TMC names journalist Sagarika Ghose among four Rajya Sabha candidates | Kolkata - Hindustan Times

TMC names journalist Sagarika Ghose among four Rajya Sabha candidates

Feb 11, 2024 08:06 PM IST

The three other candidates of the Trinamool Congress for the upcoming Rajya Sabha polls are Sushmita Dev, Mamata Bala Thakur and Nadimul Haque

Journalist Sagarika Ghose was among the four Rajya Sabha candidates the Trinamool Congress (TMC) announced on Sunday for the upcoming elections to the Upper House of Parliament.

Sagarika Ghose. (File Photo)
Sagarika Ghose. (File Photo)

The three other candidates are Sushmita Dev, former president of the Congress’ women’s wing and ex-Lok Sabha member who joined Bengal’s ruling party in August 2021, Dalit Matua community leader and former Lok Sabha member Mamata Bala Thakur and sitting Rajya Sabha member Nadimul Haque.

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Meanwhile, Bharatiya Janata Party nominated the party’s Bengal chief spokesperson Samik Bhattacharya for the fifth Rajya Sabha seat from the state.

Ghose, who has authored biographies of former prime ministers Indira Gandhi and Atal Bihari Vajpayee, was handpicked by the top leadership of the party, senior TMC functionaries said.

Dev, the daughter of former Union minister Santosh Mohan Dev, was sent to the Rajya Sabha by the TMC in 2021 but she stepped down in August 2023 to make way for social activist Samirul Haque who was nominated by the party.

Of the 16 Rajya Sabha seats from West Bengal, the TMC controls 14. Elections for 56 Rajya Sabha seats spread across 15 states will be held on February 27.

The term of five Rajya Sabha members from Bengal will end in April. Among them are TMC’s Haque, Subhashis Chakraborty, Abir Biswas and Dr Santanu Sen, former president of the Indian Medical Association.

The fifth seat from Bengal that will fall vacant is currently held by eminent lawyer and Congress leader Abhishek Manu Singhvi. He won the seat in 2018 with the TMC’s support.

“Since the Congress could not win any assembly seat in 2021, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) will target the fifth seat,” Santanu Sen said.

The BJP has 75 members in the 294-strong Bengal legislative assembly.

“Any decision regarding fielding a candidate from Bengal will be taken by our central leadership,” Bhattacharya had said earlier.

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