Monday, 24 January, 2022

Mamata’s party wins landslide victory in Kolkata civic polls

Mamata’s party wins landslide victory in Kolkata civic polls

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KOLKATA: The Trinamool Congress (TMC) on Tuesday registered a landslide victory in the Kolkata Municipal Elections bagging 134 out of 144 wards and the BJP, which had emerged as the main opposition party in the recent Assembly elections, won three seats, Indian media reported.

The Left Front and Congress won two each. The Independent candidates bagged victory in three wards.

Though the Left Front failed to retain the second position that it had secured in the 2015 civic polls, the party’s vote share was higher than the BJP. It was also in the second position in 65 seats while the saffron camp was in 47 wards. The Congress was ahead of the Left Front and the BJP in 16 seats.

Interacting with media after the victory, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said: “This is a victory of the people who have given their mandate in favour of development. This is a victory of development that Trinamool Congress has been continuously doing since its inception to power in 2011”.

“People have come out wholeheartedly to vote. This is a victory for democracy. This will help to keep a low profile and humbly work for the people of the city as well as of the state,” the chief minister added.

Speaking on a larger perspective, the chief minister stated: “This victory is very important on national level also because all the national parties like BJP, Congress and Left Front have been defeated by the people’s mandate. We will work more for the development of the state”.

“The beautification of Kolkata has been done. We stay on-ground and don’t fly by night. We will now work for the urban and semi-urban areas also,” she added.

Establishing record dominance, the TMC secured 72 percent vote share when the LF bagged 12 percent and the BJP 9 percent respectively. The Congress got 4 percent vote share.

In the 2015 civic polls, the TMC had bagged 113 wards, the LF 15 seats and the BJP 7 seats.    Leader of Opposition Suvendu Adhikari criticised the role of the state election commission. "Congratulations to @CEOWestBengal Sourav Das for making Royal Nephew of Bengal's prediction come true. Important Steps taken by you such as EVM without VVPAT, CCTV without connection and last but not the least; allowing an atmosphere of fear to prevail with @KolkataPolice's help," he tweeted.

Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury said had the election been free and fair, his party would have won in at least 12 wards.

Echoing the same, CPI(M)’S Sujan Chakraborty said had the electorates were allowed to exercise their franchise freely, the break-up of the result would have been different.

Outgoing mayor Firhad Hakim, who went to meet chief minister Mamata Banerjee after the results fuelling the speculation of becoming the mayor for the second time, told the reporters: “We should accept the mandate of the people. We also did opposition politics for 34 years but we never questioned the people. They defeated us and we accepted it with a whole heart”.

Hitting out at BJP for their demand for repoll, Hakim said: “One should have the moral courage to accept the people’s mandate. BJP is insulting the common people – the voters who went all the way from their houses to the polling stations to give their vote. BJP is insulting them. They have given the answers.”

Asked whether Firhad Hakim will be the next mayor, a senior Trinamool leader said: “That will be decided by the party. Once the result comes in the leadership will decide the future mayor of the city”.