BJP releases list of 13 candidates for the West Bengal Assembly elections amid protests
The BJP on Tuesday announced the names of 13 candidates, including economist Ashok Lahiri and Lt. Gen. (retd.) Subrata Saha, for the West Bengal Assembly poll.
Mr. Lahiri’s name was initially announced for the Alipurduar constituency but the party later replaced him with Suman Kanjilal, a local leader, after protests erupted over his candidature.
The economist will contest from the Balurghat Assembly seat. Balurghat, located in Dakshin Dinajpur district, is a relatively safe seat for Mr. Lahiri, who is a member of the 15th Finance Commision and former Chief Economic Advisor.
Lt. Gen. (retd.) Saha will contest from the Rashbehari Assembly seat in south Kolkata.
The party also replaced its candidates for the Chowringhee and Kashipur-Belgachia Assembly seats. The ones announced earlier refused to contest, leading to embarrassment for the party. The fresh candidates are Shivaji Singha Roy in Belgachia and Debrabrata Majhi in Chowringhee.
The BJP list includes candidates from the three hill constituencies of Darjeeling, Kurseong and Kalimpong. Darjeeling sitting MLA and Gorkha National Liberation Front leader Neraj Zimba is the party’s candidate for the seat again. At Kalimpong, the BJP has nominated Subha Pradhan, and at Kurseong, it is Bishnu Prasad Sharma.
In Bagdha, the BJP has named former TMC MLA Biswajit Das, who joined the party a few months ago. Another interesting inclusion is Subrata Thakur, a prominent Matua leader and brother of Bongaon MP Santanu Thakur.
Mr. Thakur will contest from Gaighata in the North 24 Parganas Assembly seat. The BJP has faced protests in several parts of the State after the list of candidates was announced.