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West Bengal sets May 14 as D-Day for panchayat elections

SEC says polls must be conducted in one phase to avoid ‘inconvenience’

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West Bengal sets May 14 as D-Day for panchayat elections
BJP workers from WB came to Delhi to sumbit a memo to VP
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The West Bengal State Election Commission (SEC) on Thursday finally announced the date — May 14 — for the three-tier panchayat elections. SEC secretary Nilanjan Shandilya added that the polling process would take place in one phase.

“Polling will take place in 20 districts on May 14 and re-poll, if any, would be on May 16,” he said on Thursday, adding that in accordance with the High Court direction, there will be talks with all stakeholders. The counting date, although not officially declared, is expected to be May 17.

Shandilya elaborated that there will be one zila observer of an IAS rank in every district along with a WBCS officer for every two blocks. As to why the polls are being conducted in a single phase as opposed to the usual three phases, he said, “It is the prerogative of the state government to fix the date. The process had to be ended ahead of the month of Ramadan and the rainy season to avoid inconvenience.”

Meanwhile, CM Mamata Banerjee said she was happy about the polls, adding, “We urge leaders of political parties to help the poll process be completed in a peaceful manner. No attempt to create unrest would be tolerated.”

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