WB panchayat polls: 41.51% voter turnout recorded till 1 pm

West Bengal To Vote For Panchayat Polls On Monday Amid Concerns Over Security Arrangements

Bengal govt is a shameless govt, you can not expect them to follow any kind of constitutional behaviour.

Union Minister and BJP leader Babul Supriyo has called the Bengal government "shameless" and demanded President's rule in West Bengal.

He further said that the CPM and BJP are now so desperate that "they are even ganging up with Maoists to kill/shoot/stab three Trinamool workers in different incidents in Bengal". "On the day of voting...armed TMC gangs (were seen) moving freely and capturing booths with police either remaining spectators or in many cases playing the role as collaborators of the criminals".

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Till 5 pm, 72.5 per cent polling was recorded, a State Election Commission (SEC) official said. Several places witnessed bomb attack and eight people lost their lives in various incidents across West Bengal. Reports from Birbhum claimed that masked men carrying weapons and sticks were seen intimidating voters outside some of the booths.

In the same order, the bench had also made it clear that the amount to be paid as compensation for poll-related deaths or damage to properties "would be realised from the salaries of the persons who had assured the court of peaceful elections with forces provided by the state government".

Samik Lahiri, CPM Secretary of South 24 district, in a letter to the EC, said, "Bombing is going on everywhere in the district [South 24 Pargana]". Mediapersons were not allowed to enter the area, reported news agency ANI.

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A CPI-M worker and his wife were charred to death after their house was set on fire in South 24 Parganas, reports said. In the same district at Kultuli, a TMC worker was allegedly murdered by a group of SUCI workers. "The police did not take any action when we asked for help". A police team has been rushed to the spot. "BJP agent was trying to run away with the ballot box, while officers caught hold of him but people said to let him go".

Fifteen people were injured in a clash outside a booth in Nandigram area of East Midnapore district. Although local body elections are generally non-glamorous events, of late, the panchayat polls in Bengal have been a barometer to the attitude of the electorate, and have been a vital pointer to which way voters will sway in the succeeding elections. Administration is active in places where such clashes have taken place. The rural elections are being held in 621 zilla parishads and 6157 panchayat samitis, besides in 31,827 gram panchayats, spread across 20 districts.

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