West Bengal bypolls today: Bhabanipur, Jangipur, Samserganj bypolls begin, extra security at sensitive booths

Bhabanipur by-polls will seal the fate of West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, who has to win from the seat and enter the state assembly to retain her post as CM. 

Created On: Sep 30, 2021 09:55 ISTModified On: Sep 30, 2021 11:28 IST
Polling begins in Bhabanipur, Source: ANI
Polling begins in Bhabanipur, Source: ANI

West Bengal bypolls: The voting began at Bhabanipur, Jangipur, Samserganj at 7 am today and is scheduled to end at 6 pm. Bhabanipur bypolls will seal the fate of West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, who has to win from the seat to retain her post as CM. 

The TMC Chief has to enter the state assembly before the end of her 6-month period of being the Chief Minister, as she is currently not a member of the assembly after narrowly losing  against Suvendu Adhikari from Nandigram assembly constituency during West Bengal Assembly Elections 2021. 

Besides Bhabanipur, polling is also being held in Shamsherganj and Jangipur constituencies in the Murshidabad district. The polls in the constituencies were delayed due to the death of two candidates. 

When will the counting of votes take place?

The counting of votes in Bhabanipur, Jangipur, Samserganj seats will take place on October 3, 2021. 

Bhabanipur bypolls

Bhabanipur bypoll has become an important battle for West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. The BJP has fielded Priyanka Tibrewal, Vice President of BJP's youth wing in West Bengal against the TMC Chief. 

Bhabanipur bypoll candidates

TMC Candidate: Mamata Banerjee

BJP Candidate: Priyanka Tibrewal

CPI (M) Candidate: Srijib Biswas 

INC: Congress decided not to field any candidate against CM Mamata Banerjee

Speaking about Bhabanipur bypolls, BJP candidate Priyanka Tibrewal said, "We're hoping for fair elections. Security deployment is very important. I will visit polling booths in the area today. The state government is in fear right now."

Tight security in Bhabanipur

Around 20 additional companies of Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF) have been deployed in Bhabanipur for the bypolls, among which seven are from CRPF, five each from CISF, ITBP and 3-4 from SSB. 

Kolkata Police has also imposed restrictions under Section 144 of CrPC in the 200-metre radius of polling stations in Bhabanipur since September 28th. The restrictions will continue till the conclusion of bypolls today evening.

Bhabanipur Violence

The final day of by-poll campaigning in Bhabanipur became tense after West Bengal BJP Vice President Dilip Ghosh along with his associates was gheraoed and attacked by TMC workers while attempting to enter Bhabanipur. While the BJP blamed the TMC, the ruling party accused the BJP leader of threatening the locals by displaying guns. Tensions were high across the constituency after the incident. 

Samserganj bypoll

The polling in the Samserganj seat could not take place with the remaining assembly constituencies in April due to the death of Congress candidate Rezaul Haque.

Following are the candidates for Samserganj bypolls

TMC-Amirul Islam 

BJP-Milan Ghosh

CPI-M-Md Moddassar Hossain 

Jangipur bypoll

The polling in the Jangipur assembly constituency was also delayed due to the death of the Revolutionary Socialist Party (RSP) candidate from Pradip Nandi.

Following are the candidates for the Jangipur bypolls

TMC-Jakir Hossain 

BJP-Sujit Das 

Left- Jane Alam Mian 

Pipili bypolls in Odisha

Voting has also begun for bypolls in Odisha's Pipili assembly constituency in Puri district amid tight security and strict adherence to Covid-19 guidelines. The Pipili bypoll was necessitated following the death of sitting BJD MLA Pradeep Maharathy in October 2020. Overall, 10 candidates are in the fray for by-election from the seat. The results will be announced on October 3rd along with Bhabanipur, Shamsherganj and Jangipur bypoll results. 

Bhabanipur bypoll- Why is it so important?

Bhabanipur bypoll is a high prestige must-win battle for TMC Chief Mamata Banerjee. Bhabanipur constituency is the traditional seat of the West Bengal Chief Minister, which she had won through a bypoll in 2011 and retained in the 2016 assembly elections. During the 2021 assembly election, the TMC leader gave up the seat to fight from Nandigram in the assembly elections earlier this year. TMC's Sobhandeb Chattopadhyay had won from Bhabanipur but he soon vacated the seat for the CM. 

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