Kolkata, May 6 : The prestigious Jadavpur Lok Sabha constituency, once considered the happy hunting ground of the Left, always hogs the limelight as this is the constituency from where the likes of former Lok Sabha speaker Somnath Chatterjee, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, iconic freedom fighter Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose's niece-in-law Krishna Bose, renowned singer-activist Kabir Suman and Harvard University historian IProfessor Sugata Bose represented Parliament.
And quite naturally this time is no exception as all attention is riveted on this star seat where former Kolkata Corporation Mayor, legal luminary and CPI(M) heavyweight Bikash Ranjan Bhattacharya will take on Tollywood heartthrob and debutante Trinamool Congress (TMC) candidate Mimi Chakraborty, who is putting her best foot forward to make her way to Parliament riding on the immense popularity of the Chief Minister, the party's organisational strength and her own silver screen image.It was from this constituency, TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee first became a Parliamentarian in 1984, defeating veteran CPI (M) politician Somnath Chatterjee.
But this time around, the TMC supremo sprung a surprise and announced that Tollywood star Mimi Chakraborty – a political debutante – would have the TMC ticket from Jadavpur.
Former Trinamool Congress parliamentarian from Bolpur Anupam Hazra—who joined the BJP after being expelled from the Trinamool Congress - was forced to contest from Jadavpur after Bolpur district BJP leadership refused to back him.
Mimi was born in Jalpaiguri after spending her childhood in Arunachal Pradesh. She finished her graduation in English literature from Asutosh College in Kolkata
A debutante into electoral politics, Mimi, started her acting career in 2008 on the small screen with the daily soap and gained prominence in two years.
She made her presence felt in the Bengali film industry with a blockbuster hit "Bapi Bari Ja" in 2012.
In the same year, along with actor Soham Chakraborty, Mimi acted in Bojhena Shey Bojhena. The film is one of the blockbusters in Tollywood’s history.
She then starred in different blockbuster movies such as Bangali Babu English Maam, Proloy, Jamai 420, Shudhu Tomari Jonyo, Ki Kore Toke Bolbo, Gangster, Amar Aponjon, Posto, Total Dadagiri, Mon Jaane Na, Golpo Holeo Shotti, Yoddha: The Warrior, Kelor Kirti, Villain and Dhananjoy.
Although a political greenhorn, Mimi is known for her proximity to the chief minister and regularly shares the dais with her at TMC programmes.
The 30-year-old celebrity Bengali actress after nominated from this prestigious constituency, said, she never had any plans to join politics, though her family members did dabble in the arena."My family members have been involved in politics since decades, but I never had such plans. After participating in campaigns for my friends in politics or other Trinamool leaders, I saw how one can reach people directly," Mimi said.
To emphasize her humble background, coming from a village in Jalpaiguri district in North Bengal, the TMC candidate said, “I am also a girl from a small village. My house is in Jalpaiguri. It is now in a panchayat area… I came here with the belief that I’ll be able to do something. But this belief has become a reality only because of you people.”
Mimi, who has built a huge fan base in her nearly a decade-old acting career, said, “Now, the main concern is the campaign and issues which they (the people) want to convey to me. I want them to convey to me what they want me to do, rather than making promises on what I can offer."
She further stated, "Being a woman and youth representative, these will be my concerns; I want to focus on youth because they are the next generation. If we don't work and set an example then who will?"
In one of her campaign speech, the TMC candidate tackles the oft-repeated media comment about her being a political greenhorn.
“I will say this. Yes, I do not have experience. Definitely. But I don’t think that to work for people, to stand beside people, one requires experience. You people have loved me and blessed me. Whatever name and respect I have acquired today is all because of you,” the actress said.
“I have got the blessings from people, my fraternity, my fans, my lovers, my role-models, idols, all guardian angels who I have got and who work for me positively and I am banking them,” said Mimi with confidence.
On balancing here professional and political commitments, the Bengali heartthrob, said that she was good at multitasking.
“Balancing act has always been the forte of woman. She has been balancing her house, she has been balancing her work, her children, her husband her everything,” Mimi said.
“So I don’t think it will not become a difficulty because I know how to balance things,” she added.
During her campaigning the Jalpaiguri-born girl said women’s safety will be among her top focuses.
Reacting to a poser on campaigning in the terrible heat, Mimi said, "While shooting for films I have to often wear heavy dresses. Now while campaigning I can wear cotton dresses of my choice.
“I have previous experience of campaigns in places like Purulia, Bankura and Birbhum during summer," she said. Mimi recently “stepped down” from Birsa Dasgupta’s film Bibaho Obhijaan, whose shoot begins soon.
“Recently it was announced that I would be a part of SVF’s next film, Bibaho Obhijaan, directed by Birsa Dasgupta. Since the announcement of my candidature this week for upcoming elections, I have, in due interest of the film and production team, decided to step down from the role. I feel it was necessary to honour my immediate commitments without disrupting the film production schedule. I wish the entire team of Bibaho Obhijaan much luck and success,” Mimi further added. (UNI)