West Bengal Elections: Record 80.43% voter turnout in 2nd phase, minor clashes reported in Nandigram
Kolkata | Jagran Politics Desk: The second phase of polling for assembly elections in West Bengal ended on Thursday with a voter turnout of 80.43 per cent, said the election commission. The highest voter turnout was recorded at Katalpur at 87.21 per cent while the lowest turnout was at the Daspur at 71.20 per cent. Meanwhile, the high-profile Nandigram saw an 80.79 per cent voter turnout.
Though the second phase of polling in West Bengal largely remain peaceful, sporadic violence was reported in Nandigram, where Trinamool Congress (TMC) chief Mamata Banerjee is contesting against her aide-turned-rival Suvendu Adhikari.
Adhikari, who joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in December last year, was attacked by some miscreants on Thursday in Nandigram. Though he left unhurt, a media vehicle in his convoy got damaged in the incident.
"These are work of Pakistanis, 'Jay Bangla' is a slogan from Bangladesh. There are voters from a particular community at that booth who are doing this," the former TMC leader said after the incident.
Apart from the attack on Adhikari, a BJP worker, Uday Dubey, was also found dead at his residence in Nandigram's Bhekutia on Thursday, triggering tensions in the area. The BJP alleged that Dubey was being tortured by the TMC after his support to Suvendu Adhikari and Mithun Chakraborty.
The TMC, however, dismissed the reports and accused the BJP of politicising the issue and inciting violence in Nandigram. "Dubey killed himself due to a family problem," news agency PTI quoted a senior TMC leader as saying.
'Central forces helping BJP under instructions from Amit Shah'
Meanwhile, TMC chief Mamata Banerjee on Thursday called West Bengal Governor and a senior election commission official and claimed that the central forces under instructions from Union Home Minister Amit Shah are helping the BJP.
Banerjee, who is seeking a third straight term, also slammed the election commission for its "inaction" over the TMC's complaints and said that her party will move the court if required.
"We have already lodged 63 complaints with Election Commission. I am not worried about Nandigram, but I am worried about democracy. I will win Nandigram with the blessings of 'Maa Maati Manush'," Banerjee was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
About second phase of polling:
The second phase of polling was held across 30 constituencies on Thursday. More than 75 lakh people were eligible to cast their votes and decide the fate of 191 candidates, including Mamata Banerjee and Suvendu Adhikari.
The election commission had earlier said that polling would be conducted on 10,620 booths, adding that over 650 companies of central forces have been deployed to maintain law and order.
Apart from Banerjee and Adhikari, the second phase polling will also decide the fate of several other heavy weight political candidates, including Manas Bhunia, Sayantika Banerjee, Niladri Sekhar Dana, Radharani Banerjee, Bharati Ghosh and Abhishek Banerjee.
Posted By: Aalok Sensharma