West Bengal Legislative Assembly election, 1996

Legislative Assembly elections were held in the Indian state of West Bengal in 1996.

West Bengal Legislative Assembly election, 1996

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All 294 seats in the West Bengal Legislative Assembly
 First partySecond party
 Jyoti Basu - Calcutta 1996-12-21 089 Cropped.pngMamata banerjee.jpg
LeaderJyoti BasuMamata Banerjee
Leader's seatSatgachhiaNone
Seats won20382
Seat changen/a
Popular vote17,629,14211,229,396

Chief Minister before election

Jyoti Basu

Chief Minister

Jyoti Basu

The election took place simultaneously with the Indian general election, 1996.[1][2]


Left Front

The Communist Party of India (Marxist) had fielded 70 new candidates, but many of them failed to get elected.[3] The All India Forward Bloc had suffered a split before the election, with the emergence of the Forward Bloc (Socialist).[3]

The Left Front supported Janata Dal candidates in five constituencies.

Indian National Congress

In the Congress Party, there was confrontation between West Bengal Pradesh Congress Committee president Soumen Mitra and Indian Youth Congress leader Mamata Banerjee.[4] Banerjee played an important role in rallying public support for the party.[4][5]

The Congress leader Adhir Chowdhury contested the Nabagram seat from jail, being imprisoned on murder charges.[6] His speeches were recorded from prison and played at campaign meetings.[6]

The Indian National Congress and the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha had entered into alliance.[7]

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