Kolkata: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Thursday cancelled all her pre-scheduled election meetings, in view of ECI’s order and surge in COVID cases. Banerjee said rallies will now be conducted virtually. “We will reach out to people virtually,” she said. The Election Commission of India (ECI) has banned roadshows, vehicle rallies and public meetings with more than 500 people over spiraling Coronavirus cases in the state.Also Read - EC Bans Poll Rallies For The Remaining Of The Elections in West Bengal

Earlier, the Kolkata High Court had warned on the alarming situation saying, “If EC won’t act the court will”.

The Calcutta High Court had also expressed dissatisfaction with the Election Commission of India over enforcement of Covid-19 health safety norms during the ongoing West Bengal assembly election process, including campaigning. Hearing three public interest litigations (PILs) seeking enforcement of Covid protocol during the elections, a division bench presided by Chief Justice T B N Radhakrishnan said issuance of circulars and holding meetings on Covid safety were not enough and sought an affidavit by Friday on steps taken to enforce the norms.

Earlier in the day, Prime Minister Narendra Modi cancelled his upcoming Bengal tour scheduled for Friday. “Tomorrow, will be chairing high-level meetings to review the prevailing COVID-19 situation. Due to that, I would not be going to West Bengal,” Modi tweeted.