Rahul Gandhi cancels poll rallies in West Bengal amid rising COVID-19 cases


New Delhi: In view of the spike in COVID-19 cases, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Sunday announced the suspension of all his forthcoming public rallies in poll-bound West Bengal and advised other political leaders to do the same.

“In view of the COVID situation, I am suspending all my public rallies in West Bengal. I would advise all political leaders to think deeply about the consequences of holding large public rallies under the current circumstances,” tweeted the Congress leader.

Last week, Trinamool Congress (TMC) had requested the Election Commission to club the remaining phases of the assembly elections into one in view of the intensifying COVID-19 situation. Following this, the Chief Electoral Officer in West Bengal called an all-party meeting over adhering to COVID-19 norms during the ongoing Assembly elections.

The first five phases of the eight-phase West Bengal Assembly elections have been already been completed. The sixth phase of the state Assembly polls is scheduled for April 22. Polling for the seventh and the eighth phase will be held on April 26 and April 29. The counting of votes will take place on May 2.

The political rallies and roadshows are being held in full swing.

West Bengal recorded 7,713 new COVID-19 cases on Saturday. With this, the total number of cases in the state goes to 6,51,508. The active number of COVID-19 cases stands at 45,300. Meanwhile, 5,95,668 people recovered from the disease so far. The COVID death toll in West Bengal reaches 10,540. (ANI)