West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee will lead the Trinamool Congress’s campaign for the 30 October by-election to four assembly seats in the state. While the party’s general secretary Abhishek Banerjee is among the star campaigners for the by-election, the names of actor-turned-MP Nusrat Jahan and former BJP leader Babul Supriyo, who recently joined the Trinamool Congress camp, do not figure in the list.
The BJP’s list of campaigners features prominent national leaders.
The Trinamool Congress list contains the names of actor-MPs Dev and Mimi Chakraborty, popular singer-MLA Aditi Munshi, filmmaker-MLA Raj Chakraborty, actor-turned Trinamool Congress state youth wing chief Sayani Ghosh, apart from senior leaders Subrata Mukherjee, Firhad Hakim, Sougata Roy and Arup Biswas.
Significantly, the names of Nusrat Jahan, who had actively campaigned for the party in the assembly election held in March-April, and Supriyo, who joined the party before the just-concluded Bhabanipur by-election, requested Mamata Banerjee to “save me from the embarrassment of campaigning against long-time BJP friend Priyanka Tibrewal”, do not figure in the Trinamool Congress list.
Trinamool Congress sources said they “spared” Nusrat Jahan from the “dust and grime” of the campaign trail, as she is nursing her baby these days.
The saffron party, which had roped in a number of campaigners from outside West Bengal for the Assembly polls, is equally relying on the local brigade of its state president Sukanta Majumder, national vice-president Dilip Ghosh, Leader of Opposition in the state Assembly Suvendu Adhikari, Union ministers and northern Bengal MPs John Barla and Nisith Pramanik, Minister-MP from the Matua community Santanu Thakur, among others.
The BJP list of campaigners contains also the party’s celebrity faces — actor-turned-Rajya Sabha MP Rupa Ganguly and actor-MP Locket Chatterjee, besides fashion designer and MLA Agnimitra Paul.