Kolkata: Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee along with several of his cabinet colleagues, including Industry minister and CPI-M politburo member Nirupam Sen were left red faced as the Left Front suffered defeat ending its 34 year-long rule in West Bengal after counting of votes on Friday.

Bhattacharjee lost from Jadavpur in the southern fringe of the city at the hands of Manish Gupta, a former chief secretary of the state who contested on Trinamool Congress (TC) ticket, by over 16,000 votes.

He had been winning from this seat since 1987.

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Sen, a CPI-M strongman from Burdwan, was trounced by TC's Rabi Ranjan Chattopadhyay, a political greenhorn by 36,438 votes.

Another major upset for CPI-M was the defeat of Finance Minister Asim Dasgupta who lost to former secretary general of FICCI Amit Mitra at Khardah constituency in North 24 Parganas district, regarded a Marxist bastion, by a convincing margin of 26154 votes.

Marxist stalwart from Siliguri and Urban Development minister Ashok Bhattacharya tasted defeat to his TC rival Rudra Narayan Bhattacharya by a huge margin of 36,110 votes.

CPI-M star campaigner and Housing Minister Gautam Deb, who had predicted a sure victory for the Front fell by the wayside at Dum Dum.

TC candidate and playwright Bratya Basu defeated Deb, who had changed his constituency this time, by 31,497 votes. Deb earlier won from Hasnabad in North 24 Paraganas.

The winds of change was so strong that even veteran CPI-M leader and Sunderban Development minister Kanti Ganguly lost from Raidighi to TC greenhorn cinestar Debasree Roy.

Other ministers who failed to make it included IT minister Debesh Das, Labour minister Anadi Sahoo, PWD minister Kshiti Goswami, Higher Education minister  SudarshanRoychowdhury and Transport Minister Ranjit Kundu.

Prominent winners

Winners from CPI-M included Land and Land Revenue minister Abdur Rezzak Mollah and Health Minister Surya Kanta Mishra.

The prominent TC candidates who emerged victorious included the Leader of the Opposition in the outgoing assembly Partha Chatterjee, Mayor Sovan Chatterjee, senior party leader Subrata Mukherjee and former FICCI secretary general Amit Mitra.

Union Finance minister Pranab Mukherjee's son Abhijit Mukherjee, won from Nalhati in Birbhum district on a Congress ticket.


(Agencies)