Bengal poll panel will have to hide after elections: Trinamool

Kolkata, July 7 (IANS) A day after West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee vowed to take "revenge democratically" against the "whims and fancies" of the state poll panel, a leader of her Trinamool Congress Sunday said it will have to "hide behind a veil" after the panchayat elections.

"After the polls, the (State Election) Commission will have to wear bangles and hide behind a veil," Trinamool leader and state Transport Minister Madan Mitra said during a party rally in West Midnapore district's Daton.

Mitra's comments come a day after Banerjee Saturday took strong exception to the panchayat elections being scheduled in the Muslim holy month of Ramadan and accused the poll panel of taking decisions at its "whims and fancies" and vowed to take revenge against it "democratically".

"I will take revenge democratically," Banerjee said Saturday at Joynagar in neighbouring South 24 Parganas district.

Mitra's comments have come in for sharp criticism from rival political parties.

"Such comments are not surprising, rather expected from a party which has scant respect from democratic institutions like the SEC," said state Congress president Pradip Bhatatcharya.

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) state president Rahul Sinha too lambasted Mitra for his "disparaging comments".

"Before making such disparaging comments, the Trinamool should not forget that the Commission chief (Mira Pande) is a woman. Such remarks are a reflection of how bankrupt their politics is," said Sinha.

The Communist Party of India-Marxist too slammed Mitra for his remarks.

Relations between the Trinamool government and the SEC have nosedived over the past three months over a plethora of issues concerning the panchayat polls.

The dispute triggered a bitter legal battle, and finally the Supreme Court announced five-phase polling July 11, 15, 19, 22 and 25.

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