The North 24 Parganas district is set to go for polls in the sixth phase of assembly elections in West Bengal on the 22nd of April. As per a New Indian Express report, just 10 days before polling, the police have recovered bombs, bomb-making equipment, gunpowder and bullets from an illegal arms manufacturing unit in the Madral Joychanditala area of Bhatpara in North 24 Parganas district on Saturday.
West Bengal: An illegal arms manufacturing unit was busted & two firearms along with equipment were recovered by police in Bhatpara area of North 24 Parganas district on Sunday night, say police. pic.twitter.com/9gEY2KUdhE— ANI (@ANI) April 11, 2021
Further investigations are underway and the police have registered a case under the Explosive Substances Act and Arms Act.
The Election Commission has intensified vigilance across West Bengal especially post Cooch Behar’s violent episode to ensure no untoward incident takes place in the remaining polling season. The silence period before the day of polling, where politicians are not allowed to campaign in the constituency going to poll, has been increased from 48 hours to 72 hours in the remaining phases.
The voting in the Bhatpara constituency in North 24 Parganas will be held on April 22 post which two more phases of polling will take place in the state before the elections conclude.
Series of violence in West Bengal amidst assembly polls
The state, even before going into polling was marred with political killings and violence. More than five BJP karyakartas have been found dead since the assembly elections began in the state.
As per reports, a BJP worker identified as Amit Sarkar, the Mandal President of the BJP unit in Dinhata, was found hanging just three days ahead of the first phase of the West Bengal assembly elections.
Amit Sarkar, mondal president of Dinhata Town, was hanged to death by TMC goons, just 72 hours before the first phase.— Amit Malviya (@amitmalviya) March 24, 2021
Is this what TMC meant by Khela Hobe?
Bengal has been reduced to blood field with political killings becoming the norm. BJP has lost over 130 of its cadres… pic.twitter.com/M1tzMkmXry
After a few peaceful hours, several cases of violence were reported amid the second phase of polling in West Bengal. From attacking the cars and convoys of top BJP leaders to stopping voters from reaching the polling booth to incumbent CM Mamata Banerjee camping in a polling booth, the second and third phases too witnessed cases of violence and political gimmicks in spurts.
However, the fatal violence in the fourth phase of polling shook not just the state but the entire nation. Violence triggered at the polling station in Sitalkuchi in Cooch Behar after an 18-year old was shot dead allegedly by TMC goons.
The situation went downhill from there with the locals attacking the CISF personnel in an attempt to snatch their weapons which led to the death of four youths in retaliatory fire by the CISF. A woman’s toddler was allegedly snatched from her after a frenzied mob ambushed the polling booth in the same area.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah has blamed Mamata Banerjee’s instigating speech for the flaring violence in the state has urged the voters to conduct the remaining polls peacefully.