Opposition candidates file nomination in huge numbers in Jhargram
Kolkata: In the newly-formed district Jhargram, which is going for the three-tier Panchayat elections for the first time, the Opposition parties have fielded their candidates in the Gram Panchayat, Panchayat Samity and Zilla Parishad in huge numbers.
The turnout of the Opposition candidates who have filed nominations peacefully demolishes the claims of the leaders of the other parties, mainly BJP, that their candidates were prevented from filing their nominations.
Going by the numbers, it clearly shows that the Opposition parties had not been prevented from filing nominations or else it would not have been possible for them to field candidates in all the seats.
In Jhargram, there are 806 seats in the Gram Panchayat, the lowest in the three-tier Panchayat system. The BJP has fielded 942 candidates while the CPI(M) and Congress have fielded 194 and 26 candidates respectively. The others and Independent have fielded 23 and 190 candidates. The Trinamool Congress has fielded 1,228 candidates.
In the Panchayat Samity, there are around 187 seats. BJP, CPI(M) and Congress have nominated 230,78 and 10 candidates. The Independent and others have fielded 44 and 9 candidates respectively. The Trinamool Congress has nominated 368 candidates in the Panchayat Samity. In the Zilla Parishad, there are 16 seats. The BJP, CPI(M) and Congress have fielded 19, 16 and 8 candidates while the Independent and others have fielded 5 candidates each. The TMC has fielded around 22 candidates.
The statistics clearly show that there has been a massive erosion of voters for the CPI(M) and Congress. CPI(M) used to run a parallel administration there when Jhargram was part of West Midnapore district. During the Maoist movement, both education and economy of Jhargram had been badly hit. After coming to power in 2011, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee visited the area several times to win back the confidence of the people.
The statistics show that the BJP is coming up as the second power in Jhargram.
However, the collective strength of the Opposition parties is less than the TMC in fielding candidates.