Kolkata | Jagran Politics Desk: Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Soumendu Adhikari, brother of Suvendu Adhikari, was on Saturday allegedly attacked by some miscreants in Contai as the polling for the first phase of assembly elections in West Bengal began.

Accusing the ruling Trinamool Congress (TMC), Soumendu alleged that people were being stopped from voting at several polling centres in Contai. He also alleged that EVMs are malfunctioning at some locations, asking the election commission to look into the matter.

"Under the leadership of TMC block president Ram Govind Das and his wife poll rigging was underway at three polling booths. My arrival here created a problem for them to continue with their mischiefs so they attacked my car and thrashed my driver," he said, as reported by news agency ANI.

"We approached the EC that there should be free and fair polls. People will choose whom they want. TMC is scared. We have given the name of one Alauddin to Election Commission, he created disturbance there," he added.

His brother Dibyendu, who is in the TMC, also blamed the ruling party behind the attack and said that he has informed the Police Observer about the incident. Here it is noteworthy to mention that speculations are on the rife that Dibyendu might soon join the BJP like his brother Soumendu and Suvendu.

The polling for the first phase of assembly elections in West Bengal began on Saturday. In the first phase, the fate of 191 candidates, including 21 women, will be decided by 73.80 lakh people -- 37.52 lakh males, 36.27 females and 55 third gender voters.

This year, West Bengal will see a triangular contest between the TMC, BJP and the Left-Congress alliance. The BJP is buoyed by its success in the 2019 Lok Sabha Elections is hoping to end the 10-year Mamata Banerjee rule in the state.

The counting of votes will take place on May 2.

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma