One of the themes that has come to define the ongoing Bengal election is defections. There isn’t a major party in the fray which has not seen a legislator or leader move to a rival, or fielded a candidate who until the other day had been on the other side. There have been so many defections, in fact, it can be hard to keep track.
So, we have created a colour-coded database of all the candidates fielded by the three top contenders – the Trinamool Congress, the BJP, and the United Front alliance of the various communist parties and the Congress – to make it easier to keep tabs on the candidates that have defected and where they have ended up.
The incumbent Trinamool has fielded at least eight turncoats from the Left Front and Congress, and brought in a couple of independent legislators. They account for 3.4 percent of the candidates fielded by the party.
The BJP, on the other side, has 53 former Trinamool, Left Front and Congress leaders on its list of 293 candidates. So, 18 percent of the Hindutva party’s nominees are defectors from its rivals.