In a major loss of face to the TMC Government in West Bengal, the Calcutta High Court on Friday dismissed Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s proposal for holding two-phased Panchayat polls in the state and ordered that the elections be held in threephases as scheduled by the State Election Commission (SEC).
Justice Biswanath Somaddar asked the state government to deploy the Central forces to the “full satisfaction” of the SEC to meet the shortfall in the numbers of the state police personnel available for poll duty.
Besides, the High Court directed the state government to provide the detail of the 400 observers to the SEC, which the latter had demanded.
Reacting to the HC order,state Panchayat Minister Subrata Mukherjee said the state government would go in appeal against the verdict.
“This order is impractical. It is impossible to implement it. So the state government cannot accept it. We will move the division bench by Monday,” he said.
In fact, the state administration had approached the High Court following serious disagreements with the SEC on the issue of the election schedule and the deployment of the Central forces or state police on poll duty.
Meanwhile, speaking at a rally in Burdwan district, Mamata said, “The Panchayat polls will be held at the right time. We understand the law and will follow it. We will take revenge for this conspiracy through the ballot box.”
Expectedly, the HC order was hailed by the SEC and the Opposition parties.