The Election Commission outright on Thursday evening rejected the change that West Bengal DGP was booted out at the instance of the ruling BJP at the centre and said: “It looks undignified to even respond to the allegations”.
It said,, “This (Trinamool allegation) virtually tantamounts to undermine the very foundation and fabric of the Constitution of India, the most sacrosanct document in any democratic polity.”
Earlier in the day, Trinamool Congress had said – “Who will take responsibility for the attack on Mamata Banerjee, when the EC is in charge of administration? EC has to take responsibility. The BJP is asking the EC to remove an official, and they are removing him”.
The poll panel said it’s “unfortunate” that the letter written by the Mamata Banerjee-led party a day after she was ‘injured’ in Nandigram is “full of insinuations and averments”. It said the letter “undermines the very foundations” of the Constitution.
It further said — “It is completely incorrect to suggest that the Commission has taken over the law and order machinery in the state in the name of conducting elections and appropriated the whole governance structure, etc.”
Ms Banerjee had on March 10 had alleged that she was “attacked” and “pushed” by four-five men in Nandigram during campaigning and that there was a “conspiracy against her”.
In the memorandum to the Election Commission, the Trinamool Congress said the Commission should take the responsibility for the “attack” on Ms Banerjee because it had recently ordered removal of the state police chief.
BJP leaders Dilip Ghosh and Shamik Bhattacharya have backed the poll panel version.
CPI-M leader Sujan Chakraborty also said the argument placed by the EC had merits as it was “never” a case that general law and order during election time rests with the poll panel.
“It is never a case that if there is a case of dacoity and theft and poll panel will now be held responsible,” he said.
The senior Marxist cautioned that it would be unfair to say that we do not have any responsibility as the Election Commission has now taken over. “By these gestures, we will only add to the woes of the common people,” he said.
In its letter, the Election Commission said the Nandigram incident involving Mamata Banerjee is “indeed an unfortunate incident and needs to be inquired into with promptitude and dispatch”.
“Having said that, it is rather unfortunate that the memorandum in question (sent by TMC) is full of insinuations and averments, which in fact questions the very basis of creation and function if the Election Commission,” the Commission said.
The poll panel is expected to get reports on the Nandigram incident from the state Chief Secretary and two poll observers by Friday, March 12 afternoon.