Sleepless nights to ‘guard’ Bengal EVMs
Trinamul Congress worker Ezarul Sheikh has not gone home in the past two days and has stationed himself outside a counting centre in Behrampore following Mamata Banerjee’s directive to guard EVMs.
“I can return home only after seeing the result of Behrampore Lok Sabha seat,” said Sheikh, 50.
Trinamul’s Apurba Sarkar is pitted against the Congress’s Adhir Chowdhury in Behrampore.
Ezarul, along with Sarbul Sheikh, Farman Ali and Medal Mondal, have been roaming outside the Behrampore Girls’ College, the counting centre, since Tuesday morning on rotation.
“We take turns to have our lunch and dinner. I had my meals at a relative’s house in Behrampore. We did not sleep last night. We took some time off for a nap,” said Ezarul.
Murshidabad district Trinamul vice-president Ashok Das said the party workers posted around strong rooms were asked to ensure that the EVMs were not switched on.
The BJP has also asked workers to stay guard outside strong rooms.
“Our state party president has ordered a strict watch over the areas surrounding strong rooms,” said Gourishankar Ghosh, the Murshidabad district chief of the BJP.
In East and West Midnapores also, Trinamul and BJP workers were posted outside four counting centres to ensure that EVMs were not moved.
Trinamul workers have set up makeshift camps at strategic places outside strong rooms to maintain vigil in East and West Burdwans.
Similar arrangements were taken by workers of both the BJP and Trinamul in Birbhum, too. “We have deployed a group of party workers who are patrolling the area outside counting centres at least 20 times a day,” a senior Trinamul leader in Suri said.
Anubrata Mondal, the Birbhum district Trinamul chief, said: “The representatives of our party who are mandated to enter strong rooms are visiting the counting centres at least three times a day. Party workers from outside are also vigilant.”