Mamata Banerjee's favourite celebs who are fighting for Trinamool Congress in some of the toughest constituencies

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Mamata Banerjee's favourite celebs who are fighting for Trinamool Congress in some of the toughest constituencies
  • It comes as no surprise that Tollywood, Bengal’s cinema industry, is at the centre stage of its upcoming state assembly elections.
  • Mamata Banerjee, the incumbent Chief Minister of the state and leader of the Trinamool Congress, has played this card earlier too.
  • But this time she sees a much wider and stronger competition from the Bharatiya Janata Party.
There’s barely a day in the good ol’ Bengali household without an adda (gathering) that involves cha (tea), cinema, cricket (only when football doesn’t take precedence) and of course, politics. And with the assembly election fever hitting its peak in the state, it comes as no surprise that Tollywood – Bengal’s cinema industry – is at the centre stage of its upcoming state assembly elections.

Hoping to get votes from the movie lovers and sports aficionados in West Bengal – the land of legends like Satyajit Ray, Ritwik Ghatak and Soumitra Chatterjee – a few superstars (of past and present) have entered the political arena.

Of course, it's not a new sight.

Mamata Banerjee (more affectionately called as Didi), the incumbent Chief Minister of the state and leader of the Trinamool Congress (TMC), has played this card earlier, too. From Dev to Soham Chakraborty to Mimi and Nusrat Jahan, Bengal’s Didi has used celebrities to garner votes, both during the assembly as well as the general elections.

And, as Didi looks at a third consecutive term, she has tough competition from the Narendra Modi and Amit Shah-led Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which has put forward its own list of celebrities – from Mithun Chakraborty to Payel Sarkar.

Here’s a look at Mamata Banerjee’s ensemble cast who are leading the fight in some of the toughest constituencies.



June Malia

June Malia
BCCL

The Tollywood actor has got a ticket from TMC to fight from the Medinipur constituency. Malia will be contesting against BJP’s Samit Kumar Das and has replaced a sitting member of the legislative assembly (MLA) from TMC -- Mrigendra Nath Maiti.

The actor who has starred in movies like Meri Pyaari Bindu, Har Har Byomkesh and shows like Sanjher Baati is elated with her nomination. "I took my time to get into politics. The jump is a high one but I have waited. I never make whimsical decisions, be it politics or film scripts," the actor said in a recent interview.

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Manoj Tiwary

Manoj Tiwary
Manoj Tiwary/Twitter

Former Indian cricketer Manoj Tiwary joined the Trinamool Congress in February this year and is set to fight from the Shibpur constituency in Howrah. Tiwary will be up against former Howrah mayor Rathindranath Chakraborty, who joined the BJP from TMC.

The cricketer who has played for India as well as in Indian Premier League (IPL) teams like Kolkata Knight Riders, Kings XI Punjab and Rising Pune Supergiants, has also represented the state of Bengal in the game.

“BJP is playing divisive politics and Mamata Banerjee is trying to unite people together. When I play cricket, I play for the country, not on the basis of religion,” the former skipper said after joining TMC.

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Saayoni Ghosh

Saayoni Ghosh
Saayoni Ghosh/Twitter

Asansol Dakshin, which was the constituency of singer and BJP politician Babul Supriyo for the general elections, has another star fighting for a win. TMC has put up actor Saayoni Ghosh from the constituency.

Ghosh -- who has starred in movies like Ekla Cholo, Rajkahini -- made headlines in January this year, when former BJP’s state wing president Tathagata Roy had filed a FIR against her for hurting Hindu sentiments.

“I have always raised (my) voice against injustice from outside. Now, I will be doing that as a part of the system. People of Asansol love us (celebrities), and I am very excited to visit Asansol and start interacting with people there. I will work as Mamata Banerjee’s soldier and will spread her messages all across the state,” she said recently.

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Sayantika Banerjee

Sayantika Banerjee
Sayantika Banerjee/Twitter

Tollywood star Sayantika Banerjee has been given a ticket from Bankura constituency. The constituency was earlier held by Daripa Shampa, the Congress leader who had joined TMC. However, Shampa has been sidelined in the assembly elections as Banerjee’s star power won Didi’s vote.

"I have been working with Didi for a long time. Recently, I officially joined the party and accepted the challenge which she has given me to contest from Bankura. I have my plan ready to understand the core issues of the area and I believe that the people in Bankura will consider me as their own daughter. I don't believe in talking too much. I am a workaholic and I will continue to work for the people," said Banerjee after her nomination.

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Raj Chakraborty

Raj Chakraborty
Raj Chakraborty/Twitter

Tollywood actor, director and producer Raj Chakraborty will fight from Bengal’s Barrackpur. Chakraborty, the director of the popular Bengali film Proloy, will be up against BJP candidate Chandramani Shukla, in the area which is a BJP stronghold.

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Kanchan Mullick

Kanchan Mullick
BCCL

The Janata Express actor Kanchan Mullick is another star power in TMC’s list of candidates. Mullick, too, recently joined TMC and was given a nomination from Uttarpara.

The 50-year old newbie in politics will be up against two-time Uttarpara MLA Prabir Ghoshal, who recently joined BJP from TMC. The actor has already begun making promises, to the electorate, during his campaign and recently said that he would propose to upgrade the Uttarpara general hospital into a superspeciality one.

With all the glitz and glamour behind her, Didi would be hoping that some of the stardust will rub off on her electoral fortunes.

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