statesman news service
KOLKATA, 15 JUNE: Taking a breather from lambasting the Trinamul Congress government for incidents of violence against women and preventing Left Front candidates from filing nomination, the Left Front chairman Biman Bose today hit out at the State Election Commission.
Come Tuesday, a Left Front delegation will hold a stay-in demonstration before the SEC office to protest the SEC overlooking incidents of violence preventing LF candidates from filing their nomination for the forthcoming panchayat elections.
Mr Bose during a Press conference at the party office at Alimuddin Street today said LF nominees are not only being intimidated, they are being fined by local Trinamul leaders for “daring” to contest the panchayat elections. The commission seems to be unaware that a fine of Rs 3 lakh has been slapped on a proposer of an LF nominee, while the candidate has been fined Rs 2 lakh, he said.
"We cannot understand why the SEC is not taking any action against the Trinamul leaders sitting in the BDO’s office and preventing the LF candidates from filing nomination," he said.
"Our nominees are being driven away. Their caste certificates snatched away and torn up and sometimes they are intercepted on the way to the nomination filing centre by Trinamul-backed goons while a some policemen are hand in glove with these goons and are reluctant to accept our complaints," he alleged.
It was not like this during the Left Front regime, the LF chairman said. The Left Front’s letters to the SEC about these incidents against its candidates has not stirred it into action, he alleged.
Some of the Trinamul leaders are alleging the LF cannot field candidates as it lacks adequate organisation, Mr Bose pointed out. This has led to LF candidates not being in the fray in many parts of the districts of Burdwan, Hooghly, South 24-Parganas, Nadia and Cooch Behar.
"As for the government, it is not taking action even after four women ~ three of them school girls ~ have been raped and murdered in the past four days," Mr Bose said.
"Even after four young lives have been snuffed out the state government is offering compensation to the next of kin instead of trying to punish the culprits in North 24-Parganas, Nadia and Murshidabad," he said.
In another function during the day, former chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee said democracy was under attack in the state as seen in the run-up to the panchayat polls, educational institutions and students’ unions. Delivering the Anil Biswas Memorial Lecture he expressed his reservation about the proposed “federal front” being tried to be formed by the ruling political parties of West Bengal, Bihar and Orissa. Turning his attention to the state, the former chief minister said the criminals seemed to be calling the shots ever since the Trinamul government has come to power. The people have to choose between industrialisation and chit funds and it is their choice, he said, which would decide whether a situation would prevail in the state in which conducting rural polls has become uncertain unlike during the LF regime.