Actor-turned-BJP leader Roopa Ganguly, who heads the party’s women’s wing in West Bengal, will face off against cricketer-turned-Trinamool Congress candidate Laxmi Ratan Shukla in Howrah North. Roopa Ganguly was among 194 candidates named in the BJP’s second list, released Thursday. The party has so far named 246 candidates; Bengal has 294 seats.
Prominent among those in the second list is former state BJP president Rahul Sinha, who is now a national secretary. He will contest from Jorasanko in Kolkata. Another actor besides Ganguly is Suman Banerjee, who will contest from English Bazar, Malda.
Of those named Thursday, 22 are women, or 11 per cent of 194.
One nomination that led to instant opposition was that of Krishanu Mitra, the state unit’s media-in-charge and spokesperson. He has been fielded from Kamarhati, where he will face jailed TMC leader and former transport minister Madan Mitra. Shortly after his name was announced, BJP workers from Kamarhati demonstrated outside the party headquarters in Kolkata, describing Krishanu as an outsider to the constituency. The protesters had been hoping the ticket would go to Mohammad Alam, sources said.
Ritesh Tiwari, the former state BJP media-in-charge, will contest from Chowringhee in Kolkata. President of the state BJP’s youth wing Amitabha Roy will contest from Barrackpore.