8-phase WB polls a Modi, Shah idea, asks Mamata

Is 8 phases for Bengal polls Modi, Shah’s idea? CM Mamata Banerjee questions ECI

'There are 294 seats in Bengal, why is the election being held in eight phases?' asked Mamata

West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee. Credit: PTI File Photo

Questioning the Election Commission’s (EC) decision of holding the Assembly elections in West Bengal in eight phases, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Friday asked whether this was done under the instructions of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah.

She also asked whether the decision to hold polls in some district of Bengal in several parts was to ensure that Modi and Shah had enough time to campaign in the State after the Assembly elections in Assam, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Puducherry were over.

"With all due respect to the Election Commission, I want to say that questions are being raised on why elections will be held in so many phases in Bengal while other states will be voting in one phase. If EC doesn't provide justice to the people, where will the people go?" she said.

Read | Bengal Assembly elections: A Modi vs Mamata battle on the cards

“There are 294 seats in Bengal. Why is the election being held in eight phases and for whose interest?” asked Mamata.

“I welcome your decision but tell me why polls are being held in several parts in some districts...Has this been done under instruction from Narendra Modi and Amit Shah so that they can complete the elections in Assam, Tamil Nadu, Kerala in single phases and play the game for 23 days in Bengal?” she further questioned.

"I have information from my sources that the poll dates are similar to the ones BJP wanted," she said. "The PM and the home minister cannot misuse their power for the state elections," she added.

TMC supremo urged the EC to ensure that the Prime Minister and the Home Minister do not misuse their powers in the West Bengal elections.

“Tell the Home Minister that he should work for the country and that he cannot misuse his power in West Bengal Elections. Tell Prime Minister that he cannot misuse his power for the State elections,” said Mamata.

Also Read | Assembly elections to start from March 27, counting for all on May 2

A combative Mamata said that she was not concerned about the Assembly election schedule and said that her party will convincingly defeat the BJP.

Banerjee said that despite "all these tricks", she will win the elections.

“We are not concerned. We will convincingly defeat you in this game,” she said.

Accusing the BJP of divisive politics, Mamata said that her party would foil their conspiracy and the people would give them befitting reply.

“But remember Bengal’s daughter Mamata Banerjee is telling you that she knows the State very well. For the last 40 years, since my days in student politics I know Bengal border to border. We will foil all your conspiracies,” she said.

“Outsider goons will not rule Bengal. The people of Bengal will rule
Bengal. I request the Election Commission please consider West Bengal as your own State don’t see it with the eyes of BJP,” said Mamata.

She said that the BJP was so scared of her that it was using the Central Government and all its agencies to plan against her.

“I am the only woman Chief Minister in the country. They are so scared of me that the entire Central Government along with all its agencies have made this plan... Mr. Narendra Modi and Amit Shah please be prepared even if you try to destroy Bengal we will fight the battle,” said Mamata.


(With inputs from PTI)




Get a round-up of the day's top stories in your inbox

Check out all newsletters

Get a round-up of the day's top stories in your inbox