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No change in West Bengal panchayat polls schedule: SC

Last Updated: Tuesday, July 2, 2013 - 16:15

Zee Media Bureau

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Tuesday refused to reschedule West Bengal panchayat elections, which are slated to be held in five phases from July 11.

According to a Supreme Court order, the panchayat polls are slated for July 11, 15, 19, 22 and 25.

The ruling Trinamool Congress government and an NGO had moved the Supreme Court seeking a change in panchayat election dates, arguing that polls will take place during Ramadan, the Muslim holy month, which begins in the second week of July.
Political parties, including the Congress and Left Front, have expressed their displeasure over the scheduling the polls during Ramadan and blamed the Trinamool Congress government for it.

Following a prolonged legal tussle between the State Election Commission (SEC) and Banerjee`s regime, an apex court bench on Friday ordered the polls to be held July 11, 15, 19, 22 and 25.

The Communist Party of India-Marxist-led Left Front and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) have accused the Banerjee government of being "insensitive" to the causes of the minority community.

"When the elections were knocking on the door, now they have gone to the Supreme Court. Earlier, when July 10 was fixed tentatively as a polling day, the government got it shifted to July 11 citing Rath Yatra as the reason. Then July 21 was moved to July 22 because of the (Trinamool Congress`) Shahid Diwas (Martyrs` Day). They should have taken Ramadan into account then, but they did not," said Left Front chairman Biman Bose.

(With IANS inputs)

First Published: Tuesday, July 2, 2013 - 15:51

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