaneous By-Elections of two Lok Sabha seats of Tirupati in Andhra Pradesh and Belgaum in Karnataka along with 13 Assembly Constituencies spread over ten states.
In Andhra Pradesh, there are 28 candidates vying for the Tirupati Lok Sabha Seat. Former Union Minister Dr. Panabaka Lakshmi is the Telugu Desam Party candidate while Chinta Mohan from Congress, K. Ratnaprabha from BJP and Nellore Yadgiri from CPI (M) are among the prominent candidates.
In Karnataka, there are 10 candidates contesting for the Belgaum Lok Sabha seat. BJP has fielded Mangala Angadi, the widow of late Union Minister Suresh Angadi from the seat while Congress has fielded State Working President Satish Jarkiholi against her. Satish Jarkiholi is the sitting MLA from Yamkanmaradi.
The ACs going in for the By-Polls include three in Rajasthan, two in Karnataka and one each in Gujarat, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Mizoram, Odisha, Telangana and Uttarakhand.
There are 161 candidates in the fray for 13 Assembly seats indicating largely multi-cornered contests. Meanwhile, H. Chuba Chang was declared elected unopposed being the only candidate in fray for the Noksen Assembly seat in Nagaland.
Meanwhile in the Sixth Phase of elections in West Bengal, 43 Assembly Constituencies spread over four districts will go to polls on 22nd of April.
The final picture of candidature for the Seventh as well as the Eighth and Final Phase of the Assembly Elections in West Bengal became clear last evening and the campaign picked up in the concerned areas immediately.
In all, 36 Assembly Constituencies spread over five districts will go to polls in the Seventh Phase on 26th of April while remaining 35 Assembly Constituencies spread over four districts will go to polls in the Eighth Phase on 29th of April. The counting of votes will be taken up together on 2nd of May.
Senior BJP leader and Home Minister Amit Shah addressed an election rally at Lebong in Darjeeling district. He remembered the contribution of Darjeeling in the country’s freedom movement. He said that once Darjeeling made huge contributions in the progress of the nation but due to the negligence of the Congress, Communist and TMC , the area is lagging behind .
He promised to solve all the problems of Darjeeling if the party comes to power in West Bengal. Mr. Shah also assured to withdraw all cases within 1 week if voted to power those were lodged by the politically motivated TMC government .
The Home Minister also stressed to bring the Gorkhas into the mainstream of the country and assured to take necessary steps in this direction. Various leaders of TMC and Sanyukta Morcha among others are holding rallies to woo the voters.