scorecardresearch
Follow Us:
Sunday, April 11, 2021

Assembly Elections 2021 Highlights: TMC demands removal of Deputy EC Sudeep Jain, accuses him of being ‘biased’

West Bengal, Assam, Kerala, Puducherry, Tamil Nadu Election 2021 Live Updates: The Election Commission has announced the poll schedule for four states and one Union Territory, in which West Bengal will vote in eight phases, Assam in three, and Tamil Nadu, Kerala, and Puducherry together on the same day.

By: Express Web Desk | Chennai, Guwahati, Kochi, Kolkata, New Delhi |
Updated: March 5, 2021 12:09:22 pm
West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee (File)

Assembly Elections 2021 Highlights: The ruling TMC in West Bengal Thursday demanded the removal of Sudeep Jain, the deputy election commissioner in-charge of the state, accusing him of being biased against it and breaking norms of the federal structure. Besides, the Shiv Sena today announced that it will not contest the upcoming West Bengal polls and extended its support to Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. “Looking at the present scenario, it appears like a ‘Didi vs all’ fight. All ‘M’s – Money, Muscle, and Media are being used against ‘M’amata Didi,” Sanjay Raut tweeted, adding that the party stands in solidarity with Banerjee.

The BJP, meanwhile, will hold a meeting today finalise the list of candidates for the upcoming assembly election in West Bengal and Assam. The party prepares to draw up a list of 60 candidates for the first two phases of the Assembly polls starting March 27, West Bengal BJP president Dilip Ghosh has said. On Wednesday, the party held another round of its election committee meeting at its party office in Hastings before central and state leaders left for Delhi.

Down south, the saffron party has announced E Sreedharan, popularly known as the ‘Metro Man’, as the the party’s chief minister candidate for the upcoming Kerala Assembly elections. Sreedharan, 88, joined the BJP last week. BJP state president K Surendran, currently on a state-wide political tour, Vijay Yatra, announced the decision. “The party will soon release a list of other candidates as well,” he said.

Live Blog

Ahead of Assembly elections in West Bengal, Assam, Kerala, Puducherry, Tamil Nadu, political parties have launched their campaigns to woo the voters. Follow the latest news and developments

21:37 (IST)04 Mar 2021
Restrain Rahul Gandhi from campaigning in TN: BJP plea to ECI

The Tamil Nadu unit of the Bharatiya Janata Party on Thursday urged the Election Commission to restrain Congress leader Rahul Gandhi from campaigning in Tamil Nadu for the April 6 Assembly election, for allegedly violating the model code of conduct. It also wanted the EC to direct the police to register an FIR against him for "inciting the youth to another freedom struggle."

BJP state in-charge, election liaison committee, V Balachandran, alleged that Gandhi's campaign in St. Joseph's Matric Higher Secondary School in Mulagumoodu in Kanyakumari district on March 1 was akin to an election campaign in school premises.

In a memorandum submitted to chief electoral officer (CEO) Satyabrata Sahoo on Thursday he said Gandhi's political campaign in the educational institution violated provisions of the model code of conduct for which strict action including "prohibitory orders for his poll campaign in Tamil Nadu is required." Further, the Congress leader committed offences under sections 109 (punishment for abetment) and 124 A (sedition) of the IPC for his remarks that India now needs another freedom struggle, it said. (PTI)

21:33 (IST)04 Mar 2021
Voters information slips to replace photo voter slip

The Election Commission of India has decided to provide voter information slip, instead of photo voter slip, to all voters who have enrolled themselves, at least 5 days before the April 6 Assembly election.
     
The voter information slip will contain details about polling station, date and time of the poll etc but not the photograph of the voter, according to Tamil Nadu chief electoral officer (CEO) Satyabrata Sahoo.
    
In a statement here on Thursday, he said all District Election Officers have been directed to distribute the voter information slip at least 5 days before the date of poll to all enrolled electors. (PTI)

21:10 (IST)04 Mar 2021
Tie-up with TMC in Bengal would be suicidal for Left, help BJP: CPI(M) mouthpiece

Acknowledging that the advance of the BJP in West Bengal was "real", the CPI(M) has said that despite certain circles advocating its tie-up with the TMC in the state, such a move would be "suicidal" for the Left and will mean victory for the saffron party.
       
According to an editorial in the latest edition of the party mouthpiece People's Democracy, the CPI(M) and the Left parties have the biggest stakes in the elections in West Bengal and Kerala.
     
"The situation in West Bengal is the most complicated. The BJP is making a serious bid to capture power in the state. For that, it is deploying all its men and resources backed by the RSS. The 2019 Lok Sabha election saw a polarisation between the TMC and BJP and the latter won 18 of the 42 seats polling 40.6 per cent (of votes). The Left Front got squeezed out in this polarisation and got only 7.4 per cent of the votes. The CPI(M) and the Left Front have been strenuously working to recover lost ground...," it said. (PTI)

18:55 (IST)04 Mar 2021
Congress promises 50 per cent quota for women in govt jobs in poll-bound Assam

Continuing with its series of "guarantees", the Congress said on Thursday that if the opposition 'Mahajot' or Grand Alliance is voted to power in Assam, it will ensure 50 per cent reservation for women in government jobs.
     
Addressing a press conference, All India Mahila Congress President Sushmita Dev said the Congress-led alliance will focus more on the upliftment of women and youths.
     
"When the Congress-headed grand alliance will form the government, we will implement 50 per cent reservation for women. This will be our guarantee and it will be one of the first things we're going to do," she said.
    
The Congress has formed a broadbased alliance with AIUDF, BPF, CPI, CPI(M), CPI(ML), and Anchalik Gana Morcha (AGM) to fight the upcoming assembly election against the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) for 126-member Assam house. (PTI)

18:34 (IST)04 Mar 2021

Sasikala's exit will help to fulfil Jaya's dreams: BJP

BJP on Thursday hailed the decision of expelled AIADMK general secretary V K Sasikala to quit politics and said her exit will help fulfil late chief minister J Jayalalaithaa's dream of a progressive and prosperous Tamil Nadu.
       
Pointing out that it was entirely Sasikala's decision to relinquish politics, BJP national secretary in-charge of Tamil Nadu C T Ravi said "our party welcomes her decision. Her decision will fulfil Amma's (Jayalalithaa) dreams."
        
"The BJP's aim is to strengthen the NDA in Tamil Nadu and strive for victory in all the 234 constituencies. Our major intention is to defeat the DMK and ensure the return of AIADMK," Ravi said. (PTI)

18:28 (IST)04 Mar 2021
TMC asks Kolkata councillors to put up Mamata posters across city ahead of PM visit

TMC asks Kolkata councillors to put up Mamata's posters across city ahead of PM visitThe TMC on Thursday asked its party's ward coordinators in Kolkata to put up in every nook and corner of the city flags and posters with Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's picture on them and poll slogan 'Bangla Nijer Meyekei Chai' written below, ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's mega rally on March 7.   

The ruling party's senior leaders, including MP Abhishek Banerjee, state president Subrata Bakshi, senior minister and administrator of Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) Firhad Hakim, met the ward coordinators at the party headquarters here and directed them to reach out to people and create awareness on the dispensation's development work. (PTI)

17:20 (IST)04 Mar 2021
TMC demands removal of Deputy EC Sudeep Jain

The ruling TMC in West Bengal Thursday demanded the removal of Sudeep Jain, the deputy election commissioner in-charge of the state, accusing him of being biased against it and breaking norms of the federal structure.

TMC spokesperson Sougata Roy said that party leader Derek O' Brien has written to the Election Commission demanding that Jain be removed as he has a "track record" of being biased against it during the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.

"During the last parliamentary poll Sudeep Jain had taken several steps which were not only against the norms of the Election Commission but also against those of the federal structure. We don't have any faith in him. We (TMC) apprehend that this time too he will take steps which will either directly or indirectly help the BJP," Roy said at a press conference in Kolkata. (PTI)

15:55 (IST)04 Mar 2021
Singer Aditi Munshi joins TMC

Singer Aditi Munshi, wife of North 24 Parganas Trinamool Youth Congress president Debraj Chakraborty, joined the TMC on Thursday in the presence of party MP Sougata Roy in Kolkata.

15:48 (IST)04 Mar 2021
Shiv Sena extends support to TMC in Bengal

After the Rashtriya Janata Dal and Samajwadi Party (SP), the Shiv Sena on Thursday extended its support to TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee, and said it would not contest assembly elections in Bengal.
    
Hailing Banerjee as the "real Bengal tigress", the party, which had earlier said that it would join the electoral battle in the state, vowed to "stand in solidarity" with the TMC camp. (PTI)

14:46 (IST)04 Mar 2021
Watch: TMC leader performs sit-ups on stage as he joins BJP

A former TMC leader "punished" himself and did sit-ups on stage ahead of joining the BJP in Paschim Medinipur on Wednesday. Susanta Pal held his ears and did three sit-ups asking for "forgiveness" for staying with the Trinamool Congress. When another person on stage tried to intervene, Pal said he was doing it to atone himself for all the sins that he has been a part of as a TMC worker. " I am now repenting and asking for forgiveness and this is a small punishment that I have given to myself," said Pal.

14:10 (IST)04 Mar 2021
Kerala elections: ‘Metro Man’ E Sreedharan is BJP’s CM candidate

The BJP on Thursday announced that E Sreedharan, popularly known as the ‘Metro Man’, would be the party’s chief minister candidate for the upcoming Kerala Assembly elections. Sreedharan, 88, joined the BJP last week. BJP state president K Surendran, currently on a state-wide political tour, Vijay Yatra, announced the decision. “The party will soon release a list of other candidates as well,” he said.

14:04 (IST)04 Mar 2021
Ahead of polls, Congress promises 50pc reservation for women in govt jobs in Assam

The Congress said on Thursda that if the opposition 'Mahajot' or grand alliance is voted t power in Assam, it will ensure 50 per cent reservation fo women in government jobs Addressing a press conference, All India Mahil Congress president Sushmita Dev said the Congress-led allianc will focus more on the upliftment of women and youths "When the Congress-led grand alliance will form th government, we will implement 50 per cent reservation fo women. This will be one of the first things we're going t do," she said Dev asserted that the Congress and the grand allianc believe in accountability and the guarantee of jobs.

13:11 (IST)04 Mar 2021
Shiv Sena not to contest Bengal polls, extends support to Mamata Banerjee

Shiv Sena has decided not to contest West Bengal polls, and stand in solidarity with Mamata Banerjee, says party leader Sanjay Raut

12:58 (IST)04 Mar 2021
TMC leaders hold meeting in Kolkata

Trinamool Congress is holding a meeting with ward presidents and coordinators for the upcoming assembly elections. Party leaders Abhishek Banerjee, Partha Chatterjee among those present in the meeting at TMC Bhawan in Kolkata (ANI)

12:52 (IST)04 Mar 2021
As seat sharing talks break down, DMDK leader targets AIADMK

Desiya Murpoku Dravida Kazhagam (DMDK) Deputy General Secretary L K Sudhish targeted the AIADMK on Wednesday as seat sharing talks between the alliance partners broke down ahead of the Tamil Nadu Assembly elections. Sudhish claimed the AIADMK would have “vanished” had it not forged an alliance with the DMDK in 2011.

Addressing party workers in Arni near Tiruvannamalai, Sudhish said the alliance would be decided by party leader Captain Vijayakant in a couple of days.

“We formed an alliance with AIADMK in 2011 after our cadre and office bearers requested us. We won the election and became an Opposition party. Today, we are not pleading with them. Many parties want to form an alliance under the leadership of Vijayakant,” said Sudhish, who is the DMDK chief’s brother-in-law.

12:39 (IST)04 Mar 2021
DMDK treasurer Premalatha Vijayakant submitted her application seeking a party ticket

DMDK treasurer Premalatha Vijayakant submitted her application seeking a party ticket

12:06 (IST)04 Mar 2021
In letter from prison, Akhil Gogoi calls AIUDF ‘communal’

Jailed peasants' activist Akhil Gogoi, who is the president of the newly formed regional party Raijor Dal, has singled out Badruddin Ajmal’s AIUDF as “communal” amongst the opposition parties while urging that only one joint opposition candidate should be put up in all constituencies against the BJP to defeat it.

In a letter from prison on Tuesday, Gogoi said when he talks about the opposition parties against the BJP, he is consciously keeping the AIUDF out. “We do not desire to take along a communal party with fundamentalist ideology to oppose a communal and fascist party,” he wrote.

Gogoi has been in jail since December 2019. He was booked by the NIA on charges of sedition and those related to terrorism under provisions of the UA(P)A for involvement in the anti-CAA movement in Assam. He led the Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti, which is the primary force behind the Raijor Dal. The party is in alliance for the upcoming polls with another regional party, the AJP, which also owes its genesis to the anti-CAA protests.

11:50 (IST)04 Mar 2021
None from TMC keeps relation with me, says Suvendu Adhikari's father

Senior Trinamool Congress MP Sisir Adhikari, whose sons Suvendu and Soumendu have joined the BJP, on Wednesday said that no one from his party maintains any relation with him, while the ruling party in West Bengal climed that it is evident where his soul is. The Adhikari family patriarch claimed that the TMC has also issued veiled threats that anyone from the party keeping relations with him or his sons will be thrown out. "No one from the party contacts me," he said. Reacting to Adhikari's comments, TMC secretary general Partha Chatterjee said, "Sisir-da is a veteran person. Everybody understands where his soul is and where he physically is. Let him first decide on that."

10:52 (IST)04 Mar 2021
BJP leader Himanta Biswa Sarma slams Assam Congress

BJP leader Himanta Biswa Sarma slams Assam Congress

10:41 (IST)04 Mar 2021
BJP's Bengal mantra '19 mein half, 21 mein saaf': Dilip Ghosh

"We won't get less than 200 (seats), it'll definitely be more than 200. We didn't begin preparations today, we had started 5 yrs back. We've proceeded phase-wise, we all saw results in Lok Sabha elections. We're going ahead with mantra of '19 mein half, 21 mein saaf'," Bengal BJP chief Dilip Ghosh said.  

Heated campaigns by heavyweight leaders and speculations on pre-poll alliances kept the political temperature up in the poll-bound states Tuesday.

While Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath trained guns on the Mamata Banerjee-led TMC government for practising “appeasement politics”, Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra said her party would roll back Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) if voted to power in Assam.

Down south, AMMK leader TTV Dhinakaran played down speculations of an alliance between his party and AIADMK while in Kerala, a CPI(M) MLA and the DYFI all-India president were sent to judicial custody in connection with a case in 2009.

READ | Assam polls: Congress hopes to cash in on anti-CAA sentiment, BJP focuses on schemes

READ | In Tamil Nadu, DMK has edge, but AIADMK hopes to ride on EPS image

READ | In high-stakes West Bengal election battle, it’s Modi pull vs Mamata pushback

READ | Left hopes to retain last bastion Kerala; it’s a do-or-die for Congress

Polling in four states and one Union Territory will be spread over a month between March 27 and April 29, and the results for all five Assemblies will be announced on May 2. West Bengal will vote in eight phases, Assam in three, and Tamil Nadu, Kerala, and Puducherry in a single phase on the same day.

  • The Indian Express website has been rated GREEN for its credibility and trustworthiness by Newsguard, a global service that rates news sources for their journalistic standards.
0 Comment(s) *
* The moderation of comments is automated and not cleared manually by indianexpress.com.
x