With political parties apprehending violence and unrest in poll-bound West Bengal, chief election commissioner Sunil Arora today said the commission has zero-tolerance to money and muscle power and misuse of the government machinery and virtually gave a clean chit to BSF rejecting the charge of “terrorising” voters by one of the “finest” forces of the county in border areas by a political party.
“The law and order in the state will be under constant watch. The charge by a political party on BSF terrorising voters on the India Bangladesh border is unfortunate. There is no such information on terrorising voters by BSF in the border areas to the commission at the moment. The parties furnish evidence or table instances of incidents of such magnitude before levelling such charges,” said Arora.
The CEC also junked BJP’s charges that names of three to four lakh Rohingyas made it to the voters’ list as “unfounded”. He also dismissed the speculation of deploying central forces in the state two to three months ago before the polls.
“The forces will be deployed in advance but not two to three months ago. The CAPF and other central forces would be deployed taking into account all factors. Not only the central forces the state police would also be deployed as situation demands,” he said.
The poll panel also issued a blanket ban on bike rallies, an instrument of canvassing during election, after the model code of conduct comes into force.
Arora also informed the poll panel has nixed the idea of deploying “civic police or Green police” as part of poll duties. Asked about incidents of violence ahead of the Assembly elections, Arora said, “We would like to review events of serious crimes which have political overtones and examine them on a case-to-case basis.”
There will be 1,01,790 polling stations for the 2021 elections in the state and every booth should be made accessible to all persons with disabilities.