At least nine people have been killed in the panchayat elections in West Bengal prompting political parties to attack each other for the violence.
The ruling Trinamool Congress blamed the absence of central forces that were deployed ahead of the polls. The Trinamool has lost five its workers in the violence.
The Trinamool Congress tweeted, “@BJP4India, @CPIM_WESTBENGAL and @INCWestBengal must be enjoying their front row seats in this theatre of death and mass destruction. The tragic deaths of two of our party workers in Basanti and Katwa highlight the incompetence of Central Forces who have been nothing but mute spectators. Is this how you celebrate democracy?”
The opposition BJP and CPI-M alleged that the State Election Commission (SEC) did not deploy the central forces as per the orders of the Calcutta High Court.
The BJP tweeted, “8 Killed in 3 hours of West Bengal panchayat election. This is Mamata Banerjee’s model of democracy for you. Yes, you won’t hear any voice talking about the Panchayat election because it does not suit the agenda.”
Former CPI-M MP Md. Salim tweeted, “So the loot of ballot and getting those stamped in TMC’s favour started even before the midnight. Those ballot papers (as inscribed) are from Itahar’s Durgapur, North Dinajpur. #PanchayatElection2023 TMC style.”
5.67 crore people are voting in Bengal panchayat polls for 73,887 seats in the rural areas of the state. The Calcutta High Court had ordered the deployment of central forces ahead of the elections.