Left Front’s backstabbing coupled with the virtual non existence of BJP has put the Trinamool Congress candidate far ahead of its competitors in the Assembly polls.
The Jhargram constituency along with 17 others will go for polls on April 4, first day of the first phase of the election. The election will be held in six phases spreading over seven days. The days are April 4, 11, 17, 21, 25, 30 and May 5. The sitting MLA Sukumar Hansda of Trinamool Congress will be contesting against Chunibala Hansda of Jhargram party (Naren) and Subrata Bhattacharya of the Congress.
Sukumar Hansda had won the seat by defeating his rival CPI(M) candidate Amar Basu by 15, 273 votes in 2011. Hansda had bagged 69,464 votes while Basu had got 54,191 votes. The BJP candidate Bijay Mahato had got 6,396 votes. But after that the situation changed and the Congress-Trinamool Congress tie up was broken. In 2014, Trinamool Congress fought alone. There was a BJP wave and in the Jhargram segment Uma Soren got 90,612 votes while Left Front candidate Pulin Behari Buske got 37,578 votes and Congress candidate Anita Hasda got 5693 votes. The BJP candidate Bikas Mudi got 19,353 votes. Thus, if the votes received by Left Front and BJP in 2014 Lok Sabha polls are added up, then the total would be around 43,000 odd votes for the Left Front candidate.
With this backdrop when the election dates were announced, an unofficial alliance developed between Congress and CPI(M). The Congress fielded Subrata Bhattacharya and Jhargram party fielded Chunibala Hansda, widow of Hansda. Chunibala earlier had received support from Congress.
Once she filed her candidature, Left Front started backing her against Congress candidate. This has created tremendous resentment among Congress workers who were disappointed after their ally betrayed them. The situation has become so bad that Congress workers have stopped talking with the CPI(M) workers. Political experts believe that this will have impact in other constituencies where candidates from the alliance had been fielded.