With Swords, Daggers, Men Appear For Nomination Filing In Bengal Polls

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Kolkata:  The administrative headquarters of Bengal’s Birbhum woke to a menacing sight today. Carrying swords, daggers and knives, several people had gathered outside the office where candidates for the panchayat elections were given an extra four hours to file their nominations, starting from 11 am.

It was not known which party they belonged to, but the men melted away as news came in that the State Election Commission has scrapped its last night’s order on the extension of nomination, announced last evening after a Supreme Court order to ensure free and fair elections.

Birbhum has seen some of the worst violence in the run-up to the panchayat elections in the state, where Opposition candidates alleged they were not allowed to file nomination papers by the ruling Trinamool Congress.

The Trinamool is already celebrating victory in the district, where it won 41 of 42 zilla parishad seats without a single vote being cast. Only one opposition candidate managed…

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