West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Friday said the Trinamool Congress will back Congress leader Abhishek Manu Singhvi in the Rajya Sabha elections from the state to be held on March 23, The Indian Express reported. Though the Congress has not officially declared Singhvi’s candidature, state Congress chief Adhir Chowdhury told the daily that Sonia Gandhi has nominated Singhvi.
“Today, we have taken the decision for a better cause,” Banerjee said at a meeting of the party’s extended core committee held in Kolkata. “We have been requested to support the fifth Rajya Sabha candidate from West Bengal, fielded by the Congress.”
The Trinamool Congress chief pointed out that Singhvi had represented the state in several cases. He is at present representing the state government in a case against expelled Gorkha Janmukti Morcha chief Bimal Gurung. “Singhvi and Kapil Sibal usually fights cases on our behalf,” she said. “So, we are supporting the Congress candidate, as the CPM [Communist Party of India (Marxist)] did not field a candidate from the state.”
The ruling party in West Bengal has fielded Dr Shantanu Sen, Subhasish Chakraborty, Abir Biswas and Nadimul Haque for the other four Upper House seats from the state.
The CPI(M)’s legislative wing had reportedly been discussing with the Congress legislature party about the possibility of selecting a common candidate for the fifth seat, The Times of India reported.