Trinamool delaying panchayat polls, says Congress

Kolkata, April 1 (IANS) After the Left Front accused the West Bengal government with hatching conspiracy to stall the upcoming panchayat polls, the Congress Monday also alleged that the Trinamool Congress regime was planning to delay the polls as it feared unfavourable results.

"Still they (the government) have a plan that it would not allow other parties to file nominations for the upcoming panchayat polls. Trinamool is trying to delay the rural body elections because poll result may go against the party," state Congress president Pradip Bhattacharya said here.

After days of stalemate, the State Election Commission (SEC) Monday morning moved the Calcutta High Court, seeking rejection of the panchayat election date notified by the state government.

The Trinamool government has been engaged in a war of words and letters with the election panel over the scheduling of the dates and deployment of central paramilitary forces.

On March 22, the government had announced two-phased polls to be held April 26 and April 30, under the supervision of the state police personnel.

The Congress also alleged that Trinamool Congress cadres were threatening its workers in the districts in order to force them not to submit nomination papers for the polls.

Bhattacharya demanded police deployment at the time of nomination filling at the sub-divisional offices (SDOs) as well as block development offices (BDOs).

Earlier, the Left Front accused the Mamata Banerjee government in the state of hatching a conspiracy to stall the elections. It also alleged that state Panchayat Minister Subrata Mukherjee deliberately did not abide by the laws as a part of the conspiracy.