KOLKATA: Trinamool Congress (TMC) raised concerns about the safety of voters in West Bengal to the Election Commission on Friday stating electorates are being intimidated and threatened in Nandigram, Bhagwanpur and Haripur.
TMC MPs Derek O'Brien and Kakoli Ghosh Dastidar visited the EC office in Kolkata to raise the issue.
"Many people with criminal records are living in Nandigram, Bhagwanpur and Haripur are not voters of the constituency. Voters are being scared and threatened. The Election Commission should ensure voters' safety," Dastidar told mediapersons here.
The TMC on Monday wrote to the Election Commission seeking the latter's intervention over the issue of allegedly "harbouring of criminals" by BJP leader Suvendu Adhikari in Nandigram.
"It has come to our knowledge that Suvendu Adhikari, the candidate fielded by BJP in Nandigram has been harbouring criminals, who are non-residents of Nandigram. We request you to immediately intervene and direct necessary steps to be taken by police to forthwith apprehend all the outside anti-social elements hired and harboured by Suvendu Adhikari," read the letter.
TMC had also mentioned about four locations where it claims Adhikari has lodged anti-social elements.
Nandigram will witness the most high-profile contest of West Bengal elections with Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee taking on her former ministerial colleague Suvendu Adhikari, who had joined BJP in December last year. Adhikari had earlier said that BJP will defeat Banerjee by over 50,000 votes from Nandigram.
The polling in Nandigram will take place on April 1, in the second phase of the upcoming Assembly elections.
TMC and BJP are at loggerheads in the poll-bound West Bengal.
Meanwhile, a total of 732 companies of Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF) have been deployed in the state for the first phase of elections, confirmed Vivek Dubey, Special Police Observer.
The first phase of the assembly polls will be kicked off on Saturday. In the first phase, 30 seats covering all assembly constituencies from the districts of Purulia and Jhargram and a segment of Bankura, Purba Medinipur and Paschim Medinipur will go for polls.
Elections to the 294-member West Bengal Assembly will be held in eight phases starting from March 27 with the final round of voting taking place on April 29. The counting of votes will take place on May 2.