West Bengal Election 2021: Security forces fire in air to control situation

Ajeyo Basu

LAST UPDATED: April 17, 2021, 1:01 p.m.

Kolkata: Widespread violence was reported from various places during the fifth phase of the West Bengal Election 2021 on Saturday.

Intense clashes between the ruling Trinamool Congress (TMC) and main opposition BJP have taken place in all the six districts of West Bengal in which polling is being held during the fifth phase of the West Bengal Election 2021.

The paramilitary forces had to fire in the air to control the situation at Chakla village of Deganga block in North 24 Parganas district.

According to sources, some villagers had gathered in an illegal manner despite the fact that Section 144 is in force in the vicinity of all polling booths.

This led to an altercation between the villagers and the paramilitary soldiers with the latter firing in the air to bring the situation under control.

The incident revived memories of the bloody incident in Sikalkuchi village of Cooch Behar district.

During the fourth phase of West Bengal Election 2021, 4 people were killed and four others were injured when Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) soldiers opened fire at booth number 126 of Sitalkuchi village in Cooch Behar district.

The CISF and the West Bengal Police have claimed that hundreds of people had attacked the polling booth and tried to snatch away the rifles of the CISF soldiers.

During the fifth phase of the West Bengal Election 2021 on Saturday, widespread violence was reported from other places as well.

Hand to clashes between workers and supporters of the BJP and the TMC took place in the Santinagar area of Salt Lake in Kolkata.

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At Kalyani in Nadia district, a shootout took place between the TMC and the BJP. Both sides fired upon each other and bombs were also hurled.

At Sandeshkhali in North 24 Parganas district, the local BJP leadership alleged that their polling agent was not allowed to enter a polling booth by TMC workers.

In the Bardhaman North constituency, a BJP agent was allegedly beaten up by TMC workers at polling booth number 72 in Saraitikor village. The BJP agent suffered injuries to his head. 

Earlier, a BJP polling agent was found death inside a polling booth during the fifth phase of the West Bengal Election 2021.

The incident took place in the Minakha area of North 24 Parganas district.

The BJP has blamed the TMC which had denied any involvement.

BJP candidate Parno Mitra was allegedly attacked by TMC when she went to visit a polling booth in Baranagar.

The Election Commision has thus made massive security arrangements to ensure peaceful voting during the West Bengal Election 2021.

However, despite the deployment of huge numbers of paramilitary forces, massive widespread violence was reported from the first four phases of West Bengal Election 2021.

Over 1 lakh paramilitary soldiers deployed

The Election Commission has made elaborate security arrangements for peaceful voting. A total of 1.07 lakh personnel of the central forces have been deployed. Apart from this, 21,000 personnel of the state police are also on duty. 

Out of the 1071 Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF), 853 companies are on electoral duty. Section 144 will remain in force within a radius of 200 meters of all polling booths.

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