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regular-article-logo Tuesday, 25 June 2024

Polls over in six seats, campaign trail shifts towards 36 seats in state that are yet to vote

In Malda, both TMC and BJP have brought in star campaigners such as Modi and Mamata Banerjee

Bireswar Banerjee Siliguri Published 29.04.24, 10:49 AM
Gautam Deb; (right) Nisith Pramanik

Gautam Deb; (right) Nisith Pramanik

Prominent Trinamool Congress and BJP leaders are heading to the constituencies that are yet to vote to campaign for their candidates.

Polling is over in six of the eight constituencies in north Bengal. Thirt-six seats in the state are yet to vote.

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Gautam Deb, the most prominent face of Trinamool in north Bengal, on Sunday said he would head for Malda on April 30 to campaign for the candidates whom his party has fielded in two seats of the district.

In Malda Uttar, Trinamool has pitted Prasun Banerjee, a former IPS officer, while in Malda Dakshin, Shahnawaz Ali Raihan is contesting in Trinamool’s ticket.

“Chief minister Mamata Banerjee has instructed me to join the election campaign in Malda. I will be there on April 30 to campaign for both candidates. In due course, if I am told to go to other districts, I will do it,” said Deb.

In Malda, elections will be held on May 7.

Deb, who is one of the members of TMC’s national working committee and the sole member from north Bengal, had extensively campaigned for the party's candidates in Jalpaiguri and Darjeeling seats where elections were held on April 19 and April 26, respectively.

“I have sent a detailed report about the elections of the second phase (that was held in Darjeeling) to the chief minister,” Deb said.

While Deb is yet to launch his campaign in other districts, Nisith Pramanik, the Cooch Behar MP and a junior minister in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s cabinet, has already campaigned in southern parts of the state.

“I have campaigned for BJP candidates, including Rekha Patra of Sandeshkhali who is contesting from Basirhat seat. From Monday, I will again join in the campaign in Malda and Murshidabad districts,” said Nisith, who is contesting from Cooch Behar seat for the second time.

Manoj Tigga, the BJP’s chief whip in the Assembly and the party’s candidate from Alipurduars, is campaigning for Khagen Murmu, a tribal face whom the party has pitted in Malda Uttar for the second time.

“To counter Khagen Murmu and the saffron camp, TMC has asked Prakash Chik Baraik, a Rajya Sabha MP who was fielded against Manoj Tigga, to campaign in tribal pockets in northern parts of Malda,” a political analyst pointed out.

In Malda, both parties have brought in star campaigners such as Modi and Mamata Banerjee. Even on Sunday, Mamata held two public meetings in the district.

“Now, they are getting leaders from northern districts. This proves the desperation of both sides to grab the two seats in Malda,” the analyst added.

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