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BJP demands Central forces for Maheshtala polls

It also presses for the transfer of Maheshtala OC because of his alleged biasness towards TMC and ‘rude behaviour’ with the Oppositions.

Statesman News Service | Kolkata |

BJP on Wednesday demanded paramilitary forces should be deployed for the bypoll to the Maheshtala Assembly constituency and also the transfer of the officer-in-charge (OC) of Maheshtala who is acting as Trinamul Congress (TMC) agent.

The state BJP on Wednesday also submitted a memorandum to the office of the Chief Electoral Officer (CEO), West Bengal demanding immediate transfer of the OC of the Maheshtala because of his alleged biasness towards the ruling party and “rude behaviour with the Oppositions.”

The senior BJP leader and party’s state spokesperson Jayprakash Majumdar visited the CEO office on Wednesday and has also demanded for more deployment of security from the Central and to enforce nakabandi (area checking) for 72 hours from the ending of the campaigning to the elections to safeguard the booths from TMC-backed goons.

“We want paramilitary force should be deployed there to safeguard the territory of the constituency. With the help of police, TMC has already started grabbing the control of the area to send miscreants to terrorise voters,” he said.

“Chief minister Mamata Banerjee destroyed the democracy and so her party and its cadre will again try to oust the Opposition from here. But BJP is all set to fight against TMC’s anarchy,” Mr Majumder said.

The Maheshtala Assembly seat in South 24 Parganas district fell vacant after the death of its two-time representative TMC’s Kasturi Das in February this year.

The seat had been a CPM bastion till 2011 when it lost to the TMC, which grabbed power in the state. Das defeated CPM’s candidate by 24,283 votes. In 2016, she returned to defeat the party again by 12,452 votes. In contrast, the BJP received 3,689 votes in 2011 and 14,909 votes in 2016.

The bypoll is scheduled for May 28 and counting will be on May 31. While Kasturi Das’s husband Dulal Das will be the TMC face, the Left Front will go with CPM’s Prabhat Chowdhury. The BJP has named Sujit Ghosh as their party candidate.

West Bengal BJP president Dilip Ghosh said his party’s show in the recent panchayat elections was good and they are hopeful for Mahestala Assembly constituency. “We hope that our party candidate will win Mahestala bypoll. BJP established its remarkable position in several panchayat by defeating TMC candidates braving the all terror tactics of the TMC,” he said.

“The Left and the Congress has lost its credibility. Congress on one hand it is seeking support from TMC to send its candidate (Abhishek Manu Singhvi) to Rajya Sabha from West Bengal and on the other they are joining hands with the CPIM to deter us from bagging the second position. So we do not need to consider as Left and Congress as toughest,” said Mr Ghosh.

A senior BJP leader further said the party will increase its vote share during the Maheshtala bypolls.

The CPIM and Congress joining forces in the coming Maheshtala Assembly bypoll, so it will be a test for the BJP to grab the second position in a three-way contest.

The state BJP also organised a grand mega road show for campaigning its party candidate. BJP’s national secretary and West Bengal observer Kailash Vijayvargiya and BJP leader Mukul Roy joined the road show.