West Bengal Assembly election: Amit Shah, Narendra Modi address rallies, hold roadshows

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With the campaigning for the West Bengal polls entering the final stages, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah are campaigning in the Mamata Banerjee-ruled state on Monday.

The prime minister started his day with a public meeting at noon in Bardhaman, followed by another one in Kalyani. The final one will be held in the afternoon in Barasat.

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Shah was slated to hold two roadshows €" the first in Kalimpong and then another one to conclude his day in Siliguri. In between, he has a public meeting in Dhupguri, followed by another one in Hemtabad at 3:30 pm.

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The voting for the fourth phase concluded on Saturday but was marred by violence. Four people lost their lives as CISF personnel opened fire, allegedly after coming under attack from locals, who "attempted to snatch their rifles" in Cooh Behar's Sitalkuchi, the police had said. Another person was killed in a separate incident of violence.

The blame-game over the deaths is on with both Banerjee and Shah trading barbs and demanding each other's resignations. The home minister said that he will resign when people ask him to, but the Bengal chief minister should prepare herself, for she will have to resign on May 2, the day election results will be declared.

Banerjee referred to the Cooch Behar firing incident as "genocide" and also said it was a "result of a conspiracy" hatched by the saffron party to intimidate voters.

Shah, on the other hand, alleged that Banerjee's advice to gherao central forces had instigated people to attack the CISF personnel, which led to the deaths.

On Sunday, taking a dig at the Trinamool supremo, Shah said she deserved a big farewell, reported the Hindustan Times. At a poll rally in Basirhat Dakshin, he was there with one request. "Didi has ruled for 10 years. Would it look good to give her a small farewell? So you should give her a farewell by giving 200 seats to the BJP," the report quoted Shah as saying.

The voting for the fifth phase of elections in Bengal in which 45 seats are up for grabs will take place on 17 April. The results will be declared on 2 May.

With inputs from PTI

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