Kolkata: Ministers in Mamata Banerjee cabinet Haidar Aziz Safwi, Javed Ahmed Khan, Abdul Karim Chowdhury and Firhad Hakim are among the 57 Muslims fielded by the Trinamool Congress Party for the 2016 Assembly Elections, according to the party list released on Friday.
While Haidar Aziz Safwi and Javed Ahmed Khan are fielded from Uluberia Purba and Kasba assembly seats in South 24 Parganas, Abdul Karim Chowdhury and Firhad Hakim will contest from Islampur in Uttar Dinajpur district and Kolkata Port respectively.
Tajmul Hossain (Harishchandrapur Malda), Dr. Moazzem Hossain (Malatipur Malda), Shehnaz Quaderi (Ratua Malda), M.D. Nazrul Islam (Mothabari Malda), Abu Naser Khan Choudhury (Sujapur Malda), Md. Mustafa (Farakka Murshidabad), Amirul Islam (Samserganj Murshidabad), Jakir Hossain (Jangipur), Dr. Abul Kasem Molla (Raghunathganj) and Chand Mohammad (Lalgola).
Other Muslims included in the list are: Abu Sufian (Bhagabangola), Dr. Humayun Kabir (Raninagar), Siddika Begum (Rejinagar), Masud Karim (Naoda), Soumik Hossain (Domkal), Naseeruddin Ahamed (Kaliganj Nadia), Kallol Khan (Nakashipara), Rukbanur Rahaman (Chapra), Amir Ali Baduria (North 24 Parganas), Rafiquer Rahaman (Amdanga), Rahima Mondal (Deganga), Haji Sk. Nurul Islam (Haroa), Atm Abdullah (Basirhat Uttar) and Md Giyas Uddin Molla (Magrahat Paschim).
In the last election, Mamata had fielded 38 Muslims. The present West Bengal assembly has a total of 59 Muslim MLAs belonging to the ruling Trinamool Congress Party and opposition political groups.
West Bengal has an estimated 29% Muslim population in the state. Out of the total 23 districts, Muslims are a majority in five districts — North and South Dinajpur, Malda, Murshidabad and Birbhum. The Muslim population in districts like Nadia, North and South 24 Parganas is sizeable and in many rural constituencies they decide the electoral result.
Out of 294 Assembly constituencies in the state, Muslims, if they vote together in a block, are a deciding factor in 140 seats.
Elections to the 294-seats in Weste Bengal will be held on April 4-11, 17, 21, 25 and 30 and May 5, Chief Election Commissioner Nasim Zaidi told the media Friday.
Mamata announced the complete list of the 294 Trinamool Congress Party within an hour after the election schedule was announced by the Chief Election Commissioner.
While announcing the list, Mamata said that the number of women candidates contesting for Trinamool Congress in 2011 was 31 while in 2016 the number has increased to 45.
The Trinamool Chairperson also said that apart from the political faces, actor Sohom, former footballers Bhaichung Bhutia and Syed Rahim Nabi, former cricketer Laxmiratan Shukla and social worker Vaishali Dalmiya will contest for the party in different constituencies.
“We have an alliance with people. We have delivered on the promises made. Bengal has turned around in last 4 years,” Mamata Banerjee said. (ummid)