Bengal BJP Leaders Urge Election Commission Not to Depute State Officers on Poll Duty


West Bengal BJP leaders on Monday met the Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) and requested him not to depute any officers or staff of the State government in any poll duty fearing that the ruling party may influence the voters.

Those who met the CEO are Arjun Singh, Soumitra Khan, Dinesh Trivedi and Shishir Bajoria. They also requested that the permanent or contractual municipal staff should also be barred from any kind of poll duty for free and fair polling.

The BJP MP and observer of Bhawanipur constituency, Arjun Singh, alleged that every time during polls, their grievances were overlooked despite all assurances given by the CEO.

Citing post poll violence issues, the BJP leaders urged the poll body to do whatever it will require to ensure free and fair polls in all the three constituencies including Samserganj, Jangipur and Bhawanipur.

“The Commission should ensure 100 per cent of booths in the three constituencies are manned by Central Armed Police Force (CAPF) with no West Bengal or Kolkata Police within 200 metres radius of any polling booths. The CAPF should arrive well in time to ensure area domination else they will have no other option but to be guided by the local police which is fully politicised,” State BJP’s letter to CEO reads.

While highlighting that Assembly Constituency 159 (Bhawanipur), which has 29 single booths, the letter reads, “The commission should ensure that every booth be treated at par and single booths should get similar force as others. For your ready reference 159 AC has 29 such single booths.”

The BJP leaders also requested the poll body to transfer State officers who have been holding the same office for more than three years. “It has been the practice of the election commission to transfer officers who have been holding the same office for more than three years, in the area going to polls. However, the poll announcement was made on September 2 but no such step has been taken,” the letter reads.

On Burqa-clad voters, the party has requested the EC for identification of such voters to enforce the spirit of the order to ensure that every voter irrespective of religious beliefs is duly identified beyond any doubt before being allowed to vote.

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