Voting process in a number of polling stations in Cooch Behar was temporarily disrupted as Electronic voting machines stopped working.
The amid sporadic incidents of violence, EVM glitches and allegations and counter-allegations of electoral malpractices in cooch Behar and Alipurduar constituencies in West Bengal were witnessed. Accusing the west bengal government because of killing the democratic norms in the municipal elections, due to which the BJP has decided to move the election commission of India complaining against the malpractices during the polls.
For an instance, the spirit of democracy was killed on Oct 6, when the SEC resigned from the post.
It's a farce and now they are mocking the democratic norms with this repoll, "BJP national secretary Sidharth Nath Singh told to the reporter".
Electoral fraud is caused to shape the election result by illegal efforts. It can be as follows-
1. Dummy and duplicate voters in the EC’s electoral list: To present an example, Lakhs of duplicates voters (registered in multiple constituencies) were found in Delhi before the 2015 Assembly elections, an incident that paints a grim picture for our democracy.
2.Malpractices in the registration of voters before the elections: New applicants weeks before an election may find their voter registration process failed. In many cases, this is because the ruling administration does not like these new voters.
3. Violence: Against adversarial candidates and voters.
4. Misuse of the state machinery: The use of Police and other state machinery by the ruling party to harass adversarial candidates
5. Dummy candidates: Several candidates of the same name as an adversary are fielded in order to cut his or her votes.
6. Dividing votes: Candidates of other parties are overtly or covertly supported in order to divide votes of the adversary.
The situation during the election-
Bengal has a long history of political violence since the 1950s and elections have often been marred with violence and lawlessness. The 2001 assembly elections and the 2004 Lok Sabha elections were held in a single phase, but the 2006 assembly elections that returned the Left parties to power for a seventh consecutive time with a massive mandate were held in five phases over 22 days
Bengal: Left to protest alleged poll malpractices (2014)
Four Left parties organised a nationwide protests against the "assault on democracy" in West Bengal, accusing ruling Trinamool Congress of violence and poll malpractices and the Election Commission of being ineffective in checking them.
The worst incident that took place was in Haroa block in Basirhat parliamentary constituency "where voters going to the polling booth were fired upon. Four persons suffered bullet injuries and 17 others were injured by sharp weapons." Observing that some of the worst-affected seats were Kolkata North, Barrackpur, Ghatal, Dumdum, Basirhat, Bongaon and Diamond Harbour, they said along with the rigging in the third and fourth phase, "this constitutes a brazen attack on the democratic system. Despite this violence, people have been braving these attacks and asserting their right to vote."
They demanded urgent intervention of the Election Commission to restore conditions for a free and fair poll.
"The free and fair poll can be done only by ordering a re-poll in all the affected polling booths in the third, fourth and fifth rounds of polling. It is only by doing this that the sanctity of the democratic process can be protected," the Left parties said"
For the upcoming elections
The upcoming elections will be held in eight phases over 34 days, starting on March 27 and ending on April 29. It is nearly as long as the 2019 Lok Sabha elections held over 39 days in seven phases across India.
According to a report by PTI, chief election commissioner Sunil Arora justified the eight-phase poll in Bengal by saying, “The elections to West Bengal (Assembly) in 2016 were in seven phases. The Lok Sabha was in seven phases. So, seven to eight (phases) is not such a big deal because we also have to see the movement of forces, the current charges and counter-charges (by political parties)."
Arora explained that measures are taken based on the history of the state’s electoral malpractices, which is why two special economic officers have been deputed to Tamil Nadu (to check the flow of black money) and two police observers have been sent to West Bengal (for the law and order situation).