Bengal, March 10: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee filed her nomination as TMC candidate papers from the Nandigram seat, while her rival and BJP candidate Suvendu Adhikari will hold a show of strength, as the stage is set for the Battle Royale in the constituency.
Adhikari, whose name was announced as the BJP candidate from the seat on Saturday will file the nomination on March 12.
For 50-year-old Adhikari, the contest in Nandigram will be a fight for his political survival as he had vowed to defeat Banerjee by over 50,000 votes in the seat or quit politics.
Adhikari won the Nandigram seat in the 2016 assembly election, while another TMC candidate emerged victorious from the constituency in 2011.
Suvendu Adhikari hits out at Mamata Banerjee, who is camping in Nandigram ahead of filing her nomination from the seat, asks, “Why does she need to stress on her Hindu surname now? Yesterday, the way she chanted the Chandi, I just pray to god!’
Suvendu plays Mamata’s clip-on phone and puts it on a loudspeaker for the crowd to hear, says it was the wrong Chandi path.
Today earlier in the morning, TMC writes to the WB Chief Electoral Officer stating that they’ve received reports of ‘distribution of boxes of incense sticks and matchboxes with BJP symbol and pictures of top BJP leaders to devotees at temples in Shyampukur and Jorasanko‘. TMC seeks strict action against BJP leaders over the issue.
Mamata Banerjee offered prayers at the Maharudra Siddharth temple in Reya Para of Nandigram, interacted with the priests and distributed the prasad among locals who had gathered outside the temple.
After praying to Lord Shiva, Mamata Banerjee went on to file her nomination papers for the high voltage Nandigram battle against her former confidante and now rival Suvendu Adhikari.
The former minister had quit the TMC and resigned from the assembly last year to join the BJP after having differences with the state’s ruling party.
On the other hand, Banerjee will contest the Nandigram seat for the first time after relinquishing the Bhowanipore constituency in Kolkata, from where she had won twice.
The TMC supremo has rented a house in Nandigram and will campaign from there. Elections in Bengal, poised to be a stiff contest between the TMC and the BJP, will be held in eight phases between March 27 and April 29. Votes will be counted on May 2.
Banerjee on Tuesday came down heavily on BJP’s attempt to divide Hindu voters and said those playing divisive politics based on religion should be given a befitting reply in the upcoming assembly polls from Nandigram.
Addressing booth-level TMC workers in a veiled attack against Adhikari, Banerjee said, “It is not that easy to divide people based on 70:30 (Hindu and Muslim vote share) ratio. For us, all are equal. We don’t differentiate people based on calculation and religion.”