Voting Begins For 4 Civic Body Elections In West Bengal

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West Bengal Civic Polls: Voting started at 7 am and will continue till 5 pm.

Kolkata:

Voting has begun for all four municipal corporation elections in Siliguri, Bidhannagar, Chandannagar, and Asansol in West Bengal on Saturday with COVID-19 protocols in place. It started at 7 am and will continue till 5 pm. The counting will be held on February 14.

Voters have queued up outside polling booths, and thermal checking and sanitization are being done before voting. Heavy police force has been deployed at every polling booth. Naka checking is also on as well as river patrolling.

In Bidhannagar, a total of 203 candidates are contesting in 41 wards, while in Siliguri, there are 201 contestants in 47 wards. Asansol has 106 wards where 430 candidates are contesting.

There are a total of 33 wards in Chandannagar, but due to the sudden death of the BJP candidate in ward number 17, the election to that ward has been postponed. So elections are now being held in 32 wards in Chandannagar.

Siliguri has 4,02,897 voters, including 1,98,899 female, 2,03,979 male, and 18 third gender. It is the only civic body in the state which was run by the Left-Front for the last five years.

Among senior politicians, former state minister Goutam Deb of Trinamool Congress, Siliguri BJP MLA Sankar Ghosh, former Siliguri Mayor and veteran CPI-M leader Ashok Bhattacharya are contesting the polls.

Sabyasachi Dutta, former Bidhannagar Mayor of Trinamool, who had joined BJP during assembly polls and returned after the results, is also contesting from Ward number 31 in Bidhannagar.

Meanwhile, on Friday, a fresh row sparked in Trinamool Congress over the “One Person, One Post” campaign after party leader and minister in Mamata Banerjee’s government, Chandrima Bhattacharya posted the slogan on her social media handle.

However, she later claimed that the post was done by consultancy group I-PAC.

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee will hold an emergency meeting with senior leaders of her party on Saturday. The meeting will be held at Ms Banerjee’s Kalighat office at 5 pm.

The civic polls were earlier slated to be held on January 22, 2022. However, the Calcutta High Court had postponed the elections citing the COVID-19 third wave situation.

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