Trinamool shying away from providing poll security: CPI-M

Kolkata, June 7 (IANS) The Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) Friday accused West Bengal's Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress government of shying away from its responsibility of providing security for the upcoming panchayat (rural body) polls.

"The government is not fulfilling it's responsibility of providing security for the panchayat polls," CPI-M politburo member and former chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee said here.

The Banerjee regime had been adamant on conducting the panchayat polls on July 2, 6 and 9 by deploying only state security personnel. However, it later relented and requisitioned the central paramilitary forces.

But Banerjee Wednesday said the central government had expressed its inability to provide the forces.

Bhattacharjee also accused the state government of inflicting violence on the opposition.

"Our party workers and offices are being relentlessly attacked as a part of Trinamool's endeavour to stifle the opposition's voice," he said.

The veteran Marxist said the Howrah Lok Sabha by-poll result was an encouraging sign and the party would have fared better had it been allowed to campaign properly by the Trinamool government.

The Trinamool retained the Howrah Lok Sabha seat with former international footballer Prasun Banerjee defeating CPI-M's Sridip Bhattacharya by over 27,000 votes. The by-poll was necessitated by the death of Trinamool MP Ambica Banerjee.

In the 2009 Lok Sabha election, the Trinamool had won the seat by 37,392 votes, while its candidates maintained a total lead of about 1.85 lakh in the assembly segments comprising the constituency.

Bhattacharjee also attacked the Manmohan Singh government at the centre.

"They say productivity has increased, but who is getting the benefit of it? The farmers are not getting it, the labourers are not getting it. Then who are getting it?" he asked.

He also opposed Bharatiya Janata Party's potential prime ministerial candidate Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi. "If Narendra Modi comes to power, it will spell disaster for the country," Bhattacharjee said.

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