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Winners, Live Streaming Counting West Bengal Assembly Election 2021

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Old 03-22-2021, 12:53 PM
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Default Winners, Live Streaming Counting West Bengal Assembly Election 2021

Who Will Win Bengal? 6 Factors That May Swing Things For Mamata Banerjee or BJP

West Bengal Assembly Election 2021: Aftermath of the release of TMC and BJP candidates list, both party has witnessed protest, and dissent from own supporters and leaders. Both TMC and BJP have changed candidates even after announcing the list.

West Bengal Assembly Election 2021 is a battle of prestige for Mamata Banerjee and Narendra Modi.

West Bengal Assembly Election 2021 is an ultimate showdown between TMC Supremo Mamata Banerjee and BJP! While, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Home Minister Amit Shah are leading an intensive, high-octane poll campaign for BJP, TMC’s outreach to voters has been championed single-handedly by Mamata Banerjee and carefully strategized by Prashant Kishor. Meanwhile, Congress, CPIM-led Left and newly formed Indian Secular Front (ISF) have forged an alliance to take both BJP and TMC in the high-voltage eight-phase state assembly election, scheduled to begin on March 27. Election Commission has already announced that along with West Bengal, Assembly elections will be held in Tamil Nadu, Assam, Kerala, and Puducherry and counting will take place on May 2. The stakes are very high for Mamata Banerjee as she looks to fortify her citadel against the BJP which made strong inroads in the state during the Lok Sabha 2019. If Mamata Banerjee manages to withstand the BJP onslaught and anti-incumbency factor, she will become the state Chief Minister for third time. However, if BJP goes onto wrest control of the state, it will be an unprecedented achievement for the saffron party. Also Read - Swapan Dasgupta Resigns as Rajya Sabha MP After TMC's Objection

Why does West Bengal Assembly Elections 2021 hold so much importance for BJP, and Mamata Banerjee’s TMC?
Also Read - 'I Wish You A Speedy Recovery, But What About The Pain Of....': Amit Shah Targets Mamata In Bengal

After coming to power in 2014 at the Centre, BJP aimed at extending its footprint beyond the Hindi belt. Assam, Tripura, Northeastern states, Bengal, Odisha, and Kerala became pivotal for the ruling party at the Centre. Bengal has 42 Lok Sabha seats, third highest after Utta Pradesh (80) and Maharashtra (48). In 2019 Lok Sabha polls, BJP won 18 seats and had a staggering 40.2 per cent of vote share in Bengal. The stupendous success forced BJP to believe that they can dethrone Mamata Banerjee in 2021. BJP has roped in turncoats and once Mamata Banerjee’s close aide and confidante like Mukul Roy and strongman Suvendu Adhikari paving the way for an exodus that saw a number of TMC legislators, and lawmakers joining the BJP ranks. When Mamata Banerjee tried to play the glamour card by bringing in personalities from Bengali film industry, BJP tried to negate the ploy by fielding actors and actresses in the upcoming Bengal assembly elections as candidates. Also Read - Yashwant Sinha Joins TMC Ahead of West Bengal Elections, Says Democracy is in Peril

During 2014 Lok Sabha election campaign, PM Modi didn’t take on CM Banerjee but the TMC supremo unleashed a vociferous attack on BJP’s prime ministerial face then. Even though, Modi won the election, Mamata Banerjee ensured that she remained one of the chief opposition figures. In 2016 Bengal assembly polls, Mamata Banerjee’s TMC successfully saw off the incumbency as the party won 211 seats bettering its 2011 assembly elections’ tally of 184. TMC also registered a vote share of 44.91 per cent in 2016. However, situation changed dramatically in 2019 as Banerjee’s party could only win 22 Lok Sabha seats in the state with a vote share dropping to 43.3 per cent.

While TMC tried to expand its footprint in states like Tripura, Assam, Odisha, Banerjee’s endeavour failed to yield desired success thus leaving Bengal as the only stronghold for the party. Winning this year’s poll will provide the necessary impetus and may catapult Mamata Banerjee as one of the strong prime ministerial faces in case a federal front takes shape ahead of 2024 Lok Sabha Polls. Conceding the Bengal would be a body blow for Banerjee’s national aspirations.

Here Are Factors That May Decide Winner in Bengal

1. Women Voters: West Bengal has a strong presence of women electorates as the female voters account for 49 per cent out of the total population that are eligible to exercise their franchise, according to data disclosed by Election Commission ahead of the much-awaited polls. Women electorates are often considered as silent voters. BJP has promised 33 per cent reservation for women in state government jobs, and free rides in public transport in its manifesto. Meanwhile, TMC has fielded 50 women candidates which is 17 per cent of total candidates. No doubt, the party, which will be favoured by the female voters, will have an advantage.

2. Middle Class Voters: Post 2019 elections, it was evident that a large number of middle class voters in Bengal showed their faith in PM Modi and BJP. However, leading up to the election, fuel prices and LPG Cylinders’ rates have become an issue and Banerjee is leaving no stone unturned to cash in. Meanwhile, BJP has promised that it would provide free electricity up to 200 units.

3. Educated but Unemployed Youths: Time to time, PM Modi and other BJP leaders have claimed that Bengal has an issue of jobs and there has been talent exodus from the state. BJP is aiming to gain most out the issue. However, Mamata Banerjee has been trying to woo the youths by promising creation of 5 lakh jobs per year in the TMC manifesto. In its manifesto, BJP has promised that it would provide at least employment opportunity from every family in the state.

4. Muslim Voters: Bengal has an estimated 30 per cent Muslim voters sprawling across 294 assembly seats. Both Mamata Banerjee and BJP know the importance of the pivotal Minority vote bank. Banerjee, who often claimed herself to be champion of minority causes, is fighting from Nandigram Assembly Constituency which has a sizeable presence of Muslim voters. However, this year TMC has fielded 42 Muslim candidates which account for 14 per cent of the total candidates. In 2016, assembly polls, TMC fielded 53 Muslim candidates.

BJP is hoping that presence of Asaduddin Owaisi and more over ISF leader and influential cleric Abbas Siddiqui would divide the vote bank causing damage to Banerjee’s vote share and seats. In North Bengal, muslim infested districts like Murshidabad, South Dinajpur will witness Congress vs TMC and BJP believes that like 2019 Lok Sabha polls, this will benefit them big time.

5. CPIM Vote Bank: The Left front’s vote bank of over 29 per cent in 2014 Lok Sabha came down to mere 7.46 per cent in 2019 General elections in Bengal. On the other hand, BJP’s vote bank rose from just over 17 per cent in 2014 Lok Sabha polls to 40.25 per cent in 2019 Parliamentary elections in Bengal. CPIM General Secretary Sitaram Yechuri said ,”No party member would have voted for BJP but the Left vote support base” could have done so.
Mamata Banerjee, who used to consider CPIM as her numero uno enemy, last week has repeatedly made fervour appeals to “friends in Left” to vote for TMC.

6. Dissent within BJP, TMC following Ticket Distribution: Aftermath of the release of TMC and BJP candidates list, both party has witnessed protest, and dissent from own supporters and leaders. Both TMC and BJP have changed candidates even after announcing the list.

As we are heading towards the festival of democracy in five states, we may expect that majority must be granted and minority should be given due respect.

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