BJP MLA Agnimitra Paul(R), Chief Spokesperson Samik Bhattacharya, and State Vice President Pratap Banerjee hold BJP candidate list for the upcoming Kolkata Municipal Corporation election, in Kolkata on Monday. ANI

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Monday announced the list of candidates in 144 wards of the Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) and nominated nine Muslim candidates including five women.

Out of 144 candidates, there are more than 48 young faces on the list. At the same time, more than 50 women candidates have been included in the list. There are nine candidates from the minority community as well. The list includes five lawyers, a retired colonel, three doctors, four teachers, and professors.

At the outset of the announcement, BJP state vice-president Pratap Bandyopadhyay said that this time, more attention has been paid to the lower-level workers in the list of candidates. At the same time, importance has been given to female candidates as well.

Pratap Bandyopadhyay, BJP’s state vice-president and in charge of Kolkata pre-polls, said, “We had a meeting of the selection committee on Sunday. This list has been decided there. We are announcing the list today after the approval of state president Sukanta Majumdar.”

At the beginning of the press conference, BJP leader Samik Bhattacharya said, “We have gone to court demanding that the elections of all corporations and municipalities, including Kolkata and Howrah, be held on the same day.

“As we have said the day before, due to the obscure position of the court, the day of Kolkata pre-poll was declared unilaterally. Under no circumstances did the BJP want to leave the field in front of the court… Eighty-five percent of the names on our list of candidates for the Kolkata pre-poll were finalized two months ago. We announced the list of 144 members of our party today, taking into account the conduct of the court and especially the conduct of the Trinamool Congress and the State Election Commission.”

After announcing the list of candidates, Bhattacharya said, “The BJP’s list of candidates is not based on anyone’s will or reluctance. The will of the party, the consensus of the party is the last word here. The decision of the party is the last word.”

Rinku Naskar left the CPM and joined the BJP before the assembly vote.

It was heard that the BJP may nominate her in the councillor vote. But in today’s list, the name of the candidate in ward number 102 was Indira Gangopadhyay.

At the same time, it was heard that the name of a family member of ‘Shahid’ may be on the list of BJP candidates. In this case, it was also heard that the grandfather of the slain BJP activist Abhijit Sarkar of Kankurgachhi was a candidate of Biswajit Sarkar.

In this context too, Samik Bhattacharya said, “We do not believe in the politics of family system. This is the difference between BJP’s politics and grassroots politics. And the martyr’s family does not have to be brought to the premises of politics and used everywhere. There are certain beliefs. They will talk in that way. But we do not believe in the politics of overall political gain by bringing them.”