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6 killed Bengal panchayat polls

Calcutta, Jul 22 (PTI): Six persons, including a woman, were killed and 18 injured in violence and CRPF firing in the fourth phase of the West Bengal panchayat elections on Monday in four districts, which saw a voter turnout of 25 per cent.

State Election Commission sources said that 25 per cent polling was recorded till noon in Murshidabad, Birbhum, Malda and Nadia districts.

Two persons were killed and their hands blown off while making bombs in a paddy field at Satpalsa village before polling began in Birbhum district, Rampurhat Sub-Divisional Police Officer Debasish Nandi said.

“Prima facie the two were making bombs which went off. Their hands were also blown off,” Nandi said.

Another two persons were killed while making bombs at Raninagar village in the same district early morning, the sources said.

A woman voter was killed when bombs were hurled by miscreants as she was leaving a booth at Kajisha village in Beldanga area in Murshidabad district after casting her vote, police sources said.

In Malda district, a 55-year-old voter was shot dead by the CRPF after voters, angry at the queue moving slowly, threw stones at a polling booth in Ratua, the sources said.

Four CRPF jawans were injured in the incident, they said.

SEC sources said that reports of violence from the four districts were received, but could not give details.

Reports of violence were the highest in Murshidabad district.