JMM and TMC field candidates in Odisha election fray

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Bhubaneswar, Mar 30: With voters not favoring national political parties in recent elections, Trinamool Congress (TMC) and Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) with headquarters in neighboring West Bengal and Jharkhand, have jumped into fray in the 2014 twin elections in Odisha.

"We have fielded candidates in one Parliamentary constituency and 39 assembly segments of Odisha," TMC Odisha convener Arya Kumar Gyanendra told PTI.

He said TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee and party's star campaigner Mithun Chakraborty will canvass in Balasore district. Mamata is likely to address a public meeting in the district in first week of April, Gyanedra said. "It is close to West Bengal and people of Balasore understand Bengali," he said when asked why the party was focusing on the Balasore district.

Besides fielding former Congress MP Kartikeswar Patra from the Balasore Lok Sabha seat, TMC has nominated candidates in all the 7 assembly segments in the district.

On winning possibility of TMC candidates in Odisha, Gyanendra said: "Our candidates are qualified and dedicated social workers. They have acceptability among the people."

In order to boost its poll prospects, TMC has forged understanding with Ama Odisha Party, he said. This apart, TMC's first MLA Trilochan Pradhan was elected to Odisha Assembly from Patkura assembly segment in 2000.

However, Pradhan later joined ruling BJD in 2001. Similarly, Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren who came down to Baripada in Mayurbhanj district and participated in nomination filing of JMM candidates said, "Our party has strong acceptability among the tribal population of north-west Odisha. We have fielded one candidate for Lok Sabha and 7 nominees in Assembly polls in Mayurbhanj district."

PTI

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