At least nine people were killed in post-election violence in eastern India, which erupted shortly after the state election results were announced on Sunday night.
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), led by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, suffered a defeat in the elections as the regional All India Trinamool Congress (TMC), headed by firebrand leader and incumbent Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, swept the polls by winning 213 seats of the 294-seat state legislative assembly.
There have been reports of 12 people killed across the state, but BJP West Bengal Vice President Ritesh Tiwari told Anadolu Agency over the phone, “I can confirm nine deaths and all of them are our workers.” He alleged that the “TMC goons attacked them.”
In response to BJP’s allegations, a TMC spokesman blamed the New Delhi government for “planning to impose presidential rule over the state.”
“BJP (is) planning for riots and killing their own and TMC (Trinamool Congress) workers,” Debangshu Bhattacharya Dev said on Tuesday afternoon. “Law and order is in the hands of the governor,” he tweeted, referring to the governor, who is appointed on the recommendation of federal government.
Meanwhile, West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankar tweeted: “(The) PM called and expressed his serious anguish and concern at (the) alarmingly worrisome law and order situation.”
“Violence, vandalism, arson, loot, and killings continue unabated,” he added.
The West Bengal elections were the most high-profile contest in the regional election of four states and one union territory, as Modi aggressively campaigned to come to power in the state.
Banerjee will be sworn in as chief minister for the third term on Wednesday.