Wayanad MP and senior Congress leader Rahul Gandhi has urged voters in West Bengal and Assam to vote against “divisive forces”. The first phase of the Assembly polls began at 7 am in both states. In a tweet written in Hindi, Rahul said, “To strengthen democracy, cast your vote against the divisive forces.”
According to reports, West Bengal has recorded 36% till noon despite allegations of violence in polling areas. Voters will decide the fate of 191 candidates in 30 constituencies. The Election Commission (EC) said that till 11 am, the Ramnagar constituency has recorded the highest voter turnout of 42.55%, and among all districts, Paschim Medinipur has the highest percentage of 35.90%. This is the first of eight phases to go to polls in West Bengal. The state has a total of 294 seats.
In Assam, voting is underway in 47 constituencies. Assam has recorded 26% voter turnout. Reportedly, till 11 am, the Charaideo constituency has the highest voter turnout with 32.40%. Assam has 264 candidates battling for 47 seats in the first phase. Out of the 264 candidates, the first phase would seal the fate of Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal and Speaker Hitendranath Goswami, among others. This is the first of three phases to go to polls in Assam. The state has 126 Assembly seats in total.
While the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) are likely to retain power in Assam, they are also eyeing to form a government in West Bengal. However, Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress (TMC) is giving a strong fight to BJP in West Bengal. The election results in these two states will be announced on May 2.