West Bengal polls: 80 per cent polling recorded in second phase

first_imgAmid reports of sporadic violence, over 79.70 per cent of votes were cast in the second phase of West Bengal elections for 56 constituencies.In Alipurduar, 82.07 per cent voting were recorded, in Jalpaiguri 77.69 per cent, Darjeeling 74, North Dinajpur 78.90, South Dinajpur 82.72, Malda 79.60 per cent and Birbhum 82.89.At Dumrut, in south Bengal’s Bolpur constituency in Birbhum, several people were arrested following a clash between Trinamool Congress (TMC) and Bharatiya Janata Party workers.Controversial Trinamool Congress leader Anubrata Mandal, the party president of Birbhum district, who has been put under strict surveillance by the Election Commission, stoked another controversy when he went to vote sporting a batch of party symbol on his shirt. The Congress lodged a complaint against the alleged violation of the model code of conduct by him.”I didn’t realise it. But the presiding officer could have stopped me from going like this,” Mandal said later. Two FIRs- one for going out of his constituency despite warning and another one for going to cast vote sporting party symbol on his kurta – are being lodged against him.Senior Congress leader Jairam Ramesh, who was in Kolkata today, alleged that booth-capturing and false voting continued in the state.”Despite the presence of central forces, there is a ‘bhoot’ (ghost) in the booths,” he said.In north Bengal, Malda district reported a clash between CPI(M) and TMC supporters in front of a booth in the Englishbazar Assembly seat. Two persons, including the TMC polling agent, were injured in the brawl, the police said.advertisement#WATCH: Clash between CPI(M) and TMC workers outside a polling booth in West Bengal’s Malda, two injuredhttps://t.co/KyVPBgtvMY ANI (@ANI_news) April 17, 2016In another instance, TMC polling agent Asraful Hossain was allegedly beaten up at a booth in Chanchol constituency in Malda district allegedly by Chanchol ex-pradhan Maqbul Hossain of Congress, polling officials said. As a result, polling was temporarily stalled. Hossain has since been arrested, the police said.Earlier in the morning, a clash between BJP and TMC workers left eight persons injured in Dumrut village of Birbhum before polling began, an EC report said. Three persons were later arrested by the police. TMC candidate from Siliguri Assembly constituency Baichung Bhutia complained of bogus votes being cast at Sriguru Vidayapith booth and a complaint has been registered with the EC.Five of the constituencies are in Alipurduar district, seven in Jalpaiguri, nine in North Dinajpur, six each in Darjeeling and South Dinajpur and 12 in Malda districts. The only south Bengal district going to the polls in this phase is Birbhum. In pics So far, voters in 49 of the total 294 constituencies of the assembly have exercised their franchise on two dates — April 4 and 11 — that make up the first phase. Polling for the remaining phases will be held on April 21, 25, 30 and May 5.Also read:PM Modi attacks Mamata Banerjee, says Trinamool not working for people of West Bengal8 injured in clashes between BJP, TMC workers in Bengal’s Birbhumlast_img read more