Assembly Election 2021 LIVE Updates: The Union Home Minister also exuded confidence that the BJP will win anywhere between 63 and 68 seats where polling has been held in the first three phases
Assembly Election 2021 LATEST Updates: Coming down hard on West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee, Home Minister Amit Shah said on Friday her fulminations against central forces betrayed frustration over "impending defeat" in the Assembly elections and wondered whether she is pushing the state towards anarchy. He exuded confidence that the BJP will win anywhere between 63 and 68 seats where polling has been held in the first three phases. Polling is over in 91 of the state's 294 Assembly constituencies in the three phases.
"The frustration of the TMC overe impending defeat is very much evident from her action and speeches. I Have never seen a chief minister or the president of a political party use the kind of words Mamata Banerjee is using against central forces. Is she trying to create anarchy? Does she want disturbance? Or does she want to win the election through rigging like before? She should know that central forces do not function under the home ministry during elections. They function under the jurisdiction of the Election Commission," he told a press conference.
West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee on Friday addressed a rally in the Memari area of the state. She slammed Union Home Minister Amit Shah, who has been campaigning consistently for the eight-phased polls.
"Prime Minister Narendra Modi must control Amit Shah, he may incite riots here. Shah pressurising police to engage in unethical acts," she was quoted as saying by The Times of India.
Union Home Minister and BJP leader Amit Shah on Friday held a roadshow in the North 24 Praganas district's Jagatdal area. West Bengal will witness its fourth phase of Assembly polls on Saturday.
The TMC said that she will continue speaking about CRPF's interference till it stops working for BJP. She also questioned the EC for not flagging Narendra Modi for campaigning in Bengal on polling days.
Responding to her 'gherao CRPF' remark, the home minister on Friday said that Mamata Banerjee was frustrated over 'impending defeat' in the state Assembly polls.
The union minister expressed confidence that the BJP will be able to secure win in at least 63 to 68 Assembly seats in the first three of the eight-phased election in West Bengal.
The plea, filed through Advocate Vivek Narayan Sharma had also sought directions for creation of temporary body with extensive powers to look into election violence and punish the perpetrators, and for enhanced punishments for poll violence.
The notice issued on Thursday night said Mamata prima facie violated various sections of the IPC with her remarks against the central forces. The TMC supremo has been asked to respond to the notice by 11 am on Saturday.
Campaigning for the high-decibel fourth phase of polling, for 44 Assembly seats scheduled in five districts of West Bengal on 10 April, ended at 5 pm on Thursday.
A total 1,15,81,022 voters including 58,82,514 men, 56,98,218 women and 290 members of the third gender, will decide the fate of 373 candidates in Saturday's polling in constituencies spread over Howrah (Part II), South 24 Parganas (Part III), Hooghly (Part II) in south Bengal and in north Bengal's Alipurduar and Coochbehar.
The polling will be held between 7 am to 6.30 ppm in 15,940 polling stations. At stake are nine Assembly
constituencies in Howrah, 11 in South 24 Parganas, five in Alipurduar, nine in Coochbehar and ten in Hooghly.
Among those whose fate will be decided at the hustings are former Bengal Ranji captain Manoj Tiwary, TMC's candidate from Shibpur, state education minister and sitting MLA from Behala Paschim Partha Chatterjee and central minister Babul Supriyo of the BJP who has locked horns with state sports minister Arup Biswas for the Tollygunge seat.
Ratna Chatterjee, wife of former city mayor and fire minister Sovan Chatterjee, who left Mamata Banerjee's TMC to join the BJP for a short period, is facing BJP's actress-turned politician Payel Sarkar in Behala Purbo seat.
Former state forest minister, Rajib Banerjee, who moved to the BJP recently is contesting from Domjur while BJP MP and actress Locket Chatterjee is contesting the polls from Chinsurah in Hooghly district.
The Sanyukta Morcha comprising Left front, Congress and ISF has fielded mostly young faces for the fourth phase of polling.
CPM leader Sujan Chakraborty is one of the few seniors fielded by the Left for this phase of the elections.
BJP's start campaigners included Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Minister Amit Shah, party president JP Nadda, Smriti Irani, Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath besides, Bollywood star of yesteryears Mithun Chakraborty who crisscrossed the state trying to build up support for the saffron party.
The BJP leadership targeted the TMC government, its supremo and chief minister Mamata Banerjee, her nephew Abhishek Banerjee accusing them of corruption and "appeasement politics" and claimed that their "khela shesh hobe" (game will be over).
Modi and Shah promised voters early implementation of Ayushman Bharat scheme, PM Kisan Samman Nidhi as well as implementation of the 7th pay commission scales for state government employees if voted to power in West Bengal.
Mamata, her nephew and party MP Abhishek were among star campaigners for the TMC who stepped up their attack on the BJP-led central government over recent hike in prices of gas, petrol, diesel, besides plans to disinvest in a large number of central government run PSUs.
She also accused central police forces of harassing and intimidating voters in Bengal and urged voters
to "gherao" them in case securitymen prevented them from voting.
The fiery TMC leader during a public rally at Tarakeswar in Hooghly district on 3 April also appealed to the minority community not to divide their votes.
This led to the Election Commission of India issuing a showcause notice to Mamata for demanding votes on communal ground.
Taking note of the "sensitive" situation in the 44 Assembly constituencies in Bengal, the EC has decided to deploy at least 789 companies of the CAPF.
Cooch Behar will have the highest deployment with 187 companies being deployed.