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HindustanTimes Fri,22 Aug 2014

Uttarakhand flood may wash away Bengal polls

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  Kolkata, June 25, 2013
First Published: 00:36 IST(25/6/2013) | Last Updated: 01:37 IST(25/6/2013)

The Uttarakhand flood may take a toll on the West Bengal panchayat elections.

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The Union home ministry informed the Calcutta high court on Monday that it was unable to provide adequate security for the rural polls due to the deployment of Central armed forces for rescue operations in Uttarakhand. The court had sought a reply on June 19.

“A large number of Central forces are in Assam and elsewhere to maintain law and order. Flood-hit Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh are seeking more forces. The Union home ministry is thus not in a position to deploy Central forces for the rural polls,” SS Sarkar, advocate of the Union government, told the court.

Some 1.49 lakh security personnel are required for the West Bengal rural polls scheduled from July 2. But the state has only 56,000 for law and order duty.

Several persons died during the filing of nominations earlier this month making the Election Commission wonder if the rural polls could be held without adequate security.


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