Narayangarh: One of the main architects of Congress-Left alliance in Bengal, CPI(M) state secretary and Opposition leader Surya Kanta Mishra is likely to face a tough challenge in his own backyard at Narayangarh in West Midnapore district.
A doctor by training, Mishra, locally known as "daktar babu", is a five-time MLA from Narayangarh since 1991. The CPI(M) had wrested the seat in 1982 from the Congress in alliance with which it is fighting the poll this time.
Fighting as an alliance candidate, Mishra is facing a tough challenge from TMC candidate Pradyut Ghosh. BJP candidate Krishna Prasad Roy and SUCI(C) candidate Surya Pradhan are also in the fray from the constituency which has 2,20,190 voters.
Mishra, the second CPI(M) leader after Jyoti Basu to contest an election while holding the post of CPI(M) state secretary, is confident of his victory from this semi-rural seat.
"The people have united and forged an alliance and if the people are allowed to vote freely and fairly, Bengal will witness a new government after May 19. The people will resist and defeat the TMC which has unleashed a reign of terror and throttled democracy," Mishra told PTI.
TMC, on the other hand, is banking on the development work that was done by the Mamata Banerjee government in last five years.
The Trinamool Congress is highlighting various social security projects such as 'Kanyashree (aimed at stopping early marriages of minor girls and inspiring them to complete school education) and 'Khadya Sathi' (providing subsidized food grain at Rs 2 a kg to a large section of the population), besides scholarships and bicycles for students.
"What has Dr Mishra done for Narayangarh in last 30 years? He was even health minister during the Left Front government. People of Narayangarh wanted a super specialty hospital in Belda, but Mishra has never bothered about it," TMC candidate Pardyut Ghosh said.
Ghosh said, "After TMC came to power we have built several new hospitals in West Midnapore district. And if I become an MLA, I will ensure that a super specialty hospital come up in Belda for the people here." .