Kolkata civic polls: TMC accuses BJP of tempting voters with Biryani
The Trinamool Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) have once again locked horns in a war of words as they contest the high-stakes Kolkata Municipal Corporation elections on Sunday. In a bizarre allegation, the TMC camp has accused its saffron opponents of tempting voters with Biryani – a dish much popular in the city for its distinctive mix. The incident, reported from north Kolkata's Maniktala area, has now generated considerable excitement in the region, reported Hindustan Times' sister publication HT Bangla.
According to the allegations, cited by the publication, the Trinamool has accused the BJP of influencing prospective voters on the promise of Biryani. Elaborate cooking arrangements in this regard have also been made on the rooftop of a private hospital in the area, the ruling party claims, adding that the mixed rice dish is being delivered to voters from there.
An official of the aforementioned hospital, however, has denied the charges. According to the hospital staffer, cited by a mainstream Bengali-language daily, the Biryani is being prepared for patients and other salaried workers of the medical facility.
Local Trinamool Congress workers have now organised a sit-in before the hospital, demanding that not a single plate of Biryani should go outside the hospital premises.
Meanwhile, TMC and Congress supporters got into a fistfight inside the premises of Sri Jain Vidyalaya on Brabourne Road in central Kolkata where a polling station was set up in ward No 45.
Another incident, where a crude bomb went off and subsequently injured a man, was reported from the north-eastern part of the city this morning. The blast occurred near the polling station at Taki Boy’s School in KMC ward No 36, and both the TMC and the BJP later traded charges and accused each other of ferrying in outsiders to create trouble.
Security has been tightened all over the Bengal capital and its entry points because of the polls. Ahead of the voting, prohibitory orders under Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) were clamped within 100 meters of all polling stations.
More than 23,500 policemen were deployed to ensure the safety of voters and the candidates contesting in the city’s 144 civic wards.