Assembly Election 2021 LATEST Updates: The high-pitched campaign for the first phase of poll in Assam in 47 Assembly constituencies slated for 27 March came to an end on Thursday evening. The poll on Saturday will decide the fate of 247 candidates.
"Implementation of the Citizenship Amednment Act, 2019 was the central issue in the state, which was rocked by violence and protests against it, but BJP, which had steered the Central legislation in Parliament maintained a studied silence on it. The issue did not find place in the campaigning by the party nor in its manifesto," PTI reported.
The campaigning for the first phase of the election in West Bengal will end on Thursday. The first phase is scheduled for 27 March.
"TMC goons siphoned off money from relief funds for Amphan, Bulbul and floods. All such goons will be sent behind bars after we form the government. The sand mafia, water tanker mafia, recruitment mafia and cow traffickers will also be sent behind bars after 2nd May," the Union Home Minister added.
BJP's Pandabeswar candidate Jitendra Tiwari was issued a show-cause notice by the Election Commission for promising voters a free trip to the temple of Lord Ram in Ayodhya if elected, officials said on Thursday. Tiwari made the promise in two events — once while speaking at a public meeting in Haripur on 21 March, and then at a party meeting, they said.
The Trinamool Congress lodged a complaint with the EC on 22 March over the issue. In his reply to the EC notice, Tiwari said that he was unaware that making such a promise would violate the model code of conduct. He also apologised to the EC for "being ignorant".
Appealing to the voters to exercise their franchise in favour of jailed anti-CAA movement leader Akhil Gogoi, social activist Medha Patkar on Thursday claimed that people's democratic rights will be curtailed if the BJP returns to power in Assam.
The Narmada Bachao Andolan leader alleged that the saffron party is working only for big industrialists and not for commoners. "This Assembly election is a fight between those selling farmers' lands and those protecting them. Akhil Gogoi is fighting for land rights of poor farmers in Assam," she told reporters.
Once again accusing the BJP of interfering in the functioning of the Election Commission (EC), West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee at a rally in Danton, said that even if EC transfers all the state officers, TMC's victory cannot be prevented.
"TMC's rule led to corruption, poverty and anarchy. For 10 years, TMC didn't do anything. Mamata Didi (West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee) didn't let any industry settle, those already there were shut with only TMC goons' business prospering," alleged Adityanath.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah, in a dig at West Bengal Cheif Minister Mamta Banerjee, says, "No one is scared of your ;Khela Hobe', Didi." Shah urges people to vote for the BJP saying, "I assure you that Didi's goons won't be able to harm you,".
The union minister accused Mamata Banerjee of bringing unemployment to state and called the TMC government 'incompetent.
Without naming any party or any person, Mamata also claimed at an election rally in South 24 Parganas district the founder of that outfit receives money from the BJP.
The poll campaigning across states is in full swing with the BJP looking to retain its hold in Assam and wrest power from the TMC in West Bengal.
Sharad Pawar will be on a three-day visit to West Bengal from 1 April to hold various rallies, press conferences and meet Mamata Banerjee, said NCP spokesperson Mahesh Tapase.
The actor turned politician will begin election campaign for the BJP on Thursday. He is expected to hold three roadshows in three districts.
According to NDTV, Chakraborty will begin his first roadshow at Saltora in Bankura district. He will then continue roadshows in Jhargram and Keshiari.
The poll campaigning across states is in full swing with the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) looking to retain its hold in Assam and wrest power from the Trinamool Congress (TMC) in West Bengal.
In Bengal, the BJP aims to get a majority of over 200 seats while Mamata Banerjee, who leads the TMC, is also confident of nabbing third straight term.
With "insider- outsider" narrative dominating polls in Bengal, Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee Wednesday said her party consider only those "pan masala-chewing, tilak-sporting" people sent from states like Uttar Pradesh "to foment trouble" before elections in West Bengal as outsider goons.
Those who originally hailed from other parts of India but have been living in the state for ages can't be called outsiders, she said. The TMC has been describing the BJP as "a party of outsiders" as a strategy in the West Bengal Assembly election.
"Why should we label those living here for ages as outsiders? They are an integral part of our state," Mamata, also the chief minister of West Bengal, told election rallies held in Bankura district.
"We consider only those pan masala-chewing, tilak- sporting people sent from states like Uttar Pradesh to foment trouble in West Bengal before elections as outsider goons. We will continue to call them as such," she said.
She asked women living in rural areas to be wary of "outsider goons" and chase them away with brooms and kitchen utensils if they lay siege to village roads.
The saffron party has severely criticised Mamata for calling their leaders coming to Bengal from other states as outsiders.
Addressing an election rally in Kanthi in the Purba Medinipur district during the day, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that Bengal was the land of icons like Bankim Chandra Chattopadhyay, Rabindranath Tagore and Subhas Chandra Bose and on this land, no Indian was an outsider.
Bengal brought together the people of India through Vande Mataram, and on that land, Mamata-didi is talking about "bohiragoto" (outsider). No Indian is an outsider here, they are the children of Bharat Mata," Modi said.
Lashing out at Modi, Mamata said, "I have great respect for the PM's chair, but I am sorry to say that Modi is a big liar. What happened to Modi's promise of crediting Rs 15 lakh to everyone's bank accounts? Why should an LPG cylinder cost Rs 900? Why is kerosene scarce? What is the fate of the Ujjwala scheme?" she said at a rally in Bishnupur.
Under the Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Scheme, LPG connections are provided to BPL people at a concessional rate. However, questions are being raised about its utility as the price of cooking gas cylinders has been increased manifold in recent times.
"Why are Modi and (Union Home Minister) Amit Shah silent even as farmers are agitating out in the open for months? Why are iron nails being laid out at the farmers' protest site? Is Modi concerned only about a large industrial group and not agriculturists?" the TMC chief said.
Claiming that the Centre's "Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao" scheme for ensuring survival and education of the girl child has been a non-starter, Mamata said, "I deliver what I promise but Modi fails to keep his promises."
To back her claim, she named several schemes that the state government has implemented. On the BJP's promise of implementing the Seventh Pay Commission recommendations for state government employees if voted to power in West Bengal, she said, "First answer why the PSUs are being closed down and at whose behest? You are rendering lakhs of people unemployed. People don't trust you."
Around 10,000 government teachers had lost their employment in Tripura and the BJP had promised before the Assembly election there to give their jobs back, she said adding that the party did not fulfil the promise after coming to power.
She also alleged that the Centre and not the Election Commission is deploying police forces for the polls and police personnel are coming to West Bengal from BJP-ruled Uttar Pradesh.
"Why should be police forces in poll-bound states be under them (BJP)?" she said at a poll meeting in Onda.
She asked voters, "particularly the minorities", to be aware of the alleged plot of the CPM and the Congress to cut into votes and help the saffron party, if they "do not want riots, tyranny and oppression of the BJP and dictatorship which takes away rights of people".
The CPM-headed Left Front and the Congress have joined hands with the newly-formed Indian Secular Front floated by Abbas Siddiqui, an influential Muslim cleric of Hooghly district's Furfura Sharif, to forge an alliance.
At another meeting in Bankura town, the cnief minister asked voters to be on guard against any offer for cash for casting votes.
"If some outsiders offer you Rs 500 or Rs 1000 in exchange for votes, don't be tempted. I won't advise you what to do with the cash but don''t vote for them. It is ill-gotten money," the feisty Bengal leader said.
She alleged that unaccounted notes found during demonetisation and money from the PM-Cares fund and that received during the sale of PSUs are being used to lure voters.