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TMC charges into polls with highest number of nominations

Kolkata: The state's ruling Trinamool Congress has filed a much greater number of nominations than any other party for the Panchayat elections in Bengal, which is scheduled to be held in three phases on May 1, 3 and 5.
The ruling party's nominations in Zilla Parishad (ZP), Panchayat Samiti (PS) and Gram Panchayat (GP) are even greater in number than the number of seats available in the three tiers.
In all the three categories, BJP has come second in nomination filing but still has been unable to field candidates in all the seats for the elections. Whereas, the CPI(M) and the Congress have lagged significantly behind both Trinamool and BJP.
The filing of nominations had begun on March 2 and concluded on March 9. The scrutiny of nominations will start from Wednesday.
It may be mentioned that as per the cumulative report of nominations furnished by the State Election Commission, Trinamool Congress has filed 1,066 nominations in Zilla Parishad, where the total number of seats is 825.
The ruling party is followed by the BJP, which has filed 766 nominations. On the other hand, CPI(M) has submitted 563, while the Congress has managed only 377, which is even lesser than Independent nominations, which amounts to 428. The total number of ZP nominations stands at 3,538.
For the Panchayat Samitis, where the total number of seats is 9,217, Trinamool Congress has filed 12,343 nominations. BJP has managed around half the number at 5,952 nominations. Meanwhile, CPI(M) and Congress have filed 4,236 and 1,646 nominations respectively. The total number of nominations for PS is 27,097.
When it comes to Gram Panchayats, Trinamool Congress has filed 59,475 nominations against a total of 48,650 seats. BJP has managed to file 27,789 nominations, followed by CPI(M) with 17,303 and Congress with 7,239. The total number of nominations in GPs has turned out to be 1,27,030.
It may be mentioned that in Birbhum ZPs, Trinamool Congress candidates were declared "elected unopposed" from 41 of 42 seats. Apart from this, the ruling party has also bagged 14 of 19 Panchayat Samitis in the district.
Trinamool's winning run was evident in Murshidabad as well. Once a Congress stronghold, the district saw Trinamool Congress candidates winning 29 of 30 Panchayat Samiti seats in Kandi uncontested. In Bharatpur II, located in Kandi sub-division of Murshidabad, Trinamool Congress' sweep saw the party winning all 21 Panchayat Samiti seats. Barwan is another area in Murshidabad, where Trinamool has won all 37 Panchayat Samiti seats.
Trinamool Congress secretary general Partha Chatterjee had said on Monday: "The Opposition does not have organisational strength in the district and that's why they could not field candidates."

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