West Bengal panchayat polls: 11 killed, 5 journalists injured in violence
Eleven people were killed and several injured during the West Bengal panchayat elections as clashes broke out at several places between rival groups on Monday. BJP and TMC workers clashed in South 24 Parganas district, Sadhanpur,Bilkanada, Murshidabad and several other places.
TMC worker identified as Arif Gazi was shot dead in Kultali area of South 24 Parganas district. Shahin Sheikh, 26, was shot dead in Patikabari gram panchayat area in Nawda of Murshidabad district.
A person identified as Krishnapada Sarkar, 63, was clobbered to death in Tehatta in Nadia district.
In another incident, at least 20 people have been injured after a crude bomb explosion in Amdanga's Sadhanpur in North 24 Parganas.
The person injured in the knife attack, allegedly by TMC workers, is a BJP candidate from Bilkanda. His name is Raju Biswas and he is undergoing treatment at Panihati State General Hospital.
Meanwhile, ballot papers were thrown in a pond after a clash that broke out between TMC and BJP in Murshidabad.
#WestBengal: Ballot papers thrown in a pond after a clash that broke out between TMC & BJP in Murshidabad. Following which voting has been stopped for now. #PanchayatElection pic.twitter.com/0kcQSz4izl— ANI (@ANI) May 14, 2018
Also, five local journalists injured after violence, following booth capturing in Birpara, allegedly by TMC workers.
TMC leader Partha Chatterjee said, "There are minor incidents taking place, no major incidents have been reported. The administration is active in places where such clashes have taken place. Voting is being conducted peacefully. I strongly condemn the attack on journalists."
Babul Supriyo, Union Minister, said, "Not surprised by all the incidents that are happening since morning. Bengal govt is a shameless govt, you cannot expect them to follow any kind of constitutional behaviour. I demand President's Rule in West Bengal."
According to the SEC officials, elections are underway in 621 zilla parishads and 6,157 panchayat samitis, besides 31,827 gram panchayats. Around 1,500 security personnel from Assam, Odisha, Sikkim and Andhra Pradesh are in the state to reinforce security arrangements for the polls.