Following the three-tier WB panchayat elections, violence broke out, killing at least three people and injuring a police officer. The ruling Trinamool Congress (TMC) hoped to win by a wide margin. The number of deaths due to violence since the election schedule became public on June 8 increased to 45. Counting votes began on Tuesday morning under strict security, with counting centers run by armed state police and central forces.
Three people died, and one police officer suffered injuries in clashes post WB panchayat election
The high court ordered that central paramilitary forces remain in the state for at least ten days after the declaration of panchayat election results to prevent post-election clashes.
In the early hours of Wednesday, after the three-tier panchayat election, clashes broke out in West Bengal, killing at least three people and injuring a police officer. The ruling Trinamool Congress (TMC) hoped to win by a wide margin.
This panchayat election claims 45 fatalities so far
With the deaths of the three identified as Raju Mollah, Hasan Ali Mollah, and Rezaul Gazi, the total number of deaths due to violence since the election schedule became public on June 8 increased to 45. Last Saturday’s election day saw at least 18 fatalities.
After receiving a gunshot wound in Bhangore, South 24 Parganas, additional police superintendent Maqsood Hasan headed to a hospital in Kolkata.
A day after re-voting occurred at 696 booths, counting ballots cast for approximately 74,000 Bengal panchayat seats started on Tuesday morning under strict security. The counting centers, where gatherings of more than four people are against the rules, ended up being run by armed state police and central forces.
High Court’s mandate
To prevent post-election clashes, the high court mandated that central paramilitary forces stay in the state for at least ten days after the declaration of panchayat election results. Following the announcement of the assembly election results in May 2021, post-election violence also broke out.
Tuesday’s counting for the rural body elections saw the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) come in a distant second.
Result of the current WB panchayat elections
Results for about 48200 seats emerged until midnight, with the TMC taking 31829 of them, the BJP taking 8630, the Congress winning 2268, and the Communist Party of India (Marxist) or CPI(M) winning 2668. Those running on their own won 1877 seats. Out of 48,636 seats, the TMC won 38,188 in 2018.
The TMC won 2,612 and the BJP 275 seats out of the 9730 Panchayat Samiti seats. The TMC won 124 seats in the Zilla Parishad. It led in another 205 seats, while the BJP led in 11.
Reports of post-election clashes flooded in from various locations. After midnight, a fight between supporters of the TMC and the Indian Secular Front broke out in Bhangore.
As clashes started after midnight, a sizable police contingent arrived, according to a police officer.
Wednesday was the deadline for finishing the counting.