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5 phases in Bengal to ensure fair polls
March 07, 2006 17:04 IST
Chief Election Commissioner B B Tandon on Tuesday said that the Election Commission's decision to go for a five-phase poll in West Bengal was to achieve the sole objective of conducting free and fair polls.
Bengal has 294 assembly seats.
''We take into account all relevant aspects and ground realities before deciding on the election schedule. Based on the ground realities in West Bengal, we decided on a five-phase poll schedule,'' Tandon said.
The CEC, accompanied by two other members of the commission, N Gopalaswami and N B Chawla, was on a two-day visit to the state to assess the situation before the April assembly polls.
The commission, besides taking the views of various recognised political parties, had a meeting with top police and civil officials and issued instructions to ensure free and fair election.
The EC has made it clear that it had 'zero tolerance' in respect of violation of the Model Code of Conduct by anybody including political parties, politicians, officials and government agencies.