May 7, 2009


KOLKATA,5th MAY: Addressing a crowded media briefing at the Muzaffar Ahmad Bhavan in the afternoon of 5 May, Left Front chairman and senior CPI (M) leader Biman Basu said that of late, the Trinamulis had started to issue statements and comments that were designed to create tension, and perhaps worse, during the next two stages of Lok Sabha elections in Bengal. In the second stage, 17 Lok Sabha constituencies would go to the polls. The rest of the constituencies would face elections – 14 Lok Sabha seats were included in the first phase on 30 April – by 13 May.

The Lok Sabha seats going in for polls on 7 May (numbers 9 to 42) are Jangipur, Berhampore, Murshidabad, Krishnagar, Ranaghat (SC), Howrah, Uluberia, Sreerampur, Hooghly, Arambagh (SC), Tamluk, Contai (Kanthi), Burdwan east, Burdwan-Durgapur, Asansol, Bolpur (SC), and Birbhum.

Biman Basu cited two specific examples in this regard. Addressing meetings at three places in Hooghly and Nadia what the Trinamul chief said was certainly alarming, fearfully so, reminding us perhaps of the rĂ´le of agent provocateurs who rouse anti-thetical feelings and then aggravate the commencement of violence.

Biman drew the urgent attention of the media, and through the media to the mass of the people, to a series of illegal comments which would clearly be regarded as provocative of anger that were uttered by the Trinamuli chieftain, as widely given publicity in such newspapers as Bartaman 4 May 2009 where it was said that she called upon the people, while addressing a meeting at Dhaniakhali in Hooghly, to ‘launch a series of attacks’ on ‘cadres’ of the ‘CPM.’

Biman said how it was reported in the Aajkaal, 4 May 2009 that the Trinamuli leader urged upon the people attending her rally at Chakdaha and Gayeshpur in the district of Nadia under the Krishnagar Lok Sabha seat, to keep ‘cooking on hold on election day,’ and to take up ‘cooking utensils like metal ladles and metal spatulas and whatever else they can lay their hands on to come out in the streets.’

In an instance of dangerous provocation, she also called upon the members of the Muslim community present to ‘apply muscle power in the streets’ on the day of election and to keep the ‘machinery ready.’ Do you possess muscles in your bodies, she cried loudly, and said, if so, get ready to go in for a piece of action on the streets, on poll day. Another Trinamuli leader and a former bureaucrat called upon the electorate to make good use of heavy staves to berate the CPI (M) workers with during the next two phases of the election.

Biman also said that there was possibility that electronic devices would be attached by a section of the voters to deliberately make the EVM go wrong, before crying foul, and going in for anarchic behaviour in and around the polling booths. The presiding officers, the polling officials, as well the election agents, in the case of the latter, irrespective of political leanings, should look for any voter staying too long in the enclosed area where the EVMs would be kept. The LF leader also called for additional supervision on the part of the state administration and the ECI in the Assembly segments marked ‘sensitive,’ ‘very sensitive,’ and ‘very, very sensitive’ under the Tamluk Lok Sabha seat.

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