Hooghly (West Bengal) [India], April 6 (ANI): After media persons and volunteers were allegedly barred from entering a polling booth in Tarakeswar by West Bengal police, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate from that constituency, Swapan Dasgupta accused the police of beating up voters and abusing women.
Speaking to the media, Dasgupta said: "The booths are supposed to be under the supervision of the Election Commission of India (ECI). This is absolutely not good. I came here to see if the polling is going on smoothly, which it is. The issue is that why the state police is asking identity cards from party agents."
Dasgupta further stated that the police officials should not impede the polling process, as per the ECI guidelines, but they are not being followed in some areas, a result of which tension is being created.
He also joked that the police officials may not know that ECI cards are actually applicable in the booth.
He also alleged that the police were not wearing name tags.
"Not a single person was wearing name tags. They are basically, there is an accusation, one of the senior police officers is actually cutting voters and they have hit some people and abused some women. the idea is that the people should just leave. But I find it very objectionable. Here you have West Bengal police without any name tags. This is completely unacceptable," he said.
Meanwhile, locals accused TMC of instructing the police officials to not let voters inside the booth.
"I was coming to vote, when two police officers approached me. I told them that I was waiting because I could not enter. They then proceeded to thrash me and did not listen to my pleas," said Amit Majhi, who came to vote here.
Another citizen alleged that TMC has not let them vote at the booth in the last ten years.
There are 205 candidates in the fray in this round of polling. However, when it comes to women representation, there are only 13 women candidates contesting in this phase, merely six per cent.
Polling for the first two phases of the West Bengal elections was held on March 27 and April 1 respectively. Polling for the third phase of elections in 31 constituencies is going on today and the fourth phase of polling will take place on April 10. The counting of votes will take place on May 2. (ANI)