WB Panchayat polls: CPI(M) leaders protest over violence in state

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"Free and fair election did not take place in my area", said Etajul, an independent candidate from Bhangore in South 24 Parganas district said to PTI.

Some reports are saying that Voter turnout in West Bengal panchayat poll till 5 pm is 72.5%. If this was happening during Left Front rule, then the TMC government would never have come in Bengal and the chief minister would not have been the chief minister of Bengal said by the CPI (M) general secretary Yechury. "The counting will take place tomorrow (on May 17)", the SEC officials said.

The state election commission declined to comment on Ray's death.

Of the 58,000-plus seats in the state, more than 38,000 were up for contest.

# According to SEC, of the 48,650 seats in 3,358 gram panchayats, 16,814 were uncontested and of the 9,217 seats in 341 panchayat samitis, 3,059 were uncontested. Opposition parties demanded re-polling at over 500 booths following the deaths of at least 14 people in violence during the polls on Monday.

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They said there was little scope for recommending repolls in only a handful of booths after Monday's widespread snatching of ballot boxes, destruction of ballot papers and several other irregularities.

Uttar Dinajpur has the most booths (73) where the re-election will be conducted, followed by Murshidabad (63) and Nadia (60) while Aliporeduar (2) and West Burwan (3) have the least number of booths where repolling will be held.

The Bengal election commission has ordered repolling in 573 booths in 19 of the state's 20 districts on Wednesday, the largest such exercise in recent memory mirroring the scale of violence and malpractices during Monday's rural elections.

Tension erupted in Raiganj in North Dinajpur district where mutilated body of a polling officer Rajkumar Roy was recovered from the rail tack.

Various reports of violence were reported from some parts, with Rapid Action Force (RAF) and police personnel charging on the crowd. They will have to pay compensation if the loss of life and property exceeded the figures of the 2013 panchayat elections.

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