Fourth phase poll in West Bengal today amidst tight security

366 candidates, including seven ministers, in the fray

May 03, 2011 01:41 am | Updated November 17, 2021 01:16 am IST - KOLKATA:

Polling in 63 constituencies will be held in the fourth phase of the Assembly election in West Bengal on Tuesday.

The fate of 366 candidates, including seven Ministers, will be decided by an electorate of more than 1.26 crore spread over the districts of Howrah, Hooghly, Purba Medinipur and parts of Bardhaman.

The Election Commission said on Monday that special security arrangements were made in several pockets in the four districts after receiving multiple complaints from both the ruling and the Opposition of voters being intimidated.

“Utmost security arrangements have been made to ensure fair and peaceful elections. Special arrangements will be made for voters feeling intimidated to reach the polling booths to exercise their franchise. Central paramilitary forces will be deployed at each of the 15,711 polling booths,” Chief Electoral Officer Sunil Gupta told journalists.

Purba Medinipur district, which has been witness to turf-wars between political opponents in areas such as Nandigram and Khejuri, is under the special scanner of the Commission following the Communist Party of India (Marxist)'s repeated complaints that its candidates were not allowed to campaign freely in the district by Trinamool Congress supporters and the lack of adequate administrative measures to ensure the safe return of many CPI(M) supporters who had fled from their villages when violence flared up in the region few years back.

A special observer sent by the Commission is camping in the district to oversee the overall law and order situation.

The other places that have witnessed inter-party violence over area-domination in the past two years and where election will be held in the fourth phase are Singur and Arambag in Hooghly district, Udaynarayanpur and Amta in Howrah distrct and Mangalkot and Raina in Bardhaman district.

He said the inspector-in-charge and assistant sub-inspector of Bally police station in Howrah district were suspended and disciplinary proceedings initiated against them.

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