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Trinamool and Congress hail EC decisions

Written by: Staff
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Kolkata, Mar 1 (UNI) Welcoming the Election Commission's decision to conduct Bengal elections in five phases, Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee today said the move would ensure free and fair polling in the state.

'' We hail the EC's decision. It is a five-day match and not a one dayer. This will go a long way in ensuring free and fair polling,'' she said in an instant reaction after the Election Commission announced poll dates for the state.

The EC announced that elections in West Bengal would be held on April 17, 22, 27, May 3 and 8.

'' The polls are being held in the Bengali new year, which I am sure, will usher in political changes in the state,'' Ms Banerjee said.

West Bengal Pradesh Congress Working President Pradip Bhattacharjee also expressed happiness at the five-phase schedule saying this would help proper deployment of security forces. ''I am very happy. This will ensure proper mobilisation of central forces and the people will be able to vote freely,'' he said.

Mr Bhattacharjee, however, said the otherwise welcome decision of the EC came with a rider as there was a restriction of the state Pollution Control Board on the use of microphones by all political parties till April 13 because of Higher Secondary examinations.

'' We have written to the EC requesting for his intervention to solve the problem. The PCB restriction will not allow us to campaign properly during the peak electioneering days,'' he said.

Mr Bhattacharjee said while the use of microphones would affect the examinees, it was up to the EC to find a way out so that political parties could carry on campaigns.

UNI KDG KK RA PM2102

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