Four of eight phases of the Bengal Assembly election are over. Altogether, voters have decided the fate of candidates in 135 of 294 seats, the remaining 159 will go to the polls between April 17 and 29. The election witnessed violence on April 10 during the fourth phase of polling when five people lost their lives in two different incidents. Apart from violence, the state is also reeling under the Covid resurgence. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Thursday urged the Election Commission to think about conducting polls for the remaining assembly seats at one go, while also stressing that her party had opposed the prolonged eight-phase poll schedule. Follow Live Updates on West Bengal Assembly Elections 2021 here.
Congress MP Adhir Chowdhury has filed a PIL on Sitalkuchi firing incident demanding a CBI investigation or an investigation by a sitting High Court judge.
This is the third PIL in the Sitalkuchi incident. The PIL filed in the Calcutta High Court on April 12 was two PILs clubbed into one.
Trinamool Congress leader (TMC) Partha Chatterjee on Friday demanded that the remaining phases of Bengal Assembly election be clubbed together.
“We value human life. Democratic right should be respected, but life should be protected as well. We tried to make them understand that three phases should be clubbed,” he said.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah Friday accused West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee of denying citizenship to Dalit Matua and Namsudra communities as her “vote bank would not like it”.
Reaching out to the two numerically strong communities which can infuence the outcome of assembly elections in many seats, Amit Shah said a Rs 100 crore fund will be created for their welfare if the BJP is voted to power in the state. He also mocked Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, calling him a “tourist politician”.
At least five candidates of different parties contesting the ongoing assembly election in West Bengal have tested positive for Covid-19, a health department official said on Friday. Out of the five candidates who tested positive, three are from the Trinamool Congress (TMC), and one each from the Revolutionary Socialist Party (RSP) and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), he said. RSP’s Jangipur candidate, 73-year-old Pradip Kumar Nandi, tested positive on Wednesday and is now in home isolation, the official said. BJP’S candidate for Matigara-Naxalbari seat Anandamay Barman (38), TMC’s Goalpokhar nominee Mohmmed Ghulam Rabbani, Tapan candidate Kalpana Kisku, and Jalpaiguri candidate Pradip Kumar Barma have tested COVID-19 positive, the health official said.
While addressing a rally in Bengal’s Nadia, Mamata Banerjee said, “Will urge EC to stop BJP from bringing outsiders in Bengal during campaigning to check spread of Covid-19.”
West Bengal CID Friday took over the case of the killing of four people in firing by the CISF during polling in Cooch Behar district on April 10, a senior government official said. A Special Investigation Team (SIT) of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) has been constituted to conduct the probe in the incident which happened during the fourth phase of polling at Sitalkuchi.
Addressing an election rally in Nadia, CM Mamata Banerjee said this election is about saving the state. “This election is about saving Bengal…saving the mother of Bengalthis is a fight for our prideDo not waste your vote or else Amit Shah will send you all to detention camps using NRC just like Assam. We will never allow NRC in Bengal. Bengal will remain with Bengal and Delhi will listen to what we say,” Mamata Banerjee said.
Mamata Banerjee also said that outsiders were coming to the state and spreading Covid-19. “I want to ask the EC to not allow outsiders here, those who are coming from GujaratPM may come here but let him use local people to organize his rallies after the necessary Covid testbut why to bring people from Gujarat or UP to do that,” she said.
With the Election Commission (EC) having barred him from campaigning for 24 hours, West Bengal BJP president Dilip Ghosh on Thursday said that he will strictly abide by the order and not stage a dharna over the poll panel’s decision, unlike TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee. Banerjee sat on a dharna in the city on Tuesday to protest the EC’s 24-hour ban on her campaigning for her comments against central forces and a statement that had alleged religious overtones. “I will abide by the Election Commission’s order and not stage any dharna on the streets,” Ghosh said.
An FIR has been lodged against West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee at a police station here, alleging that she instigated voters to gherao central forces and that, in turn, led to the incident of firing in Sitalkuchi and the subsequent death of four persons. Siddique Ali Mia, the zilla president of BJP’s minority cell in Cooch Behar, cited the TMC supremo’s comments during a rally in Banerswar area as he filed a complaint on Wednesday claiming that her address provoked people to attack CISF personnel during the fourth phase of state elections.