File photo of an anti-power station agitation at Bhangar last year.
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Diamond Harbour: Five out of the nine Independent candidates who had filed nominations through WhatsApp to contest the Panchayat poll from Bhangar in South 24-Parganas have come out victorious.

All these five victors belong to an anti-Trinamool civil society group opposed to the setting up of a power station at Bhangar’s Polerhat as high voltage cables will pass over the paddy fields and this, the villagers believe, will hamper cultivation.

They had contested the election from Polerhat-II Gram Panchayat, which has 16 seats but voting was taken only for eight seats. This is because Trinamool got a walkover in the remaining eight seats in the absence of any rival candidates.

As the results were declared today, Trinamool was found winner only in three seats while the remaining five seats went to the kitty of the Independent candidates from the civil society group. Despite this, Trinamool will rule Polerhat-II GP because of the walkover that it had managed in eight seats.

Not only this. Trinamool muscleman and arch-rival of the civil society group, Arabul Islam, his son Hakimul Islam, and his wife have come out victorious.

Arabul has defeated his nearest Independent candidate by around 2,000 votes and this despite him being in police lock-up after an anti-Trinamool activist Hafizul Molla was shot dead by miscreants on 11 May. The opposition, however, alleged that he directed his followers on the election day from the lock-up itself.

Arabul’s win found a special mention in Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s news conference today. “We don’t know whether Arabul is guilty or not and yet we got him arrested. Despite lodged in jail, Arabul, his son, and wife have won the election by a huge margin. This shows that people of Bhangar love him,” Banerjee said.

The CM also said that Trinamool’s win at Polerhat-II GP signifies that those against the power station have lost.

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