The BJP claimed that the Trinamool, its office-bearers, ministers and other senior functionaries are now preparing to abuse the state’s resources in support of Banerjee…reports Asian Lite News.
The BJP on Wednesday urged the Election Commission of India (ECI) to deploy a minimum of 90 companies of Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF) for the bypolls to three Assembly constituencies in West Bengal scheduled on September 30.
A BJP delegation submitted a memorandum to the poll panel demanding the deployment of at least 40 companies of CAPF in Bhabanipur from where Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is contesting, and at least 25 companies in each of the other two Assembly constituencies in Samserganj and Jangipur.
BJP national General Secretary Arun Singh, MPs Swapan Dasgupta and Locket Chatterjee, and party leaders Sanjay Mayukh, Om Pathak, Shishir Bajoria and Neeraj signed the memorandum.
“A CAPF deployment of only 15 companies per Assembly constituency has been sent, which is grossly inadequate, especially in Bhabanipur where unelected Chief Minister Banerjee is contesting for survival. The Trinamool Congress has deployed its entire strength of hooligans,” the BJP memorandum said.
The BJP claimed that the Trinamool, its office-bearers, ministers and other senior functionaries are now preparing to abuse the state’s resources in support of Banerjee.
The BJP also alleged that the officials who were shifted out by the Commission, either for completing three years in a post or for being found unfit for conducting free and fair polls, have been brought back in the three Constituencies by the Trinamool, demanding that they should be immediately transferred out of the Kolkata district.
“Hoardings, posters and banners with photos of Chief Minister Banerjee should immediately be removed from all government and municipal sites from the KMC area,” the BJP demanded.
Citing Covid, the BJP urged the ECI that the presence of the agents of the candidates inside the polling booths should be restricted only to the national parties, while all other polling agents should be seated outside the booths.
“Firhad Hakim, a state minister and administrator of Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC), who is a close confidante and an undeclared election agent of Banerjee, should be debarred from participating in the poll process in any form and be relieved from his charge of KMC until the conclusion of the elections in Bhabanipur, an area falling within the limits of KMC,” the BJP further demanded.
EC sends notice to BJP candidate Priyanka Tibrewal
The Election Commission has issued a show-cause notice to the BJP candidate for Bhabanipur bypolls, Priyanka Tibrewal, for alleged violation of Covid protocols by gathering a large number of supporters while filing her nomination paper.
On Tuesday, the BJP had objected to West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s nomination for the same bypolls, on the ground that she suppressed information in her affidavit.
The Trinamool Congress in its complaint alleged that Tibrewal violated the Model Code of Conduct and the Covid-related guidelines by gathering “an unruly mob” of not less than 500 without any prior permission.
She even performed a ‘Dhunuchi Nach’ (traditional Bengali dance, generally performed during Durga Puja) at places on the way to file her nomination, the Trinamool claimed.
The notice issued by the returning officer also referred to a report submitted by the officer-in-charge of the Bhabanipur police station where he mentioned traffic congestion following a big assembly of BJP supporters on Sambhunath Pandit Street and other places.
Tibrewal, however, denied the allegation and said, “The Election Commission has sent me a letter after the Trinamool filed a complaint alleging that I had taken a huge number of people when I had gone to file my nomination and thus violated the Model Code of Conduct as well as the Covid-19 protocols. I will reply with whatever will be my answer,” she said.
“I would also like to say that Suvendu Adhikari was alone in my vehicle. There was no one else. Arjun Singh and Dinesh Trivedi came in their own vehicle. So how did I violate the poll code? There was no flag in my vehicle either,” Tibrewal added.
On the allegation of carrying supporters along with her, the BJP leader said, “I had not led any crowd. It’s not my duty to see who was on the roads on bikes and four-wheelers. It’s the job of the police and the local administration,” she added.
Tibrewal is up against Banerjee and CPI(M)’s Srijib Biswas in the bypoll scheduled to be held on September 30. The votes will be counted on October 3.