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TMC takes over Birbhum ZP seat as Oppn fails to make a dent

Kolkata: Trinamool Congress has bagged the Birbhum Zilla Parishad seat unopposed. Monday was the last day of filing nomination. There are 48,751 seats in Gram Panchayat, followed by 9,240 seats and 825 seats in Panchayat Samity and Zilla Parishad, respectively.
A party fielding candidates in all the seats would require 58,816 workers. In the 42 member Zilla Parishad, Trinamool has fielded 41 candidates, while BJP has fielded one candidate. Neither Congress nor Left Front could field any candidate in Zilla Parishad.
In the three-tier Panchayat system, the organisation of the party matters in fielding Zilla Parishad and Panchayat Samity candidates.
From 1978, when the first Panchayat election was held in Bengal till 2003, it had been seen that the Left Front used to bag 85 percent of the Zilla Parishad seats and 75 percent of the Panchayat Samity seats on an average. But in Gram Panchayat, it used to get 50 percent of the seats.
In Zilla Parishad and Panchayat Samity, Left Front candidates did better because of the organisational strength of the party. In 2008, Trinamool Congress got the Zilla Parishads of South 24-Parganas and East Midnapore and had created a major dent in the Left Front vote bank.
Subsequently, it got 13 seats in the Lok Sabha election which was held in 2009 and won the Kolkata Municipal Corporation election in 2010. Because of sheer organisational strength, Trinamool had ousted Left Front in the 2011 Assembly election, by winning 211 out of 294 seats.
Over the years, Trinamool Congress has improved its organisational strength with efficiency and precision.
Anubrata Mondal, Trinamool president of Birbhum district, said BJP does not have any organisation in the district and has tried to create trouble by bringing in "outsiders" from the neighbouring states.
"But once the administration sealed the border, BJP could not bring them and could file only one candidate in ZP," said Mondal.
He said the organisational strength of the party in Birbhum is very strong and added: "the party will get the ZP in all the districts, as Mamata Banerjee has carried out massive development in rural areas. This is for the first time when Panchayat election will be held on development, compared to the Left regime, when elections were held on false promises."

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