The Election Commission has issued a stern response to a letter sent to it by Trinamool Congress over the injury that Mamata Banerjee suffered yesterday. The poll panel strongly objected to the attempt of the ruling party in West Bengal to blame it for the alleged attack on the Chief Minister.
After Mamata Banerjee had suffered an injury on her leg in Nandigram yesterday, the TMC had sent a letter to the ECI, saying that there is a deep-rooted political conspiracy behind the incident. The party had alleged that there was no police protection around the CM when the incident happened, and added that police was now in ECI’s control as the election process has started. The party had also claimed that Mamata Banerjee is under threat due to ‘abrupt’ removal of the state DGP by the Election Commission.
The ECI has taken a strong objection to the allegations made by the TMC, and has denied their claims. The state issued by the ECI says that the incident involving Mamata Banerjee was indeed an unfortunate incident and it deserves to be inquired into with promptitude and dispatch. However, the memorandum submitted to it by TMC leaders is full of insinuations and averments, which in fact questions the very basis of creation and functioning of the Election Commission.
The ECI has said that it is completely incorrect to state that it has taken over law and order machinery in the name of conducting elections and appropriated the whole governance structure. “This virtually tantamounts to undermine the very foundation and fabric of the Constitution of India”, the statement said. ECI added that it does not appropriate day to day governance of any state during the elections, and they keep functioning as per extant rules of business and distribution of work approved by CM, which also applies to West Bengal.
The poll panel added that it looks undignified to even respond to allegations of all this being done at the behest of a particular party. The ECI also responded to the allegations over the removal of the DGP. They said that it was not an abrupt decision, and it was done on the recommendations of the Special Observers Ajay Nayak and Vivek Dube. They also added that after the incident in Nandigram, the commission has sought a report on the same from the observers within 48 hours.
ECI said that not just the DGP, even the ADG (Law and Order) was also replaced after considered application of mind by the Special Observers. They added that after elections are announced, it is not legally necessary or mandatory to consult the state government in such matters as these are temporary measures.
The poll panel concludes by saying that it will wait for the report on the incident and share the same with all stakeholders. They added that the life of the West Bengal chief minister needs to be duly protected by all tasked with the maintenance of law and order machinery in the state. While Mamata Banerjee and TMC had alleged conspiracy behind the ‘attack’ yesterday, today they have changed the tone, especially the CM. In a video message from Hospital today, Mamata Banerjee said that she was crushed by her car when she was on the bonnet of it, and didn’t mention anything about being pushed by miscreants. Yesterday she had claimed that she was pushed by 4-5 people.
In the meanwhile, locals Nandigram who witnesses the incident have said that she was injured in an accident, not an attack. They told media that when Mamata Banerjee’s convoy was moving on the road, she was waiving towards the crowd by keeping the car door open and keeping her legs out. The open car door had hit a short iron pillar on the roadside which was not visible to the driver due to the crowd. This has resulted in the door to close forcefully, hitting the CM and injuring her legs. The preliminary investigation report by the police confirmed this eyewitness account.