Kolkata: Facing a three-corner contest, Ratna Chatterjee, the estranged wife of BJP leader Sovan Chatterjee, is expected to win from Behala Purba Assembly constituency in South Twenty Four Parganas district as she is pitted against BJP actor candidate Paayel Sarkar and CPI( M)’s Samita Har Chakraborti
Though the seat is falling under the South 24 Parganas district, area is practically within reach of this metropolis and has a mixed population of voters, who have already made their mind.
Behala Purba is a part of the Kolkata Dakshin Lok Sabha constituency, will go to polls in the fourth of eight phases on April 10.
In 2016, Sovan Chatterjee of Trinamool Congress won the seat by defeating Professor Ambikesh Mahapatra from Independent with a margin of 24294 votes.
In 2011, Mr Chatterjee won the seat by defeating Kumkum Chakraborty of CPI (M) with a margin of 48173 votes.
In the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, Trinamool Congress candidate Mala Roy won from Kolkata Dakshin Lok Sabha (MP) Seat with a margin of 155192 votes by defeating Chandra Kumar Bose from the Bharatiya Janata Party.
Ratna is the estranged wife of former Kolkata mayor Sovan Chatterjee, who had also served as a minister in the TMC government. Even though he was considered close to West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, Sovan later joined the BJP in 2019.
Even as a confident Ratna said she will surely defeat Sovan if they compete against each other, the latter walked out of the BJP after Paayel was fielded instead of him from the Behala Purba seat.
After Sovan’s exit, Ms Banerjee had asked Ratna to take care of party affairs in her husband’s Assembly segment and municipal ward. Ahead of the civic polls in March last year, TMC had named Ratna in charge of ‘Banglar Gorbo Mamata’ — a public outreach campaign — in the Behala East assembly constituency.
On the other hand, actress Paayel joined the BJP on February 25 in the presence of the party president Jagat Prakash Nadda and state BJP president Dilip Ghosh in Kolkata
After joined the saffron party, Payel said she would now work for West Bengal.
“The people of Bengal want ‘Asol Poriborton’, Bengal wants development! Bengal wants BJP,” she said
“Got immense love from all, now I want to work for the people of Bengal. Want Bengal to be what it was earlier. When I can see BJP is working so hard for Bengal, I thought of joining them,” she said.
On speculations of a rift in the Bengali film industry, the actor said, “I can speak for myself. I have entertained people now I want to serve them, I do not think groups will happen. It is a negative thought.”
The actress said after entertaining people for over a decade, she now wants to serve the people of Bengal.
Paayel also said she will not leave people’s side post-election if she gets the opportunity.
The 37-year-old actress made her debut in 2004 with the film “Shudu Tumi” and has since then, been a part of several Bengali TV serials and movies.
She has a degree in History from Jadavpur University in Kolkata.