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April 08, 2021 / 11:03 PM IST

Assembly Elections 2021 News Highlights | EC issues notice to Suvendu Adhikari for alleged communal speech, asks to respond in 24 hours

Assembly Elections 2021 News Highlights: Voting took place in a single phase in Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Puducherry on April 6, while voters in Assam cast their votes in three phases. The next phase of voting in West Bengal will happen on April 10. Catch the latest updates of the poll campaign here

Assembly Elections 2021 News Highlights: It’s the assembly elections season in Assam, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal and the Union Territory of Puducherry. Polling happened in a single phase in Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Puducherry on April 6, while voters in Assam cast their votes in three phases. Polling in Bengal is happening in eight phases. Of these, three phases have concluded. The next phase
will take place on April 10. The election campaign and canvassing has continued there in full swing. Counting of votes in all states will happen on May 2. In Bengal, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s Trinamool Congress is fighting to keep the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)’s surge at bay. The saffron party has shown a dramatic electoral rise in the state over the last few years. In Assam, the state’s governing BJP is hoping to retain power even as it faces ‘Mahajot’, the joint opposition alliance comprising the Congress, AIUDF and other regional parties. Congress and the Left Front, which are allies in Bengal, are competing for power in Kerala. The Congress-led UDF and the ruling LDF have been winning alternate elections since the early 1980s. Tamil Nadu’s ruling AIADMK has continued its alliance with the BJP amid a challenge from MK Stalin-led DMK and its alliance partners. However, one of the key things to watch out for in the southern state is how some of the smaller parties – including that of actor Kamal Haasan and TTV Dhinakaran’s AMMK – may impact the poll outcome. With their government having collapsed due to defections weeks before the election, V Narayanasamy-led Congress is battling the BJP-NR Congress alliance in Puducherry.
  • April 08, 2021 / 11:01 PM IST

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  • April 08, 2021 / 10:42 PM IST

    Assembly Elections 2021 LIVE Updates | Assam CEO received 1,374 complaints during model code of conduct period

    The office of the Assam Chief Election Officer Thursday said it had received 1,374 complaints during the period the model code of conduct for the recently concluded state assembly election was in place. Of the 1374 complaints received, 411 were dropped, 961 were found correct and two are pending, a release by the office of the CEO said.

    During the period when the model code of conduct was in place from February 26 to April 8 for the three-phase poll for the 126-seat Assembly, there were 13 complaints about campaigning during the period when it was banned. Six of the complaints have been dropped. There were seven complaints about display of firearms and intimidation and six of them were dropped.

    There were another 30 complaints about distribution of cash and 27 of them were dropped, the release said. The other complaints included distribution of gifts and coupons, posters put up without mandatory declaration, defacement of property, putting up of posters and banners without permission, religious or communal speeches and messages, use of speakers beyond permitted time and use of vehicle or convoy without permission, it added. 


  • April 08, 2021 / 10:27 PM IST

    Assembly Elections 2021 LIVE Updates | Bengal child protection panel seeks to know from ECI why it released jawan accused of molesting minor

    The West Bengal Child Protection Commission (WBCPC) on Thursday wrote to the Election Commission of India (ECI) seeking to know the reasons behind the "transfer" of a central force jawan, who is accused of molesting a minor girl, without arresting him under the POCSO Act. WBCPC Chairperson Ananya Chakraborti said she also sought an explanation from the superintendent of police of Hooghly Rural Police District on why the accused was released.

    A central force jawan, who is on poll duty in the state, allegedly molested a class 10 student at Tarakeswar in Hooghly district on Monday evening when she was going to a friend''s place. The ECI removed the accused jawan from duty after receiving complaints in this connection. 

    Chakraborty said that the poll panel has also transferred him and seven other jawans of his unit. "I visited the victim yesterday at Tarakeswar. She told me that she will be able to identify the accused jawan. Hers is a different version as the investigating officer told me that the victim is unable to identify the accused. How can they release the accused jawan?" Chakraborti told PTI.

    She was also surprised that though the victim is a minor, the jawan was not booked under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act. "The Commission is surprised to hear that the accused has been allowed to leave for their next destination without proper identification and investigation. The ECI's silence is a cause of great concern and shock for the Commission.

    "One of the eight is the accused and the allegations against him fall under the provision of POCSO Act and he should have been identified and arrested," a statement released by the WBCPC said.


  • April 08, 2021 / 09:55 PM IST

    Assembly Elections 2021 LIVE Updates | West Bengal Pradesh Congress Committee President Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury wrote to the Election Commission, requesting the deployment of central forces personnel to accompany officers who will go to receive the casting of votes from respective houses of disabled persons and aged persons of more than 80 years, news agency ANI reported.

  • April 08, 2021 / 09:26 PM IST

     Assembly Elections 2021 LIVE Updates | EC issues showcause notice to Suvendu Adhikari over alleged communal speech, asks to respond in 24 hours

    The Election Commission issued a showcause notice to BJP candidate from Nandigram, Suvendu Adhikari, over his alleged communal speech delivered during the campaign trail on March 29.

  • April 08, 2021 / 07:46 PM IST

     Assembly Elections 2021 LIVE Updates | Take money offered by BJP, vote for TMC: Abhishek Banerjee

    BJP was distributing cash to purchase votes, TMC MP Abhishek Banerjee on Thursday asked people to exercise their franchise in favour of his party, after having taken the money being offered by the saffron camp. Insisting that people should bargain for more, he urged voters to ask for Rs 5,000 if offered Rs 500.

    "Take money from lotus (BJP symbol) and vote for the twin flowers (TMC symbol). If they can do cheat you, why won't you do the same?" Banerjee stated at a public meeting at Kumargram in Alipurduar district. (PTI)

  • April 08, 2021 / 07:14 PM IST

     Assembly Elections 2021 LIVE Updates | Nadda holds roadshows in north Bengal, says 'insider-outsider' debate reflects Mamata's frustration

    Claiming that a wave was blowing in favour of the BJP, the party's national president, J P Nadda, on Thursday criticised Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee for raking up the 'insider-outsider' debate every now and then, saying that it reflects her 'frustration', having sensed imminent defeat.

    Exuding confidence that his party would win the assembly polls with over 200 seats in its kitty, Nadda said this election was all about putting an end to TMC's 'cut-money (bribery) culture'. 'We are confident of bagging more than 200 seats (in the 294-member Assembly). A wave is blowing in favour of the BJP, and it is so strong that the TMC will get washed away.

    We condemn the insider-outsider debate by Mamata Banerjee. This is a sign of her desperation sensing imminent defeat,' he told reporters at Dinhata during a roadshow. Later, while addressing the crowd, Nadda said this election is not about just changing the government; it is also about bringing an end to the cut money culture and corruption'.


  • April 08, 2021 / 06:44 PM IST

     Assembly Elections 2021 LIVE Updates | Anti-Romeo squads in Bengal if BJP is voted to power: Yogi Adityanath

    Senior BJP leader Yogi Adityanath Thursday said that anti-Romeo squads will be formed in Bengal if the party is voted to power in the state.

    Bengal is not a safe place for women under the present TMC government, Adityanath, also Uttar Pradesh chief minister, said addressing three poll rallies in Hooghly and Howrah districts of West Bengal He said if BJP is voted to power it will stress on women and education.

    "Why is Bengal not a safe place for women? ... Education and transport will be made free for girls in Bengal. Anti-Romeo squads will be formed in Bengal to deal with those who loiter around girls schools," he said.


  • April 08, 2021 / 05:50 PM IST

     Assembly Elections 2021 LIVE Updates | Amit Shah to hold press conference in West Bengal on April 9

    Union Home Minister and BJP veteran Amit Shah would be addressing a press conference in West Bengal on April 9, reports said. The press briefing, to be held in the afternoon in Kolkata, would come three days after Bengal voted in the third phase of assembly elections. Polls are yet to be conduted in five more phases in the state, ending on April 29. The counting of votes is scheduled by by the Election Commission on May 2.

  • April 08, 2021 / 04:36 PM IST

    Assembly Elections 2021 LIVE Updates | No 'paribartan' in Bengal under TMC : Yogi Adityanath

    Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath criticised the Trinamool Congress government in West Bengal and derided it for failing to bring in any positive change in the ten years that it has been in power. The UP chief minister also claimed that West Bengal is not a safe place for women under the TMC government. He promised that after BJP assumes power, education and transport will be made free for girls and anti-romeosquads will be formed in Bengal to deal with those who loiter around girls schools.

  • April 08, 2021 / 03:47 PM IST

    Assembly Elections 2021 LIVE Updates | Rajib Banerjee, who is seeking re-election for the third time after crossing over to BJP in January, is fighting a fierce battle for survival not only against rival candidates, but against the TMC message that the party led by chief minister Mamata Banerjee was bigger than individual politicians. The Domjur constituency, which comprises urban clusters and rural swathes, was traditionally a Left-bastion with the CPI(M) wining the seat from 1977 to 2006, but is set to witness a tug of war between the centrist TMC and right-wing BJP this time around. The former state minister, who had won the seat twice on a TMC ticket, is campaigning on his track record of getting development work done over the last five years. (PTI)

  • April 08, 2021 / 03:28 PM IST

    Assembly Elections 2021 LIVE Updates | Bollywood superstar Mithun Chakraborty, who had recently joined the BJP, led a roadshow in Tollygunj constituency for Union minister and BJP's candidate Babul Supriyo today after he was denied to hold a roadshow in Behala area of Kolkata.