Counting for the West Bengal panchayat polls began on Monday with initial trends putting ruling Trinamool Congress in the lead in most of the districts.

With security ring provided by both central and state security forces, 329 counting centres have been set up, which by Monday evening will decide the fate of 1.69 lakh candidates with around 90,000 of them women.

According to a State Election Commission official, the Trinamool Congress is leading in most of the districts as per the initial counting trends.

The ruling party has already won over 6,000 seats uncontested.

Due to inclement weather counting in a few centres could not begin.

At least 24 people were killed during the five phased polls which began July 11, but no untoward incident, according to police, has taken place yet during counting.

However, the CPI(M) has alleged that several of its counting agents were forcibly driven out from counting centres allegedly by Trinamool workers.