KOKATA – Mamata Banerjee’s Trinamool Congress has crossed the half-way mark in early leads in Bengal and is leading in 206 seats, though the BJP seems to have made gains since the 2019 national elections.
The BJP ran a bitter, no holds barred communal campaign against Banerjee that defied Covid safety rules as well as the poll code. But Mamata Banerjee is trailing the BJP’s Suvendhu Adhikari – her former close aide — in Nandigram, which is the most-watched fight in Bengal.
The 2021 assembly election has been a major test for the ruling Trinamool Congress as the saffron brigade had put in all its might to make its footmark for the first time in West Bengal. But if early trends are taken as an indication, then Mamata Banerjee seems to have an edge over her rival.
The trends available from different sources indicate that Trinamool Congress is leading in 206 of the 292 seats while the BJP is leading in 85. United Front – an alliance of Left Front, Congress and the newly formed Indian Secular Front, has been wiped away.
There was no election in two assembly constituencies as the respective candidates died before the polls. Presently the counting of postal ballots is going on where mainly the government officials on election duty and voters above 80 years of age exercised their franchise.
As counting of the postal ballots show Trinamool having an edge over the BJP, it is also indicative that the government employees who turned their face away from the ruling party are showing signs of coming back into the Trinamool fold. In the last Lok Sabha elections, on the basis of postal ballots, the BJP was ahead in 41 of the 42 Lok Sabha seats.
Trinamool heavy weights like state education minister Partha Chatterjee, PWD minister Arup Biswas, power minister Sovondeb Chattopadhayay and panchayat minister Subtrata Mukherjee are leading from their respective constituencies but tourism minister Goutam Deb is trailing till the last report came in.
On the other hand, BJP heavy weights like Locket Chatterjee, Swapan Dasgupta, Mukul Roy have been leading from their constituencies but Babul Supriyo has been trailing behind TMC’s Arup Biswas from Tollygunje constituency.