Trinamool unhappy over West Bengal poll scheduleMarch 2nd, 2009 - 8:59 pm ICT by IANS
Kolkata, March 2 (IANS) West Bengal’s main opposition party Trinamool Congress Monday expressed dissatisfaction with the state’s voting schedule announced by the Election Commission.
The poll panel Monday declared that the Lok Sabha election in northern Bengal will be held April 30. Voting in south Bengal constituencies will take place May 7 and 13.
The Trinamool demanded that polls in southern Bengal be held ahead of north Bengal keeping in view the scorching summer.
“We want the south Bengal elections to be held in April and the north Bengal polls in May keeping in view the weather,” All India Trinamool Congress (AITC) general secretary Mukul Roy told reporters here.
“The dates declared by the CEC for West Bengal are not actually suitable considering the scorching summer heat in May in south Bengal,” he said.
“Many Hindi-speaking people, who live in south Bengal region, often migrate to different states (their homeland) in May. If the south Bengal election can be rescheduled in April, instead of May, many electors would be able to cast their votes in West Bengal,” he observed.
The Trinamool also wants the election to be conducted through ballots boxes, not through electronic voting machines (EVM).
“We still believe that EVMs can be manipulated by changing their internal programming system,” Roy said, adding that the Trinamool had earlier appealed to the election panel to conduct the polls using ballot papers.
“We also want that every polling booth should be manned and managed by central paramilitary forces,” he said.