Nisith Pramanik: BJP’s controversial winning candidate

Nisith Pramanik: BJP’s controversial winning candidate

Nisith Pramanik wrested the Cooch Behar seat from the Trinamool Congress (TMC), his former party.

Nisith Pramanik

Nisith Pramanik is arguably the most controversial BJP candidate in West Bengal in the Lok Sabha elections. Pramanik, fielded by the saffron party from the Cooch Behar constituency, wrested the seat from the Trinamool Congress (TMC), his former party.

From his days as a youth leader of TMC to his becoming a BJP candidate, the 33-year-old Pramanik has always been embroiled in controversy. The fact that he has 11 declared criminal cases against him made him a target for both the TMC leadership as well as disgruntled BJP workers in Cooch Behar.

Soon after his candidature was declared from Delhi, protests by BJP workers erupted in Cooch Behar and a section of them gheraoed the party’s district president, Malati Raha who ultimately admitted that Pramanik was not the first choice of the district leadership.

Pramanik has serious charges against him such as one case of attempt to murder, a case of attempt to outrage the modesty of woman, three cases of criminal intimidation and two cases of rioting with weapons. There are also three cases of voluntarily causing grievous hurt with weapons against him, along with cases of theft and trespassing.

A resident of Dinhata in Bengal’s Cooch Behar district, Pramanik came into the limelight in state politics as a TMC youth wing leader and one of the key musclemen of the party in the district. He gained so much clout that he was able to corner most of the other TMC district leaders.

During the panchayat elections in the state last year he fielded about 300 candidates as Independents against TMC candidates and several of them won. He joined BJP in Delhi on February 28.

This time the odds were stacked against the BJP candidate. Not only did TMC win the Lok Sabha by-election in Cooch Behar in 2016 with a margin of about 4 lakh votes, he was also pitted against the far more experienced TMC candidate Paresh Chandra Adhikari, a former Forward Bloc leader. Pramanik managed to defeat his nearest rival Adhikari with a margin of about 54,000 votes. 

 

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