The West Bengal constituencies where polling will be held in phase 6 are Tamluk, Kanthi, Ghatal, Medinipur, Bankura, Bishnupur, Purulia and Jhargram.(ANI file photo)
The West Bengal constituencies where polling will be held in phase 6 are Tamluk, Kanthi, Ghatal, Medinipur, Bankura, Bishnupur, Purulia and Jhargram.(ANI file photo)

Lok Sabha election 2019: Eye on big fights as West Bengal’s western part goes to polls in sixth phase

The constituencies where polling will be held in this phase are Tamluk, Kanthi, Ghatal, Medinipur, Bankura, Bishnupur, Purulia and Jhargram.
By Snigdhendu Bhattacharya | Hindustan Times, Kolkata
UPDATED ON MAY 12, 2019 06:46 AM IST

The western region of West Bengal partially comprising the dry, hot and forested eastern extensions of the Chota Nagpur plateau will poll in the sixth phase on May 12, when 13,356,964 voters will choose eight representatives from a total of 83 candidates.

The constituencies where polling will be held in this phase are Tamluk, Kanthi, Ghatal, Medinipur, Bankura, Bishnupur, Purulia and Jhargram.

The remaining nine seats of the 42 constituencies in the state will votes on May 19, the last phase. Counting will be held on May 23.

Read: Full coverage of Lok Sabha elections 2019

All of the 15,428 polling stations in this phase are to be manned by central paramilitary forces.

“The TMC has an advantage over others in this phase, mainly because the Left is expected to retain its vote share to a good extent in Jhargram, Bankura and Medinipur – exactly the seats BJP is hopeful of. Left getting anything about 20% votes will increase TMC’s chances by dividing anti-TMC votes,” said political analyst Maidul Islam.

In Purulia, Rahul Gandhi’s rally for the Congress candidate will definitely reduce the BJP’s chances,” Islam, who teaches political science in Kolkata’s Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, added.

Read: Trinamool hold Jhargram, once a Left bastion

Among senior leaders, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has campaigned in Jhargram and Tamluk, while Congress president Rahul Gandhi has come to Purulia, and BJP president Amit Shah addressed rallies in Medinipur, Ghatal and Bishnupur. Trinamool Congress (TMC) chief Mamata Banerjee has held about 18 meetings in these eight seats.

In 2014, the TMC won all these seats comfortably, with the lowest winning margin of 98,506 votes in Bankura. In this constituency, its candidate and political greenhorn Moon Moon Sen defeated the Communist Party of India (Marxist)’s nine-time MP Basudeb Acharia. The highest winning margin in these eight seats was 3.47 lakh votes in Jhargram.

The most politically-significant fight in this phase will be in Medinipur, where the Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP’s) state unit president and Kharagpur (Sadar) MLA Dilip Ghosh is pitted against seven-time MLA and Bengal minister-turned Trinamool Congress (TMC) Rajya Sabha member Manas Bhunia. The impending battle between the two heavyweights has hogged limelight since the candidates were named.

Read: ‘Mamata will play key role in forming new government’, says Chandrababu Naidu

The Jharkhand and Odisha-bordering seats of Jhargram and Purulia are also significant because it was once a Maoist hotbed between 1998 and 2011 and turned into a bastion of the ruling TMC since 2012. Restoring peace in this region by breaking the backbone of the Maoist rebels and ushering in a new area of progress has been the TMC’s key campaign issue in this belt.

“We ended Maoist insurgency here but the BJP could not end it in Chhattisgarh despite ruling the state for 15 years at a stretch,” Mamata Banerjee said while addressing a public meeting in Jhargram.

Amid reports that the Maoists led by their Bengal state unit chief Akash, presently based in Jharkhand, are desperately trying to stage a comeback using grievances against TMC’s local leaders’ alleged indulgence in corruption and nepotism, the BJP made significant inroads over the past couple of years, as was evident in the 2018 rural elections.

Read: BJP sharpens its election pitch in Bengal for last two phases

“Our performance in this belt will surprise political analysts and shock Trinamool Congress,” said BJP’s Dilip Ghosh.

The TMC is confident of retaining all seats, and to even increase winning margins in some.

Among other constituencies in focus are Bishnupur and Bankura.

Saumitra Khan, who won with a Trinamool Congress ticket from Bishnupur in 2014, joined the BJP in January this year. He is contesting from the same seat on a BJP ticket, but was barred by the court from entering the Bankura district in which six of the seven assembly segments that make the Bishnupur Lok Sabha seat are located.

Khan had to park himself at Khandaghosh, the only assembly segment within Bishnupur that is located in neighbouring East Burdwan district. His wife Sujata Mondal campaigned on his behalf in the rest of the constituency, while BJP president Amit Shah came to canvass for him. The TMC has pitted minister Shyamal Santra against him.

Read: Many verbal spats between TMC, BJP

In Bankura, the TMC has fielded senior minister Subrata Mukherjee, who first became an MLA in 1971 and a minister in 1972. He later served as Kolkata’s mayor and was one of the key ministers in Mamata Banerjee’s government until being named Bankura candidate.

Mukherjee’s battle is not easy because the BJP’s Bakura candidate Subhas Sarkar, the party’s state unit vice-president, wields significant influence in Bankura district. The CPI(M) has fielded Amiya Patra, a central committee member of the party, who is also an influential politician in the district.

Purulia’s Congress candidate Nepal Mahato is a four-time MLA and influential political figure in Purulia district, where the BJP has fielded a young organiser, Jyotirmay Mahato, against TMC’s incumbent, Mriganka Mahato.

In Ghatal, former Indian Police Service (IPS) officer Bharati Ghosh – who is facing a probe by West Bengal CID since she resigned – is contesting on a BJP ticket. She is taking on TMC’s Dipak Adhikary alias Dev, a Bengali film industry superstar and Ghatal incumbent.

Kanthi and Tamluk are the TMC’s strong bastions since 2009.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
Close
Officials aware of developments said the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF), which is responsible for security at airports, held a meeting with officials of the external affairs ministry and the airport operator to discuss the modalities. (PTI photo).
Officials aware of developments said the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF), which is responsible for security at airports, held a meeting with officials of the external affairs ministry and the airport operator to discuss the modalities. (PTI photo).

Airports, stations gear up ahead of Modi oath taking

By HT Correspondent | Hindustan Times, New Delhi
UPDATED ON MAY 29, 2019 10:34 AM IST
Wednesday promises to be even busier for officials at the Indira Gandhi International airport with leaders of the BIMSTEC nations, Kyrgyzstan, and Mauritius expected to arrive for the swearing-in.
Close
Prime Minister Narendra Modi being felicitated by Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K Palaniswami during a dinner meeting with National Democratic Alliance leaders in New Delhi(PTI)
Prime Minister Narendra Modi being felicitated by Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K Palaniswami during a dinner meeting with National Democratic Alliance leaders in New Delhi(PTI)

Vote split behind AIADMK-BJP alliance loss in Tamil Nadu

By MC Rajan & M Manikandan | Hindustan Times, Chennai
UPDATED ON MAY 28, 2019 07:46 AM IST
The DMK, led by former party chief Karunanidhi’s son, Stalin, swept the elections, winning 37 of the 38 Lok Sabha seats that polled last month.
Close
According to an official, Delhi government is focussing on high-rise buildings where coaching centres are functioning and inspecting whether these centres have functional firefighting equipments(HT Photo)
According to an official, Delhi government is focussing on high-rise buildings where coaching centres are functioning and inspecting whether these centres have functional firefighting equipments(HT Photo)

Delhi govt to shut down coaching centres operating above fourth floor

By Press Trust of India | New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON MAY 27, 2019 09:39 PM IST
The Delhi Fire Service director has been directed to “take strict action as per fire safety standards and guidelines to prevent recurrence of such accidents (Surat fire),” an official order issued by Home Minister Satyendar Jain said.
Close
Prime Minister Narendra Modi along with BJP President Amit Shah offers prayers at Kashi Vishwanath Temple, during a visit to his parliamentary constituency Varanasi(PTI)
Prime Minister Narendra Modi along with BJP President Amit Shah offers prayers at Kashi Vishwanath Temple, during a visit to his parliamentary constituency Varanasi(PTI)

‘All became Narendra Modi and led the campaign’: PM in Varanasi

By HT Correspondent | Hindustan Times, Varanasi
UPDATED ON MAY 27, 2019 08:40 PM IST
The PM underlined that such large support from across the country was made possible because people had faith in the ‘Saaf Niyat, Sahi Vikas’ approach of the BJP government.
Close
The TMC leadership also claimed that not a single BJP worker has been killed in the state in political violence.(ANI Photo)
The TMC leadership also claimed that not a single BJP worker has been killed in the state in political violence.(ANI Photo)

Trinamool dismisses PM’s allegations on killing of BJP workers in Bengal

By Press Trust of India | Kolkata
UPDATED ON MAY 27, 2019 11:07 PM IST
The TMC leadership also claimed that not a single BJP worker has been killed in the state in political violence.
Close
Addressing NC workers in Anantnag town Newly-elected MP Justice (Retired) Hasnain Masoodi of the National Conference (NC)demanded immediate release of the youths without any blemish on their career so that they can rejoin the educational institutions(Twitter/@masoodi_hasnain)
Addressing NC workers in Anantnag town Newly-elected MP Justice (Retired) Hasnain Masoodi of the National Conference (NC)demanded immediate release of the youths without any blemish on their career so that they can rejoin the educational institutions(Twitter/@masoodi_hasnain)

Free all youths unconditionally: NC MP

By Indo Asian News Service | Indo Asian News Service
UPDATED ON MAY 27, 2019 06:25 PM IST
The NC winner from Anantnag alleged that hundreds, many juvenile, were arrested and locked up on mere suspicion by police after Musa’s killing.
Close
CM Ashok Gehlot intrect with media person at his residence in jaipur on Wednesday(HT)
CM Ashok Gehlot intrect with media person at his residence in jaipur on Wednesday(HT)

BSP says it will continue supporting Gehlot Govt

By Press Trust of India | Jaipur
PUBLISHED ON MAY 27, 2019 06:03 PM IST
BSP MLA Wajib Ali said that BSP’s will continue to support the Congress-led government in Rajasthan
Close
Prem Singh Tamang, popular as P S Golay, became the sixth chief minister of Sikkim when he was sworn in by governor Ganga Prasad at Gangtok’s Paljore stadium(Twitter/@amritdahal_09)
Prem Singh Tamang, popular as P S Golay, became the sixth chief minister of Sikkim when he was sworn in by governor Ganga Prasad at Gangtok’s Paljore stadium(Twitter/@amritdahal_09)

Sikkim gets new chief minister after 25 years, moves to five-day week

By Pramod Giri | Hindustan Times, Gangtok
UPDATED ON MAY 27, 2019 06:18 PM IST
Immediately after being sworn in, the new chief minister declared a five-day week for the state government employees. Earlier, only the second Saturday of each month was a government holiday.
Close
The BJP’s landslide win in the parliamentary elections was also powered by its excellent showing in West Bengal.
The BJP’s landslide win in the parliamentary elections was also powered by its excellent showing in West Bengal.

‘BJP workers being killed for their ideology in Bengal’: PM Modi

By HT Correspondent | Hindustan Times, New Delhi
UPDATED ON MAY 27, 2019 05:46 PM IST
The BJP’s landslide win in the parliamentary elections was also powered by its excellent showing in West Bengal.
Close
Resignations of state Congress chiefs have started coming in with Punjab and Jharkhand Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) presidents Sunil Jakhar and Ajoy Kumar quitting their posts. (Raj K Raj/HT Photo)
Resignations of state Congress chiefs have started coming in with Punjab and Jharkhand Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) presidents Sunil Jakhar and Ajoy Kumar quitting their posts. (Raj K Raj/HT Photo)

‘Don’t fall for rumours’: Congress on reports of Rahul Gandhi’s resignation

By HT Correspondent | New Delhi
UPDATED ON MAY 27, 2019 06:09 PM IST
Surjewala said the CWC saw the reverses in the Lok Sabha polls as an opportunity for radical changes and a complete organisational overhaul and authorised Congress president Rahul Gandhi for the necessary measures.
Close
To a query seeking details of income tax refunds of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, it refused to share the information, saying it was exempted under the Right to Information Act(Hindustan Times)
To a query seeking details of income tax refunds of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, it refused to share the information, saying it was exempted under the Right to Information Act(Hindustan Times)

PMO has no records of income tax refunds of former prime ministers

By Press Trust of India | New Delhi
UPDATED ON MAY 27, 2019 05:41 PM IST
To a query seeking details of income tax refunds of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, it refused to share the information, saying it was exempted under the Right to Information Act.
Close
Siddaramaiah asserted that all Congress MLAs, including dissident leader Ramesh Jarkiholi, were with the party and nobody was leaving.
Siddaramaiah asserted that all Congress MLAs, including dissident leader Ramesh Jarkiholi, were with the party and nobody was leaving.

On Yeddyurappa’s prediction for Karnataka, Siddaramaiah responds with a dare

By HT Correspondent | Press Trust of India
UPDATED ON MAY 27, 2019 06:23 PM IST
In a series of tweets, Siddaramaiah said the people’s mandate was for continuation of the BJP-led government at the Centre and not for ‘toppling’ the state government.
Close
Ali Daruwalla, state coordinator and president of Muslim Rashtriya Manch(HT PHOTO)
Ali Daruwalla, state coordinator and president of Muslim Rashtriya Manch(HT PHOTO)

Muslims have shown confidence in Modi-led govt: Ali Daruwalla

By Nadeem Inamdar | Hindustan Times, Pune
UPDATED ON MAY 27, 2019 04:57 PM IST
He is the state coordinator and president of Muslim Rashtriya Manch for western Maharashtra affiliated to the RSS
Close
PM Modi held a 5-km long roadshow as thanksgiving to the voters of Kashi(BJP / Twitter)
PM Modi held a 5-km long roadshow as thanksgiving to the voters of Kashi(BJP / Twitter)

Narendra Modi in Varanasi Highlights| ‘Every house had a Modi’: PM on BJP’s poll sweep

By HT Correspondent | Hindustan Times, New Delhi
UPDATED ON MAY 27, 2019 11:41 PM IST

After the Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) landslide victory, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is in his Lok Sabha constituency of Varanasi on a thanksgiving visit on Monday.He marked his visit by offering prayers at the Kashi Vishwanath temple before heading to address party workers.Modi won the Varanasi parliamentary seat by a margin 4,79,505 votes, defeating his nearest rival Shalini Yadav of the Samajwadi Party.Follow highlights here:

Close
BJP nominee Girish Bapat’s win with a record margin of 3.24 lakh votes in Pune and substantial lead in all six constituencies, has increased the tension among Shiv Sena aspirants.(HT FILE)
BJP nominee Girish Bapat’s win with a record margin of 3.24 lakh votes in Pune and substantial lead in all six constituencies, has increased the tension among Shiv Sena aspirants.(HT FILE)

Lok Sabha Elections 2019: BJP’s rise in vote share in Pune dims Sena’s hopes of seat sharing

By HT Correspondent | Hindustan Times, Pune
UPDATED ON MAY 26, 2019 04:22 PM IST
BJP nominee Girish Bapat’s win with a record margin of 3.24 lakh votes in Pune and substantial lead in all six constituencies, has increased the tension among Shiv Sena aspirants  
Close
SHARE
Story Saved
OPEN APP