The West Bengal panchayat elections are likely to take place next month. Both the Trinamool Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party have their eyes set on these polls, being viewed as a weathervane for the 2024 Lok Sabha contest.
Corruption allegations against the state’s TMC government are an important weapon for the BJP. Sources in the saffron party say that the selection of candidates this time will be based chiefly on three criteria.
Firstly, the aspirants should be honest. “Though it’s not easy to get 77,000 honest candidates, since the TMC is corrupt from top to bottom, providing honest options to the people is important for us,” said a BJP leader.
Secondly, the candidates should be somewhat educated and civil. Panchayat leaders don’t have to be rowdy and thuggish, said a BJP insider.
Thirdly, sources say only those people who are not afraid of anything and can appropriately assert their authority will be picked by the party.
Speaking to News18, BJP’s West Bengal co-incharge Amit Malviya said, “We always look to field good candidates who can improve the quality of representation in public life and work for the benefit of the people.”
The TMC though has stated that all this is only for show and that the BJP will not gain ground in the state.
BJP insiders say finding candidates meeting all three criteria will be difficult but not impossible.
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