Didi ready for battle.

Didi ready for battle.

BJP shifts focus to remaining 203 seats in Bengal; to pull out all stops

Polling percentage in 3rd phase of Bengal polls better than Lok Sabha elections

Agency Report | New Delhi | 7 April, 2021 | 11:10 PM

After the Assembly elections concluded in Assam, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Puducherry on Tuesday, the BJP has now shifted all its focus to the remaining 203 seats in West Bengal, where three of the eight-phase polling have been conducted so far.

A senior BJP leader said that now the sole focus will be on West Bengal in order to achieve the party’s target to win more than 200 seats in the 294-member state Assembly.

“As per our internal assessment, the party’s performance has been overwhelming so far. There are some shortcomings in some areas where elections are yet to take place, but we will rectify them in the remaining five phases of polling,” he said.

Another senior BJP leader said that it has been realised that few areas where the BJP had performed well in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls still require some extra work on the ground to mobilise the voters in the party’s favour.

“There are some small local issues such as lesser crowd in some public meetings, which will be corrected to carry forward the momentum,” he said.

He also pointed out that more senior leaders, including Union ministers, will be engaged in campaigning in West Bengal.

“Senior leaders and Union ministers will be roped in for both outreach and strategic planning as per the requirement,” he said.

It is learnt that more public meetings will be organised as more leaders, who were busy in Assam, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Puducherry, are now free to assist and oversee the party’s poll preparedness in West Bengal.

“Depending on the need, we may increase the number of public meetings for the remaining five phases of elections as more senior leaders and Union ministers are available for campaigning now,” another BJP leader said.

The saffron party, however, is not going to make major changes in its campaign strategy as everything was taken into consideration before it was rolled out.

“Some minor changes will be made as per local requirements like sending more senior leaders to particular regions or sending more star campaigners to seek votes in favour of our candidates,” he said.

The people of the 31 assembly constituencies in West Bengal have voted overwhelmingly in the third phase of election conducted on April 6. The final percentage data released by the commission shows that the overall percentage in the 31 assembly constituencies is 84.6, which is better compared to the last Lok Sabha polls that had a percentage of meagre 80.5 so far these assembly constituencies are concerned.

A district-wise analysis shows that 16 constituencies of South 24 Parganas district that went for the polls on last Tuesday have an average polling percentage of 85.5 followed by 8 constituencies of Hooghly district that has a percentage of 83.7 and the 7 constituencies of Howrah has polling average of 83.5.

Interestingly the 16 constituencies of South 24 Parganas had a cumulative polling of only 82.5 per cent in the last Lok Sabha polls. Similarly, the 8 constituencies had an average of 81.6 per cent and the 7 constituencies had the lowest average of only 80.3 per cent.

Though the polling per cent improved compared to the Parliamentary election in 2019 but it was lower than the second phase of polling when 30 constituencies including Nandigram in West Midnapore district went for the polls on April 1.

According to election data, Nandigram, where the chief minister locked horns with her one-time aide Suvendu Adhikary, had a whopping polling percentage of 88 per cent and the average polling in the entire phase was 86.11. However, in the first phase when 30 assembly constituencies of Jhargram and East Midnapore went for the polls on March 27, the polling percentage was 84.63.

So far as individual constituencies are concerned, Khanakul in Hooghly district had the lowest percentage of 78.2 and Goghat in the same district had the highest polling percentage of 88.6 percentage. Two more constituencies of South 24 Parganas district – Diamond Harbour and Canning East crossed the 88 per cent mark.

While Canning East has a polling percentage of 88.3 per cent, Diamond Harbour has a polling percentage of 88 per cent. (IANS)