Campaign ends for first phase of LS polls in Bengal

Wed, Apr 10, 2019

Kolkata (IANS): The campaign for the first phase of the Lok Sabha elections in West Bengal ended on Tuesday in two parliamentary constituencies which go to the hustings on April 11.
With big rallies, road shows, street corner meetings and last minute door-to-door contact with voters, canvassing reached a peak over the past couple of days, before coming to an end at 6 p.m. on Tuesday.
A total of 34,54,274 voters of Cooch Behar (SC) and Alipurduar (ST) will decide the fate of 18 candidates in the first phase.
As per the electoral roll, there are 17,73,196 men, 16,81,051 women and 29 registered in the 'other' category.
Of a total of 3,844 polling stations, Cooch Behar has 2,010 and Alipurduar 1,834.
The star campaigners for the first phase were Prime Minister Narendra Modi and party President Amit Shah for the BJP. West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee held meetings tagging celebrity candidate Nusrat Jahan along.
The fight is between Trinamool candidate Paresh Chandra Adhikary, Bharatiya Janata Party's Nishith Pramanik, Piya Roy Chowdhury of Indian National Congress and Gobinda Chandra Roy of All India Forward Bloc in Cooch Behar.
There are four candidates from other registered parties and three are independent nominees.
In Alipurduar, sitting MP Dasrath Tirkey is again contesting as a Trinamool candidate, RSP has nominated Mili Orao, and John Barla is the BJP nominee. The Congress has fielded Mohanlal Basumata.
There is one candidate from another registered party, and two independents.
According to an analysis done by the West Bengal Election Watch and Association for Democratic Reforms, of 18 candidates analysed, six have declared serious criminal cases against themselves.
Among major parties, the average assets per candidate for the two Trinamool Congress candidates is Rs 2.54 crore, while the same figure for the two BJP candidates is Rs 55.24 lakh. The two Congress candidates have average assets of Rs 6.45 lakh.
Earlier, Additional Chief Electoral Officer Sanjay Basu told reporters that seven companies of the Border Security Force (BSF) of the ten companies that reached the state on March 15 have been moved to Cooch Behar and Alipurduar.

Area: 7096 Sq Km
Altitude: 5,840 ft
Population: 6.10 Lakhs
Topography: Hilly terrain elevation from 600 ft. to over 28,509 ft above sea level
Summer: Max- 21°C ; Min – 13°C
Winter: Max -13°C ; Min – 0.48°C
Rainfall: 325 cm per annum
Language Spoken: Nepali, Bhutia, Lepcha, Tibetan, English, Hindi