As polling for the Bhabanipur by-poll continues, a clash broke out between workers of the Trinamool Congress (TMC) and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). The police reached the spot to take control of the situation. Earlier, BJP candidate for Bhabanipur by-poll, Priyanka Tibrewal at polling booth of ward number 72 alleged booth capturing in the area. Speaking to ANI, she said, “Madan Mitra, a TMC MLA, has purposely shut the voting machine here as he wants to capture the booth.” She added, “A man confessed to me that TMC paid him Rs 500 to cast vote. He was from Bansdroni. I have informed the authorities.” Meanwhile, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and TMC candidate for Bhabanipur by-poll have departed from Mitra Institution, a polling booth in the assembly constituency, after casting her vote.
Till 3 PM today, a voter turnout of 72.45 per cent, 68.17 per cent and 48.08 per cent was recorded till 3 pm in Samserganj, Jangipur polls and Bhabanipur by-poll, respectively. By-polls are being conducted today in three assembly constituencies in West Bengal – Bhabanipur, Samserganj and Jangipur. Bhabanipur by-poll has become a prestige battle for West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, who is presently not an MLA. Notably, Mamata Banerjee was defeated by BJP leader Suvendu Adhikari in the Nandigram constituency in the Assembly elections held earlier this year. Following this, the Bhabanipur Assembly seat was vacated by the West Bengal Agriculture Minister Sobhandeb Chattopadhyay in May, making way for Mamata Banerjee to contest from Bhabanipur seat as a move to continue to hold her post.
Bharatiya Janata Party fielded 41-year-old Priyanka Tibrewal against the TMC supremo. The Mamata Banerjee-led TMC registered a landslide victory in polls winning 213 seats in the 294-member West Bengal assembly. The BJP lost the polls but emerged as the second-largest party with 77 seats.