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Tuesday, Jan 31, 2023
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Left names 34 candidates, outgoing mayor to contest

It is understood that the veteran CPM leader was at first reluctant to contest the election due to his ailing health and the recent death of his wife. However, the Left leader changed his mind after a phone call from former chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee.

Tests were conducted under the supervision of Section Officer Yogesh Saharan, who was deputed as Invigilator by the EC.

The Left Front on Tuesday released its list of candidates for the Siliguri Municipal Corporation (SMC) election. The list included Ashok Bhattacharya, the outgoing mayor of the civic body.

It is understood that the veteran CPM leader was at first reluctant to contest the election due to his ailing health and the recent death of his wife. However, the Left leader changed his mind after a phone call from former chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee.

The former minister said, “After the telephonic conversion during which he asked me to lead the party’s fight in Siliguri, I have decided to reconsider my decision. I will contest the election from ward 6,” Bhattacharya told reporters. The CPM on Tuesday released names of candidates for 34 out of the 47-ward SMC, leaving the door open for an alliance with the Congress.

In 2015, Left Front fought the civic polls in alliance with the Congress and defeated the Trinamool Congress. Bhattacharya was elected the mayor of Siliguri. Congress leader Shankar Malakar said his party is keen to contest the SMC election in alliance with the Left. “They have left some seats for us. We hope to reach an understanding in further meetings,” Malakar said. Even on Tuesday evening, both parties held a meeting to discuss seat sharing arrangements.

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Meanwhile, the West Bengal State Election Commission (WBSEC) on Tuesday formally notified elections to the municipal corporations of Siliguri, Asansol, Chandannagar and Bidhannagar on January 22. In another related development, a PIL was filed at Calcutta High Court, seeking immediate election in Howrah Municipal Corporation.

The notification for HMC polls has not been issued by the state poll panel as the bill which was passed in the Assembly seeking bifurcation of Bally Municipality from HMC is awaiting a consent from Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar.

First published on: 29-12-2021 at 06:12 IST
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