Sun, 18 Apr 2021

Indore (Madhya Pradesh) [India], February 28 (ANI): The Congress-Left alliance with Indian Secular Front (ISF) is not a threat to Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in West Bengal, said party National General Secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya on Saturday.

"In West Bengal, we are targeting 51 per cent voters and therefore we don't care who forms an alliance with whom. We will get 51 per cent votes and form a government with a two-thirds majority, "Vijayvargiya told ANI.

Talking about All India Majlis-e-Ittehad-ul-Muslimeen (AIMIM) possible entry in West Bengal politics, the BJP leader said Asaduddin Owaisi-led AIMIM would not affect his party's vote bank.

"Owaisi Ji wanted to enter West Bengal politics on the back of ISF, but now that ISF is part of the left alliance, we will have to see his next move. But it will not damage BJP's vote," Vijayvargiya noted.

West Bengal will witness eight-phased Assembly polls beginning March 27.

The tenure of the 16th Legislative Assembly of West Bengal will end on May 30 this year. A total of 7,34,07,832 voters will choose their representative for the 17th Legislative Assembly of West Bengal.

Addressing a press conference, Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora said: "West Bengal will see eight-phase elections. 30 Assembly constituencies in five districts will go to polls in the first phase on March 27. 30 Assembly constituencies in four districts will go to polls in the second phase on April 1.

In the third phase, 31 constituencies in 3 districts will go to polls on April 6. 44 constituencies in five districts will go for polling on April 10.""In the fifth phase, 45 constituencies in six districts will witness polling on April 17. 43 constituencies in four districts in the sixth phase will go to polls on April 22. 36 constituencies in five districts in the seventh phase will go for polling on April 26. In the eighth and final phase, 35 constituencies in four districts will witness polling on April 29," he said.

West Bengal is likely to witness a triangular contest this time with TMC, Congress-Left alliance, and BJP in the fray.

While Mamata Banerjee is seeking her third consecutive term, BJP has set a target of winning 200 seats in the 294-member state Assembly. Congress and the Left have stitched the alliance for the polls and had already finalised the seat-sharing agreement. They are also in touch with the Indian Secular Front (ISF), recently floated by influential minority leader Abbas Siddique.

In 2016 West Bengal Assembly elections, out of the 294 seats, Congress had managed to win 44 seats while the Left Front bagged 33 seats. The ruling TMC secured 211 seats and the BJP had won 3 seats.

The BJP made deep inroads in the state in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections winning 18 seats and reducing TMC's tally to 22. Out of the total 42 Lok Sabha constituencies in West Bengal, Congress won two seats, the Left drew a blank.

After BJP's performance in the 2019 polls, several TMC leaders have joined the party led by JP Nadda. (ANI)

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