Fifth Phase Of Polls In Bengal Records 78.25%

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Kolkata: Overall 78.25 percent turnout recorded in the fifth phase of the West Bengal assembly elections for 53 seats spread over 24 Parganas Dakshin, Hooghly and Kolkata Dakshin districts on Saturday.

Divulging details at a press conference, Deputy Election Commissioner Sandeep Saxena said, “At 5 p.m., 78.25 percent voters’ turnout was reported in the fifth phase of the West Bengal assembly polls.”

“Final voting percentage recorded in the phase 1A: 84.22 percent; Phase 1 B: 83.73percent; second phase: 83.05 percent; third phase: 82.28 percent; fourth phase: 81.25 percent and fifth phase: 78.25 percent,” he said.

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Following the directions of the Election Commission, the authorities registered an FIR against Trinamool Congress MLA Sonali Guha after she was caught on camera allegedly ordering party workers to beat CPI (M) polling agents. The conversation was recorded by TV channels.

Guha, also the deputy speaker in the outgoing West Bengal Assembly, is the Trinamool candidate from South 24 Parganas district’s Satgachia constituency.

“FIR has been lodged and action has been initiated against TMC leader Sonali Guha, said Saxena.

The presiding officer at a booth in Arambagh was changed after charges of rigging for TMC. An FIR has been filed against all involved at the directive of the Commission. Over 2,000 complaints were received by the Commission from the three poll-bound districts till early in the evening, highest being from the 24-Parganas Dakshin and the least from Kolkata Dakshin.

The Kolkata Police used Drones to monitor the massive security arrangement made for the polling.

The voters in today’s crucial round sealed the electoral fate of many heavyweights in EVMs including TMC chairperson and Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and 11 of her cabinet colleagues.

The candidates in Kolkata and 24-Parganas Dakshin included the Speaker and Deputy Speaker of the Assembly and the Kolkata Mayor, all of them from the ruling party.

The opponents contesting today included Congress’ Deepa Das Munshi, BJP’s Chandra Kumar Bose and Left leaders Kanti Ganguly, Sujan Chakraborty and Samik Lahiri.

Senior Congress leader Abdul Mannan and CPI-M’s former chief whip, Robin Deb figured among the notables in Hooghly-Ajay Mhamia.