Sushmita Dev TMC’s pick for Rajya Sabha
The Trinamool Congress (TMC) on Tuesday nominated Sushmita Dev, former Congress parliamentarian who switched to the West Bengal’s ruling party recently, to the Rajya Sabha. The Election Commission on September 10 announced that bypolls for seven vacant Rajya Sabha seats in six states will be held on October 4.
“We are extremely pleased to nominate @SushmitaDevAITC to the Upper House of the Parliament. @MamataOfficial’s vision to empower women and ensure their maximum participation in politics shall help our society to achieve much more!” the TMC tweeted in the afternoon.
The former president of women’s wing of Congress, Dev is a former Lok Sabha member from Silchar in Assam, her home state.
One Rajya Sabha seat in the state fell vacant after the resignation of TMC leader Manas Ranjan Bhunia, who is now a minister in the Mamata Banerjee-led cabinet. Bhunia won the recent assembly election from Sabang in West Midnapore district.
Dev could not be contacted as she was in Tripura making preparations for the TMC’s first proposed roadshow in the state.
TMC general secretary Kunal Ghosh, who was in Agartala, said, “Our leadership has taken the right decision. Dev is an able leader.”
Of the 16 Rajya Sabha seats from Bengal, the TMC is currently in control of 12, the Congress has two members while the Communist Party of India (Marxist) has one seat.
Former Prasar Bharati CEO Jawhar Sircar was sent to the Upper House by the TMC on August 9. This seat was vacated by Dinesh Trivedi when he joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) after the March-April assembly polls.
Dev, 49, is the daughter of former Union minister Santosh Mohan Dev, who died in 2017. He represented Silchar Lok Sabha seat as well as the Tripura West Lok Sabha in the adjoining state. His wife, Bithika Dev, is also a former legislator from Silchar.
According to the notification issued by the EC, there are two seats vacant in Tamil Nadu and one each in West Bengal, Assam, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Puducherry.