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Tough electoral battle for TMC’s Chandrima Bhattacharya from Dum Dum Uttar

Kolkata: Dum Dum Uttar assembly constituency this time will witness tough electoral battle as Trinamool Congress (TMC) candidate Chandrima Bhattacharya, who straddles multiple portfolios in the Mamata Banerjee government, is pitted against CPI(M) candidate Tanmoy Bhattacharya and BJP nominee Dr. Archana Majumdar.

Minister of State for Housing (Independent Charge), Health and Family Welfare, Land and Land Reforms & Refugee Relief and Rehabilitation, Panchayats and Rural Development in the West Bengal Cabinet, Chandrima is among the top leaders in the ruling Trinamool Congress.

Chandrima is also president of the Trinamool Mahila Congress, a spokesperson for the party and a member of its core committee.

The 65-year-old leader grew close to Mamata Banerjee during the Singur and Nandigram movement and joined the Trinamool Congress in 2009, and soon became president of the TMC’s women’s wing.

At a time when the West Bengal chief minister has lost many leaders — MLAs, MPs, gram and zilla parishad leaders, grassroots members — Chandrima has never wavered from her allegiance to the party and its chief.

Chandrima said there is no question about the Chief Minister not winning from her constituency, she will in fact win handsomely, despite every effort by them (the BJP) to threaten and intimidate voters by calling on goons from other states.

The State Minister said the TMC government helmed by Mamata Banerjee, after coming to power, raised the number of seats reserved for women at the panchayat level from 33 per cent to 50 per cent.

“The TMC has 17 women MPs in Lok Sabha which is a record of sorts if compared to other parties. In Rajya, 41 per cent of TMC MPs are women. The party, after coming to power, increased women’s reservation in the three-tier panchayat system to 50 per cent from 33 per cent,” she said.

The minister also pointed out the smart card doled out under the state-run health scheme, ‘Swasthya Sathi’, bears the name of the household matriarch, and her family members are registered as “other beneficiaries”.

Chandrima alleged that BJP leaders have time to travel across the country and “shed crocodile tears” for farmers in different states but they fail to address the concerns of protesting farmers camping outside the national capital.

“BJP leaders are coming to Bengal and going to other places. But they don’t listen to the farmers who are protesting outside Delhi. The BJP’s concern for the farmers is a pure sham,” she added.”

In 2011, she won the Dum Dum Uttar Assembly constituency but lost the seat to CPI(M) leader Tanmay Bhattacharya in 2016. A year later, she won the bypoll from Dakshin Kanthi Assembly seat

In 2016, Tanmoy Bhattacharya of Communist Party of India (marxist) won the seat by defeating Chandrima from Trinamool Congress with a margin of 6549 votes.

In 2011, Chandrima won the seat by defeating Communist Party of India (marxist) candidate Rekha Goswami with a margin of 19026 votes Dum Dum Uttar Assembly constituency is falling under Dum Dum Lok Sabha constituency.

In 2019 Lok Sabha elections, Trinamool Congress candidate Sougata Ray won from Dum Dum Lok Sabha (MP) Seat with the margin of 53002 votes by defeating Samik Bhattacharya from Bharatiya Janata Party.

On the other hand, Communist Party of India (marxist) candidate Tanmoy Bhattacharya is going to launch a COVID care camp with a call to all to support the effort irrespective of whom they vote for the elections.

Bhattacharya is circulating an e-poster where it is written “Vote for whoever you want but co-operate with us for saving lives” The camp would be launched on April 19. Polling will be held in the constituency on April 22.

The poster has also said that sanitisation drive would be taken by the party in different wards of the area from April 23.

It mentions 10 phone numbers for the people to contact for information on the camp which will be inaugurated on April 19.

Bhattacharya will be present in the camp for several hours every day curtailing time from his campaign.

On April 14, leaders of the CPI(M) voluntarily took the decision to cancel all rallies, roadshows and mass gatherings to help curb the infection from spreading in all four remaining phases of the Bengal assembly elections. The state is going through an eight-phase polling between March 27 and April 29.

The communication being circulated by Bhattacharya on social media informs the people that a major roadshow has been cancelled.

The camp is using the space in the CPI(M) party office in Rabindranagar area.

On April 16, the Election Commission directed a partial ban on the mass gatherings, rallies, street corner meetings between 7 pm and 10 am in West Bengal.

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