There is a competition to be elected unopposed in West Bengal.
During the Panchayat elections in West Bengal, political parties compete to get elected unopposed. Except for a few years between 1978 and 2018, the number of those elected unopposed has been increasing progressively. In the year 1978, 338 people were elected unopposed in the Panchayat elections. In 1983 this number was 332, in 1988 the number suddenly jumped to 4200. In the year 1993, 1716, 680 in 1998, 6800 in 2003, 2845 in 2008, 6274 in 2013 and 20,076 people were elected unopposed in 2018 in the panchayat elections.
Most election violence has been happening in West Bengal
Assembly elections were held in Bengal in the year 2021. There was violence in many parts of Bengal after the election results were announced. The BJP had claimed that around 60 people had died in the violence that followed the assembly elections. Most of those killed were BJP workers. The BJP had said that more than 50 of its workers had been killed. The state government had denied allegations of large-scale election violence. The CBI finally took up the investigation of post-poll violence on the instructions of the Calcutta High Court. The CBI filed a charge sheet against more than 250 people in this connection. More than 225 people were also arrested on charges of violence. The violence included incidents of murder, attempt to murder, rape, attempt to rape.
Devastated by the violence, people left their homes, fled to Assam
The situation of election violence in Bengal was such that a large number of people left their homes and migrated to Assam. Later, the then Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar went to Assam to meet him. His return was possible after the strictness of the High Court. This mystery came to light only when the CBI investigated the matter. If the police of the state government had investigated these cases, the figures would have been hidden. According to statistics, even after concealment, Bengal still tops in cases of election violence. Leaving aside elections, political violence happens year after year in Bengal.
Enrollment happened on the first day itself
The filing of nomination papers for the Panchayat elections began on Friday. The elections were marred by violence on the very first day. Incidents of fighting took place at many places and a Congress worker was killed in Murshidabad. More than one and a half dozen people have been reported injured in the fight. There was also news of stone pelting on the MLA’s vehicle in Bankura. Some Congress workers were playing cards in Khargram on Friday afternoon. Then miscreants belonging to Trinamool Congress attacked. They were beaten with bamboo sticks and iron rods. Congress workers fell down in a pool of blood. The miscreants also fired. Many people were injured in the firing. The injured were admitted to Kandi Sub-Divisional Hospital. Congress worker Phoolchand Sheikh was declared brought dead by the doctors.
BJP supporters are becoming victims of violence since 2019
Political violence is not a new thing in Bengal. From 1977 to 2007, 28 thousand people were killed in political violence. A few years ago, the government told in the Bengal Assembly that from 1977 to 2007, 28,000 political murders took place. This was the era of Left Front rule. Those killed in the Singur and Nandigram agitations were also treated as victims of political violence. If you look at the official figures, there were 15 political murders during the 2014 Lok Sabha elections. Police records mention 1100 incidents of political violence in Bengal. According to the statistics of the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India, between 2013 and May 2014, more than 23 political murders took place in Bengal. In 2016, there were 91 incidents of violence in Bengal, in which 205 people lost their lives. In the year 2015, 184 people were killed. In 2013 also 26 people were killed in Bengal. 18 people were killed in the 2018 panchayat elections. Although BJP claims that 52 of its workers were killed. TMC had also said that 14 of its people had been killed. In the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, 12 people were killed.
Report- Omprakash Ashk