With the Bengal Assembly Elections around the corner, the Election Commission convoy visiting Amradangi to review poll-preparedness was allegedly attacked on Tuesday. The alleged attack has left the EC convoy damaged, however, no injuries have been reported so far. Two ISF workers, identified as Hassan Ghazi and Mir Hossain, have been arrested in connection with the attack.
As per reports, the EC delegation was visiting Haroa to remove objectionable political banners which violate the Moral Code of Conduct (MCC), in effect since the announcement of polling dates. However, ISF workers had protested against the EC delegation which led to a scuffle, following which they cornered the election body convoy and vandalized it. Significantly, the ISF is contesting the West Bengal polls, in an alliance with the Left parties and the Congress.
To ensure safe and secure polling in West Bengal, the Election Commission announced that it will deploy at least 684 companies of CAPF in 10,288 booths spread in about 7,034 premises in five districts in the first phase of polling in West Bengal on March 2. In view of the Maoist activity in the Jhargram district, the EC has decided to deploy 11 paramilitary personnel per booth, the highest in any election in the state so far, an EC official told PTI.
The other districts where the election will be held on that day will have an average of six paramilitary personnel per booth. The official said altogether 144 companies of central forces will be deployed in Jhargram for the election. The state force includes 173 inspectors, 2,661 sub-inspectors or assistant sub-inspectors, 4,012 armed constables, 13,970 unarmed constables and 1,276 lady constables.
The West Bengal Assembly with 294 seats will go to the polls from March 27, 2021. CM Mamata Banerjee's Trinamool Congress holds 222 seats at present. However, BJP has made major inroads in the state in the Lok Sabha elections winning 18 seats out of 42 and establishing itself as the major opposition force in the state. A mass exodus of political big wigs from TMC to the BJP has also seen the saffron party gain confidence ahead of the polls. AIMIM Chief Asaduddin Owaisi announced on Tuesday that his party will contest the upcoming Assembly elections in West Bengal. Bengal is set to go to polls in 8 phases - March 27, April 1, April 6, April 10, April 17, April 22, April 26, and April 29 with results to be announced on May 2.