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CPM candidate's car attacked in West Bengal's Islampur; police resort to lathi charge after protesting voters block highways

Incidents of violence were reported in three West Bengal constituencies while voting in the Lok Sabha polls’ second phase are underway in the state.

Islampur CPM candidate Mohammed Salim’s vehicle was attacked and his driver was forced to flee, according to the Indian Express. He was on his way to vote at a Patagora polling booth in Raigunj constituency.

According to Catch News, Salim has alleged that the TMC’s workers are on the streets and are not allowing people to vote.

Meanwhile, the police resorted to tear-gas shelling and lathi-charges in the state’s Chopra constituency, where locals blocked the NH-34, allegedly protesting an incident where miscreants were prevented from voting at the Digirpar polling booth, according to ANI. Locals also claimed that they were beaten up and their EPIC cards were snatched. Tensions prevailed as locals also blocked NH-31 and grenades were lobbed at the police after they were not allowed to vote in the Middapara and Dighi Colony polling booths, according to the Indian Express.

BJP's Raiganj candidate Debasree Chaudhuri also alleged that TMC workers tried to capture a polling booth in the constituency. "TMC workers were trying to capture booth. They were campaigning among Muslims there. This isn't election campaign," she told ANI.

In Rajganj’s Goalpokhe, a journalist also sustained serious injuries after allegedly being beaten up. Local BJP leaders also accused the TMC of setting fire to a booth in Jalpaigur’s Malbazar.

Three constituencies in West Bengal — Jalpaiguri, Darjeeling, and Raiganj — are voting on Thursday. The state will also vote on 23 and 29 April and 6, 12 and 19 May. West Bengal has the presence of 41,000 paramilitary presence, the highest ever central security forces deployment for a general election in the state, to ensure peaceful elections.

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Updated Date: Apr 18, 2019 15:17:08 IST