Kolkata: BJP on Wednesday said it will contest
all 294 seats in the forthcoming Assembly elections in West
Bengal in alliance with "influential" smaller parties.
"We will contest all the 294 Assembly seats in
alliance with some smaller parties in North and South
Bengal," state BJP General Secretary Ashim Sarkar said here.
Sarkar said that state party President Rahul Sinha
would submit the first list of candidates before the BJP
Parliamentary Board tomorrow for ratification of the list
prepared by the state election committee.
"Names of the candidates will be made known after
the parliamentary board releases the final list," he said,
but declined to mention who were the smaller parties with whom
the BJP had entered into alliance.
Sarkar said that Sinha had already held meetings
with those "smaller parties" in the last few days.
"These are the influential parties in the two
regions of the state," he added.
The BJP would meet on March 14 here to prepare the
second list for approval by the parliamentary board, he said,
adding the third and final list would be readied a few days
ahead of the polls.
To a question, Sarkar said that BJP would expect a
rise in its voting percentage this time.
"We have noted that our candidates secure better votes
if they contest alone and not in alliance with other parties
in recent past," Sarkar said.
He said that BJP stalwarts like L K Advani, party
national President Nitin Gadkari and leaders like Arun
Jaitley and Sushma Swaraj would campaign for candidates.