A candidate from Mamata Banerjee’s Trinamool Congress was chased out of a polling booth in Bengal today as voting was on in the third phase of the assembly election in the state. Sujata Mondol Khan was chased with lathis by a group of people in the middle of a field. Ms Banerjee said “BJP workers chased Trinamool candidate Sujata Mondal and hit her on head near a polling booth”.
The Trinamool Congress has claimed that a security personnel was injured.
Sujata Mondal Khan, the Trinamool candidate from Arambagh, was chased out of a voting booth in Arandi area of the constituency.
She had accused the opposition BJP of creating chaos and threatening Trinamool supporters in Arambagh amid the voting. The BJP has denied the allegation.
“They have inflicted serious injury on our Scheduled Caste candidate Sujata, when she visited a booth. They also hit another candidate in Khanakul. In Canning East, security forces prevented our nominee Shaukat Mollah from entering a booth. There had been numerous such instances of attack on our candidates, party workers across the state,” Ms Banerjee said at a rally in Alipurduar district, adding that she has received at least 100 complaints of assault and violence since morning, and that the Election Commission has been duly informed but to no avail.
“At booth no 45 in Batanal, despite pressing the symbol of TMC, the vote is going for the BJP. I believe that I will get the blessings of the people. In Arandi, our workers have been beaten up. They (BJP) are thinking that by creating violence, they will get the Arambagh seat. They are mistaking. I am the kind of person who does not fear death,” she told news agency ANI.
This morning, four voting machines and an equal number of VVPATs, or paper-trail machines, were found in the house of a TMC leader in Uluberia Uttar assembly seat in Howrah district, following which a Bengal election official was suspended. Locals surrounded the Trinamool leader’s house and CRPF personnel had to be deployed in the area to keep peace.
In another part of Hooghly district, a woman was murdered early this morning. While the BJP claims she was murdered by Trinamool “goons”, Bengal’s ruling party has denied any role in the murder. The woman’s son is reportedly a BJP worker.
Bengal votes in seven phases for the 294 assembly seats and the results will be announced on May 2.