Kolkata: Sporadic incidents of violence marked the first two hours of polling in West Bengal, where an estimated 16.90 per cent of voters exercised their franchise till 9.00am Monday in eight Lok Sabha constituencies, election officials said.
An electorate of 1,34,56,491 will decide the fate of 68 candidates in the eight constituencies — Baharampur, Krishnagar, Ranaghat (SC), Burdwan East (SC), Burdwan-Durgapur, Asansol, Bolpur (SC) and Birbhum.
There were reports of a clash between TMC and BJP workers outside a booth in Barabani in Asansol, following a tiff between sitting MP and BJP candidate in Asansol, Babul Supriyo and polling officials inside the station, an Election Commission source informed.
However, an EC official stated that by and large, polling has so far been peaceful. “There are reports of small incidents of violence from some booths which were addressed immediately. Our officials and forces are monitoring the situation in Asansol,” the official told this agency. “We have sought a report from the presiding officer about what Babul Supriyo was doing inside the booth,” he added.
The commission has deployed a total of 580 companies of central forces to cover all the polling booths in the Lok Sabha constituencies, to ensure free and fair polling.
The eight seats will see a four-cornered contest between the Trinamool Congress, the BJP, the Congress and the Left Front.