Trinamool fields 50 women candidates for upcoming polls
Kolkata: In a unique move, the Trinamool Congress, which has always stood for women empowerment, has given tickets to 50 women candidates for the 2021 Assembly polls in which the party's clarion call itself is "Bangla Nijer Meyekei Chaye".
This time, the party has nominated the highest number of women candidates for the forthcoming polls with Trinamool Congress Chairperson Mamata Banerjee, who is the only woman Chief Minister in the country at present, contesting from Nandigram.
The ruling party in the state had fielded 41 women candidates in 2016 Assembly polls and 31 in 2011 when it had contested in 238 seats in an alliance with the Congress. In the 2019 Parliamentary elections, the TMC had fielded 17 women candidates out of a total of 42 Parliamentary seats in the state.
"This time, we are nominating 50 women candidates to contest in the Assembly polls. At the same time, there are 79 and 17 candidates from the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe community respectively when the sanctioned seats for SC/ST are 68 and 16 respectively," Banerjee said while announcing the candidates' list from the party's office at her Kalighat residence on Friday.
The move of Trinamool Congress to file 50 women candidates comes at a time when there are around 3.59 crore women electorates in the state as per the revised electoral roll in 2021.
It is worth mentioning that two-time MP Dr Ratna De (Nag) from Hooghly Lok Sabha constituency, who was defeated by BJP's Locket Chatterjee in the 2019 Parliamentary elections, has been fielded as a candidate from Pandua Assembly constituency in Hooghly district.
Apart from well-known actors who are contesting for the first time, like Sayani Ghosh, June Maliah, Sayantika Banerjee, Lovely Moitra, Birbaha Hansda and singer Aditi Munshi; one to two-time MLAs, including Jyotsna Mandi (Ranibandh in Bankura), Seuli Shaha (Keshpur in West Midnapore), Sandhya Rani Tudu (Manbazar in Purulia), Mitali Roy (Dhupguri in Jalpaiguri) have also been nominated to fight as the party's candidate in the upcoming Assembly polls.
Veteran politician Sabitri Mitra, who was MLA from Araidanga Assembly constituency in Malda from 1991 to 2011 till the seat ceased to exist due to delimitation, is contesting from Manikchak. In 2011, she was elected as a TMC candidate from Manikchak itself but got defeated in 2016.
Manju Basu, whose husband Bikash Basu was killed in the run-up to the elections in 2001, is contesting as a TMC candidate from Noapara from where she got elected for the first time on the party's ticket in 2011.
Ministers in Mamata Banerjee's Cabinet including Chandrima Bhattacharya, Shashi Panja, Asima Patra, Sandhya Rani Tudu are also contesting this time from Dum Dum North, Shyampukur, Dhanekhali and Manbazar Assembly constituencies.
This comes when there were a total of 40 women MLAs in the state Assembly, including 29 of the Trinamool Congress after the 2016 Assembly polls.