By Bappaditya Paul
Kolkata: Bengal, which takes pride in being politically conscious, appears to be fast losing interest in politics based on ideology!
This Lok Sabha election, as many as four out of the seven politicians have won who had defected from one party to the other immediately before the polls.
Pramanik, 33, joined the BJP and got into the poll fray in Cooch Behar seat. He has won defeating seasoned politician Paresh Adhikary, who had last year switched over from Forward Bloc to Trinamool.
Next is Khagen Murmu in Malda North constituency. Murmu, 59, was a three-time CPI-M MLA from Habibpur Assembly segment since 2006. He switched over to BJP in March.
Murmu has now won the election by defeating outgoing MP Mausam Noor, who had defected from Congress to Trinamool earlier this year.
Significantly, in winning on BJP’s ticket, Murmu has also smashed the legacy of Ghani Khan Family that ruled the politics in Malda for decades.
Then comes Saumitra Khan, at Bishnupur Lok Sabha constituency in Bankura district. Khan, 38, was originally a Congress MLA but switched over to Trinamool in 2014 and got elected to an MP that election.
In March this year, he changed camp again, this time to the BJP. The saffron party fielded him from Bishnupur seat and he has won even though by a reduced margin.
However, the biggest of all win by defectors has happened in Barrackpore seat in North 24-Parganas. Muscleman Trinamool politician and MLA Arjun Singh deserted the party on being denied ticket to contest the Lok Sabha polls.
He joined the BJP and the saffron party fielded him in Barrackpore to take on Trinamool’s outgoing MP and veteran politician Dinesh Trivedi. Singh has proved to be a giant killer although he has won by a narrow margin.
There are, however, two defectors to the BJP who have not been able to reap an electoral dividend.
Anupam Hazra, 37, had become an MP from Bolpur Lok Sabha seat in 2014 on Trinamool ticket.
The party expelled him earlier this year and then Hazra joined BJP. He contested the Lok Sabha polls from Jadavpur on the saffron ticket this time and has come second.
The other is Nilanjan Roy, who was the Congress district president in South Dinajpur district before switching to the BJP a few months ago. Roy,43, contested this Lok Sabha polls on BJP ticket from Diamond Harbour seat and has lost to Trinamool.