Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi referred to as for individuals to proceed to return out “in step with Covid-19 protocols” and vote over the last part of West Bengal state elections.
Modi and his Bharatiya Janata Celebration (BJP) have come beneath fireplace for holding a number of rallies forward of the elections in West Bengal, with hundreds in attendance and failing to abide by social distancing tips.
Critics have accused the BJP of placing politics earlier than public well being. India is now dealing with a large new wave of Covid-19 instances throughout the nation and nationwide shortages of oxygen.
On April 22, the Election Fee of India tightened restrictions for the remaining phases of the West Bengal state meeting elections, banning highway reveals, automobile rallies and huge public conferences with greater than 500 individuals after discovering political events and candidates had been flouting Covid-19 tips.
Nonetheless, political events – together with the BJP – continued to carry rallies all through the week, whilst India continued to file greater than 300,000 instances per day.
Thursday is the final day of voting in West Bengal. The polls opened round 7 a.m. native time (9:30p ET) and are anticipated to shut at 6:30 p.m. native (9a ET).
Southern Tamil Nadu and Kerala states, West Bengal and Assam states within the east and the union territory of Puducherry went to the polls on March 27, with voting going down throughout eight phases and ending on April 29. All votes are to be counted on Might 2, with the outcomes introduced on the identical day, although India’s Election Fee has banned victory procession.
On Thursday, the Election Fee additionally issued tips ordering all polling officers and candidates to offer damaging Covid-19 check reviews or to have had each doses of Covid-19 vaccine forward of Might 2.