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EC prepared for Bengal bypolls

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Kolkata, Sep 30: Braving the rains, the election commission is fully prepared to conduct the election in three assembly constituencies including high-profile Bhabanipur assembly constituency where chief minister Mamata Banerjee is contesting where she needs to win mandatorily if she is supposed to retain her position as the chief minister, after she lost to Trinamool turned BJP Suvendu Adhikari from Nandigram assembly constituency in the recently concluded assembly polls in the state.

The Bhabanipur assembly seat became vacant after TMC veteran Sovondeb Chattopadhyay resigned making room for the chief minister. There was no election in the other two assembly constituencies – Samserganj and Jangipur – both in Murshidabad in the recently concluded assembly polls because the contesting candidate died just before the poll day.

Though there are three bye-elections in the state, the entire focus will be on Bhabanipur and so the election commission, apart from the 15 companies, has pumped in an additional 20 companies of central forces that will be deployed for patrolling duty. With this the total forces deployed in Bhabanipur is 35 companies.

There has been widespread allegation that the ruling Trinamool Congress threatens voters and stops them from going to the voting centres and so the commission is taking no chances.

Though there has been a deployment of 2,250 state forces but there will be no deployment of state forces inside the polling stations. “The 15 companies of central forces that are presently stationed in the constituency will take care of the polling stations. There will be two state force personnel outside the polling station to manage the queue but the responsibility of the security will rest entirely on the central forces,” the official added.

Besides announcing all the 287 booths to be sensitive, the election commission will deploy micro-observer in all the booths. “The commission also announced 13 booths to be super-sensitive. Mitra Institution – the booth where chief minister Mamata Banerjee is supposed to cast her vote has also been declared as super-sensitive. There will be web-casting not only in the super-sensitive booths but also many other booths. The election commission will keep a close watch on the development of the election process,” the official added.

Considering the incessant rains in Kolkata for the last few days the commission has made an unprecedented arrangement to take the people to the polling stations. The commission has asked all the people to call on the 1950 phone number if they can’t go to their respective polling stations. The commission will make arrangements to bring the voters to the booths and send them back home after their vote is over. The administration is also keeping NDRF teams and two boats ready for any emergency situation.

The total number of electors including service voters in Bhowanipore is 2,06,522. There are 5 overseas electors and 4 third genders. The total number of polling stations in Bhowanipore is 287 with 269 main and 18 auxiliary polling stations. 12 candidates are in the fray at Bhowanipore.

Meanwhile, the total number of voters including service electors in Samserganj and Jangipur are 2,35,576 and 2,55066 respectively. The number of polling stations are 329 and 363 respectively. Webcasting will be done in 176 polling stations in Samserganj and 193 in Jangipur. Micro-observers will be present in 68 and 20 polling stations. 19 and 18 companies of armed forces will be deployed at Shamsherganj and Jangipur respectively.

TMC nominee Jakir Hossain will contest in Jangipur against Sujit Das of BJP and Jane Alam Mian of the Left Front while in Samsherganj TMC nominee Amirul Islam is locking horns with Milan Ghosh of BJP and Modasar Hossain of CPM.

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Maharashtra government tells HC, Param Bir Singh non-traceable

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Call me “Dada”, not “Sir”, Tripura CM Biplab Kumar Deb to employees

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Agartala: In what appears to be a step to boost the morale of the government employees, Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb on Sunday asked the government employees to call him “Dada” instead of “Sir”. “Call me Dada, not sir. It enhances the warmth of the relationship”, Deb told a gathering of government employees.

Deb exhorted the government employees of the state especially ASHA and Anganwadi workers of the state asking them not to dishearten as the state government was eager to improve their pay structure.

“I salute the ASHA and Anganwadi workers of my state. The level of dedication that my sisters have shown during the pandemic period deserved applause. I know, they want to hear good news from me and I am assuring you all that this government will not disappoint anyone”, Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb told a gathering of government employees at Badharghat sports school field organized by Vivekananda Vicha Manch (VVM).

VVM has emerged as a big platform of government employees, of late, and Sunday’s public rally was its first big gathering to thank the Chief Minister for the series of steps his government took for the welfare of the employees.

“I know what challenges you people are facing. Nothing is hidden in front of me. I am assuring you all everything will be taken care of in the due course of time”, he added.  Lauding the efforts of government employees Deb said, without them no government office can function.

“Due to the efforts of government employees, people can access the benefits of the state sponsored welfare schemes. But, for a prolonged period the employees did not get their right to do something freely. They were trapped in the clutches of unions. In the previous regime, Left sponsored unions used to enjoy supreme power which had reduced the whole work culture of the state to tatters. In 2018, you people showed courage and voted BJP to power”, said Deb.

“Despite fund constraints, the state government is positively working on the issues of DA and other factors pertaining to the interest of the government employees. Our government has already addressed a number of issues related to financial benefits. The ad-hoc promotion, increment for Group D, Group C employees, regularization of SSA teachers, seventh pay scale, UGC scale for professors, special benefit for LTC are to name a few. All these indicate what we want to do and we shall do what we promise”, the Chief Minister said.

The Chief Minister also asked the officials not to call him “sir” suggesting them to refer to him as “Dada” as it makes the relationship stronger and cherished. The Chief Minister also distributed clothes among children of Badharghat sports school during the programme. State BJP President Manik Saha, Minister Ram Prasad Paul, Minister Sushanta Chowdhury, MLA Mimi Majumder, state BJP Vice President and president of Vivekananda Vichar Manch Rajib Bhattacharjee also spoke on the occasion.

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