Jamshedpur : Even after Sunday practically stopping the political parties and their candidates from holding public rallies, meetings and road shows the spirit of the candidates to make the most even after the deadline is far from vanishing.
The Kolhan division, where the state is witnessing two former Chief Ministers of Jharkhand trying their luck to earn ticket to the Assembly besides, of course, few other important political personalities, experienced the ‘canvassing heat’ even after the campaigning deadline was over. All eyes are on Jamshedpur West.
Two member teams comprising a magistrate (an administrative official) and a videographer (private videographers hired on daily basis by the administration) have been placed from morning till night with selected candidates and senior leaders of respective political parties.
The administration notification has placed 26 leaders/candidates under close vigil. The list include candidates like BJP national vice-president and four times MLA Raghubar Das (Jamshedpur East), former legislator Sarayu Roy ( Jamshedpur West), BJP sitting legislator Meneka Sardar (Potka), former BJP state president Dineshanand Goswami (Baharagora), BJP’s candidate Laxman Tuddu (Ghatshila), Banna Gupta (Jamshedpur West), former MLA Dulal Bhuiyan (Jugsalai), JMM candidate Upender Singh (Jamshedpur West), sitting MLA Ramdas Soren (Ghatshila) and sitting MLA Ram Chandra Sahis (Jugsalai).
Tough challenge lies ahead for sitting Jamshedpur West Congress MLA and Agriculture Minister Banna Gupta in his home turf, Jamshedpur West. In a constituency of 3,20,000 voters, around 90,000 are from the minority community. However, with two candidates from the minority community in fray, the minority votes are set to divide giving fears to the Gupta.
In 2009, Gupta lagged behind BJP sitting MLA Saryu Roy in the initial staged but registered a last minute win after Muslim-dominated Mango (especially Azadnagar) votes were counted.
Though the senior leader of BJP Saryu Roy had maintained a lead of 11,000 votes till 14th round but the last two rounds of 20 rounded counting turned out to be crucial for Roy. Despite all odds Congress candidate Banna Gupta managed to cover the gap and by 18th round despite lagging behind 500 hundred votes improved tremendously in last two round defeated senior leader Saryu Roy by a margin of mere 3297 votes. Banna Gupta received 55638 votes and Saryu Roy 52341 votes.
However, situation is different this time. The JVM has fielded Firoz Khan, the party’s East Singhbhum district president, known for his strong hold in Mango area while Sahzad Khan is contesting as an independent.
Earlier, Gupta was confident when as no party had fielded a candidate from minority community however, situation seems to be changing with JVM naming Firoz Khan as its candidate on November 10.
Poll experts predict a tough contest for Gupta and the ultimate BJP’s Saryu Roy will be in a better position. Moreover, with the city gripped with Modi factor, Saryu seems confident to give a tough fight to his rival sitting MLA.