Ravi Shankar Prasad: Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP Ravi Shankar Prasad on Wednesday took a jibe at West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee saying that he hoped CM will allow members of Parliament to enter the areas.
This statement came following BJP MP Ravi Shankar Prasad’s arrival in Kolkata along with the fact-finding team constituted by the saffron party aiming to dig out the reason behind the violence that erupted in the state during the Gram Panchayat elections.
“We will visit the violence-affected areas and meet the victims and after that, we will submit our report to party president JP Nadda,” said Prasad.
#WATCH | Ravi Shankar Prasad, chief of BJP’s fact-finding team, says “I hope that Mamata ji will allow all 4 MPs to visit the violence-affected areas in West Bengal. Mamata ji, your democratic credentials are further on test. We are senior members of the Parliament and we have… pic.twitter.com/HDDnm96HC7
— ANI (@ANI) July 12, 2023
On Tuesday, the saffron party constituted a four-member fact-finding committee in the wake of the widespread violence during the Panchayat elections in the state.
“Why should more than 40 people lose their lives in the gram panchayat election? Why the so-called colleagues who are trying to forge an alliance against Narendra Modi are maintaining a conspicuous silence? We will visit and submit our report to the President. I hope the Mamata government will allow us to visit the affected areas?” asked MP Prasad.
Prior to the scheduled Gram Panchayat elections in West Bengal on July 8, violent incidents occurred, tarnishing the voting process. The actual voting day was marred by widespread violence, including incidents of ballot paper looting and rigging.
Numerous districts, including Murshidabad, Cooch Behar, Malda, South 24 Parganas, North Dinajpur, and Nadia, witnessed reports of booth capturing, ballot box damage, and assault on presiding officers. Instances of ballot box arson and clashes between political parties also surfaced in different locations.
Consequently, the State Election Commission announced the re-polling of the Panchayat election on July 10. The re-polling concluded on Monday, followed by vote counting on Tuesday, July 11.
As per the latest updates from the State Election Commission (SEC) until 10:30 PM on Tuesday, the Trinamool Congress secured victory in 28,985 seats, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in 7,764 seats, and the Congress in 2,022 seats. TMC was leading on 1,540 panchayat seats, with the BJP leading on 417 seats.
West Bengal encompasses 3,341 gram panchayats, and the number of village panchayat election centers amounts to 58,594. There are a total of 63,239 seats at the Gram Panchayat level, 9,730 at the Panchayat Samiti level, and 928 at the Zila Parishad level.
In the 2018 panchayat elections, the Trinamool Congress (TMC) had won an uncontested 34% of the seats, with instances of violence also occurring during that time.