BJP leader and party's Bhabanipur Assembly bypoll candidate Priyanka Tibrewal on Monday lashed out at the Mamata Banerjee government over rising incidents of violence in the state. She urged people of Bhabanipur to "make history" by defeating Mamata in her hometurf.
"This is a fight against injustice. This is a fight for justice, for the people of West Bengal. I would like to tell the people of Bhabanipur that they have received a big opportunity, they should come forward and make history," she said.
Priyanka, 40, a lawyer by profession, is known to be behind the BJP's victory in the post-poll violence PIL against the West Bengal government. The Calcutta High Court recently ordered a CBI probe into crimes such as rape and murder during post-poll violence in the state.
Priyanka has held various roles in the BJP. She has been the State Officer Bearer for the party. An English Honors graduate from the University of Delhi and law from the University of Calcutta, Priyanka embarked on her journey as an advocate in the High Court of Calcutta and the Supreme Court of India. She also holds a Master of Business Administration from Assumption University, Thailand.
Priyanka was also the legal adviser of former Union Minister Babul Supriyo. Inspired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, she joined the BJP in August 2014. In 2015, she had contested the Kolkata Municipal Council elections from ward number 58 (Entally). She, however, lost to TMC's Swapan Sammadar.
Priyanka was elevated to the vice president post of Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM) in West Bengal in August last year. In the Assembly elections held earlier this year, she entered the fray from Entally but lost to TMC’s Swarna Kamal by a margin of over 58,000 votes.
Earlier on Friday, Banerjee filed her nomination for the September 30 Bhabanipur assembly by-poll winning which is an absolute necessity for her to continue as the Chief Minister. She will be pitted against Priyanka and Left Front's Srijib Biswas. The Congress has decided not to field a candidate against her.
The votes for Bhabanipur as also Jangipur and Samserganj will be counted on October 3 and results declared the same day.
Banerjee, a resident of Bhabanipur, had won the seat twice in 2011 and 2016 but shifted to Nandigram, where the anti-farmland acquisition movement against the Left Front government had transformed her into a major political force in the volatile state, to dare her former protege and now a BJP leader Suvendu Adhikari on his home turf. Though Banerjee powered the TMC to a resounding win for a third straight term in office, she lost in Nandigram. She now must win Bhabanipur to ensure an unbroken stint as the Chief Minister.
Banerjee is required to win a seat in the state assembly by November 5 in conformity with the constitutional provisions in order to continue as Chief Minister. The Constitution allows a non-member of a state legislature or Parliament to continue in a ministerial position without getting elected only for six months.
After her defeat in Nandigram, Sovandeb Chattopadhyay, state cabinet minister and TMC MLA from Bhabanipur, vacated the seat to facilitate her return to the assembly from there.
Banerjee was first elected to the Assembly in a by-poll from Bhabanipur months after the TMC stormed to power ousting the 34-year-old Left Front dispensation in 2011. She represented South Kolkata Lok Sabha seat, of which Bhabanipur is a segment, six times.