West Bengal Election News
In order to win the battle of the 2014 election, there are many unexpected developments taking place in the political space.
In West Bengal, the former president of Asom Gana Parishad (AGP), Chandra Mohan Patowary joined the BJP on Monday. Also, Hitendra Nath Goswami, a senior leader of the AGP, took the same step and has been welcomed by the BJP.
The BJP has also received support of the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) president Bimal Gurung in West Bengal.
The GJM’s support may prove substantial in helping the BJP candidate to contest elections against the Trinamool Congress. The TMC has fielded Bhaichung Bhutia, the renowned football player, from the Darjeeling seat.
West Bengal Lok Sabha Elections 2014
West Bengal is the sixth most populous state of the country, along with being the sixth largest contributor to India's GDP. The state has held regular elections since independence and is known for its political activism.
West Bengal elects 42 representatives to the lower house of the Parliament or Lok Sabha, the third highest in the country. The state sends 16 members to the Rajya Sabha.
Of these 42 seats, eight are reserved for candidates from Scheduled Caste (SC) while two constituencies - Alipurduars and Jhargram are reserved for the Scheduled Tribes (ST) candidates. Some important parliamentary constituencies of West Bengal are Cooch Behar, Dum Dum, Dakshin Kolkata, Birbhum, Jadhavpur, Purulia and Kolkata Uttar.
Till 1969, the state assembly was bicameral but at present it is unicameral.
Major Political Parties
The main national parties active in West Bengal are:
- The Communist party of India (CPI)
- The Communist party of India (Marxist) [CPI(M)]
- The Indian National Congress (INC)
- The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)
The regional parties in the state are:
- All India Trinamool Congress (AITMC)
- All India Forward Block
- Revolutionary Socialist Party
- Gorakha National Liberation Front
- Gorkha Janmukti Morcha
- Democratic Socialist Party (Prabodh Chandra)
- Socialist Unity center of India (Communist)
The election history of West Bengal is dominated by the CPI (M) and the INC, though recently AITMC has successfully challenged their dominance. INC ruled the state from 1947 to 1967. In 1967, United Front came to power. It won the 1971 elections too, but failed to complete its term. In 1972, INC returned to power. In 1977, CPM emerged victorious and was led by Jyoti Basu till 2011. Jyoti Basu remained the CM till 2000. Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee took over in 2000 and led the party to victory in the 2006 elections. However in 2011, Mamata Bannerjee led AITMC to power, thereby ending 34 years of Left-rule in West Bengal.
In elections to the Lok Sabha, INC was the leading party in 1951 and 1956 elections. CPM won seats for the first time in 1962 elections, though INC continued to be the leading party. In 1967, INC's share of seats came down. In the 1971 elections, CPM emerged as the leading party and remained the dominant party till 1980. INC made a comeback in the 1984 elections by winning 15 seats only to be reduced to four seats in the 1989 elections. CPM continued to be the leading party from 1989 till 2004 elections. In 2009, AITMC won 19 seats thus emerging as the leading party in West Bengal.
2014 general elections will see a keen contest between the major political parties. AITMC, CPI (M) and BJP have announced their candidates. INC is expected to announce soon.
Some politicians contesting the elections are:
: He is a former Union Minister of State during the NDA regime. Sikdar represented the Dum Dum constituency in the 12th and 13th Lok Sabha and is the BJP candidate from the same constituency this year.
: A prominent footballer, Bhutia is contesting from the Darjeeling constituency. This is his first attempt into electoral politics.
: An important politician from the CPI (M), he represented Calcutta North constituency in the 14th Lok Sabha. He is contesting from the Raiganj constituency this year.
Some prominent MPs in the 15th Lok Sabha are:
: A BJP leader, he is a former Union Minister and held portfolios in Finance, Defense and External Affairs Ministry. He represents Darjeeling in the 15thLok Sabha.
: He represents the Barrackpore constituency and is a former Union Minister for Railways and Union Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare. He is the chairperson of the Indo - European Union Parliamentary Forum (IEUPF).
: A leader of the CPI, Dasgupta is a MP from the Ghatal constituency. He is a former General Secretary of the All India Trade Union Congress (AITUC).
: He is a member of the All India Forward Block (AIFB). He represents the Purulia constituency and is a member of the Committee on Coal and Steel and Committee on Papers Laid on the Table.
: She is a politician from the INC and represents the Raiganj constituency. She was elected to the West Bengal state assembly for the first time in 2006 and is currently the Union Minister of State for Urban Development.
Famous Political Personalities
West Bengal has given India a number of visionary politicians. Some of them are:
Subhas Chandra Bose
: Popularly called Netaji; he was an Indian freedom fighter of great renown. He founded the Forward Block in 1939 and headed the Indian National Army (INA).
Bidhan Chandra Ray
:He is a leader of the INC. He was appointed as the second Chief Minister of West Bengal and maintained power in the post for 14 years. He is credited for founding five cities in the state.
Prafulla Chandra Sen
:A renowned freedom fighter and a Gandhian, Sen was the Chief Minister of West Bengal from 1961-67. He is noted for introducing food grain rationing in the state.
: He was the longest serving Chief Minister of any state in India and was in power in West Bengal from 1977 to 2000. Basu, a CPI(M) leader was first elected for the legislative assembly in 1952.
: He is the current President of India. He started his political career in 1969 and as a leader of the INC held many important portfolios in the Defense, External Affairs and Finance ministries.
Siddhartha Shankar Ray
: He is a politician of the INC and was the Chief Minister of West Bengal from 1972 to 1977. He was also a former Governor of Punjab and the Education Minister of India.
: He is a prominent CPI(M) politician. He won his first Lok Sabha elections in 1971, and was the leader of CPI(M) in the Lok Sabha from 1989 to 2004. He was the Speaker of the Lok Sabha from 2004 to 2009.
: He is a member of the Politburo of CPI(M) and was the Chief Minister of West Bengal from 2000 to 2011. He was elected to the state assembly for the first time in 1977. As a Chief Minister he is credited for liberalizing Bengal's economy.
: She started her career as a Congress politician. She founded the All India Trinamool Congress (AITMC or TMC) in 1997. She was a Union Minister in the NDA and UPA-II regime. In 2011, she became the first female Chief Minister of West Bengal.
Opinion Polls 2014
Opinion polls predict that AITMC will emerge as the leading party in the state. AITMC is likely to bag around 20-28 seats in its favour, while the Left Front may win 10-14 seats. INC's performance is suspected to be worse than the last elections and the party may barely win 4-5 seats. BJP might secure 0-2 seats.
West Bengal Parliamentary Constituency Winners 2009
|2009||West Bengal||1||Cooch Behar||(SC)||Roy,Shri Nripendra Nath ||M||AIF Bloc||500677|
|2009||West Bengal||2||Alipurduars||(SC)||Tirkey,Shri Manohar ||M||RSP||384890|
|2009||West Bengal||3||Jalpaiguri||(SC)||Roy,Shri Mahendra Kumar ||M||CPI (M)||469613|
|2009||West Bengal||4||Darjeeling||GEN||Singh,Shri Jaswant ||M||BJP||497649|
|2009||West Bengal||5||Raiganj||GEN||Dasmunsi,Smt. Deepa ||F||INC||451776|
|2009||West Bengal||6||Balurghat||GEN||Majumdar,Shri Prasanta Kumar ||M||RSP||388444|
|2009||West Bengal||7||Maldaha Uttar||GEN||Noor,Smt. Mausam ||F||INC||440264|
|2009||West Bengal||8||Maldaha Dakshin||GEN||Choudhury,Shri Abu Hasem Khan ||M||INC||443377|
|2009||West Bengal||9||Jangipur||GEN||Mukherjee,Shri Abhijit ||M||INC||506749|
|2009||West Bengal||10||Baharampur||GEN||Chowdhury,Shri Adhir Ranjan ||M||INC||541920|
|2009||West Bengal||11||Murshidabad||GEN||Hossain,Shri Abdul Mannan ||M||INC||496348|
|2009||West Bengal||12||Krishnanagar||GEN||Paul,Shri Tapas ||M||AITC||443679|
|2009||West Bengal||13||Ranaghat||(SC)||Haldar,Dr. Sucharu Ranjan ||M||AITC||575058|
|2009||West Bengal||14||Bangaon||(SC)||Naskar,Shri Gobinda Chandra ||M||AITC||546596|
|2009||West Bengal||15||Barrackpore||GEN||Trivedi,Shri Dinesh ||M||AITC||428699|
|2009||West Bengal||16||Dum Dum||GEN||Roy,Prof. Saugata ||M||AITC||458988|
|2009||West Bengal||17||Barasat||GEN||Dastidar, Dr. (Smt.) Kakoli Ghosh ||F||AITC||522530|
|2009||West Bengal||18||Basirhat||GEN||Islam,Shri Sk. Nurul ||M||AITC||479650|
|2009||West Bengal||19||Joynagar||(SC)||Mandal,Dr. Tarun ||M||IND||446200|
|2009||West Bengal||20||Mathurapur||(SC)||Jatua,Shri Choudhury Mohan ||M||AITC||565505|
|2009||West Bengal||21||Diamond Harbour||GEN||Mitra,Shri Somendra Nath ||M||AITC||564612|
|2009||West Bengal||22||Jadavpur||GEN||Suman,Shri Kabir ||M||AITC||540667|
|2009||West Bengal||23||Kolkata Dakshin||GEN||Bakshi,Shri Subrata ||M||AITC ||576045|
|2009||West Bengal||24||Kolkata Uttar||GEN||Bandyopadhyay,Shri Sudip ||M||AITC||460646|
|2009||West Bengal||25||Howrah||GEN||Ambica Banerjee||M||AITC||477449|
|2009||West Bengal||26||Uluberia||GEN||Ahmed,Shri Sultan ||M||AITC||514193|
|2009||West Bengal||27||Srerampur||GEN||Banerjee,Shri Kalyan ||M||AITC||569725|
|2009||West Bengal||28||Hooghly||GEN||De(Nag),Dr. (Smt.) Ratna ||F||AITC||574022|
|2009||West Bengal||29||Arambagh||(SC)||Malik,Shri Sakti Mohan ||M||CPI (M)||630254|
|2009||West Bengal||30||Tamluk||GEN||Adhikari,Shri Suvendu ||M||AITC||637664|
|2009||West Bengal||31||Kanthi||GEN||Adhikari ,Shri Sisir Kumar ||M||AITC||606712|
|2009||West Bengal||32||Ghatal||GEN||Dasgupta,Shri Gurudas ||M||CPI||625923|
|2009||West Bengal||33||Jhargram||(ST)||Baske,Dr. Pulin Bihari ||M||CPI (M)||545231|
|2009||West Bengal||34||Medinipur||GEN||Panda,Shri Prabodh ||M||CPI||493021|
|2009||West Bengal||35||Purulia||GEN||Mahato,Shri Narahari ||M||AIF Bloc||399201|
|2009||West Bengal||36||Bankura||GEN||Acharia,Shri Basudeb ||M||CPI (M)||469223|
|2009||West Bengal||37||Bishnupur||(SC)||Bauri,Smt. Susmita ||F||CPI (M)||541075|
|2009||West Bengal||38||Bardhaman Purba||(SC)||Saha,Dr. Anup Kumar ||M||CPI (M)||531987|
|2009||West Bengal||39||Bardhaman-Durgapur||GEN||Haque,Prof. Sk. Saidul ||M||CPI (M)||573399|
|2009||West Bengal||40||Asansol||GEN||Chowdhury,Shri Bansa Gopal ||M||CPI (M)||435161|
|2009||West Bengal||41||Bolpur||(SC)||Dome,Dr. Ram Chandra ||M||CPI (M)||538383|
|2009||West Bengal||42||Birbhum||GEN||Roy,Smt. Satabdi ||F||AITC||486553|
||West Bengal Parliamentary Constituencies
Last Updated on : March 10, 2014
||Parliamentary Constituencies of India