SEC has no voice of its own : Opp
The opposition BJP and CPI-M Saturday said that the State Election Commission should have postponed polling in four municipal corporations in West Bengal by more than three weeks and the deferment of the election date by it proved that the state poll panel has no voice of its own and is dictated to by the ruling Trinamool Congress.
The State Election Commission on Saturday postponed the poll to four municipal corporations by three weeks to February 12 instead of January 22 following a letter by the state government to the SEC giving its consent to reschedule the election dates due to the surge in COVID-19 cases in the state.
CPI-M Rajya Sabha MP Bikash Ranjan Bhattacharya told reporters that the SEC's decision to defer the election is testimony to the fact that the poll panel is not capable of taking independent decisions and always waited for instructions from the ruling party.
''The high court had recommended the polls to four municipal corporations be deferred by four to six weeks. But as we all learnt the state government wanted it to be held after three weeks. The SEC proved it cannot take any decision independently. However, let's hope the COVID situation does not turn worse when the polls are held on February 12,'' Bhattacharya, an eminent lawyer, said.
BJP state spokesman Samik Bhattacharya said the polls should have been held not before four to six weeks as ''No one knows what will be the COVID situation by February 12.'' Asked if he thought the date for the civic poll was fixed as desired by ruling TMC, Bhattacharya said ''We don't think the SEC has any separate identity. It is dictated by the ruling party and its supremo (Mamata Banerjee)''.
Voting will be held from 7 am to 5 pm it said. The Calcutta High Court had asked SEC to explore the possibility of postponing the civic polls by four to six weeks in view of the surge in the pandemic.
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)