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Monday, May 2, 2011

Fate of 63 West Bengal constituencies to be decided tomorrow

Kolkata, 2 May : A total of 63 constituencies, including Singur and Nandigram, will go to the polls tomorrow in the fourth phase of Assembly elections in West Bengal amidst tight security. Polling will be held in 63 Assembly constituencies spread over four districts - Hooghly, Howrah, East Midnapore and parts of Burdwan.
The significant phase will not only decide which party will form the government, but will also determine if the CPI(M)-led Left Front retains its strongholds or the TMC-Congress alliance makes gains. Trinamool Congress had made major gains in the 2009 Lok Sabha elections in the four districts capturing six of the eight seats.
The seats include Singur in Hooghly and Nandigram in East Midnapore which have changed the political scene in the state after the anti-land acquisition movement by the Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress.
Over 1.26 crore voters will decide the fate of 366 candidates including Industry minister Nirupam Sen and Higher Education minister Sudarshan Roy Chowdhury and five other cabinet members. Altogether 20,000 EVMs will be used in 15,711 polling stations, state chief electoral officer Sunil Kumar Gupta said.
Tight security arrangements have been made with the deployment of a huge contingent of security forces including Central forces in the districts going to the polls tomorrow, he said.
Other ministers in the fray include Food Processing minister Mohanta Chatterjee, Minister of State for Information and Culture Soumendranath Bera, Technical Education minister Chakradhar Maikap, Agriculture minister Naren Dey and Fire Services minister Pratim Chatterjee.
Three former IPS officers Rachpal Singh, Haider Aziz Sawfi and Sultan Singh have been fielded by the Trinamool Congress candidates in this phase.
Of the six phases of the elections, three were held on 18, 23 and 27 April. The fifth phase will take place on 7 May and the sixth and last on 10 May.

Video of Sushanta's verbal attack on Mamata received : EC
Kolkata, 2 May : The Election Commission today said that it has received a video-clipping of West Bengal minister and CPI(M) leader Sushanta Ghosh''s public meeting where he allegedly used foul language against Trinamool chief Mamata Banerjee.
"We will send the document to the Election Commission along with a transcription of the statement against which a complaint has been lodged for scrutiny and action," West Bengal, Chief Electoral Officer (CEO), Sunil Kumar Gupta said. TMC had lodged a complaint on 29 April with the CEO against Sushanta for using "foul language" against Banerjee at an election meeting.

UK B'deshi chef contest to be held in Oxford next Monday
Oxford Times, 2 May : Brrain's best Indo-Bangladeshi chefs are coming to Oxford and there won’t be a tikka masala in sight.
The first UK Indian Chef competition will launch at Oxford & Cherwell Valley College next Monday, with 27 cooks battling it out to claim the title.
Award-winning Cowley chef Muhammed Ali is behind the charity contest and hopes it will become an annual, nationwide event.
The competition - supported by the Oxfordshire Bangladeshi Association – will showcase the best of Britain’s Bengali cuisine and aims to move away from traditional stereotypes about curry.

Ali, head chef at Karma restaurant in Oxford Road, said: “It will be a great occasion.
“Indian food is undergoing a revolution in Britain, with increasing numbers of ambitious young chefs producing innovative dishes.
“We have come a long way from just tikka masala and vindaloos, and this competition aims to show how exciting modern Indian cooking can be.”
Nine chefs will cook at the Oxpens Road college in the first heat, with two subsequent legs in Banbury.
Out of 27 entrants, nine will go through to the grand final on 29 June at Oxford & Cherwell Valley College’s Banbury campus.
A black-tie dinner will be held that night in Oxford that the public will be able to attend.
Ali said: “The competition is in aid of Cancer Research UK and we hope to raise hundreds, if not thousands, of pounds.
“The awards will be handed out at the gala dinner and I will be doing all the catering.
“It will be a celebration of Indian-Bangladeshi cuisine.”
Last year, Ali won the International Indian Chef of the Year Competition for the UK.
Competing against seven other chefs in the Bangladeshi capital Dhaka, he impressed the judges with his presentation skills and by cooking five dishes in two hours.
Ali said: “I had a real boost after winning that competition and I want to help my fellow chefs achieve similar accolades.
“It was a great honour for me to represent the UK and we saw a surge in business when I got back.
“I hope this competition will become a prestigious national event that chefs all over Britain aspire to win.”
Lord Mayor of Oxford John Goddard will open the contest on Monday..... READ MORE