East Indian state ends stand-off with election commission

West Bengal state government agrees to replace officials accused of bias.

East Indian state ends stand-off with election commission

World Bulletin / News Desk

The Chief Minister of an eastern Indian state agreed on Tuesday to India's election commission's demands for the transfer of eight officials accused of bias, according to Indian television channel NDTV.

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's West Bengal government made the decision to avoid a major stand-off with the election body, who had threatened to cancel elections in the state, but has maintained that it will decide the replacements for the officials.

The Election Commission of Inia had ordered Monday the transfer of five police superintendents, one district magistrate and two additional district magistrates after complaints of “bias” were received against them.

The West Bengal state government reportedly defied the order, saying it is “unable to affect the transfers”.

On Monday Banerjee accused election commission officials of favoring India's major parties, after it did not consult her government before making the transfer order.

“I challenge the Election Commission to remove anybody while I am in charge,” Banerjee reportedly said. “You will only listen to the Congress...to make the Congress win, BJP win. You will have to take my resignation. I will not remove a single officer, not while I am Chief Minister."

West Bengal, which sends 42 lawmakers to Indian parliament, goes to polls from April 17 in five phases of voting.

Last Mod: 08 Nisan 2014, 16:23
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