Despite battling violence, BJP projected to make strong gains in West Bengal Zilla Parishad polls

The upcoming West Bengal Panchayat polls have been marred by violence and attack on BJP workers, allegedly perpetrated by the TMC goons. There have also been various reports of TMC goons attacking BJP candidates going to file nominations for the Panchayat polls. This has resulted in the party taking a contingent of electoral violence victims to President Kovind, to appraise him of the situation.

Despite such setbacks, the BJP might end up doing well in the said polls if a ABP Ananda – C Voter survey is to be believed.

As per the survey, the TMC is predicted to win the majority of the 825 Zilla Parishad seats, but BJP too is expected to make a significant entry into the state.

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According to reports, the TMC is set to win 538 out of the total 825. BJP has been predicted to win 167 seats. The erstwhile ruling CPI(M) and left parties have been predicted to win about 73 seats while the Congress may end up being at the bottom with just 43 seats.

If this indeed turns out to be true, it might signal a strong upswing in the BJP’s fortune in West Bengal. Back in 2013, out of the 825 Zilla Parishads, the TMC had won 531, the left won 213, Congress won 77 and the BJP won virtually none.

Since the first opinion polls were aired on 2 April the BJP has reportedly gained 2% of the vote share, with the party doing well in districts like 24 Parganas, Nadia and Cooch Bihar. Congress and the left parties have seen a loss in their vote shares.

With the BJP emerging as the single largest opposition party in the polls, speculations are rife that it might cause concern for TMC chief Mamata Banerjee for the upcoming Lok Sabha polls.

As of today, state BJP leaders met Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh regarding the ongoing violence in the state.

The Kolkata High Court had earlier issued a stay order on the panchayat election. The state government had informed the Election Commission that it wants a single phase Panchayat elections on 14th May. As per latest news reports, the Election Commission has accepted the request. The counting of the votes will happen on May 17th.

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