Eager to oust Mamata as CM, BJP opposes WB bypolls

Eager to put Mamata out of power, BJP opposes WB bypolls

By-elections are due in seven Assembly seats in Bengal including Bhabanipur constituency where Mamata is likely to contest

Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee. Credit: PTI Photo

The West Bengal BJP is opposing Assembly by-elections in the state tooth and nail, eager to oust Trinamool Congress (TMC) supremo Mamata Banerjee from her post as Chief Minister for not being able to get elected within six months after taking oath.

BJP sources said that the state leadership has given several reasons to the Central leaders, opposing the by-elections.

Pointing out that several Covid-related restrictions are imposed in Bengal, state BJP president Dilip Ghosh said “Schools, colleges and local train services are suspended in Bengal due to the pandemic. Then how can by-elections be held here? If the TMC government wants by-elections, then it should declare that everything is normal in the state.”

Sources further revealed that the state BJP does not want by-elections to be held before November 5 as that is the last date for Mamata to get elected to the Assembly. She lost to BJP’s Suvendu Adhikari from Nandigram in the last Assembly election. Mamata took oath as Chief Minister on May 5 and has to get elected to the Assembly within six months.

Read | Trinamool Congress again urges EC to hold bypolls in West Bengal

“The state BJP has told the central leadership that due to the pandemic, TMC government was not allowing local train services to resume. Buses are also plying with half of their passenger capacity and opposition parties are not being allowed to hold political programs. But the TMC is demanding by-elections in Bengal,” a senior state BJP leader said.

The state party unit also told the leadership that with the pretext of the pandemic, the TMC government was not holding elections to 122 municipalities. They also said that since the TMC got full majority in the Assembly, delay in holding by-elections will not put the state government in crisis.

While the TMC has repeatedly urged the Election Commission to hold by-elections as soon as possible, Mamata herself has said several times that there is a “favorable situation” in Bengal for holding by-elections.

By-elections are due in seven Assembly seats in Bengal including Bhabanipur constituency where Mamata is likely to contest.

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