Firhad Hakim’s ship of success looks to be sailing smoothly as the election approaches. The state Urban development minister and the sitting MLA, Hakim is very sure of retaining the seat but a tough fight is likely in the area.
After the election dates were announced, Hakim was the first to call a workers’ convention and senior Trinamool Congress leaders like Sultan Ahmed, Abhishek Banerjee and Subrata Bakshi along with others were present.
The leaders gave a clarion call to give up infighting and put up a united fight to ensure development in the area.
Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee took part in a road show which had attracted a great crowd.
In 2011, Hakim had won the seat by defeating the Left Front candidate Mainuddin Shams by a margin of 25,033 votes.
TMC then had ties with Congress. Ram Pyare Ram as an independent candidate had bagged 22, 131 votes.
In 2014 Lok Sabha seat TMC candidate Subrata Bakshi took a lead of 6,974 votes only from the segment.
He got 45, 722 votes while the Left candidate got 17, 090 votes. Congress got 29,706 votes and BJP because of Modi wave got 38,848 votes.
Congress and Left are fighting together and Left has a pocket vote in the constituency.
BJP got over 38,000 votes and though Modi wave is not there now, BJP is certainly an important factor.
Mostly importantly, Ram Pyare Ram had bagged 22,000 odd votes in 2011 election.
Veteran politician Ram has a clout in the port area and his role in the election is very important.
Hakim will have to depend on those people who had voted for BJP in 2014. If he can bring back 25 per cent of these voters to his side, then no power can stop him from retaining the seat.
He has carried out a series of development work in the area. The new flyover connecting Taratala with Metiabruz is a major one. We will have to wait till May 19 to know in whose favour the wind will blow in Kolkata Port constituency.