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Jangalmahal elections a challenge for everybody

Jangalmahal polls are giving sleepless nights to everybody — CPI(M), Trinamool, Election Commission and district administration. Koushik Dutta reports.

india Updated: May 05, 2011 17:55 IST
Koushik Dutta

Jangalmahal polls are giving sleepless nights to everybody — CPI(M), Trinamool, Election Commission and district administration.

Both CPI(M) and the Opposition have complained to Election Commission and district administration that in many areas they are not being able to campaign.

While the CPI(M) alleges that Trinamool and “its allies”, the Maoists and PCAPA, are creating obstacles in its campaign path, the Trinamool is blaming CPI(M) “harmads”.

To Election Commission and district administration, it is a “challenge” to conduct free, fair and peaceful polls. For this, the poll panel decided to conduct the polls for 14 assembly seats in the last phase on 10 May. The panel had already taken the decision to deploy a maximum numbers of security personnel in the areas, so that they can combat and tackle all possible attacks.

Of the 14 assembly constituencies, seven are in West Midnapore. Among the remaining seats, four (Jhargram, Gopiballavpur, Nayagram and Binpur) are in Jhargram subdivision. The area has remained “disturbed” for the last few years due to Maoist activities. According to sources, district administration held an all-party meeting to ensure free and peaceful polls. The CPI(M) leadership alleged that in places such as Sirshi, Labkush, Amlachati, Chandipur in Jhargram area it is being resisted.

On the other hand, Trinamool is worried about the presence of CPI(M) harmads in many areas. “Not only in Garbeta and Keshpur, harmads are also present in many places in Jhargram, Lalgarh, Gopiballvpur and Nayagram areas. They beat up our supporters when they went to campaign,” Trinamool Congress leader in West Midnapore Pradyut Ghosh said.