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Nadia youngsters defy threats and cast first votes

Trinamul-backed miscreants beat up first-time voters

By Subhasish Chaudhuri

  • Published 7.05.19, 1:32 AM
  • Updated 7.05.19, 1:32 AM
Barnali Saha outside the polling station in Gayeshpur on Monday.
Barnali Saha outside the polling station in Gayeshpur on Monday. (Abhi Ghosh)

At least three first-time voters showed their strong resolve to exercise their franchise despite threats and assault by alleged Trinamul-backed miscreants in Nadia’s Gayeshpur that falls under the Bongaon Lok Sabha constituency on Monday.

Higher secondary examinee Barnali Saha and first-year under-graduate students Tiyasha Singh and Lokenath Das defied the attacks to cast their votes.

Barnali, a resident of Subhashpally in Gayeshpur town, was on her way to the polling centre with her cousins when suspected Trinamul workers prevented them. “They told us: ‘We know you will vote for Didi. So don’t worry, return home, we will cast your votes’,” Barnali said.

“I told them that I am a first-time voter and I want to cast my vote. One of them dragged me by hair and kicked me. They also beat up my cousins. But I was so determined to cast my vote that I told them that even ‘if you kill me, I will make all efforts to go to the booth’. Hearing the commotion, a local Trinamul leader rushed in and helped us reach the booth,” added Barnali.

Tiyasha Singh, BA student of Kalyani College, cast her vote at another booth in Gayeshpur though she had been dragged out of a toto and beaten. Lokenath Das, a student of RBC College in Naihati, voted at a Gayeshpur booth and recorded the threats on his mobile camera.