The eight-phase West Bengal Assembly elections were completed on Thursday, with a turnout of 76.07 percent recorded until 5 p.m. The Election Commission (EC) reported that voting was generally peaceful, with only a few incidents of clashes between political parties.
Workers from the BJP and the Trinamool Congress (TMC) clashed with bamboo sticks and hockey sticks in Rajballav Para, Beliaghata Assembly constituency, and allegedly pelted stones at each other. Several people were reportedly injured as a result of the violence.
Both sides accused each other of interfering with the voting process. The situation is said to have deteriorated after BJP candidate Kashinath Biswas visited the location. According to the opposition party, TMC supporters threw stones at Biswas. In response to the incident, BJP supporters gheraoed the police.
In the morning, there were reports of bombs being thrown at the vehicle of the BJP’s Jorasanko candidate Meena Devi Purohit in central Kolkata. This sparked panic in the area, with Purohit accusing the TMC of hurling the bombs “to instill fear among voters.” The BJP leader claimed she was touring the constituency’s booths at the time of the incident.
The police, however, claimed that firecrackers, not bombs, were set off outside Mahajati Sadan shortly after polling began in the area.
TMC candidate Sadhan Pande claimed that BJP workers assaulted his agents at several booths in the Maniktala constituency here. Kalyan Choubey, Pande’s BJP opponent, accused the ruling party of hooliganism.
“When a 50-year-old woman arrived to vote instead of a 31-year-old woman, our polling agent was sitting inside. She was chastised when she objected. This is TMC hooliganism.”
There were also reports of sporadic violence in Birbhum, where the EC had earlier this week placed TMC district chief Anubrata Mondal under “strict surveillance.” Tarakeswar Saha’s vehicle was allegedly attacked in the Nanoor area of the district.