Election 2019

CPI(M) urges EC to ensure free, fair polling in Bengal on Sunday

Sitaram Yechury

New Delhi | The CPI(M) has written to the Election Commission, urging it to deploy central forces present in West Bengal to build confidence among people for the final phase of voting on Sunday.

It said the central forces are not being deployed for polling and the promised route marches by them are “not taking place”. Polling for nine seats in the state is to be held on Sunday.

Violence has marred polling in West Bengal during the previous six phases. It spread to the streets of Kolkata on Tuesday, when suspected TMC and BJP workers clashed during a roadshow of saffron party chief Amit Shah.

A bust of polymath and social reformer Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar was damaged. Both the parties have blamed each other for its desecration.

“Though central forces are present in the state, they are not being deployed to create confidence among people regarding the conduct of a free and fair poll. The promised route marches by the CRPF is not taking place. This should immediately be rectified and the CEC must direct the compliance of its earlier directives,” said the CPI(M) letter to the EC.

A CPI(M) delegation including party general secretary Sitaram Yechury and politburo member Hannan Mollah met the Chief Election Commissioner on Saturday.

The Left party previously demanded re-polling in 630 booths, across various constituencies, including 298 in 30-Tamluk constituency.

This re-polling has become essential due to large-scale disturbances reported in many polling booths, it said. No decision on this matter has been taken by EC.

“We wish to once again draw your attention to the fact that the accessibility of the observers appointed by the ECI is very very limited and rare. The observers should be available to receive complaints and irregularities and must immediately intervene to do the needful,” the letter stated.

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