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Trinamool's Total Triumph In Bengal Civic Polls, BJP Distant Second

  • Published in India

KOLKATA: Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's Trinamool Congress has swept all seven urban local bodies for which elections were held in West Bengal on Sunday. Of a total 148 wards, the Trinamool has won a massive 140 and the BJP six. The Left's seat was won by the Forward Bloc, while the CPM and Congress drew a blank.

"It is the people's victory. I thank them. The Opposition has got barely 1 per cent vote," Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said. Her senior party colleague and minister Partha Chatterjee said in a dig at the BJP, "If the first boy in class gets 95 and the second boy just 10 marks, what's the meaning of coming second?" The CPM, he said, has been reduced to a "signboard".

The BJP is undeterred. It had three seats in 2012 and has doubled that to six now, displacing the Left-Congress combine as the main opposition party in the state. "We are going to do much better in 2019," asserted the BJP's Bengal minder Kailash Vijayvargiya, adding, "There is deep discontent against Bengal's ruling party... if polls were held in a free and fair manner we would have won in many places... they captured booths, assaulted workers even then we are at No.2 which means the public wants to make the BJP win more seats."

The CPM's Sujan Chakraborty said, "Are elections held in Bengal anymore?"

Sunday's elections were held amid violence, especially in Durgapur, and the BJP and CPM had both demanded that the polls be cancelled alleging that the ruling Trinamool used violence and booth capturing to rig the elections.

Supriya Dey, a two-term Congress councilor from Ward 1 at Coopers Camp civic body in Nadia district, who fought this election as an independent, committed suicide after she lost to the Trinamool. On polling day, she had got embroiled in a fight with Trinamool supporters at the polling booth. Once results came out, she went home and allegedly took an overdose of sleeping pills. By the time she was rushed from one hospital to another, it was too late.

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