Deepa Das Munshi sits with party supporters at the counting centre in Islampur College on Friday afternoon. Picture by Mehedi Hedaytullah
Raiganj, May 16: A 1600-odd vote gap proved too much for Deepa Das Munshi in Raiganj, a seat she had represented but today lost to Md Salim of the CPM.
Salim’s precise victory margin: 1,634 votes.
After her defeat, Deepa said that she was affected by the BJP wave sweeping across the country.
There was tension in the counting centres in Islampur and Raiganj throughout the day.
After each round of counting the leads stayed slim.
The main fight, it was clear was between the Congress and the CPM.
Nimu Bhowmick, the BJP candidate came third and Trinamul’s Satya Ranjan Das Munshi, Deep’s brother-in-law, was relegated to fourth position.
Salim was met with cheers when he came to the Raiganj Polytechnic College counting centre this morning.
Deepa left for her home in Kaliaganj after her defeat. She said that she would head for Delhi as soon as possible. Son Priyadeep, who had campaigned for her with Congress chief Sonia Gandhi in Raiganj, was upset, she said.
“I have to return to Delhi and hand over my bungalow. Moreover, my son is sitting for his Level I exams at the Delhi International School and I have to be by his side. My loss is simply because of the BJP wave sweeping across the country. I had felt that during polling day when I was visiting the booths,” said Deepa.
She said that the BJP had polled five times the votes they had got in 2009. “There was a huge swing because of the BJP wave. Moreover a large portion of the votes of the Socialist Party was secured by the CPM. In the four-cornered contest in Raiganj, all my rivals focused on was to defeat me. Trinamul’s main aim was not winning but ensuring that I lost,” Deepa, a Mamata-baiter said.
Deepa, however, said that with the BJP securing a large number of votes, she felt that there would be unrest in the district.
“I have doubts after the results about the law and order situation in North Dinajpur. However, the Congress has to consolidate its position in the district. I will be back in a week and work on strengthening the party,” Deepa said.
A beaming Mohammad Salim said the people had rejected the Congress as the party had failed to deliver.
“First Priya Ranjan Das Munshi, then his wife Deepa. What have they done besides dangling carrots like AIIMS in front of people. The voters have seen through them and voted the CPM in Raiganj. My victory is significant for the Left, given the situation in the country. I want to stay with the people and work for their development,” Salim said.