West Bengal elections 2021: BJP's request to change system of appointing booth agents unacceptable, says TMC
After visiting the Election Commission office in Kolkata, Trinamool Congress (TMC) leader Sudip Bandyopadhyay said the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has submitted a memorandum requesting the poll body to alter the system of appointing booth agents, reported news agency ANI on Saturday.
Bandyopadhyay said the BJP has asked for a system wherein anybody can be the agent of any booth. “The new system is not acceptable to us. We demand that from the next phase, the polling agent must be local. The CEO has assured us to look into the matter,” he was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
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The TMC leader’s remark comes on a day when 30 constituencies across West Bengal are voting in the first of the eight phases of the assembly elections. By 1:55pm, a voting percentage of 54.90% was recorded.
Earlier in the day, the ruling party alleged a discrepancy in the EC’s voter turnout application. TMC leader Derek O'Brien wrote to the poll body questioning how the voting percentage on the app reduced drastically to half within five minutes. The party also shared screenshots of the voter turnout app on Twitter. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s party also alleged that many voters have complained their ballot was being cast for the BJP despite voting for the TMC.
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The BJP, however, has rubbished the poll rigging allegation and the chief of its Bengal unit Dilip Ghosh said the ruling party was making such statements as it knows it is going to lose. He claimed that the chief minister was under pressure.
West Bengal is witnessing a crucial battle between the two parties that have levelled multiple allegations, including that of corruption against each other. The BJP, which is confident of winning at least 200 seats, has promised to bring ‘ashol poriborton’ (real change) by overthrowing the TMC government, Banerjee aims to secure the chief minister’s post for the third term and has called it a “smiley election.”