West Bengal polls: EC bans roadshows, bike rallies due to Covid-19 spike

Supporters of ruling BJP participate in an election rally ahead of during the West Bengal assembly elections in Kolkata. (AP)

The Election Commission of India (ECI) banned public rallies, roadshows and bike or cycle rallies in poll-bound West Bengal right now night in view of the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Issuing an order, the ECI invoked its plenary powers below Article 324 to prohibit roadshows, pad yatras, and cycle/bike/automobile rallies efficient instantly. The orders will come into impact from 7 pm right now.

All earlier orders for rallies and roadshows stand cancelled and solely conferences which might be attended by not over 500 individuals, will likely be allowed, the Election Commission acknowledged.

The ECI has additionally restricted the restrict of individuals at any public assembly to 500 for the West Bengal meeting polls. Such public conferences will likely be allowed as per the provision of enough house with social distancing norms and adherence to Covid-19 pointers, the ECI mentioned.

The order mentioned the fee has famous “with anguish” that many political events and candidates are nonetheless not adhering to the prescribed security norms throughout public gatherings.

Earlier on Wednesday, the ECI had turned down appeals from TMC chief Derek O’Brien and Congress’s Adir Choudhury to membership collectively the remaining three phases of polls.

In its order, it mentioned that it has already issued security pointers for Covid-19, reduce down on every day marketing campaign hours and prolonged the “period of silence” — stopping of the marketing campaign earlier than polls — from 48 to 72 to 72 hours.

Voting for the 2 remaining phases of the West Bengal meeting polls will likely be held on 26 and 29 April. The counting of votes will happen on 2 May.

Meanwhile, West Bengal on Thursday registered its highest single-day spike of 11,948 new Covid-19 circumstances, the well being division mentioned in a bulletin.

The state additionally reported 56 recent fatalities in a span of 24 hours.

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