In a huge blow to Mamata Banerjee, the BJP has swept the election to a cooperative body in Nandigram, a former Trinamool Congress stronghold where the Bengal Chief Minister was defeated in 2021.
The BJP has won 11 of the 12 seats of the cooperative body Bhekutia Samabay Krishi Samity, which was earlier run by Mamata Banerjee’s Trinamool. Only one seat went to the Trinamool in the election held on Sunday.
Both parties accused each other of violence in the polls. The BJP accused the Trinamool of trying to bring in outsiders to disrupt voting.
Nandigram is the constituency of Suvendu Adhikari, Mamata Banerjee’s former aide, who left the Trinamool and joined the BJP months before the 2021 Bengal election.
Mamata Banerjee won the state election, becoming Chief Minister for the third time, but she lost a prestige battle to Suvendu Adhikari in Nandigram, the district that contributed to her rise to power in Bengal.
Her setback in the cooperative body polls in Nandigram has been projected by BJP leaders as a sign that she is losing her grip on key strongholds in Bengal.