BJP: Unnatural increase in voters in border districts

Kolkata: A BJP delegation on Thursday raised concerns regarding an alleged increase in the number of voters in the state in the past four years, particularly in some border districts, and have urged the Election Commission to look into the matter.

“The jump in West Bengal’s the electoral rolls of the number of voters between 2016 and 2020 is 63 lakh. The jump is specifically alarming in the border districts of Malda, Murshidabad, both of which have shown a 14% increase. Uttar Dinajpur has recorded a 13% increase while South 24 Parganas and South Dinajpur have seen an 11% increase,” said Shishir Bajoria, state executive member, who has raised the issue along with BJP leaders Swapan Dasgupta and Shamik Bhattacharya.

Bajoria said there were serious discrepancies in the draft electoral rolls that have shown an increase of 9.6% voters in three years. “According to our preliminary analysis, nearly 23 constituencies have shown an increase of at least 20%. We have approached the Election Commission. When there is an excess of 10%, there is definitely a concern. We have urged the Election Commission for an audit,” he added.

TMC state spokesperson Debangshu Bhattacharya said it was the responsibility of the Centre to check infiltration in border areas. “The BJP has won seats in 2019 in the border districts. They did not raise this issue then. They do this only to create fear in the Hindus and antagonise the Muslims. But it won’t work here.”

The TMC has blamed the BJP for spreading fear about Muslims changing the demography to lead to Muslim consolidation. About 30% of the Muslim voters in Bengal are in a decision-making role in about 100 of the state’s 294 seats.

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