State Mahila Morcha president of BJP Roopa Ganguly will contest against Lakshmi Ratan Shukla of Trinamool Congress in Howrah North constituency.
BJP on Thursday announced the second list containing 194 candidates in Delhi. Narendra Modi and party’s All India president Amit Shah were present in the meeting to finalise the list of candidates. Earlier, BJP had announced the list of 52 candidates and by next week the names of the candidates in the remaining 48 seats will be announced. The Howrah North constituency is likely to observe a keen contest between Shukla, Ganguly and the CPI(M) candidate Anjan Bera. Bera was a minister of State in the Cabinet of Buddhadeb Bhattacharya (2001-2006). Political experts said the fight would be very close as there was resentment among Trinamool Congress workers after the sitting MP Ashok Ghosh was dropped. Though Ghosh is attending all the meetings of Trinamool candidates, experts apprehended that on the day of election his loyalists would play the real game which might prove to be costly for Shukla.
The experts said that fielding Ganguly from Howrah North was a wise decision as the concentration of non Bengali voters in the area was highest in Howrah and Ganguly’s image as Draupadi was very popular, even today. Rahul Sinha, former state BJP president and now the national secretary of the party will contest from Jorasanko. The sitting Trinamool MLA is Smita Bakshi. Suman Bandopadhyay will contest from Englishbazar. Former head of state BJP’s media cell Ritesh Tewari is likely to contest from Chowringhee seat. Tewari had fought in the by-election from this seat and was emphatically defeated by Nayna Bandopadhyay of Trinamool Congress. Journalist Manas Ghosh is likely to contest from Salt Lake. He will face Arunabha Ghosh of Congress and Sujit Basu of Trinamool Congress who is the sitting MLA in the contest. The party’s state president Dilip Ghosh who is contesting from Kharagpur on Thursday submitted his nomination paper. Locket Chatterjee will contest from Birbhum. Chandra Bose, grand nephew of Netaji will contest from Bhowanipore against Mamata Banerjee.