July 8, 2023, In a shocking incident that has further escalated tensions surrounding the ongoing Panchayat election in West Bengal, the state witnessed yet another act of violence as Madhab Biswas, the polling agent for the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), was brutally murdered in Coochbehar’s Phalimari village. This unfortunate event adds to the already tense atmosphere, with allegations of political violence and concerns about the state of democracy in the region.
According to reports, Biswas was attacked by alleged Trinamool Congress (TMC) supporters, popularly referred to as “goons.” The incident has sparked outrage among the opposition party, with BJP members questioning the role of the State Election Commission (SEC) in ensuring the safety and security of participants in the electoral process.
Union Sports Minister Anurag Thakur also weighed in on the West Bengal Panchayat elections, expressing deep concerns. He stated, “…The announcement of elections in West Bengal means the beginning of the murder of democracy. Fighting with people, firing, bombings, and arson have become a common thing and many such examples have been seen more than once. Under Mamata Banerjee’s government, ballot boxes are looted and democracy is crushed and killed. Mamta Banerjee and TMC leaders do the work of stooping to any level to win the elections, but Congress & Rahul Gandhi remains silent. Congress wants to form an alliance with Mamata Banerjee? Will Rahul Gandhi say something? What is the compulsion of Mamata Banerjee that in every election there is murder, murder, and murder of people…”
Critics of the ruling party, led by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, argue that the violence is a testament to her draconian regime and accuse her administration of having blood on its hands. The opposition claims that this incident is not an isolated event but rather a reflection of a larger pattern of political violence carried out by TMC supporters.
Furthermore, it has been reported that the death toll in connection with the Panchayat election has been rising steadily. As of 1 pm, the count stood at 34 casualties, a number that has continued to increase, heightening concerns about the safety of individuals participating in the democratic process.
These incidents have led to widespread calls for an immediate end to the violence and for the restoration of peace and order in West Bengal. Opposition parties are urging the State Election Commission to take prompt action to ensure the fair conduct of the election and the safety of all participants.
The escalating violence in West Bengal has attracted the attention of the national media and raised concerns among the public regarding the preservation of democracy and the right to participate in elections without fear of harm. It remains to be seen how the State Election Commission and the state government will address these issues and work towards a peaceful resolution.
As the death toll rises and political tensions continue to mount, West Bengal finds itself at a critical juncture, desperately in need of a swift resolution to ensure the safety of its citizens and the integrity of the electoral process.