West Bengal Panchayat Polls Bell Ringing

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Kolkata: West Bengal Panchayat polls likely to held soon in the state as the Bengal election commission has requested the state government to spell out the number of phases and possible time frame for this year’s panchayat polls.

This is the first time the commission has begun with wanting to know the number of phases.In 2013, the rural polls were held in five phases following a Supreme Court order. But then too, the discussions had started over arrangement of forces.

According to a Nabanna Official, the government would like a single-phase election that used to be the norm till 2008.  Although no reply has been sent so far, the government feels that multi-phase elections keep development work on hold.

According to the West Bengal Panchayat Elections Act, 2003, the commission and the state government hold discussions and fix the time and phases of the rural polls.

Commission sources said the poll body was keen on arranging proper security for each booth. It is not possible to deploy the required number of personnel in the state’s 77,000-odd booths if the elections are held in one phase, the sources said.

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