Kolkata: Most of the turncoat TMC leaders and Tollywood celebrities, who had made a beeline for the BJP, lost despite the political hype and the glam quotient.
From Prabir Kumar Ghoshal at Uttarpara to Rajib Banerjee at Domjur, to Baishali Dalmiya at Bally to Rabindranath Bhattacharya at Singur, all lost the battle, possibly because of the trust deficit created by their exit from the TMC.
Notably, PM Modi, Union Home Minister Amit Shah and BJP National president JP Nadda had visited the state time and again to campaign for the turncoat leaders.
Only three leaders -- Mukul Roy from Krishnanagar (North), Suvendu Adhikari from Nandigram and Mihir Goswami from Natabari in North Bengal -- won the polls; but then they were in a different league altogether.
Celebs and relative political greenhorns like Rudranil Ghosh from Bhawanipore, Yash Dasgupta from Chandipur, Payal Sarkar from Behala (East) and Shrabanti from Behala (West) lost to TMC heavyweights.
As against this miserable performance, cricketer Manoj Tiwari, actor June Maliah, director Raj Chakraborty and singer Aditi Munshi managed to cruise through on Trinamool Congress tickets.
According to poll analysts, since 2017 at least 140 TMC leaders, including 37 legislators, had joined the BJP in droves. A candid West Bengal BJP unit chief Dilip Ghosh acknowledged the problem and admitted that it was a mistake to give tickets to the turncoats; he further blamed the BJP’s shabby performance on the rudderless defectors.
Slamming the trend, TMC leader Partha Chatterjee said that not just the turncoats, the people had rejected the BJP as well.