KOLKATA: Bengal is set to raise the glam quotient in the upcoming Lok Sabha with a number of celebrity candidates sailing through the bitterly fought elections in the eastern state.
Making their debut in the lower house of Parliament are two young Bengali actresses and Trinamool Congress winners - Nusrat Jahan (Basirhat) and Mimi Chakraborty (Jadavpur) - both famed for their oomph factor.
Trinamool chief Mamata Banerjee's decision to nominate the two political greenhorns had created quite a sensation, and they even became the butt of distasteful trolls on the social media. Banerjee's gamble has, however, paid off as both actors defeated their BJP rivals by handsome vote margins.
Chakraborty triumphed by a margin of 2,95,239 votes over Anupam Hazra, while Jahan left her nearest rival Sayantan Basu behind by 3,50,369 votes. Bollywood singer-actor-turned-politician Union Minister Babul Supriyo retained his Asansol seat, but his victory robbed Parliament of the presence of yesteryear actress Moon Moon Sen, who lost out in the race.
Asansol, which had become an eyeball grabbing constituency because of the presence of the two celebrities, saw Supriyo having the last laugh as he emerged victor with an emphatic margin of 1,97,637 votes over Sen, the daughter of Bengali screen legend Suchitra Sen. Bengali superstar Deepak Adhikari (Dev) retained the Ghatal seat for Trinamool, humbling BJP nominee and former IPS officer Bharati Ghosh. Deb's winning margin was 1,07,973 votes.
All the hard work of BJP's Locket Chatterjee, who had failed to turn the tables on her opponents during the 2016 assembly elections, brought cheer to the party as she won the Hooghly seat defeating Trinamool's sitting MP Ratna De Nag by 73,362 votes. Another yesteryear actress and the Trinamool's Birbhum candidate, Satabdi Roy, posted a hat-trick of Lok Sabha wins by getting the better of BJP's Dudh Kumar Mondal by 88,924 votes.
However, theatre personality and Trinamool's Lok Sabha sitting member Arpita Ghosh fell by the wayside in Balurghat, from where her BJP opponent Sukanta Majumdar won with a 33,293-vote margin.