Kolkata: Amidst the tussle between the ruling Trinamool Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) over the bypoll issue in seven constituencies, the Election Commission of India (ECI) on Saturday announced bypoll of three constituencies including Bhabanipur, Shamserganj and Jangipur on September 30 and the counting of the same will be on October 3.
According to ECI the campaigns and election process will be held abiding to all the pandemic protocols.
“Street corner meetings can take place with only 50 people and indoor meetings cannot have more than 200 people. For door-to-door campaigns, only five people can accompany the candidate and all those involved in the election process should be totally vaccinated,” said the ECI sources also adding that there should be no roadshows and the poll campaign should end 72 hours before the poll.
The ECI sources also added that failing of the regulations will lead to no campaign for the candidate.
Regarding the bypoll of the remaining four constituencies, the ECI is yet to decide the date.
The last date of filing nomination for these three constituencies is on September 13, the date of withdrawal of candidatures is on September 16 and the entire process will have to be completed by October 5.
Meanwhile, welcoming the move TMC spokesperson and state general secretary Kunal Ghosh said that the situation is conducive for the bypoll and it should be conducted maintaining all the guidelines prescribed by ECI.
West Bengal BJP vice-president Jay Prakash Majumdar claimed that the claims of TMC that ECI is being run by BJP is proven wrong as the ECI have announced the dates of bypoll even if the BJP didn’t want.
Notably, within November 5 Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had to win the poll and become the MLA or else she would have to resign from the Chief Minister post.
It can be recalled that Mamata had taken oath as Chief Minister on May 5 and within six months she will have to win the bypoll as she had lost the Nandigram seat to Leader of Opposition Suvendu Adhikari.
Incidentally, Sobhandeb Chattopadhyay who had won from the Bhabanipur seat had vacated the seat to TMC Supremo who is now contesting from the Bhawanipore constituency.
After invoking Bengali sentiments and by calling the BJP ‘outsiders;’ the TMC after a landslide victory had formed the government in West Bengal for the third time by the slogan ‘Bangla Nijer Meyeke Chaye’ (Bengal wants its daughter) during the polls made by Prashant Kishor’s I-PAC, Trinamool Congress since August have started campaigning in Bhabanipur constituency again invoking the Bengali sentiment is ‘Unnayan ghore ghore, ghorer meye Bhabanipore’ (Development in every household, daughter of the state is in Bhabanipur).
It is pertinent to mention that elections in Samserganj and Jangipore got cancelled after the candidates had died due to COVID-19 ahead of the recently concluded Legislative election.
However, bypoll of Shantipur, Khardah, Dinahata and Gosaba is yet to be declared by the ECI.
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