Stationing central forces in State after poll irks TMC

The Trinamool Congress (TMC) on Tuesday condemned the central government’s decision to retain the central forces in West Bengal after the polls got over.

Following a meeting of TMC’s senior management, the party officials questioned Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s comment that armed forces should remain stationed in West Bengal as long as the Model Code of Conduct was in place. Ms Sitharaman made the statement on Sunday indicating that TMC workers may target BJP activists if central paramilitary forces are removed.

TMC officials questioned the statement. “BJP’s Defence Minister announced that central forces will be in Bengal for one week more. Has Emergency been declared by the BJP in Bengal? BJP-RSS members disguised as central forces are torturing citizens,” a TMC statement issued after the meeting read. The party indicated that the “special rule for West Bengal [is] unacceptable.”

Meanwhile, the Special Police Observer of Election Commission indicated that a part of the additional forces will remain stationed in the State.

“A total of 200 companies of the central forces will be retained in West Bengal to assist in counting and also to handle post poll violence. These groups will be scattered all over the State. The remaining 510 companies will move out,” said Vivek Dubey, Special Police Observer of Election Commission in the State.

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