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West Bengal Election 2021 Updates: Sporadic violence marks third phase; TMC, BJP allege attacks on candidates

West Bengal Election 2021 updates: Four EVMs and a similar number of VVPAT machines were found at the house of the TMC leader in Uluberia following which an election official was suspended by the poll body

FP Staff April 06, 2021 19:37:56 IST
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West Bengal Election 2021 Updates: Sporadic violence marks third phase; TMC, BJP allege attacks on candidates

File image of voters queuing up outside a polling booth. PTI

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Apr 06, 2021 - 19:36 (IST)

West Bengal Assembly Election 2021 LATEST Update

BJP demands independent inquiry from EC after EVMs found in TMC candidate's house

The BJP on Tuesday demanded an independent inquiry from the Election Commission after electronic voting machines (EVMs) and VVPAT machines were found in a TMC leader's house in a constituency in West Bengal's Howrah district.

Four EVMs and a similar number of VVPAT machines were found at the house of the Trinamool Congress leader in Uluberia constituency following which an election official was suspended by the poll body.

Addressing a press conference, senior BJP leader and Union minister Prakash Javadekar said it is a serious matter that a day before the polling EVMs and VVPAT machines were found in the TMC leader's house and were confiscated.

"And this becomes more serious that the machines were brought by a car which was on election duty. There should be full-fledged inquiry in this matter and we are sure that the Election Commission will do a separate and independent inquiry," he said.

The EVMs and VVPAT machines were not used in Tuesday's polling and were seized by the poll panel.

-PTI

Apr 06, 2021 - 19:16 (IST)

West Bengal Assembly Election 2021 LATEST Update

Voters level allegations against TMC workers

Some voters at a polling booth in Diamond Harbour constituency levelled allegations against TMC workers and said that they were not allowed to vote, according to ANI.

"Officials came here but didn't facilitate voting for us," a woman told ANI.

Apr 06, 2021 - 18:26 (IST)

West Bengal Assembly Election 2021 LATEST Update

Derek O'Brien writes to CEC over sexual assault of minor by CRPF personnel

TMC's Derek O Brien wrote to Chief Electoral Officer, West Bengal regarding 'gruesome sexual assault' on a minor girl by CRPF jawan in AC 198-Tarakeshwar, Hooghly.

“In a gruesome and heartbreaking turn of events, the very CRPF that has been deployed to poll-bound Tarakeshwar, Hooghly to maintain the law and order, has become responsible for brutal and vicious attack on a minor, school-going girl,” the letter signed by TMC MP Derek O'Brien said.

The letter said that an official complaint and an FIR was registered with the Tarakeshwar police station.

Apr 06, 2021 - 18:00 (IST)

West Bengal Assembly Election 2021 LATEST Update

Modi accuses TMC of 'Bhaipo service tax'

In a veiled attack to TMC MP Abhishek Banerjee, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday criticised Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee for starting ‘Bhaipo Service Tax’ (Nephew Service tax) in West Bengal and claimed that her call for ‘united Muslims’ clearly shows that even the minority don’t trust her now.

Apr 06, 2021 - 17:43 (IST)

West Bengal Assembly Election 2021 LATEST Update

Over 77% of votes polled till 5:30 pm

As of 5:30 pm, West Bengal has recorded a voter turnout of 77.68 percent, according to the Election Commission's approximate voter turnout trends.

Apr 06, 2021 - 17:33 (IST)

West Bengal Assembly Election 2021 LATEST Update

Voters in queue to cast their vote in South 24 Parganas District

Apr 06, 2021 - 17:08 (IST)

West Bengal Assembly Election 2021 LATEST Update

Mamata heaping abuse on me, alleges PM at rally

Hitting out at West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday claimed that the TMC supremo was "heaping abuse" on him as she is "frustrated" over her party's impending defeat in the assembly elections.

Addressing a public meeting at Dumurjala in Howrah, he claimed that people in Bengal are speculating that the TMC will disintegrate after its defeat on 2 May, the day scheduled for counting of votes. "Didi is heaping abuse on me as she is frustrated over her impending defeat," he said.

Maintaining that the TMC dispensation has institutionalised "ease of crime and ease of loot", the prime minister said that a BJP government, instead, will provide people "ease of living and business".

-PTI

Apr 06, 2021 - 16:46 (IST)

West Bengal Assembly Election 2021 LATEST Update

Didi making false claims, says PM at Howrah rally

Frustrated over impending defeat, Mamata Banerjee is heaping abuse on me, alleges Narendra Modi at a rally on Tuesday.  Modi, who is addressing a rally in the Howrah district, further said that no social scheme will be stopped if BJP comes to power and claimed "Didi is making false claims"

Apr 06, 2021 - 16:36 (IST)

West Bengal Assembly Election 2021 LATEST Updates

Modi mocks TMC over absence of polling agents at rally

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who is addressing a rally in West Bengal Howrah district, said "The situation (in the state) is such that Didi's party is not getting polling agents at polling booths. A few days back, didi was accusing EC and security forces of stopping her polling agent. Now she has accepted that her polling agents are revolting against her." He also refuted Banerjee's allegation that people are voting for BJP in lieu of money. 

He further said, "The truth of whatever Didi did to West Bengal has come out. This is why Didi is threatening the people of West Bengal. Didi says 'Amra dekhe nebo', BJP says 'Amra seva korbo'. We are humbly asking for a chance to serve people." 

Apr 06, 2021 - 16:26 (IST)

West Bengal Assembly Election 2021 LATEST Updates

Visuals from Bengal polling booth where volunteers, journalists allege being pushed out

West Bengal Election 2021 LATEST updates: The TMC has written to the election commission of India alleging sexual assault of a minor by a CRPF Jawan in Tarakeshwar, Hooghly.

Narendra Modi, who is addressing a rally in the Howrah district, further said that no social scheme will be stopped if BJP comes to power and claimed "Didi is making false claims"

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday slammed Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee for seeking en bloc voting by Muslims for the TMC and said had his party made a similar appeal to Hindus, it would have been criticised and censUred.

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday claimed BJP activists were forcibly occupying polling booths and attacking TMC members, including party candidates, and asserted that she would not get bogged down by such "intimidatory tactics".

Addressing a public meeting in Alipurduar district, the TMC supremo said her party's nominee in Arambagh, Sujata Mondal, was chased and hit on head near a polling booth by saffron party workers.

Mamata recently appealed for Muslim unity and said their votes should not divide. It shows that Muslim vote bank, which you considered as your strength, is slipping out of her grasp, said Modi in Cooch Behar on Tuesday.

The TMC supremo also shared a video of an incident in Uluberia in Howrah in which Central forces personnel and locals could be seen arguing.

Of the three districts voting on Tuesday, Hooghly recorded the highest voting percentage at 37.36 percent. Howrah witnessed 36.97 percent polling whereas, South 24 Parganas registered 32.44 percent.

Out of 53 candidates with criminal cases, 43 have declared serious criminal cases against themselves. There are nine candidates who have declared cases related to crime against women.

The Election Commission has said that the EVM and VVPAT machines were taken to the TMC leader's residence by Tapan Sarkar, a sector officer in charge of elections, reported ANI.

Among the three districts voting on Tuesday in the third phase of Assembly polls, South 24 Parganas recorded the highest voter percentage at 12.89 percent. Howrah witnessed 9.67 percent polling whereas, Hooghly registered 8.87 percent turnout.

Among the 2015 candidates in phase 3, the TMC and BJP have fielded 31 candidates each, 13 each by the BSP and CPM, seven by the Congress, two by the All India Forward Bloc, one by the Revolutionary Socialist Party, 68 independents and 39 from other parties.

Describing all 31 Assembly constituencies as 'sensitive', the Election Commission on Monday imposed prohibitory orders under Section 144 of the CrPC.

The allegations of corruption in Amphan relief and the rise of ISF in certain pockets are among the factors that are being closely watched for their potential to affect the TMC's fortunes.

The third phase of the West Bengal Assembly election will be held on Tuesday amid tight security and COVID-19 protocols.

In this phase, elections will be held in parts of rural Howrah, the Sunderban region, the Diamond Harbour and Baruipur belts in the South 24 Parganas, and parts of the Hooghly district. The third phase of polling will cover a total of 31 constituencies.

A total of 78,52,425 voters will decide the fate of 205 candidates in the 31 seats. Of them, 39,93,280 are males, 38,58,902 females and 243 third gender voters.

In all, 10,871 polling stations have been set up in the Assembly constituencies, where elections will be held from 7 am to 6.30 pm.

At least 618 companies of central forces will be deployed in this phase, Election Commission sources told PTI, adding that all the booths have been identified as "sensitive".

The EC allocated the highest 396 companies of central forces for the 5,544 booths in the three police districts in the South 24 Parganas -- Baruipur, Diamond Harbour and Sundarban.

Key battles

The 16 seats in South 24 Parganas, going to the polls in this phase, are the most affected by cyclone Amphan that hit the state amid the lockdown last May. Significantly, these are TMC strongholds, having massive grassroots organisation, with many being part of Abhishek Banerjee's Diamond Harbour Lok Sabha seat.

However, the allegations of corruption in Amphan relief and the rise of ISF in certain pockets are among the factors that are being closely watched for their potential to affect the TMC's fortunes.

The seven seats going to the polls in Howrah, another TMC stronghold in its south Bengal bastion, are mostly in the rural areas of the district. The TMC won 15 of the 16 seats in this district in the 2016 assembly elections. However, the switching over of state minister Rajib Banerjee, a senior TMC leader of the district, to the BJP ahead of the elections is being closely watched for its potential to sway the polls.

Elections to the 294-member West Bengal assembly are being held in eight phases. The first two phases were on 27 March and 1 April. Votes will be counted on 2 May.

West Bengal Election 2021 Updates Sporadic violence marks third phase TMC BJP allege attacks on candidates

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