The Election Commission cutting down campaign period in West Bengal shows there is a classic case of breakdown of the Constitutional machinery in the state, senior BJP leader Arun Jaitley said on Wednesday.
In wake of violence between BJP and TMC workers in Kolkata during a roadshow by BJP President Amit Shah, the Election Commission (EC) cut short campaign for nine Lok Sabha seats in West Bengal by 24 hours.
The Commission banned the campaigning in the nine constituencies from 10 PM, Thursday. Earlier the campaign was to end on Friday.
A constitutional authority, the Election Commission of India, has effectively held West Bengal to be a “state in anarchy”, said Jaitley in series of tweets.
Repeatedly escalating violence, state-supported vandals, partisan police and home department are the illustrations the ECI has given, he noted.
“A free campaign is not possible and therefore the campaign has to be cut short. This is a classic case of breakdown of the Constitutional Machinery,” the minister said.
The BJP and the TMC have traded charges of inciting the violence.
During the violence, a bust of Bengali icon Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar was vandalised.
The Election Commission invoked Article 324 of the Constitution to curtail the campaigning for the last phase of the election on May 19.
The EC also ordered the removal of Principal Secretary (Home) and Additional Director General, CID from their postings in West Bengal.