Mamata killing democracy in West Bengal: BJP

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Polling was scheduled to be held in three phases between 1 May and 5 May and the votes counted on 8 May. "The date of counting will be notified later", SEC Secretary Nilanjan Shandilya told reporters.

Meanwhile retired Supreme Court Justice Asok Kumar Ganguly said that though the High Court does not generally interfere in the election process but the entire panchayat election process in West Bengal has remained violent since declaration of dates of nomination and election.

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee urged all political parties to "maintain courtesy" during the polls so that they are held in a peaceful manner.

The decision to hold elections on a single day immediately came under severe criticism from the Opposition, which raised questions about the security arrangements for almost 58,000 polling booths in the State.

"The state government asked the SEC unilaterally to hold polls on May 14, and it has obliged".

The court has also asked the commission to declare polling dates according to the law, and take the nominations of those people who were resisted from entering the returning officers' office.

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"We still have candidates who are waiting to fight the polls".

Keeping the influx of people into the state in mind, Banerjee said the state government would try to seal the borders. The court has directed the SEC to submit a report by April 30. But the ongoing legal battle that has dogged the panchayat polls from April 10 has left the SEC and the Bengal government with very little room to manoeuvre.

Apart from the BJP, the CPI (M) and the PDS, the Congress too had moved the high court separately challenging the SEC's decision to recall the nomination deadline extension.

Following the order, the 11 candidates had gone to the treasury building in Alipore (the administrative office of South 24 Parganas district) on Monday, but were unable to file their nominations due to an alleged attack by Trinamool workers.

Bengal BJP on Tuesday released its panchayat poll manifesto promising to make the panchayat truly pro-people and remove corruption in several Centre-assisted schemes like "Prime Minister Sadak Yojna" and "Swachh Bharat".

As per the latest SEC notification, last date of filing was 23 April and 28 April for withdrawal.

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