The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and ruling Trinamool Congress, headed by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, are spearheading an intense election campaign in West Bengal. The third alliance that is in the fray is led by Congress. The Congress has signed an electoral pact with the Left in the eastern state.
Several opinion polls have predicted a tight contest between the BJP and TMC. In the previous Assembly elections held in 2016, the BJP had won just 3 three seats while the TMC pocketed 211. The Congress won 44 seats and the CPI(M) settled with 26 seats.
This time, polling will take place in eight phases with the first one scheduled for March 27 (Saturday), covering 30 seats.
Key candidates in the Phase 1 of Bengal Polls 2021
Purulia: Sujoy Banerjee (TMC) vs Sudip Mukherjee (BJP) vs Partha Prathim Banerjee (Congress)
Medinipur: June Malia (TMC) vs Shamit Dash (BJP) vs Tarun Kumar Ghosh (CPIM)
Kharagpur: Dinen Ray (TMC) vs Tapan Bhuiya (BJP) vs Sk. Saddam Ali (CPIM)
Kanthi Uttar: Tarun Kumar Jana (TMC) vs Sunita Singha (BJP) vs Sutanu Maity (CPIM)
Kanthi Dakshin: Jyotirmoy Kar (TMC) vs Arup Kumar Das (BJP) vs Anulup Panda (CPIM)
Baghmundi: Sushanta Mahato (TMC) vs Ashutosh Mahato (AJSU) vs Nepal Mahata (Congress)
The West Bengal Legistive Assembly comprises 294 seats and the halfway mark is 174. Polling in the remaining seven phases will take place on April 1, April 6, April 10, April 17, April 22, April 26 and April 29. Results will be declared on May 2.