Constituency Watch: TMC At Advantage In Minority-Dominated Uluberia

(MENAFN- IANS) Kolkata, April 25 (IANS) The ruling Trinamool Congress is in an advantageous situation at Uluberia constituency in Kolkata-adjacent Howrah District, where minority voters traditionally determine the fate of candidates.

After being a Red bastion and giving CPI(M) ten-consecutive victories from 1971 to 2004, Uluberia turned into a virtual fortress of the Trinamool Congress since the 2009 Lok Sabha polls.

Of the three principal candidates from Uluberia, the candidates of the Trinamool Congress and the Congress come from the minority community.

The Trinamool Congress has re-nominated its two-time winning candidate Sajda Ahmed, the widow of the two-time party MP from the same constituency, late Sultan Ahmed.

What is making Sajda Ahmed confident of her victory this time as well are the results of the 2019 Lok Sabha and 2021 West Bengal Assembly polls.

In 2019, Sajda Ahmed had won by a margin of over two lakh votes and again in the 2021 Assembly polls, Trinamool Congress candidates got elected from all the seven Assembly constituencies under the Uluberia Lok Sabha.

If past winning margins are a source of confidence for Sajda Ahmed, the unremitting increase in the vote share of the BJP since the 2014 Lok Sabha polls is giving a sense of poise to the party's candidate Arun Uday Pal Chaudhury.

In the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, BJP candidate Ranjit Kishore Mahanty finished in third position, bagging 11.56 per cent of the votes polled then. However, in the 2018 bye-elections at Uluberia, where Sajda Ahmed got elected for the first time, BJP's Anupam Mallik finished in the second position, improving the vote share to 23.29 per cent.

Again in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, BJP candidate and actor-turned-politician Joy Banerjee further improved his party's vote share to 36.58 per cent.

Analysts are of the opinion that this uninterrupted increase in vote share is a clear indication of the consolidation of Hindu votes in favour of the saffron camp at Uluberia.

Another positive point for the BJP candidate is that he has his roots in Uluberia.

In fact, Chaudhury, in his campaign is focussing on this roots theory to woo the electorate.

However, Sajda Ahmed is not giving much importance to this theory. According to her, the people of Uluberia will vote again keeping in mind the development activities undertaken by the state government under the leadership of Chief Minister, Mamata Banerjee.

Also in the poll-fray is the Left Front-supported Congress candidate Azahar Mollick, the state Youth Congress President and AICC member.

The main focus of his campaign is how the“clandestine understanding” between the BJP and Trinamool Congress is aiding the state's ruling party to establish a“reign of terror and corruption.”

Uluberia is basically a rural Lok Sabha constituency with voter strength of around 16 lakh. Farming is the principal means of livelihood in the region.



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